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The diagnosis and treatment of dyspareunia

Dyspareunia is a common but poorly understood problem affecting around 7.5% of sexually active women. It is an important and neglected area of female health, associated with substantial morbidity and distress. Women may be seen by several clinicians before a diagnosis is reached, There are also specialist psychosexual clinics, where men and women...


Patient information is key to the therapeutic relationship

Sue Farrington is chair of the Patient Information Forum, a member organisation which promotes best practice in anyone who produces information for patients. In this podcast, she discusses what makes good patient information, why doctors should be pleased when patients arrive at an appointment with a long list of questions, and why patients are...


15 seconds to improve your workplace

15s30m is a social movement to reduce frustration & increase joy - the idea is to spend 15 seconds of your time now, and save someone else 30 minutes down the line. To talk about their movement we're joined by the founders, Rachel Pilling, consultant ophthalmologist, and Dan Wadsworth, transformation manager - both from Bradford Teaching...


11 Norman Swan

A familiar voice to millions, Dr Norman Swan is Australia’s best known health reporter. Having presented the ABC’s Health Report for more than three decades, this week he’s on the other side of the microphone. Norman joins Ray to talk frankly about medicine and the media. He shares some of the joys and challenges of his work inside and outside of...


Mendelian Randomisation - for the moderately intelligent

Mendelian randomisation - it’s a technique that uses the chance distribution of genes in a population, combined with big data sets, to investigate causative relationships. But there are a lot of questions we have in The BMJ about how the technique works - the association between genes and apparently non-biologically mediated behaviours, how much...


What does the public think of the NHS?

It’s been quite a year for the NHS - it just turned 70, had a winter crisis like never before, got over junior doctor strikes, but then was hit by a series of scandals about breast screening, and now opiate prescriptions. At the same time, we’ve seen demonstrations in favour of the service and even widespread public backing for more money. So...


James Munro cares about patients opinions.

Getting feedback from people who use NHS services is essential to assessing their value - and improving their quality. Hospitals and general practices widely post information about patient's satisfaction with their services on their websites, but approach tells us little about how feedback changes things on the ground . In this podcast, James...


Prof. Wendy Burn - the changing focus of psychiatry.

Wendy Burn is a consultant old age psychiatrist, and new president of the Royal College of Psychiatrists. Her work on dementia has given her an affinity for the neurobiological basis of psychiatry - and her tenure at the college is seeing a move to wards this neurobiological model in the teaching of the profession. In this interview she talks...


Your recommended dose of Ray Moynihan

Ray Moynihan is a senior research assistant at Bond University, a journalist, champion of rolling back too much medicine, and host of a new series “The Recommended Dose” from Cochrane Australia. In the series, Ray has talked to some of the people who shape the medical evidence that underpin healthcare around the world - the series aim is to...


Evidence in a humanitarian emergency

At evidence live this year, one of the sessions was about the work of Evidence Aid - and their attempt to bring high quality evidence to the frontline of a humanitarian crisis. In that situation, it’s very difficult to know what will work - a conflict, or even immediately post-conflict situation is characterised by chaos - and merely doing...


When an investigative journalist calls

At Evidence Live this year, the focus of the conference was on communication of evidence - both academically, and to the public. And part of that is the role that investigative journalism has to play in that. At the BMJ we’ve used investigative journalistic techniques to try and expose wrong doing on the part of government and industry - always...


Don Berwick - you can break the rules to help patients

Don Berwick, president emeritus of the Institute of Healthcare Improvement, and former Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. In this conversation he discusses how he went from being a paediatrician to running Medicare for Obama, how we can create headroom in stressed systems, and breaking the rules to make things better...


Darknet Opioids

When tackling societal problems - like the opioid epidemic in the US - there are two ways of approaching it. One is to reduce demand - by organising treatment programmes, or reducing the underlying reasons why people may become addicted in the first place - but that’s hard. So governments often turn to the other route - reducing supply - and...


Ashish Jha tries to see the world as it is.

There’s a lot going on in the world at the moment - Ebola’s back, Puerto Rico is without power and the official estimations of death following the hurricane are being challenged. The WHO’s just met to decide what to do about it all, as well as sorting out universal healthcare, access to medicines, eradicating polio, etc etc. To make sense of that...


Nutritional science - why studying what we eat is so difficult.

We at The BMJ care about food, and if our listener stats are to be believed, so do you. In this podcast we talk to a few of the authors of a new series, published next week on, which tries to provide some insight into the current state of nutritional science - where the controversies lie, where there’s broad agreement, and the journey of...


The misunderstanding of overdiagnosis

In December 2017, the NEJM’s national corespondent, Lisa Rosenbaum, published an article “The Less-Is-More Crusade — Are We Overmedicalizing or Oversimplifying?” The article aimed a broadside against those who are campaigning against the overuse of medicine, and the over diagnosis of treatment. This week in the BMJ we’ve published a rebuttal...


Biochem for kids

Each time you order a test for a child, do you think the population that makes up the baseline against which the results are measured? It turns out that that historically those reference intervals have been based on adults - but children, especially neonates and adolescents, are undergoing physiological changes that mean those reference intervals...


Antidepressants and weight gain

Patients who are depressed and prescribed antidepressants may report weight gain, but there has been limited research into the association between the two. However new observational research published on aims to identify that association. Rafael Gafoor, a psychiatrist and researcher at Kings College London, and one of the authors of that...


Think of healthcare is an ecosystem, not a machine

Complexity science offers ways to change our collective mindset about healthcare systems, enabling us to improve performance that is otherwise stagnant, argues Jeffrey Braithwaite, professor of health systems research and president elect of the International Society for Quality in Health Care. Read the full...


New antivirals for Hepatitis C - what does the evidence prove?

There’s been a lot of attention given to the new antirviral drugs which target Hepatitis C - partly because of the burden of infection of the disease, and the lack of a treatment that can be made easily accessible to around the world, and partly because of the incredible cost of a course of treatment. But a new article on BMJ talks about the...