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CAM LIVE: Evidence-based interventions with Brennen McKenzie, the SkeptVet


Brennen McKenzie, the SkeptVet and author of ‘Placebos for Pets! The Truth about Alternative Medicine in Animals’, joins Hannah to discuss how the use of evidence-based medicines can protect us and our pets from harm, be it physical, emotional or financial. Sadly, a lot of commonplace interventions do not have strong evidence of benefit. Brennen offers a rational overview of why using options with evidence is so important and how an intervention is tested to gain a level of confidence in its safety and efficacy. Topics posed by CAM followers are covered including zoopharmacognosy, NSAIDs, turmeric, CBD, glucosamine, essential fatty acids, LED and laser and PEMF.

Every CAM LIVE finishes with Ten Top Tips for managing your arthritic dog (from 1:12:43 in this video).

Dr Brennen McKenzie has always pursued a wide range of interests both within and outside science. After completing a bachelor’s degree with majors in English Literature and Biology at the University of California at Santa Cruz, he obtained a Master’s in Physiology and Animal Behavior and worked for several years in environmental and behavioral enrichment for captive primates. He then attended the School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and began working as a small animal general practice veterinarian. In addition to his clinical work, he has served as President of the Evidence-Based Veterinary Medicine Association, lectured on evidence-based medicine at numerous veterinary conferences, and published journal articles on such topics as overdiagnosis, cognitive bias in veterinary clinical decision-making, and the philosophical underpinnings of evidence-based and alternative medicine. Since 2009, he has managed the SkeptVet Blog (http://skeptvet.com/Blog/) and associated social media outlets, including a series of science-based pet health videos on YouTube. He has continued to pursue post-graduate training and in 2015 he completed his MSc in Epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine.

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