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REVIEW ☆ Trick or Treatment The Undeniable Facts about Alternative Medicine “For anyone who has ever wondered about the scientific evidence for the effectiveness of alternative therapies” Susan Okie Washington Post Whether you are an ardent believer in alternative medicine a skeptic or are simply baffled by the range of services and opinions this grou. DIE HOMEOPATHY DIEThis book is perfect I ve been thinking I had to write this book eventually but now I don t have to because it exists and it s exactly as I imagined it Now all I have to do is have a child and plant a tree It s a fact that otherwise smart people have a tendency to believe weird stuff It s always there right under the surface My own mom just came in to tell me I have to be careful tomorrow 111111 because the number 11 scares her I don t understand it but there it is And being afraid of the number 11 probably won t hurt her but there are people out there who will find ways to take advantage of her fearThis is why this book is so important People need to know why alternative medicine doesn t work and they need to know how we can tell that it doesn t work And if I had to write a book for non sciency folks to understand how we ve come to that conclusion well this is exactly the book I would write Except it s already been written I ll have to find something else to do with my timeThe book is at the same time ruthlessly scientific and ridiculously accessible It flat out refuses to make any assumptions choosing instead to revise from scratch all the evidence we have on alternative therapies Except you can t do that without first explaining the method you re using so that s what the authors do they intertwine all the acupuncture talk with scientific method talkThat is they start out by laying out the origins of the clinical trial and before you know it they re explaining the concept of publication bias and the Cochrane initiative The result is a rigorous honest and well researched book and the fact that it s a little lightweight is probably its greatest strength Something in the Wine The Moonstone Series #1 just came in to tell me I have to be careful tomorrow 111111 because the number 11 scares her I don t understand it but there it is And being afraid of the number 11 probably won t hurt her but there are people out there who will find ways to take advantage of her fearThis is why this book is so important People need to know why alternative medicine doesn t work and they need to know how we can tell that it doesn t work And if I had to write a book for non sciency folks to understand how we ve come to that conclusion well this is exactly the book I would write Except it s already been written I ll have to find something else to do with my timeThe book is at the same time ruthlessly scientific and ridiculously accessible It flat out refuses to make any assumptions choosing instead to revise from scratch all the evidence we have on alternative therapies Except you can t do that without first explaining the method you re using so that s what the authors do they intertwine all the acupuncture talk with scientific method talkThat is they start out by laying out the origins of the clinical trial and before you know it they re explaining the concept of publication bias and the Cochrane initiative The result is a rigorous honest and well researched book and the fact that it s a little lightweight is probably its greatest strength

REVIEW Trick or Treatment The Undeniable Facts about Alternative MedicineTrick or Treatment The Undeniable Facts about Alternative Medicine

REVIEW ☆ Trick or Treatment The Undeniable Facts about Alternative Medicine Ndbreaking analysis lays to rest doubts and contradictions with authority integrity and clarity Over thirty of the most popular treatments including acupuncture homeopathy aromatherapy reflexology chiropractic and herbal medicines are examined for their benefits and potential dang. In my continued exploration of alternative medicine I turned to Drs Edzard Ernst and Simon Singh s Trick or Treatment While rife with medical history and science unfortunately it reads somewhat like stereo instructions Trick or Treatment is simply too tedious for the casual reader I m sure medical professionals will find this text fascinating Laypeople Not so much It s too academic Further I find it irritating that the doctors denigrate alternative medicine practitioners for relying on anecdotal experience when they do the same It s story after story of the negative effects a certain complementary treatment had on one or a few person Basically the definition of an anecdote I was looking for the science or lack thereof behind why specific alternative remedies are pure uackery Give me the science I WANT THE SCIENCE The one highlight of Trick or Treatment is the synthesized glossary It covers a wide variety of alternative treatments and rates them based on efficacy and risk factor It s entirely possible to simply read the glossary and skip the remainder Summary Read if you re a medical professional or avid fan disregard otherwise

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REVIEW ☆ Trick or Treatment The Undeniable Facts about Alternative Medicine Ers What works and what doesn’t Who can you trust and who is ripping you off In its scrutiny of alternative and complementary cures this book also strives to reassert the primacy of the scientific method as a means for determining public health practice and policy 16 illustratio. So Trick or Treatment The Undeniable Facts About Alternative Medicine was written by Simon Singh who I used to respect and Edzard Ernst MD who calls himself the world s first professor of complementary medicine and immediately relative to this I have heard people who know him clear their throats and add Although I have never heard where he studied any complementary medicine See what I just did there I cast aspersions upon one of the authors by relating an anecdotal and therefore spurious sourceThe book has a single goal to prove through repetition that complementary medicine is invalid because it can not be proved through that golden standard of medicine the double blind trial to lead to evidence based medicine The introduction states The contents of this book are guided entirely by a single pithy sentence written over 2000 years ago by Hippocrates of Cos Recognized as father of medicine he stated There are in fact two things science and opinion the former begets knowledge the latter ignorance which says it all and I need explain nothing further From the outset science is the only thing that is important in the field of medicine Anything else is opinion Which illustrates the delightful paradox in that this book is positively chock full of opinion For example the first first chapter The Truth About Acupuncture begins with the bold statement that it was not the Chinese who invented it because in 1991 two German tourists Helmut and Erika Simon discovered a frozen corpse 5000 years old covered in tatoos that resemble conventional acupuncture points Scientists began examining him he was covered in tattoos consisting of lines and dots 80 percent of the points correspond to those used in acupuncture today Voil case proved ipso facto Europeans invented acupuncture For two men who profess to loathe anecdotes they have no compunction about pulling them out to prove one of their batty theories Next the authors discuss ch i and frankly anybody who studies Chinese medicine knows that what they say is wrong wrong wrong The character for ch i or i rarely if ever exists alone in Chinese text books it is always modified because and this is the difference between Chinese medicine and biomedicine i describes a process or function not a structure or a measurable substance See Westerners like tangible measurables in medicine When the Chinese talk about yuan i vitality or wei i immune robustness or gu i nutrient absorption it is all relative The Chinese philosopher doctors use their language to describe how systems function in relative terms not how they compare from one human to another In other words how is someone handling all of their basic functions digestion elimination breathing sleep not what are your values To talk about Chinese medicine without understanding this most basic concept is the euivalent of saying I English good speak By the way the photo on page 45 of illegal non clean needle techniue in which a patient has 16 needles in his face makes me wonder what s going on there A face lift by acupuncture Because jeez loueez it s not recognizable acupuncture I ve ever seenNext there are all the scary stories about infections death and so on C mon you guys In my 15 years in the biz I ve heard of one case of pneumothorax caused by an untrained MEDICAL doctor The explanation he gave to his patient was get this Your lungs are too big See I can use anecdotes tooActually this book continues along just of the same The scientific part of the book turns out to be a selective review of some of the scientific studies Conclusions are drawn but they are wifty Here are some thoughts about the difficulties posed by studies of acupuncture efficacity 1 Double blind tests with acupuncture protocols where there are no reduction of symptoms don t prove acupuncture doesn t work they just prove that that protocol doesn t work 2 The first thing a student of Chinese medicine learns is Same symptoms different treatment different symptoms same treatment This means that even when the symptoms are same over a group of people you treat them differently because they have different presentation age sex robustness In order for any treatment to be successful it must be tailored for each subject Thus for obvious reasons the double blind test for acupuncture efficacy is not viable there would always be too many variables 3 Sham needling is SHAM study The Japanese style of acupuncture called Toyohari for example developed by blind practitioners do not for obvious reasons insert the needle into the dermis they just use needles to stimulate the surface of the skin Toyohari has been shown to have tremendous therapeutic value Therefore the idea of using sham retractible needles that contact the surface of the skin means there still has been treatment By the way I had a Toyohari treatment when I was in Japan At the time didn t think I d gotten any treatment at all Later on do you know how I felt Like a million freakin bucks that s how I felt When was the last time you left a doctor s office and felt like a million freakin bucksLet s not go into that rat s nest of placebo but frankly do you think acupuncturists are talking dogs cats and horses into feeling better with acupuncture A veterinarian with an euine practice in Middleburg VA came to acupuncture school after he successfully treated a horse with a dripping eye The key is that conventional treatment had not been effective it was only after he had tried acupuncture that he had positive results Do you think he persuaded the horse into stopping his eye from drippingErnst and Singh do the same thing for chiropractic therapy thank god for chiropractors my doctor wanted to cut open my back for exploratory surgery When I declined he offered me physical therapy didn t work and Oxy no thanks My chiropractor bless him fixed me However Ernst points out that you are taking your life into your hands any time you step into a chiropractic office despite the fact mine pays about 900 a year in malpractice whereas my GP pays 50000 and that chiropractors are 9 times likely to be brought up for charges for sexual misconduct Oh you randy randy chiropractors What will we do with you I guess Ernst and Simon have forgotten all those years when female patients were given unauthorized pelvic exams by residents and students while under anesthesia a practice that continues today Google Unauthorized practice teaching pelvic examination on women under anesthesia and guess only chiropractors fall under the bright light of scrutiny medical doctors sticking their hands into anesthetized women s parts doesn t rate mentionThe authors continue to find hoaxes within homeopathy herbal medicine meditation naturopathy Alexander techniue leech therapy why do they not call it hirudotherapy and why do they not acknowledge it is now used for over a dozen approved post surgical therapies in North America etcThey conclude with a chapter entitled Does the truth matter Well hah of course it doesn t Smart people know this is all bunk Those stupid people who head to acupuncturists and chiropractors in droves are not to be blamed for being hood winked Oh and the Prince to whom the book is dedicated is a Royal fool gullible and weak minded In short the Prince of Wales ought to start listening to scientists rather than allowing himself to be guided by his own prejudices They ask who is to blame for all this nonsense Well celebrities are especially pretty ones like Pamela Anderson and Goldie Hawn medical researchers are here they may be talking about people like a man diagnosed with MS while he was finishing his PhD in Biostatistics at Johns Hopkins University upon receiving the diagnosis he set his considerable mind to pursuing available information about treatment protocol outcomes and concluded there was no pharmaceutical on the market that actually performed better than placebo He decided to go holistic and is now a teacher of i gong of national renown and has had no further exacerbations universities are bad universities bad bad down boy By awarding profitable degrees in these alternative therapies they are creating false hope and real profits alternative gurus are eg charismatic MDs like doctor Oz This really cheeses me off when I ve been telling patients for four years their Raynaud s symptoms would improve if they stopped smoking inevitably they come back to me and and say Dr Oz says such and such the media well look at the bullshit that s happened in the last 16 months there who can believe anybody any the World Health Organization the National Institutes of Health and so onWhen the authors talk about biomedicine moving out of the dark ages I think they refer to biomedicine moving away from how are you today towards an Orwellian world where your physician faces a screen Electronic Health Records anyone instead of her patient To a world where the patient s numerical values are the end all be all and outside of those values he as a patient has no value himself One area the authors never touch upon is the importance alternative medicine has for society in a world in which doctors are priests standing between a man and his own health and only care about that small slide from ill health to death alternative medicine allows for a place in which a person can go to learn about self care to augment the uality of his healthy life and prevent an odd situation from becoming a chronic situationAs a final statement I d like to mention the Starfield report published by Barbara Starfield MD in JAMA 2000 it stated that the third leading cause for untimely death in the US is iatrogenic in nature This is in direct conflict to the CDC s list of top ten killers in which lung disease is third after cardiovascular disease and cancer Please note that alternative medicine doesn t figure in the top 100 causes of untimely death Draw your own conclusions Written forStephen dead at 23 from a fatal drug interaction prescribed by a medical doctorElizabeth currently blind crippled and brain damaged by a routine allergy shot administered incorrectly by a medical doctorEgan survived pneumo thorax caused by medical doctor using acupuncture incorrectly while attempting to treat his shinglesWilliam saved from sepsis by a phenomenal surgeon and an extraordinary team of physicians nurses and techs at Yale Teaching hospital We need each other guys A House of My Own Stories from My Life just did there I cast aspersions upon one of the authors by relating an anecdotal and therefore spurious sourceThe book has a single goal to prove through repetition that complementary medicine is invalid because it can not be proved through that golden standard of medicine the double blind trial to lead to evidence based medicine The introduction states The contents of this book are guided entirely by a single pithy sentence written over 2000 years ago by Hippocrates of Cos Recognized as father of medicine he stated There are in fact two things science and opinion the former begets knowledge the latter ignorance which says it all and I need explain nothing further From the outset science is the only thing that is important in the field of medicine Anything else is opinion Which illustrates the delightful paradox in that this book is positively chock full of opinion For example the first first chapter The Truth About Acupuncture begins with the bold statement that it was not the Chinese who invented it because in 1991 two German tourists Helmut and Erika Simon discovered a frozen corpse 5000 years old covered in tatoos that resemble conventional acupuncture points Scientists began examining him he was covered in tattoos consisting of lines and dots 80 percent of the points correspond to those used in acupuncture today Voil case proved ipso facto Europeans invented acupuncture For two men who profess to loathe anecdotes they have no compunction about pulling them out to prove one of their batty theories Next the authors discuss ch i and frankly anybody who studies Chinese medicine knows that what they say is wrong wrong wrong The character for ch i or i rarely if ever exists alone in Chinese text books it is always modified because and this is the difference between Chinese medicine and biomedicine i describes a process or function not a structure or a measurable substance See Westerners like tangible measurables in medicine When the Chinese talk about yuan i vitality or wei i immune robustness or gu i nutrient absorption it is all relative The Chinese philosopher doctors use their language to describe how systems function in relative terms not how they compare from one human to another In other words how is someone handling all of their basic functions digestion elimination breathing sleep not what are your values To talk about Chinese medicine without understanding this most basic concept is the euivalent of saying I English good speak By the way the photo on page 45 of illegal non clean needle techniue in which a patient has 16 needles in his face makes me wonder what s going on there A face lift by acupuncture Because Under Her Command (The Bosss Pet, #5) jeez loueez it s not recognizable acupuncture I ve ever seenNext there are all the scary stories about infections death and so on C mon you guys In my 15 years in the biz I ve heard of one case of pneumothorax caused by an untrained MEDICAL doctor The explanation he gave to his patient was get this Your lungs are too big See I can use anecdotes tooActually this book continues along El Gaucho Martín FierroLa vuelta de Martín Fierro just of the same The scientific part of the book turns out to be a selective review of some of the scientific studies Conclusions are drawn but they are wifty Here are some thoughts about the difficulties posed by studies of acupuncture efficacity 1 Double blind tests with acupuncture protocols where there are no reduction of symptoms don t prove acupuncture doesn t work they Fragonard Art and Eroticism just prove that that protocol doesn t work 2 The first thing a student of Chinese medicine learns is Same symptoms different treatment different symptoms same treatment This means that even when the symptoms are same over a group of people you treat them differently because they have different presentation age sex robustness In order for any treatment to be successful it must be tailored for each subject Thus for obvious reasons the double blind test for acupuncture efficacy is not viable there would always be too many variables 3 Sham needling is SHAM study The Japanese style of acupuncture called Toyohari for example developed by blind practitioners do not for obvious reasons insert the needle into the dermis they Mao Zedong just use needles to stimulate the surface of the skin Toyohari has been shown to have tremendous therapeutic value Therefore the idea of using sham retractible needles that contact the surface of the skin means there still has been treatment By the way I had a Toyohari treatment when I was in Japan At the time didn t think I d gotten any treatment at all Later on do you know how I felt Like a million freakin bucks that s how I felt When was the last time you left a doctor s office and felt like a million freakin bucksLet s not go into that rat s nest of placebo but frankly do you think acupuncturists are talking dogs cats and horses into feeling better with acupuncture A veterinarian with an euine practice in Middleburg VA came to acupuncture school after he successfully treated a horse with a dripping eye The key is that conventional treatment had not been effective it was only after he had tried acupuncture that he had positive results Do you think he persuaded the horse into stopping his eye from drippingErnst and Singh do the same thing for chiropractic therapy thank god for chiropractors my doctor wanted to cut open my back for exploratory surgery When I declined he offered me physical therapy didn t work and Oxy no thanks My chiropractor bless him fixed me However Ernst points out that you are taking your life into your hands any time you step into a chiropractic office despite the fact mine pays about 900 a year in malpractice whereas my GP pays 50000 and that chiropractors are 9 times likely to be brought up for charges for sexual misconduct Oh you randy randy chiropractors What will we do with you I guess Ernst and Simon have forgotten all those years when female patients were given unauthorized pelvic exams by residents and students while under anesthesia a practice that continues today Google Unauthorized practice teaching pelvic examination on women under anesthesia and guess only chiropractors fall under the bright light of scrutiny medical doctors sticking their hands into anesthetized women s parts doesn t rate mentionThe authors continue to find hoaxes within homeopathy herbal medicine meditation naturopathy Alexander techniue leech therapy why do they not call it hirudotherapy and why do they not acknowledge it is now used for over a dozen approved post surgical therapies in North America etcThey conclude with a chapter entitled Does the truth matter Well hah of course it doesn t Smart people know this is all bunk Those stupid people who head to acupuncturists and chiropractors in droves are not to be blamed for being hood winked Oh and the Prince to whom the book is dedicated is a Royal fool gullible and weak minded In short the Prince of Wales ought to start listening to scientists rather than allowing himself to be guided by his own prejudices They ask who is to blame for all this nonsense Well celebrities are especially pretty ones like Pamela Anderson and Goldie Hawn medical researchers are here they may be talking about people like a man diagnosed with MS while he was finishing his PhD in Biostatistics at Johns Hopkins University upon receiving the diagnosis he set his considerable mind to pursuing available information about treatment protocol outcomes and concluded there was no pharmaceutical on the market that actually performed better than placebo He decided to go holistic and is now a teacher of i gong of national renown and has had no further exacerbations universities are bad universities bad bad down boy By awarding profitable degrees in these alternative therapies they are creating false hope and real profits alternative gurus are eg charismatic MDs like doctor Oz This really cheeses me off when I ve been telling patients for four years their Raynaud s symptoms would improve if they stopped smoking inevitably they come back to me and and say Dr Oz says such and such the media well look at the bullshit that s happened in the last 16 months there who can believe anybody any the World Health Organization the National Institutes of Health and so onWhen the authors talk about biomedicine moving out of the dark ages I think they refer to biomedicine moving away from how are you today towards an Orwellian world where your physician faces a screen Electronic Health Records anyone instead of her patient To a world where the patient s numerical values are the end all be all and outside of those values he as a patient has no value himself One area the authors never touch upon is the importance alternative medicine has for society in a world in which doctors are priests standing between a man and his own health and only care about that small slide from ill health to death alternative medicine allows for a place in which a person can go to learn about self care to augment the uality of his healthy life and prevent an odd situation from becoming a chronic situationAs a final statement I d like to mention the Starfield report published by Barbara Starfield MD in JAMA 2000 it stated that the third leading cause for untimely death in the US is iatrogenic in nature This is in direct conflict to the CDC s list of top ten killers in which lung disease is third after cardiovascular disease and cancer Please note that alternative medicine doesn t figure in the top 100 causes of untimely death Draw your own conclusions Written forStephen dead at 23 from a fatal drug interaction prescribed by a medical doctorElizabeth currently blind crippled and brain damaged by a routine allergy shot administered incorrectly by a medical doctorEgan survived pneumo thorax caused by medical doctor using acupuncture incorrectly while attempting to treat his shinglesWilliam saved from sepsis by a phenomenal surgeon and an extraordinary team of physicians nurses and techs at Yale Teaching hospital We need each other guys

  • Paperback
  • 352
  • Trick or Treatment The Undeniable Facts about Alternative Medicine
  • Simon Singh
  • en
  • 14 October 2019
  • 9780393337785