How long will they get away with this?

How long will they get away with this?

Momma Kliff used to say that money buys lots of things but it cannot buy happiness. She also noted that even the most respected institutions and individuals are not immune from temptation particularly when there is a fat payday involved. Or as she once said, “No one is above temptation and many will sell their sole just to make a buck.”

These words came back to us today when we received an email from our friends at OneDrop which stated;

“Next week, at the Stanford Medicine X Conference, One Drop will present study results showing a 1.2% absolute reduction in A1c among people with type 2 diabetes using One Drop | Mobile with One Drop | Experts personalized diabetes coaching on iPhone and Apple Watch. See abstract for additional details.”

Naturally we checked the abstract which can be found at;

Which stated the following;

“Beginning in October 2016, Evidation Health, Inc. recruited 144 English-speaking U.S. adults with T2D to complete a survey, receive an Apple Watch, and use the One Drop iOS/watchOS app for an IRB approved study. We tested de-identified blood glucose and self-care data tracked in the app during that 3-month evaluation. Pooled repeated measures models assessed within changes in blood glucose and self-care over time, differences by high vs. low tracking, and the interaction of time by high vs. low tracking.”

Just so we are clear the abstract does not mention that these patients had their HbA1c’s independently verified nor does it say what these patients average testing frequency was prior to and then after using this way cool whiz bang system. Although it does state; “The ‘One Drop app + Experts’ significantly improved blood glucose, carbohydrate intake, and physical activity over 3 months. Findings support the health benefit of a diabetes app with passive data tracking, in-app coaching, and a global reach.”

At least OneDrop is consistent in that they have a panache for hyperbole and chutzpah.

What surprises us is that such a respected institution as Stanford would allow this kind of crap. Listen we could poke so many holes in this “study” that it would make a block of cheddar cheese look like Swiss. Never mind that 3 months is not a real measure of whether these “so-called” improvements are sustainable or that the company continues to use math wizardry (what’s that old saying that figures lie and liars figure).

Another surprise, although not really, is that no one else in this space is calling out OneDrop and exposing them for playing very fast and very loose with so-called facts. The reason as best we can guess is that they look at this crap and figure it validates their way cool whiz band toy too. One just might think that if OneDrop is so damn good they would spend money on a real clinical study. That they would stop all the nonsense but that would be like asking a leopard to remove its spots.

Listen we are not against any of these toys but just once we’d like to see them go through the rigors of a real clinical trial.

So, as we head to EASD, and yes there are many companies across the pond who are also trying to put lipstick on a pig, we just to have accept the fact that no one seems to care very much. That now that we have fake news why not have fake studies too.