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Careful approach to single studies needed (mask effectiveness)

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by sun rise, Dec 7, 2022.

  1. sun rise

    sun rise Śvāna Dharma
    Premium Member

    Apr 28, 2014
    I've too often seen (and might have done it myself) seizing on a single study that appears to prove something. Case in point:

    Study Comparing Surgical and N95 Masks Sparks Concern
    • the fit-testing protocol wasn't defined
    • results may not apply to other countries because of differences in treatment effects.
    • wide confidence intervals indicating a high degree of uncertainty,
    • differences in self-reported adherence
    • baseline SARS-CoV-2 antibody status
    • between-country differences in vaccination coverage
    • dominant circulating variants
    • HCWs in Canada were allowed to make their own decisions about whether to don a mask or N95, regardless of which intervention they were assigned to.
    • 81% of N95 users reported using them all the time.
    • Most HCWs not infected in hospital
      About a quarter of participants reported never caring for COVID patients yet were still included in the analysis
      relied on self-reported household and community exposures, which he said are unreliable because many infections go unrecognized.
      Study participants were required to get tested for infection only if they developed symptoms
    • They use a figure of '>50% efficacy' for excluding vaccines, but do not present the estimates of efficacy for Sinopharm and other vaccines, or any information on how they calculate this,
    • A control group was also needed,
    Some of the bullet points come from here: Study on masks vs N95 respirators for health workers spurs concerns | CIDRAP

    • Informative Informative x 4