Hey, Cochrane... 🤔

Digestible summaries of Cochrane reviews – which are as close to medical "truth" as exists.

Does caffeine improve symptoms of asthma?

Caffeine is a bronchodilator, and can modestly improve airway function for up to four hours in people with asthma. People taking a lung function test should avoid caffeine for at least four hours beforehand.


Does quarantine work to prevent the spread of viruses?

Studies simulating the spread of disease show that quarantine reduces the number of people with the disease by 44–81% and the number of deaths by 31–63%.


Do corticosteroids help people with acute respiratory distress syndrome?

There is some limited evidence that all-cause mortality in ARDS patients is reduced by corticosteroids.


Does gabapentin help with neuropathic pain?

Gabapentin improves neuropathic pain in adults suffering from severe pain after singles or due to diabetes.


Does Vitamin C help with colds?

Regular supplementation seems to shorten how long your cold is, but it doesn't make you less likely to get sick in the first place.


Does paracetamol (acetaminophen) help with lower back pain?

There's no evidence that paracetamol works better than placebo to treat acute or chronic back pain.


Do nicotine replacements (gum, sprays, etc.) help when quitting smoking?

All forms of nicotine replacement therapy are effective, and they increase the rate of long-term quitting by approximately 50% to 60% in those smoking 15 cigarettes a day or more.


Should I wear a bicycle helmet?

Wearing a helmet dramatically reduces the risk of injury to your head and face if you're in an accident.


Do antidepressants work better than placebo?

SSRI and tricyclic antidepressants work better than placebo when treating depression.


Will taking antioxidants before/after exercise stop me getting sore?

Antioxidant supplementation may make a very small difference, but it's likely to be so small as to be undetectable.


Is cannabis helpful for neuropathic pain?

There is a lack of good evidence that any cannabis-derived product works for any chronic neuropathic pain.