28 February 1998

Medical advice

There’s a stupid ad for some medical product, which says “In clinical trials, the most common side effect was headache”.

A curiously evasive and meaningless statement. The moment I heard it, I immediately realized that the lab results must have looked something like this:

Side effect Incidence
Headache 99%
Massive brain haemorrhage 98%
Malignant cancer of the genitals 92%
Tertiary syphilis 85%
Windows NT 76%
Smallpox 40%
Death of one kidney 33%
Explosive cranial dispersal 20%
Total body ionization 11%

So beware.

© mathew 2017