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|Title:||How the factoid of wind turbines causing “vibroacoustic disease” came to be “irrefutably demonstrated”.|
|Citation:||Australian & New Zealand Journal of Public Health. 2013;33: 244-9. [The definitive version is available at www3.interscience.wiley.com].|
|Abstract:||Objective In recent years, claims have proliferated in cyberspace that wind turbines cause a large variety of symptoms and diseases. One of these, “vibroacoustic disease” (VAD) is frequently mentioned. Seventeen reviews of the evidence for wind turbines causing harm have concluded the evidence to be poor yet regulatory authorities are now referencing health concerns as part of the rationale for set-back guidelines from residences, greatly reducing siting opportunities. The aim of this study is to examine the quality of the evidence on how VAD came to be associated with wind turbine exposure by wind farm opponents. Methods Searches of the web (Google advanced) and major research databases for papers on VAD and wind turbines. Self-citation analysis of research papers on VAD. Results Google returned 24,700 hits for VAD and wind turbines. Thirty five research papers on VAD were found, none reporting any association between VAD and wind turbines. Of the 35 papers, 34 had a first author from a single Portuguese research group. Seventy four per cent of citations to these papers were self-citations by the group. Median self-citation rates in science are around 7%. Two unpublished case reports presented at conferences were found asserting that VAD was “irrefutably demonstrated” to be caused by wind turbines. The quality of these reports was abject. Conclusions VAD has received virtually no scientific recognition beyond the group who coined and promoted the concept. There is no evidence of even rudimentary quality that vibroacoustic disease is associated with or caused by wind turbines. Implications The claim that wind turbines cause VAD is a factoid that has gone “viral” in cyberspace and may be contributing to nocebo effects among those living near turbines.|
|Description:||Pre-print of paper titled - A disease in search of a cause: a study of self-citation and press release pronouncement in the factoid of wind farms causing “vibroacoustic disease”. http://hdl.handle.net/2123/8362|
|Type of Work:||Article|
|Type of Publication:||Pre-print|
|Appears in Collections:||Research Papers and Publications. Public Health|
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