Healthy, Natural Living

Archive for May, 2014

Are They Quacks?

I have hired the aid of several health care practioners, all different types. I do believe that God intended for us to ‘need’ each other. I always consider the possible risks, side effects, and choose non-invasive treatments. At this point in our lives, this has worked for our family.

Proverbs 27:17 As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.

Easy “Google” searches would deem; I think every one of them as “Quacks” and ridicule their practices. Which I find completely unprofessional. I am now aware even MD’s try to discredit DO’s. I have come to grips that there will always be opposition, disagreement, and division. There has been since the beginning and there will continue to be until the end. That is the world we live in and some still think it is flat. God’s Word says,

He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth…(Isaiah 40:22 NIV)

One of the first quacks, Ignaz Philipp Semmelweis a Hungarian physician called the “saviour of mothers” who discovered, by 1847, that the incidence of puerperal fever, also known as childbed fever could be drastically cut by use of hand washing standards in obstetrical clinics. The epidemic of women and babies dying is documented from records as early as 1746, where more than 50 percent of mothers who gave birth in a Paris hospital died. In the United States, Europe, New Zealand, Sweden, and wherever conventional midwifery was abandoned and taken over by the obstetricians and medical students, puerperal fever followed.
Doctors often went from touching infected corpses in the cadaver dissection lab, to the maternity ward, where they examined women and delivered babies without handwashing. Doctors were insulted at the suggestion that their hands were dirty, and many had the arrogance to continue to ignore factual evidence showing that they were the cause of maternal suffering and death up until the 1940s when antibiotics were invented.
When I look at God’s Word, He always has our best interest at hand.

“Whoever touches a human corpse will be unclean for seven days. (Numbers 19:11 NIV)

Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes of the United States and Dr. Ignaz Semmelweis of Austria were prominent, long-suffering advocates for women, who tried to get the medical profession to wash their hands and practice more like the traditional midwives did. Both were ignored and even professionally attacked for their views. After years of mental anguish, watching women die needlessly, they left the field of medicine in disgust. Dr. Holmes became a writer. Semmelweis was outraged by the indifference of the medical profession and began writing open and increasingly angry letters to prominent European obstetricians, at times denouncing them as irresponsible murderers. His contemporaries, including his wife, believed he was losing his mind and he was in 1865 committed to a mental institution. Semmelweis died there only 14 days later, possibly after being severely beaten by guards.
Although Dr Semmelweis was the first healthcare professional to demonstrate experimentally that hand washing could prevent infections, it was not until approximately two decades after his death that his work was revisited and he was given credit. Only after Pasteur, Koch, and Lister had produced more evidence of the germ theory and antiseptic techniques was the value of hand washing appreciated.

20140524-224246-81766084.jpgDr. Joseph Goldberger also dealt with critics when he discovered pellagra is was caused from a vitamin defincency. Many critics unable to part from the germ theory of pellagra, raised doubts. Goldberger hoped to squelch those reservations by demonstrating the existence of a particular substance that when removed from the diet of healthy individuals resulted in pellagra. With the cooperation of Mississippi’s progressive governor, Earl Brewer, Goldberger experimented on eleven healthy volunteer prisoners at the Rankin State Prison Farm in 1915. Offered pardons in return for their participation, the volunteers ate a corn-based diet. Six of the eleven showed pellagra rashes after five months.
Expert dermatologists made the actual diagnosis of pellagra to avoid the appearance of a conflict of interest on Goldberger’s part. Although many scientific colleagues sang Goldberger’s praises, even mentioning a Nobel nomination, others still doubted. In the pages of the Journal of the American Medical Association, critic W.J. MacNeal challenged the results. One Birmingham physician referred to the experiment as “half-baked.” Still others thought the whole experiment a fraud.
November 1915 the Public Health Service had issued a press release reporting the Mississippi prison-farm experiment and urging that pellagra could be prevented by an appropriate diet; yet throughout the 1920’s many practicing physicians, especially in the American South, were unwilling to accept diet as a more than predisposing cause of pellagra. Chronic resentment toward the East and the well-financed Public Health Service seems to have contributed to this incredulity.
Prior to his work with pellagra in 1910 Goldberger played an increasingly responsible role in field investigations of yellow fever, typhus, and dengue—as well as other, less dramatic, ills. In the course of his investigations he acquired a reputation in the Public Health Service as one of its most gifted epidemiologists.
Seems we are forgetting lessons learned from the past in many areas. Goldberg recommended keeping home gardens for fresh vegetables, and owning milking cows for fresh milk as ways to eliminate the pellagra problem.

Dr. Joseph Goldberger and his young assistant, Dr. William Henry Sebrell, Jr., in 1929 working on pellagra at the Hygienic Laboratory.

Goldberger never lived to see his theory accepted he died in 1929. It wasn’t until 1935 when Conrad A. Elvehjem, an agricultural chemist at the University of Wisconsin, found nicotinic acid to be highly effective for curing black tongue in dogs. Soon clinical trials followed and confirmed that nicotinic acid (niacin) was indeed the elusive “pellagra-preventive factor” (P-P factor).

In 1983, Australian doctors J. Robin Warren and Barry Marshall isolated Helicobacter pylori, the bacterial cause of peptic ulcer disease (P.U.D.). However, decades passed before most doctors prescribed antibiotics to their afflicted patients.
For years, Dr. Barry Marshall hailing from Australia watched in horror as ulcer patients fell so ill that many had their stomach removed or bled until they died. He was tormented because he knew there was a simple treatment for ulcers, which at that time afflicted 10 percent of all adults. In 1981 Marshall began working with Robin Warren, the Royal Perth Hospital pathologist who, two years earlier, discovered the gut could be overrun by hardy, corkscrew-shaped bacteria called Helicobacter pylori. Biopsying ulcer patients and culturing the organisms in the lab, Marshall traced not just ulcers but also stomach cancer to this gut infection. The cure, he realized, was readily available: anti­biotics.

In 1982, when this bacterium was discovered by Marshall and Warren, stress and lifestyle were considered the major causes of peptic ulcer disease. It is now firmly established that Helicobacter pylori causes more than 90% of duodenal ulcers and up to 80% of gastric ulcers. The link between Helicobacter pylori infection and subsequent gastritis and peptic ulcer disease has been established through studies of human volunteers, antibiotic treatment studies and epidemiological studies.
Opposition to their radical thesis came from doctors with vested interests in treating ulcers and other stomach disorders as well as from drug companies that had come up with Tagamet, which blocked production of gastric acid and was becoming the first drug with $1 billion annual sales.
Ulcer surgery was lucrative for surgeons who removed large portions of the stomach from patients with life-threatening bleeding and chronic symptoms. Psychiatrists and psychologists treated ulcer patients for stress.
The concept of curing ulcers with antibiotics seemed preposterous to doctors who had long been taught that the stomach was sterile and that no microbes could grow in the corrosive gastric juices.
A bacterial cause “was just too wild a theory for most people” to accept, and something so ingrained as stress causing ulcers was too difficult to dismiss, Dr. J. Robin Warren, one of two who won the 2005 Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine on Oct. 3, said in a telephone interview.
Blame focused on psychological stress in part because many patients had stressful lives and scientists lacked another explanation.
Also, Tagamet and similar drugs, known as H2 blockers, safely made ulcers and their symptoms disappear. But the H2 blockers were not one-shot cures. Ulcers often recurred, requiring repeated courses of the drugs, providing a steady stream of profits.
“The opposition we got from the drug industry was basically inertia,” said Dr. Barry J. Marshall of the University of Western Australia, the other Nobel winner, and “because the makers of H2 blockers funded much of the ulcer research at the time, all they had to do was ignore the Helicobacter discovery.”
“If the drug companies were truly into discovery, they would have gone straight after the Helicobacter,” Dr. Marshall said, but they did not because of the success with H2 blockers.
“Had these drugs not existed, the drug companies would have jumped on our findings,” he added.
*All Photos Source: Wikipedia Public Domain

I have came across some more examples of “Quacks Revealed.” I will add links to this blog as I come across them.
This one is great: Beware of Bicycle Face! Excerpt from 1895 Literary Digest.

The Dream & Lie of Louis Pasteur – Yes, the Same Louis Pasteur that discovered the so-called life saving pasteurization! New York Times Archives Experiments in Deceit