Lancet 5 May 2007 Vol 369

Trials of education and screening in primary care tend to be labour-intensive and end up with large drop-out rates and low yields. This educational outreach and screening programme for tuberculosis in Hackney was certainly labour-intensive, and in terms of case-finding, had a low yield: but by increasing the uptake of BCG vaccination sevenfold (!) it certainly achieved something. David Mant and Dick Mayon-White try to draw out the generalisable lessons on p.1493.

Talc poudrage conjures up visions of mincing French courtiers surrounding Benjamin Franklin with wonder and admiration after he appeared at Court wearing his own hair– so free! such a child of nature! Nowadays talc is not applied so much to aristocratic wigs and faces as to babies’ bottoms, and to the pleural cavities of people with pleural effusions. Large-particle talc for pleurodesis in malignant pleural effusion can be remarkably effective and is safe.

Developmental dysplasia of the hip is a confusing subject, because we lack a clear knowledge of its natural history. What we do know about how to classify it, screen for it and treat it is explained at some length in this thorough review.