Kidney Punch

beyond reasonable doubt: a significant improvement

John Pickering Jan 15, 2015

For the second time in a week I have removed the word “significant” from a draft manuscript written by a colleague of mine in clinical medicine. In a significantly p’d I wrote about the myth of significance – that is about the ubiquitous use of the term “significant” in the medical literature to mean a […] … Read More

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Fat Mate: Fat chance lost

John Pickering Jan 02, 2015

I expect New Zealand tax dollars science spending to be better than what I read in the media this morning. Headlined in the Press was “Blenheim ‘fat mate’ loses 13.5kg in 8 weeks.”  The story was of someone on a trial of a locally produced diet supplement having lost weight.  So far nothing to peak my interest, […] … Read More

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Cheesecake files: Just how deadly is it?

John Pickering Nov 27, 2014

Everyone said it did, but how did they know and by how much?  Statements like “The development of AKI [Acute Kidney Injury] after CPB [Cardiopulmonary Bypass Surgery] is associated with a significant increase in infectious complications, an increase in length of hospital stay, and greater mortality.” (Kumar & Suneja, Anaesthesiology 2011 14(4):964) are common place […] … Read More

Can Doctors and Nurses help Dialysis patients recover?

John Pickering Nov 07, 2014

In the case of dialysis dependent acute kidney injury patients this is a question which Dr Dinna Cruz  and colleagues (University of California San Diego) are asking and seeking opinions from both nephrologists and non-nephrologist doctors and nurses involved in care of dialysis patients.  It was a question which arose out of discussions at this […] … Read More

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A funding model that works (for me)

John Pickering Sep 26, 2014

I’ve been a strong critic of the bias towards project rather than people based funding in public grants for science research.  Now, I celebrate being the recipient of people based funding thanks to a combined initiative of the Emergency Care Foundation, the Canterbury Medical Research Foundation, and the Canterbury District Health Board. What has transpired is … Continue reading → … Read More

It’s all about the math, dummy!

John Pickering Sep 18, 2014

No one understands the electoral maths of the NZ electoral system including the electoral commission apparently. Last night I put the latest figures from the “Poll of Polls” into the electoral commission calculator and I discovered the calculator was broken! I put the figures in with United Future winning one electorate seat, but when it crunched … Continue reading → … Read More

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World Science Week: Where are we in the world?

John Pickering Aug 26, 2014

It’s World Science Week.  So, where are we in the science world?  One measure showing our commitment to science is our expenditure on R&D.  If we compare ourselves to the other OECD countries, we see that we are right at the bottom of the pile at 1.27% of GDP and have recently been overtaken by Hungary. … Continue reading → … Read More

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Policy our lives depend on: Health research in election 2014

John Pickering Aug 21, 2014

We all care about health – ours, our family’s, and even that of one or two politicians (perhaps). We also care that the 15 billion dollar annual health budget is spent on health care that works.  I contend that both these cares are only as good as the health research that underpins the treatments we receive.  Therefore, … Continue reading → … Read More

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