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Facts Versus Fears: Unfounded Health Scares

Facts Versus Fears: Unfounded Health Scares

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This report summarizes the most noteworthy health scares of the past half-century, reviewing the charges against a given product or substance and what the credible scientific studies had to say on each topic. Fourth edition (Sept. 2004).
This report summarizes the most noteworthy health scares of the past half-century, reviewing the charges against a given product or substance and what the credible scientific studies had to say on each topic. Fourth edition (Sept. 2004).

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Published by: American Council on Science and Health on Sep 09, 2010
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FACTS VERSUS FEARS:
A REVIEW OF THE GREATEST UNFOUNDEDHEALTH SCARES OF RECENT TIMES
byADAM J. LIEBERMAN (1967–1997)SIMONAC. KWON, M.P.H.with new chapters byTiffany Dovey, Sagine Gousse, and Aubrey StimolaPrepared for the American Council on Science and Health
FOURTH EDITION
First published May 1997Revised September 1997Revised June 1998Revised September 2004September 2004
AMERICAN COUNCILON SCIENCE AND HEALTH1995 Broadway, 2nd Floor, New York, NY10023-5860Phone: (212) 362-7044 • Fax: (212) 362-4919URLs: http://acsh.org • http://HealthFactsAndFears.comE-mail: acsh@acsh.org
 
THE AMERICAN COUNCILON SCIENCE AND HEALTH GRATEFULLYACKNOWLEDGES THECOMMENTS AND CONTRIBUTIONS OF THE FOLLOWING INDIVIDUALS.
ACSH accepts unrestricted grants on the condition that it is solely responsible for the conduct of its research and thedissemination of its work to the public. The organization does not perform proprietary research, nor does it acceptsupport from individual corporations for specific research projects. All contributions to ACSH—a publicly fundedorganization under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code—are tax deductible.Individual copies of this report are available at a cost of $5.00. Reduced prices for 10 or more copies are availableupon request.Copyright ©2004 by American Council on Science and Health, Inc.This book may not be reproduced in whole or in part, by mimeograph or any other means, without permission.
Dennis T. Avery, M.A.
Center for Global Food Issues Hudson Institute
Thomas G. Baumgartner,Pharm.D., M.Ed., FASHP, BCNSP
University of Florida
Michael B. Bracken, M.P.H., Ph.D.
Yale University
Christine M. Bruhn, Ph.D.
University of California
Zerle L. Carpenter, Ph.D.
Texas Agricultural ExtensionService
Robert G. Cassens, Ph.D.
University of Wisconsin
Donald G. Cochran, Ph.D.
Virginia Polytechnic Institute &State University Bernard L. Cohen, D.Sc.University of Pittsburgh
Ilene R. Danse, M.D.
 Enviromed Health Services, Inc.
John E. Dodes, D.D.S.
 National Council Against HealthFraud (New York Chapter)
J. Gordon Edwards, Ph.D.
San Jose State University
Madelon Lubin Finkel, Ph.D.
Cornell University MedicalCollege
F. J. Francis, Ph.D.
University of Massachusetts
Ronald E. Gots, M.D., Ph.D.
 International Center for Toxicology and Medicine
Michael Gough, Ph.D.
Cato Institute
Gordon W. Gribble, Ph.D.
 Dartmouth College
Rudolph J. Jaeger, Ph.D.
 Environmental Medicine, Inc.
Edward S. Josephson, Ph.D.
University of Rhode Island 
Ruth Kava, R.D., Ph.D.
 American Council on Scienceand Health
John G. Keller, Ph.D.
Olney, Maryland 
Manfred Kroger, Ph.D.
Pennsylvania State University
Frank C. Lu, M.D., BCFE
Consulting Toxicologist, Miami,Florida
Harold Lyons, Ph.D.
 Rhodes College
Howard D. Maccabee, Ph.D., M.D.
 Radiation Oncology Center,Walnut Creek, California
Roger P. Maickel, Ph.D.
Purdue University
Dade W. Moeller, Ph.D.
 Harvard University
John W. Morgan, Dr.P.H.
 Loma Linda University
Stephen J. Moss, D.D.S., M.S.
 New York University
Ian C. Munro, Ph.D., FRCPath
CanTox Inc.
John S. Neuberger, Dr.P.H.
University of Kansas School of  Medicine
Albert G. Nickel
 Lyons Lavey Nickel Swift, Inc.
James E. Oldfield, Ph.D.
Oregon State University
M. Alice Ottoboni, Ph.D.
Sparks, Nevada
David B. Roll, Ph.D.
U.S. Pharmacopeia
Gilbert Ross, M.D.
 American Council on Scienceand Health
R. T. Ravenholt, M.P.H., M.D.
Population Health Imperatives
Paul D. Saltman, Ph.D.
University of California, San Diego
Harold H. Sandstead, M.D.
University of Texas Medical Branch
Edgar J. Schoen, M.D.
Kaiser Permanente MedicalCenter 
Sidney Shindell, M.D., LL.B.
 Medical College of Wisconsin
James H. Steele, D.V.M., M.P.H.
The University of Texas, Houston
Fredric M. Steinberg, M.D., M.B.A.
Georgia Baptist Medical Center 
Elizabeth M. Whelan, Sc.D., M.P.H.
 American Council on Scienceand Health
Robert J. White, M.D., Ph.D.
 MetroHealth Medical Center 
Christopher F. Wilkinson, Ph.D.
 Burke, VA
James J. Worman, Ph.D.
 Rochester Institute of Technology
 
Table of Contents
Introduction1.The “Cranberry Scare” of 19592.DDT, 19623.Cyclamates, 19694.DES in Beef, 19725.Nitrites, 19726.Red Dye Number 2, 19767.Saccharin, 19778.Hair Dyes, 19779.Tris, 197710.Love Canal, 197811.Three Mile Island, 197912.Asbestos in Hair Dryers, 197913.2,4,5-T, 197914.Coffee and Pancreatic Cancer, 198115.Times Beach, 198216.EDB, 198317.Alar, 198918.Electric Blankets, 198919.Video Display Terminals, 198920.Benzene in Perrier, 199021.Amalgam Dental Fillings, 199022.Asbestos in Schools, 199323.Cellular Phones, 199324.Perchloroethylene in a Harlem School, 199725.Vaccines and Autism, 1998-26.Acrylamide, 2002: “The GreatPotato Chip Scare”27.PCBs in Farmed Salmon, 2003-428.Not-Quite-Great Unfounded Health ScaresConclusions343538404244464849515557606356812131517192123242529303132

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