Science & Technology

Researchers warn that meta-reviews amplify bad ivermectin data and even fake ivermectin data

Some bad apples messed up Metathe study Its first promotion IvermectinAs a promising remedy for, a common anthelmintic COVID-19 (New Coronavirus Infection)..

Within a few weeks of being available online, some of these Clinical trial We found that the overview contained an impossible number, an unexplained cohort inconsistency, an inconsistent timeline, and substantial methodological weaknesses.

One of these Preprint analysis Then withdrawn, but another Revised After it turns out that it contains incorrect data.

Despite a number of serious mistakes, millions of doses of ivermectin have already been given to COVID-19 patients worldwide, while others virus We take the problem in our hands and use it as a precautionary measure. May endanger their health..

Some scientists are now Meta-analysis A process to prevent this from happening again.

In the letter published in NatureThe author argues that studies should not be included in the meta-analysis unless raw individual patient data (IPD) is accessible.

If the author of the original study is not willing or unable to provide such detailed information, then the clinical trial should simply be excluded. Researchers say that such a simple criterion would have stopped the publication of meta-studies on ivermectin so far.

“We recognize that by recommending IPD reviews, we are seeking changes to practices that have been accepted almost universally for decades,” the author of the letter said. increase. Admit, “But the resulting potential for harm to patients on a global scale demands more.”

According to one of the authors, the epidemiologist Gideon Maerowitzkats, the process behind the meta-analysis is almost entirely trustworthy. No checkpoints have been set as no one is expected to commit fraud.

Unfortunately, this means that some meta-studies rely on experimental data that may never have been collected.

“In the case of ivermectin, there is evidence that a significant number of studies in the literature contained in the meta-analysis are potentially or arguably fraudulent, and these have been included in dozens of meta-analyses for months without minor problems. “Meyerowitz-Katz told Science Alert.

“You can only detect this kind of fraud when you look at the actual line data, so you need to make this the standard method.”

That’s what happened at ivermectin this summer. In July, some meta-analyses reported that antiparasitic drugs were “Very useful in controlling COVID-19 infection“But in the weeks that followed, much of the evidence base disappeared on closer inspection.

Currently, there is no evidence that ivermectin can be used to treat COVID-19, and as in the United States, incorrect doses can be quite dangerous. Federal Drug Advisory (FDA) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has repeatedly warned since August.

Just this weekend, 5 people Reportedly I was hospitalized after taking COVID-19 medication in Oregon.

Ivermectin can not only cause overdose when taken improperly, but can also interact with anticoagulants. Cause side effects It’s like nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, low blood pressure, dizziness, seizures, coma, and even death.

According to recently Nature letter, Current Pandemic “In both scientific literature and social media, it provides a fertile basis for the evidence of validity to be amplified even with inadequate claims.”

“This context”, author continue, “It can quickly translate almost any apparently favorable conclusion from a relatively weak or series of trials into a wide range of clinical practice and public policy.”

For years, scientists have pointed this out, and some In search of Updated standard To the long-accepted practices behind meta-analysis.

Often one Meta-analysis It is considered better evidence than a single well-conducted clinical trial, but it is not always the case. Ultimately, the effectiveness of a meta-analysis depends on the rigor of the sampled research, but not all scientific journals carry out the same quality control.

Therefore, a meta-analysis can select only the best trials to include, but it can easily include more suspicious data. And it can make all the difference.

For example, in the case of ivermectin, some meta-analyses have been distorted by a small number of studies using data that have been or may have been tampered with.

Incorrect information makes it much more difficult to withdraw or clarify. Even after certain conclusions have been shown to be groundless, changing people’s minds can be a daunting task, as evidenced by the experience of vaccines.

In the first place, it is very important to prevent the leakage of false information, and some scientists think that it is necessary to fill the cracks in the meta-analysis process.others suggestion Meta-research should be abolished altogether, as it may not actually contribute much to scientific progress and may actually make water turbid.

(Most of such studies are likely to be done by authors who only need publication records, as meta-analysis does not require their own lab work.)

At the very least, the author of a recent letter states that the raw data contained in the meta-analysis needs to be revisited before making a drastic claim. Whether that actually happens is another matter.

“Our recommendations are simple and easy to adopt,” Meerowitz-Katz told Science Alert.

“I don’t think many will pick them up, but they could.”

The letter was published in Nature..

Disclosure Statement: Gideon Maerowitz-Kats previously wrote an article on Science Alert.

Researchers warn that meta-reviews amplify bad ivermectin data and even fake ivermectin data Researchers warn that meta-reviews amplify bad ivermectin data and even fake ivermectin data

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