Thursday, February 26, 2015

UK Surgeon DocBastard wonders why patients research the internet for health care answers. Don't think he liked the answers. UK Surgeon "DocBastard" gets slammed on his DailyBeast article.

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DocBastard, as he calls himself, got an opinion piece published in the DailyBeast slamming alternative medicine and wondering Why health care consumers trust the internet for answers to their questions rather than their doctors He got a lot of heartfelt answers he probably did not, but should have expected.

See screen shots of a few sample posted comments. As I watch the trend away from conventional medicine towards alternative forms of health care (which DocBastard slams in his article), conventional medicine has a lot of work to do to improve its very tarnished image. As you will glean from the comments, conventional medical pracitioners are clearly their own worst enemy.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Passage of the Lord Saatachi Bill Has Impressive Supporters

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Letters to The Telegraph in support of passing the Saatchi Bill Read the original HERE

"SIR – We note the successful third reading of the proposed Medical Innovation Bill (the Saatchi Bill).

While there have been significant advances in cancer treatments in recent decades, there remain areas where there has been no meaningful advance. Diseases such as glioblastoma, sarcoma or pancreatic cancer have seen no clinically relevant improvements over those decades.

While clinicians have leeway to prescribe drugs “off-label”, we know from our direct experience with patients that viable clinical options are not being used in the vast majority of “terminal” cases. When all standard therapies have failed, and there are no clinical trials available, the response is almost uniformly to move that patient into palliative care.

We do not dispute that the clinical trial is necessary in order to identify those advances that work and those that do not. However, the evidence base for medicine can come from many different sources. Data collection is a necessary corollary of increased off-label usage and the new registry included in the Bill will record information (including side-effects and outcome data) in every instance of an innovative treatment. This ground-breaking registry will enable us to analyse real-world data, thereby providing greater patient protection than exists at present.

Ultimately the question that must be addressed is: what can we responsibly offer to those patients for whom there are no suitable clinical trials?"

Pan Pantziarka,The George Pantziarka TP53 Trust
Dominic Hill, Film maker & patient advocate
Professor Marc-Eric Halatsch, Professor of Neurosurgery, University of Ulm
Lydie Meheus, Managing Director, Anticancer Fund, Brussels
Dr Gauthier Bouche, Medical Director, Anticancer Fund, Brussels
Richard Gerber, Glioblastoma survivor and patient advocate
Professor Angus Dalgleish, St George’s Hospital, University of London
Professor Ahmed Ashour Ahmed, Professor of Gynaecological Oncology, University of Oxford
James Hargrave. Empower Access to Medicine
Dr John Symons, Director, Cancer of Unknown Primary Foundation
Flóra Raffai, Findacure
Professor Stephen Kennedy, Professor of Reproductive Medicine, University of Oxford
Dr Ian N Hampson, Reader in Viral Oncology, University of Manchester
Professor Andy Hall, Associate Dean of Translational Research, Newcastle University
Professor Emeritus Ben A Williams, Psychology, long-term glioblastoma survivor, patient advocate, Moore’s Cancer Center, University of California, San Diego
Dr Al Musella, President, Musella Foundation, founder The Grey Ribbon crusade: umbrella organisation for over 100 brain cancer charities
Professor John Boockvar, Director, Brain Tumor Center Lenox Hill Hospital NYC
Professor Emil J Freireich, Ruth Harriet Ainsworth Chair, Developmental Therapeutics, The University of Texas, MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, Texas
Brett Shockley, Patient advocate, Professor David Walker
Professor Pediatric Oncology, University of Nottingham
Laura Mancini, Clinical Scientist, National Hospital for Neurology and Neurosurgery, UCLH NHS Foundation Trust, London
John Morrissey, Adviser to the Children’s Cancer Research Fund
Stephen Western, Patient advocate,
Richard E Kast, MD, IIAIGC Study Center
Charlie Chan FRCS, Consultant Breast Surgeon
Professor Chas Bountra, Professor of Translational Medicine, University of Oxford
Dr Henrietta Morton-King, North Cumbria University Hospitals Trust
Dr Andrew Brunskill, Clinical Assistant Professor of Epidemiology and Health Services, University of Washington Seattle)
Vincent Galbiati, President & CEO of Tomorrow’s Cures Today, Washington DC
Neil Hutchison, Founder, Magic Water Pediatric Cancer Foundation, San Diego
Fiona Court, Consultant Oncoplastic Breast Surgeon, Cheltenham
Professor Alastair Buchan, Head of the Medical Science Division and the Dean of the Medical School at the University of Oxford
Dr Georgios Evangelopoulos, Patient advocate, lawyer & political scientist
Professor John Yarnold, Professor of Clinical Oncology at The Royal Marsden and Institute of Cancer Research
Professor Jerome H Pereira, Consultant General & Oncoplastic Breast Surgeon, Norwich Medical School University of East Anglia
Dr Lynne Hampson, Non Clinical Lecturer in Oncology, Institute of Cancer Sciences, Manchester
Dr Robert Kirby, Senior Lecturer, Hospital Dean, University Hospitals of North Midlands
Professor Gareth Evans, Professor of Medical Genetics and Cancer Epidemiology, University of Manchester
Dr Rupert McShane, Coordinating Editor Cochrane Dementia and Cognitive Improvement Group, Oxford University
Michael Shackcloth, Consultant Thoracic Surgeon, Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital
Professor Vikas P Sukhatme, Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Co-founder Global Cures
Vidula Sukhatme, Co-founder Global Cures
Sarah Lindsell, CEO, The Brain Tumour Charity Neil Dickson, Chairman, The Brain Tumour Charity
Alex Smith, Founder, Harrison’s Fund
Giles Cunnick, Consultant General & Breast Surgeon, Bucks Healthcare NHS Trust
Dr Piers Mahon, Biotech Consultant
Paul Fitzpatrick, Chairman, Duchenne Now
Dr David Faurrugia, Consultant Oncologist, Cheltenham General Hospital
Dr Chris Govender, Medical Officer in Addictions
Sue Farrington Smith, Chief Executive, Brain Tumour Research
Professor Steven Gill, Professor in Neurosurgery, University of Bristol

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Friday, November 7, 2014

Homeopathy Skeptic Alan Henness Quizes Professional Health Care Team

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I'll let the image and content speak for itself. The "Translation" in bold red lettering I have added to the screen shot of the Twitter conversation represents my personal opinion about Mr. Henness' thought process.

I wonder if Mr. Henness (Nightingale Collaboration Co-Founder) would prefer more expensive and potentially toxic drugs over other alternative care that a private individual and his/her family may prefer and choose instead?

Sunday, October 26, 2014

The Brain-Dead Homeopathy Critics & Their Schoolyard Slander

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Quoted material.   "It is truly remarkable the level of ignorance involved in this debate, with critics of homeopathy showing their true love of mediocrity, conformism and brain-dead enforcement of orthodoxy (dogma) – with enthusiasm that would make an Inquisitor blush.

Would be defenders of science and so-called ‘evidence-based medicine' seem to have no problem whatsoever issuing criticisms of homeopathy which are completely and totally at variance with the actual data.

Somehow they don't see the irony in calling homeopathy ‘unscientific' even though the criticism is itself not based on any hard evidence. As Dr. Spense has rightfully pointed out, this is a very safe and conventional position – ‘everyone' knows homeopathy is ‘just water' and ‘just placebo'. The critics see no problem substituting conventional wisdom for facts – which is why if you peruse Dr. Spense's article and the subsequent commentary, you will find almost no mention of material facts, just schoolyard slander.

The fact is, the weight of the evidence strongly favors homeopathic remedies being biological active agents.

Nearly all physico-chemical research – conducted by scientists of the very highest skill on earth, such as Rustum Roy and Jayesh Bellare – demonstrates physical properties of homeopathic remedies which are distinct from those of plain water or succussed/diluted water controls. None of the research is completely beyond reproach, but it is nevertheless quite strong and viewed as a whole becomes stronger.

Good medicine: homeopathy

Extreme homeopathic dilutions retain starting materials: A nanoparticulate perspective.

The 'Memory of Water': an almost deciphered enigma. Dissipative structures in extremely dilute aqueous solutions.

The in vitro evidence is similarly strong – with a recent review finding that over 2/3 of all high quality studies demonstrate biological activity of homeopathic remedies. The same is true for nearly 3/4 of all replications.

The in vitro evidence for an effect of high homeopathic potencies--a systematic review of the literature.

The clinical evidence is less consistent, but this is because of the enormous heterogeneity of the literature – with many different types of homeopathy being studied, often by people who know nothing of homeopathy or lack the skills specific to the performance of homeopathic trials. Viewed as a whole, 41% of all RTC's come to positive conclusions, while 52% are inconclusive; 7% are actually negative. These numbers correlate almost precisely with RCT's of conventional medical therapies.

Research, the evidence base.

Systematic reviews have come to positive conclusions for, so far, the following conditions: allergies and upper respiratory infections, childhood diarrhea, influenza treatment, post-operative ileus, rheumatic diseases, seasonal allergic rhinitis, vertigo and most recently, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome

Systematic reviews of RCTs in homeopathy.

Homeopathic treatments in psychiatry: a systematic review of randomized placebo-controlled studies.

Homeopathic critics, if they cite any evidence, seem to universally cite only one study – the Shang, et al meta-analysis (Lancet, 2005). They may as well have referenced no data at all, since Shang is an abomination of science – failing nearly every conventional norm for high quality research (e.g. failing to meet multiple QUOROM criteria for systematic reviews) – and basing its conclusions on 8 out of 110 cherry picked trials. No sensitivity analysis was performed, but in subsequent independent assessment, literally every single other manner of assessing the data comes up positive for homeopathy. The 8 selected trials fail the ‘leave one out' cross-validation test – take out the study looking at use of Arnica for soreness in marathon runners (a completely irrelevant research question with zero external validity) and the conclusions reverse dramatically (in favor of homeopathy). In other words, Shang is a sham. But clearly for critics it represents the pinnacle of research science since it supposedly ‘debunks' homeopathy. No mention is ever made of all the other meta-analyses - which come to positive ends and are of far higher quality than Shang.

The conclusions on the effectiveness of homeopathy highly depend on the set of analyzed trials.

The 2005 meta-analysis of homeopathy: the importance of post-publication data.

The homeopathic literature is not without deficiencies, but to say homeopathy is nothing but placebo requires turning a blind eye to a large amount of data which, though not completely conclusive, certainly suggests otherwise. It is clear that those who issue boilerplate criticisms of homeopathy have not bothered to consider the entirety of the data. Intelligent people and true scientists should be embarrassed by this and most ‘discussions' taking place about homeopathy in the British medical community – they are an affront to scientific principles of rationality and objectivity."

Competing interests: No competing interests | 06 October 2012 |
Christopher M Johnson | Naturopathic Doctor |Private Practice |
4910 31st St S Suite A Arlington, VA 22206 USA
The source of this article can be found HERE

Thank you Dr. Johnson!

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Nightingale Collaboration - The Ugly Side

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As BrownBagPantry on Twitter, I promote homeopathy. As a follower of the Nightingale Collaboration, JoBrodie has decided she needs to reign me in. The Nightingale Collaboration was founded by Alan Henness and his wife MariaMacLachlan with initial seed money donated by Simon Singh. Their anti-CAM lobby group "challenges questionable claims made by healthcare practitioners on their websites, in adverts and in their ... feel is unproven...." Since I am not a healthcare practitioner, seems a bit of a stretch how I *fit* that description.

A brief Google search shows that JoBrodie can be an annoyance ELSEWHERE