Trick or Treatment

Thursday 19th February 2009 @ 19:00

Non-Member: £12.00 ; Staff: £5.00 ; Student: £3.00

Dr Simon Singh, MBE, Author, Broadcaster, Imperial Alumnus

Evidence based medicine is an important concept in medical practice.

However evidence can be difficult to gather on some alternative practices but does this mean that they are less valid? Millions are spent on non-orthodox therapies and there is an increasing acceptance of there practice within the NHS and other quarters. Which therapies might help patients and how do we prove their efficacy.

Simon Singh

Simon Singh has caused considerable controversy and legal challenges with his latest writings. He has co-authored Trick or Treatment? Alternative Medicine on Trial with Edzard Ernst, the world's first professor of complementary medicine. A former practitioner of traditional and alternative medicine Professor Ernst has spent over a decade at Exeter University meticulously analyzing the bewildering evidence for and against alternative therapies.

The writer and broadcaster, Simon Singh brings his considerable scientific knowledge and scrupulous impartiality to this controversial subject. Together they deliver a hard-hitting, yet honest examination of more than thirty of the most popular treatments including Acupuncture, Homeopathy, Reflexology, Chiropractic and Herbal medicines.

So confident that there is no evidence to show that homeopathic remedies are effective in the treatment of any conditions, except as a placebo, Ernst and Singh are offering £10,000 of their own money to anyone who can demonstrate the effectiveness of homeothapy by having a peer reviewed paper published the world's most independent authoritative body on the effectiveness of treatments, the Cochrane Collaboration.

In a much reported move (at least on the web and in Private Eye) the British Chiropractic Association is suing Simon for libel in an article that he wrote in the Guardian during Chiropractic Awareness Week, May 2008. The Guardian is not being sued and the article has been removed from its web site.

It is a matter of concern to some that evidence based science is not applied to alternative medicine prior to giving treatment to patients. The New England Journal of Medicine commented "This book meets the need for a current, evidence-based survey of alternative therapies to balance the widespread misinformation about them. Physicians should recommend the book to their patients, and it will help health practitioners provide patients with sound advice."

His previous books include The Code Book, Fermat's Last Theorem, Big Bang. All are available at local book shops or on Amazon. We hope to arrange for copies of Trick or Treatment to be available at the lecture when Simon will sign copies.

Simon speaks with clarity, humour, great knowledge and a number of surprising, entertaining and astonishing anecdotes. Please come and hear him.

Please download a poster and put it on a notice board near you.

Thursday 19 February 2009 7.00 pm

Venue: G16 Sir Alexander Fleming Building