Last week, Karl Schwartz of Patients Against Lymphoma, posted information about a free downloadable e-book "Know Your Chances - Understanding Health Statistics", which is available from the National Center for Biotechnology Information (ncbi.nlm.nih.gov).
Steven Woloshin, MD, MS,
Lisa M. Schwartz, MD, MS, and
H. Gilbert Welch, MD, MPH.
"The goal of this book is to help you better understand health information by
teaching you about the numbers behind the messages-the medical statistics on
which the claims are based.
The book will also familiarize you with risk charts, which are designed to
help you put your health concerns in perspective.
By learning to understand the numbers and knowing what questions to ask,
you'll be able to see through the hype and find the credible information-if
Worth checking out if you'd appreciate a plain English explanation of what it means to have an x% greater (or lesser) chance of you developing (or avoiding) different medical conditions if you exercise, take particular medications, are overweight, etc, etc. This book puts such commonly used statements into an easily understandable context, so you'll know when to dismiss apparently scary risk increases and perhaps be encouraged to make some worthwhile changes where the risk/benefit warrants this.