Don't (Always) Believe the Hype

Don't (Always) Believe the Hype

If you keep up with our blogs regularly, you’ll know that we are constantly analyzing new studies, research and development and breaking down what it means for you. However, today we thought we would take the opportunity to address the fact that while studies can be promising, they aren’t without their flaws - and we shouldn’t always take their overarching declaration to be 100% correct.

For instance, in a recent study carried out to determine the best treatment options for psoriasis, one treatment was ruled out as the most successful one. And although we’ve discussed biological agents before, this study proved that another treatment overrules them (in case you’re wondering - the winning treatment seems to be ustekinumab).

The study was not without its flaws, though. The researchers admitted that it came with a lot of limitations: half the patients had already used one of the treatments before, which is known to lower their response to another agent in that category. In contrast, very few patients had been exposed to ustekinumab before the study, which then places that agent in a favorable position. In addition, there were only a few patients on some of the agents, and despite this, comparisons were still made.

The media may have approached this story by touting the benefits of ustekinumab and how it’s the next big thing for psoriasis - but they may have neglected to list the huge number of flaws in the study that may make you question the validity of that overarching claim. From a scientific perspective, we are not always quick to jump to those conclusions and accept headline news. It is best to rely on multiple studies coming to the same conclusion.

The bottom line is this: new research is amazing, and it’s always trying to help us move so much in the right direction. However, I would urge you to not fully invest your opinion in one media news story, and know that every study has its flaws.

If you have a skin concern and want to speak to a provider about your options, please visit our Dermatology specialists at one of our locations in Middle Tennessee: NashvilleFranklinColumbia, and Pulaski.

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Dr Pena

About The Author

Dr. Pena is a Board-Certified Medical Dermatologist, Mohs skin cancer surgeon, and cosmetic dermatologist. Her mission is to educate the diverse patient populations she serves, and their communities, on the importance of skin care in decreasing the risk of skin cancer and minimizing the early signs of aging. She founded Skin Solutions Dermatology with numerous clinics in Nashville, Tennessee and surrounding Middle Tennessee.

Dr. Julia Pena, MD