* NHS lacks allergy expertiseMore than 80 per cent of respondents to a British survey regard the National Health Service as having 'poor' provisions for treating allergies. Furthermore, the report revealed that only a handful of doctors in the UK are trained in allergies, which have reached epidemic proportions (BMJ, 2003; 326: 1415).
*HRT raises cancer risk by 100 per centFurther data are now available confirming earlier WDDTY reports that women who take hormone replacement therapy for five years or more are doubling their risk of developing breast cancer (BMJ, 2003; 327: 9).
* Heart problems following vaccineA significant number of cardiac events [involving ischaemia (blocked blood flow) or inflammation of the tissues surrounding the heart] were reported following a smallpox vaccination programme implemented throughout the USA, raising questions concerning the vaccine's safety (JAMA, 2003; 290: 31-4).
* Chronic back pain in children is mistreatedMany UK children and adolescents with chronic back pain are not being given the appropriate treatment by doctors due to a lack of research in this area as well as the misguided perception among the medical profession that back pain is an adults-only problem (BMJ, 2003; 326: 1409).
* Radiation therapy causes breast cancer in Hodgkin's patientsRadiation therapy, which is commonly used in the treatment of Hodgkin's disease, has been linked to an increase in breast cancer - and the more treatment received, the higher the risk, according to new research (Lancet, 2003; 362: 51).
* Cancer trials not representativeAlthough the majority of cancer cases in the USA are aged over 65, such patients are not being included in trials of cancer therapies, creating a discrepancy between research results, and cancer management and care (JAMA, 2003; 290: 27-8).