Alternative Medicine

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Some think chelation can cure autism

There is no evidence of chelation curing autism.

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The field of alternative medicine is as wild and woolly as the old west.  There are all kinds of people doing all kinds of things.  Some are studied and tested, some are intuitive, and some seem to come from Uranus.

So it is no surprise that the FDA occasionally cracks down on some of the most flagrant offenders.

Please listen to someone with a lot of formal training and many years of experience in clinical trials and many treatment modalities — There are no miracle cures. If there really were, I think I could have a handle on them by now.

One hot button recently is autism.  And one of the biggest misconceptions is that it is just mercury poisoning.  Believe me (and a million other medical experts) – it is NOT.

There are plenty of people around who want to believe in the magic bullet. Somehow this goes hand-in-hand with believing that doctors and drug companies are hiding things that are wildly effective.

Truth, science, and the American way are effective. People are always devoted to things that will make them a lot of money.  They may even convince themselves that they are on the way to miracles. Old fashioned values like responsible experimentation, even responsible observation … the heck with it.

I will not expostulate. I see it all the time.  Some of my colleagues – and I mean trained and licensed MDs – seem to settle on one treatment and think it fixes everything.  I suspect it is because they are basically lazy and cynical, but that may not be fair.  But in my years of practice I’ve seen docs who give everybody thyroid hormone, others who firmly believe in vitamin D, the apostles of Prozac, and other things too bizarre for me to really believe. Read more on Denial, Wishful Thinking And Chelation…

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I really am not worried about my reputation among my medical colleagues, as most of them think I’m “cracked” anyway.

However, just as an actor or director doesn’t make a movie just to get an Oscar, I don’t worry about what other doctors think – as long as I take good care of my patients.

Maybe that’s why the most frequently asked question by my patients is, “Why didn’t my other doctors know/discover/tell me this?” Read more on Yes, Virginia, Mercury Could Be At The Root Of Your Problem…

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Oh, I know most people want to believe, the same way I do, that our federal regulatory agencies are doing their job. The only thing I can say in their defense is that their job is pretty much impossible.

Look, I mean who is going to send someone to check on every blessed piece of glassware? I once actually treated a case of cadmium poisoning in a young man who had been a ceramic artist.  Told him to get some intravenous chelation. Although this remains a controversial procedure for some things – like arteriosclerosis — nobody debates that it is the fastest and best way, when adequately monitored, to get heavy metals, like mercury and cadmium and such, out of your body.  A simple, gentle IV.  It’s mainstream medical practice and its been around for many years.

He didn’t much like the idea of needles puncturing his skin.  Alternative medicine embraces multiple oral protocols that seem to work just fine, so I referred him to another doctor who offered such things. Read more on Heavy Metal Poisoning From Drinking Glasses…

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I try really hard to make my time with patients count. I talk to them just like I would talk to a family member or next door neighbor. Although this occasionally frightens them, they generally get pretty relaxed and ask me questions I can’t believe they would come up with. I think they do this — and I connect with them — because I do something called “mirroring.” Yes, you can try this at home.

I will always be happy that at some point in my residency I dragged myself to Kansas City to sit in some hotel function room and study Neuro Linguistic Programming, now known colloquially as “NLP,” with one of its originators. Read more on NLP And Mirroring…

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Every doctor has known the frustration of trying to help a patient who just won’t even try to comply with treatment.

Everyone who is in the military, works for the government or a corporation/company of just about any size knows the frustration of dealing with an unresponsive or non-functional bureaucracy.

In my line of work, I deal with both — traveling around and answering cries for help and then finding obstructions, denial and wishful thinking making the solutions impossible. Read more on The Benefits Of Singing…

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Medical Marijuana LogoIt seems that the first television advertisement for medical marijuana has hit the California airwaves without a whimper.  The first TV commercial just ran on a Sacramento station.

Having experience in many clinics from the Oregon border to the Mexican border, I can confirm that in most of California, medical marijuana is commonplace.  It does not seem to be tremendously difficult to obtain, and I have attended many patients have valid prescriptions for it.

There is a list of conditions for which it is alleged to help, which is as long as your arm.  Hearing about these conditions where cannabis is the preferred treatment usually causes me to smile, and I suspect that the list continues to grow with each new patient who wishes to use this remedy.   Read more on Marijuana–The Only Drug Without FDA Approval…

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People in an Australian study would rather have a pill than agree to eat chocolate daily for a chronic heart condition.

Some people have an idea why, but I will tell you the truth and the light.

After 30 years of practicing medicine in three different specialties, in three different countries, and in every kind of clinical situation anyone can imagine, I have come to a realization.

No matter how pleasant or non-invasive the alternative methods  proposed, people want to just take a pill and get better. Read more on It’s Time For Your Daily Dose Of Chocolate…

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The first time I found out about neuropathic pain, it was not even mine.

I was living in Amiens, above a cafe, and had adopted the boss, the patronne, as a surrogate mother.  I came home late from a laboratory class one night and I tried to figure out what I was looking at with a dim light only on in back.  I found this 80 year old woman in the back room with her blouse undone and an older man apparently angry at her pointing his finger. I ran in and asked him to identify himself, as I was concerned for Madame, and there was apparently some difficulty.  He was nearly as old as she and they were both laughing heartily indeed.  That is how I met this noble “docteur du quartier” (neighborhood doctor) who was performing what he described as an “honest and beneficial auscultation” and prescribing for her chest cold.

His whole practice was cafe backrooms.  His patients the cafe patrons, who often had no cars, or no place else to go for medical care.  He practiced a simple medicine, and as I advanced in school and he knew what I was learning he told me all that was too technical for him, and he would leave that to the young ones, especially the girls like me, because girls pay a lot of attention to detail and remember everything.  And girls are nice and take good care of patients because they care a lot and try very, very hard.  He told me not to tell anybody he said that. I never told anybody he said that until just now. Read more on Neuropathic Pain and Benfotiamine…

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I really do like the people at Health Freedom USA.  They are not speaking the truth, however.  Every day people are killed by natural phenomena, as we have been recently reminded by the tragic earthquake in Haiti.  Some people who walk into my office and tell me that they want to “go natural” are barely holding themselves together with complex lists of prescription medications.  I understand their desire to find relief without drugs, but I can’t help but jump up and down and yell, “Tornadoes are natural!  Earthquakes are natural!  They kill a lot of people.”

Alternative MedicineI have seen too many people harmed by “nutraceuticals,” a relatively new term for natural substances that are supposed to take the place of prescription drugs.  Some of these natural regimens have been devised by health professionals, but most are the result of individual research and curiosity. I am not yet aware of any sure-fire replacement for a doctor.  The closest we have today is the internet.  After all, I never claimed to have knowledge that the public could not find out with a little help from their favorite search engines. Read more on Natural Doesn’t Always Mean Safe…

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