Know Your Chances Understanding Health Statistics

ISBN-10: 0520252225

ISBN-13: 9780520252226

Edition: 2009

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Description: Every day we are bombarded by television ads, public service announcements, and media reports warning of dire risks to our health and offering solutions to help us lower those risks. But many of these messages are incomplete, misleading, or exaggerated, leaving the average person misinformed and confused. Know Your Chancesis a lively, accessible, and carefully researched book that can help consumers sort through this daily barrage by teaching them how to interpret the numbers behind the messages. In clear and simple steps, the authors--all of them staff physicians at the Veterans Administration Medical Center in White River Junction, Vermont--take the mystery out of medical statistics. By learning to understand the medical statistics and knowing what questions to ask, readers will be able to see through the hype and find out what--if any--credible information remains. The book's easy-to-understand charts will help ordinary people put their health concerns into perspective. This short, reader-friendly volume will foster communication between patients and doctors and provide the basic critical-thinking skills necessary for navigating today's confusing health landscape.

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Book details

List price: $29.95
Copyright year: 2009
Publisher: University of California Press
Publication date: 11/30/2008
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 110
Size: 7.00" wide x 9.00" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 0.880
Language: English

Steven Woloshin, MD, MS, Lisa Schwartz, MD, MS,andH. Gilbert Welch, MD, MPH,are general internists, faculty members at Dartmouth Medical School, and researchers in the VA Outcomes Group, Department of Veterans Affairs, White River Junction, Vermont. Woloshin and Schwartz have written many articles together for leading medical journals, and Welch is the author ofShould I Be Tested for Cancer? Maybe Not and Here's Why(UC Press).

What This Book is About
What Is My Risk?
Understanding Risk
Putting Risk in Perspective
Risk Charts: A Way to Get Perspective
Can I Reduce My Risk?
Judging the Benefit of a Health Intervention
Not All Benefits Are Equal: Understand the Outcome
Does Risk Reduction Have Downsides?
Consider the Downsides
Do the Benefits Outweigh the Downsides?
Developing a Healthy Skepticism
Beware of Exaggerated Importance
Beware of Exaggerated Certainty
Who's Behind the Numbers?
Extra Help
Quick Summary
Glossary
Number Converter and Risk Charts
Credible Sources of Health Statistics
Notes
Index
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