Wednesday, 18 October 2017

An Alternative NHS?

The NHS wants to stop patient access to homeopathy. They initiated a consultation exercise asking our opinion, part of a 'saving money' initiative. I blogged about this in July, 'Banning Homeopathy on the NHS'. Following the Department of Health's response to a petition opposing this, I wrote another blog, 'Homeopathy, the NHS, and Patient Choice'. Given the vested interests that control the NHS, both asked whether homeopathy should want to be, or continue to be part of the NHS. I also raised the question, almost rhetorically, whether it would not be better to establish an 'alternative' NHS that offered patients a variety of traditional therapies. In this blog, I want to develop that idea.

My blogs, so far, have focused on the negative aspects of the current situation. The NHS is now completely hostile to alternative medical therapies, especially homeopathy. The NHS is now completely controlled by the conventional medical establishment, which is itself is completely controlled by the pharmaceutical industry. This is making it almost impossible to debate health issues with these powerful vested interests as they just repeat their mantras, 'there is no evidence that homeopathy works'.

At the same time the government says that it supports 'patient choice', that there should be within the NHS 'no decision about me without me'. Yet whilst this might be their policy, their actions say otherwise. They are intent on restricting and denying patient choice, not developing it.

As I predicted, the homeopathic community is going to fight this, and I am aware of its plans to do so. Indeed, they may be quite right to respond to yet another attack on health freedom. My question is, should we bother? Should we, instead, set up some kind of 'alternative NHS' that provides patients with real patient choice?

The case for doing so is a strong one, but it is one that will require considerable work and effort to establish - and it is something we should seek to do alongside our colleagues from other alternative medical therapies, who suffer equal neglect and marginalisation.

1. A Declaration of Independence.
Homeopathy is different to conventional medicine. In most crucial respects it is superior. It is more effective. It is safer. It is less expensive. It is inferior only in one important respect. It is not organised, it has no structure. Patients, even those who know that we exist, don't know what we do, or even how how to find us in their locality.

The conventional medical establishment clearly does not want us. We are a threat to their virtual monopoly within the NHS. They are trying to get rid of us. We are not welcome. And most people, most organisations, do not thrive within hostile environments. Homeopathy is no different. So leaving the NHS, voluntarily, would be like declaring our independence. It would be liberating, invigorating.

2. A Declaration of Disassociation
NHS medicine, dominated as it is by pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines, is failing, fast. Conventional medicine is failing for many reasons. Its drugs and vaccines do not work, they are not effective in treating the epidemics of chronic disease that are creating demands the NHS cannot cope with. Worse, it is the side effect and adverse reactions of pharmaceutical drugs are causing these illness and disease epidemics.

The result is that the NHS is virtually bankrupt. It cannot recruit sufficient staff to meet the ever-increasing demand for health care, the epidemic levels of chronic illness, which, in significant part, have been caused by dangerous drugs and vaccines. It is difficult to get a doctor's appointment, and the NHS is finding it difficult to recruit more doctors. Waiting lists for treatments and operations are growing. Accident and Emergency services throughout the country are at breaking point.

Does homeopathy want to be part of this failure? The NHS does not use homeopathy to any significant degree, so there is little that the homeopathic community is going to lose. Homeopathy has survived throughout the world for over 220 years, and it has done so without the support of national health service schemes.

3. A Declaration for Safe Medicine
Conventional medicine harms patients. Iatrogenic (doctor-induced) disease is rife. In the past many pharmaceutical drugs have been either banned or withdrawn. Today, the drugs and vaccines doctors are using are heavily restricted because of the patient harm they are known to cause. Medical science and the drug regulatory process has completely failed to protect patients from iatrogenic harm.

Homeopathy is safe medicine. Why should it want to be associated with a medical system that has caused illness and disease through its side effects, killed millions, and continues to do so every year. Homeopathy can, and probably should stand on its own, and declare that it is different. Why do we need to work with medics who tell us that any medicine or treatment, to be useful, has to be harmful?

4. A Declaration in favour of Effective Medicine
Homeopaths often say that we treat people who are ill, not illness itself. Whilst this is true, we rarely sit back and think about how different we are. For instance, we don't want patients to tell us they have arthritis, we want to know when that arthritis is worse, and when better; whether it is better or worse for exercise; and a whole host of other individual symptoms. Homeopaths don't believe that illness is caused by bacteria and viruses, just why we have become susceptible to them. We don't believe that we have an ability to prevent and cure human illness and disease, but we do know that we have knowledge of, and access to remedies that will help the body heal itself.

Homeopathy is effective medicine because it understands what causes illness that relates to the real, observable world. And through our Materia Medica (knowledge of what symptoms remedies will treat), and over two centuries of clinical experience, we know that they work. And we know that they work because we see them working. We do not create illness and disease with our remedies, we treat them successfully, we cure them. Why do we think that we need to work with a medical system that has overseen such a prodigious increase in illness and disease?

5. A Declaration of Our Existence!
So where on earth are we? Do we exist within the NHS? Only a handful of doctor-homeopaths operate from there. Most homeopaths work independently, in their local communities. So how do we operate within these communities. Do homeopaths have high visibility? Can anyone living there find us easily?

The fact is that homeopathy has never been well organised. At best, we are a collection of well-intentioned individuals, working alone, in isolation, relying on the successful treatment of patients to get us more widely known. This can work well. But it cannot be called 'organisation'. And if homeopathy does decide it has had enough of the NHS, its myopia and its hostility, we will need to organise. We will have to declare that we are here, we do exist. How do we do this?

The Need for an Alternative NHS
Homeopathy needs an organisation within which to base our practice. It should not be an organisation that restricts how homeopathy practices, what we can and cannot do. Homeopaths are healers, and we all have their own ways of operating. Homeopaths do not need an organisation that restricts us - but our patients need an organisation that makes us visible!.

If someone becomes sick, what do they do? They do what is easiest, closest to hand. They contact NHS Choices, or go to their GP surgery, or to the local hospital. They do so because that is how conventional medicine has organised. If patients want to use homeopath what do they do? Are we in Yellow Pages? Are we on the internet? Perhaps the surgery, or the local pharmacy, or our hospital will know. Or perhaps not!

And how much does homeopathy cost? NHS treatment is free. It may not work, it may not be safe - but it IS free! This is the big argument about staying within the NHS. Poorer people, entitled to free NHS treatment, are unlikely to opt to pay for homeopathy. Yet this argument fails in two ways.

  • It ignores the important fact that most people, in most parts of the country, are already denied access to homeopathy. 
  • And it ignores the fact that homeopathy has failed to organise, to work within an organisation that people know about, and can find easily, that offers homeopathy at that stressful time when illness strikes.

Other Alternative Therapies
I am a homeopath, and I have focused on homeopathy. There are many other alternative practitioners, and they all have the same problem. They are all excluded from the NHS, and the conventional medical establishment is hostile to them. So similar things can be said about their current organisation, or the lack of it. No-one knows for certain what they do, or for whom, where they can be found, and how much it will cost.

There is every reason for alternative medical therapies to join together in such an enterprise.

Each therapy has similar problems. Each therapy seeks to cure patients without the need for pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines. Each therapy provides a safer, gentler, more effective medical discipline that relies on helping the body heal itself. So why not join together. It makes imminent sense.

So how can alternative medicine organise itself. What would such an organisation look like? How would practitoners relate to it? How will patients find it? And how will treatment be funded?

An Alternative Health Service (AHS)
The organisation will need a name, and a logo that people will be easily recognised. For the sake of simplicity, lets call it AHS - the Alternative Health Service. The first objective should for AHS to develop, gradually, over time, a presence in every community Many communities already have independent health centres devoted to alternative medical therapies. These could all be invited to work under the auspices of the AHS, completely independently.

      1. Practitioners
Qualified and registered health practitioners, whether they be homeopaths, osteopaths, acupuncturists, herbalists, naturopaths, reflexologists, would sign up to the aims and objective or the AHS - which would be simply to offer their services to patients who are searching for safe and effective medical treatment. When they treat patients the AHS will pay their fee.

     2. Patients
The AHS would be largely funded by patients. There is no alternative to this when our government is totally, myopically committed to an ineffective and unsafe medical system based on pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines, and whilst it remains so hostile to alternative medical therapies.

  • Patients would pay a small monthly fee to enable them to access the treatment of an AHS practitioner.
  • Patients who are unable to pay the monthly fee could apply to AHS for emergency funding.
  • Every patient who undergoes a course of treatment will be asked to provide information about their treatment, and the outcomes of that treatment.

     3. Local Health Centres
These may be existing health centres, who affiliate to AHS, or new ones. Alternative therapists may practice from the premises, or they might prefer to practice elsewhere.

Each centre would identify and approve therapists, seeking to ensure that they have access to therapists from the complete range of therapeutic disciplines.

The centres would be a drop-in point for local patients, where they can seek information and advice, book appointments with therapists, and sign up to the AHS scheme.

In addition, each centre would liaise with local GP surgeries and hospitals. They would pass on information about the functioning of the centre, and how doctors can make referrals to them. When the surgery makes a referral, they would be charged the full cost of an initial period of treatment, plus an administration fee.

     4. The AHS
The central AHS organisation would oversee all this operation, setting guidelines and standards for both affiliated health centres, and therapists, without seeking to restrict or control their practice.

     * AHS would identify existing, and establish new health centres. It would develop simple and unobtrusive guidelines for the operation of each of the centres.

     * AHS would approve therapists submitted by each of these centres.

     * AHS would register patients, and receive their monthly payments. It would pay therapists for the work they do with registered patients.

     * AHS would also seek patrons, people who support the concept, principles and work of the AHS, and who are able to make donations towards its work, and help to subsidise emergency or urgent treatment.

     * AHS would manage a scheme to fund emergency or urgent treatment for patients who cannot afford to pay the monthly fee.

     * AHS would also keep a database of treatment outcomes from Health Centres, and publish these on a regular basis.

     5. The Fee Structure
The AHS should be run by people who are well versed with alternative medical therapies, and can operate the system without encroaching on freedom of therapists to practice. However, as this is essentially a health insurance scheme, it would be important that an insurance company ran this particular aspect of the business.

  • Patients would pay their monthly fee to the AHS, or the insurance agent.
  • The AHS, or the insurance agent, would pay the local health centre who generated the business.
  • The local health centre would pay the therapist for their work undertaken.

Prospects?
No business works unless there is a demand, and there is undoubtedly a demand for safe and effective  medical treatment. At the moment no alternative therapy is organised to systematically tap into this demand.

The proposed AHS would have to be sympathetically led by entrepreneurial business people who were tuned in to the principles and ideals of all the medical therapies they promote.

The proposed AHS would have to be efficiently managed by people who understand the principles and operations of health insurance, and were able to make it an affordable option for most people and their families.

The proposed AHS, along with local health centres, would have to promote alternative therapists efficiently.

If all this were done demand for alternative medicine would quickly increase, and initially AHS might struggle to meet patient demand, particularly in areas where there has been little previous development or promotion of alternative medicine.

Beyond this, the venture will succeed in line with the success of the treatment.

  • Curing a patient will increase demand on a 'word of mouth' basis, as it has always done for alternative medical therapies. 
  • Demand will increase with the ongoing failure of the NHS, its failure to meet demand, its inability to offer timely appointments with doctors.
  • Most important, demand will increase when the outcome surveys mentioned above show that alternative medicine is more effective in the treatment of illness.
If this happened, the government and the department of health would find themselves in some difficulty. They would be funding an NHS, who were offering a medicine, that people no longer wanted. Patients would vote with their feet! 
  • Patients are voters. 
  • Voters influence the result of elections. 
  • Elections determine who our politicians are. 
  • Politicians, to be elected, will want to give people what they want.
  • Politicians determine governments.
  • Governments run the Department of Health.
  • The Department of Health controls the health budget.
Soon, the department would be trying to work out why doctors are under-occupied in their surgeries, why Accident and Emergency departments are no longer struggling to cope, and start asking about all these AHS Health Centres, and why they are so popular. Shortly afterwards, the department would be running down their support for the failing, or failed NHS, and asking the AHS whether it needed any of the spare cash it had because the NHS no longer had many patients.

Could any of this be achieved if homeopathy remains content to be an unwanted, irritating, and insignificant part of the NHS?




Friday, 13 October 2017

Antibiotic Apocalypse. Conventional Medicine needs Homeopathy

Professor Dame Sally Davis hates homeopathy, and she is NHS England's chief medical officer in the Department of Health. This is certainly not unusual, but it is a misfortunate - for her, her department, the NHS, and every patient who relies on pharmaceutical drugs for their health care.

Professor Dame Sally Davis has been talking about antibiotics again, and she is concerned. Antibiotics 'may be lost', she says, through overuse, and she is urging global leaders to tackle the growing threat of antibiotic resistance. She is giving this message to a meeting in Berlin of health officials from around the world. It is, she says, a "call to action" to tackle the problem.

This is not a new warning, medical experts have told us that conventional medicine's 'wonder' drug is being used too much, and that 25,000 people die across Europe each year because of drug-resistant infections. This morning, Professor Dame Sally Davies said that she was "really worried" that without effective antibiotic drugs, common medical procedures such as caesarean sections, cancer treatments and limb replacements could become too risky.

Professor Dame Sally Davis is right of course, and I have blogged about the problems of antibacterial resistance several times.

               In June 2015, I first heard her use the term 'antibiotic apocalypse', and wrote "Antibiotic Apocalypse. The BBC fails again to address the issue", suggesting that whilst she was right, the BBC (and the mainstream media) were asking her the wrong questions. Today, she has repeated the message, and the BBC asked the same questions.

               Later that year, in November 2015, I wrote another blog, when it was suggested I was discounting the serious situation we would be in if Antibiotic drugs failed. This was entitled "Antibiotic resistance. A problem only for conventional medicine?" Antibiotic was not a problem for homeopathy, or anyone who relies on homeopathic treatment. in the treatment of infectious illnesses.

               In May 2016, I blogged about "The Failure of Antibiotic Drugs" in which I outlined the harm that antibiotic drugs caused to patients, something never admitted by Professor Dame Sally Davis, or by conventional doctors throughout the world.

However, this morning I took particular note about her comments that antibiotic failure would jeopardise the future of certain surgical operations. Professor Dame Sally Davis is correct, of course. I could point out that many of these operations might be entirely unnecessary if the NHS embraced homeopathy, and other alternative therapies, as they would be more successful in preventing the need for many such operations, rather than pharmaceutical drugs which are often the reason they become  necesssary! But on this occasion let's focus on another issue.

How can alternative medicine help with surgery - notably the pain, and the danger of infection, created by operations? How can Acupuncture help with the pain? How can Homeopathy help with the infections?

I wondered whether Professor Dame Sally Davis had looked into this possibility, and set up meetings with their professional bodies. Probably not, as she hates homeopathy! Unfortunate. So what has happened during the two-and-a-half years since she last used the term 'Antibiotic Apocalypse'? From what she said this morning, not a lot, except that doctors were now prescribing 4.3% fewer antibiotics. Is this enough? No, she said. Apart from that, Professor Dame Sally Davis said she has been urging drug companies to come up with new antibiotics. Why are they not doing so? There is insufficient profit in it for them, not least because doctors were being urged to use less of them. The drug companies, of course, want them to use more of them!

Indeed, far from seeking to resolve an 'apocalyptic' problem by working co-operatively with alternative therapies, the department she advices is now seeking to ban the use of homeopathy within the NHS. The drowning woman, it would seem, has cut the cord to one ship that might just save her, and the conventional medical establishment, from a severe embarrassment. Perhaps Professor Dame Sally Davis saw that the ship was crewed by homeopaths, acupuncturists, and other therapists she despises so much.

Well, there are still lots of good homeopaths around who have been treating infectious diseases, safely and effectively, without antibiotics for decades. I am sure that they would not withdraw the offer of help, I don't suppose any of them will pull in the cord away whilst she splashes around in the water, with no-where to go but the direction in which conventional medicine is heading - downwards.

However, I am more concerned with patients, especially if they are getting fearful. To them I say, at the same time, that homeopaths and other alternative therapists, will be there for them too, to treat their infectious disease. And I repeat the message - antimicrobial resistance is not a problem for homeopathy But we have no surgeons, and if surgeons need help, they will need to talk to us, as soon as possible, because the crisis hits.



Homeopathy, the NHS, and Patient Choice

The conventional medical establishment is moving to ban all homeopathy from the NHS in England. They are doing so NOT because homeopathy is a danger to patients, like pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines; NOT because homeopathy cannot make patients better; NOT because patients do not want to use homeopathy for their illnesses. It is doing so purely and simply because the NHS, and the conventional medical establishment that controls it, has been captured by the pharmaceutical industry. They want to kill patient choice and health freedom.

To allow homeopathy on the NHS could lead to comparisons which conventional medicine has always found awkward. Why don't their drug treatments work? Why is the NHS in constant crisis? Why do homeopathic 'sugar pills' have such a wonderful effect? Why do patients continue to see homeopaths when they have to pay for the treatment?

It's not that homeopathy costs much, or that the NHS spends a lot of money on homeopathy. In a previous blog, Banning Homeopathy on the NHS, I calculated that homeopathy constituted just 0.001257% of the total NHS drugs budget.

This blog, written on 24th July 2017, outlined what the NHS were doing. It mentioned a petition to the government in support of homeopathy. In the blog I questioned whether homeopathy needed a place within the NHS. After all, it is not where most homeopathy is practiced in Britain. But the petition to government was well supported, and now the Department of Health has responded to it. I am reproducing that response here, commenting on what it says, and the government's position.

               "It is for local NHS organisations to decide on the commissioning and funding of these healthcare treatments. NHS England’s consultation on low value prescription items includes homeopathic treatments."

It would seem that Pontius Pilate rules within the Department of Health! It's nothing to do with us, guv'! We wash our hands of the whole thing! But can they do this without abandoning a key element of the government's policy on health? Read on.....

               "Information from NHS England (NHSE) shows that in 2015, the cost for all prescriptions dispensed in primary care, not including any dispensing costs or fees, was £9.27 billion, a 4.7% increase on the previous year. Due to the increasing cost, NHSE is leading a review of medicines which can be considered as being of low clinical value and develop new guidance for Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs). "

Yes, yes. The pharmaceutical drugs bill IS enormous, and the government does need to control it. But that has nothing to do with homeopathy, and the 0.001257% of that budget spent on homeopathy will not have gone up!

               "On 21 July, NHSE launched a three month consultation on the draft guidance on low value prescription items which is based on the latest clinical evidence, including that from the National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE). Careful consideration has been given to ensure that particular groups of people are not disproportionately affected, and that principles of best practice on clinical prescribing are adhered to." 

The NHS regularly conducts these 'consultation' exercises when they are proposing to close down homeopathic treatment within the NHS. They did one prior to closing the homeopathy hospital in Lothian in 2014. A large number of patients, and former patients, spoke highly of the facility, and wanted it to continue. But NHS consultation is not about patients, it is about the vested interests of the conventional medical establishment, and their masters, the pharmaceutical industry! It was closed.

               "The commissioning guidance, upon which NHSE is consulting, will be addressed to CCGs to support them to fulfil their duties around the appropriate use of prescribing resources. This will need to be taken into account by CCGs in adopting or amending their own local guidance to their clinicians in primary care."

Most CCG's (Clinical Commissioning Groups) do not spend money on homeopathy, they have long since 'banned' it from the services they offer to patients in their area. This consultation is about preventing the remaining few CCG's from spending money on homeopathy.

               "The aim of this consultation is to provide individuals with information about the proposed national guidance and to seek people’s views about the proposals. NHSE welcomes the views of the public, patients, clinicians, commissioners and providers through this consultation process to help inform the final guidance. The consultation ends on 21 October. Links to the consultation can be found here: https://www.england.nhs.uk/2017/07/medicine-consultation/ and 
https://www.engage.england.nhs.uk/consultation/items-routinely-prescribed/

I am delighted that the Department of Health welcomes people's views! It is a question about whether minority views will be listened to, or whether instead the NHS will go further down the road of mono-medicine, that is, a 'one size fits all' health service, on the basis that if pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines are good enough for most people, they are good enough for everyone.

               "It is the responsibility of local NHS organisations to make decisions on the commissioning and funding of any healthcare treatments for NHS patients, such as homeopathy, taking account of issues to do with safety, clinical and cost-effectiveness and the availability of suitably qualified and regulated practitioners. "

Okay, well homeopathy complies with all that.

  • Homeopathy is safe (indeed, it is demonstrably safer than the conventional treatments that currently dominate the NHS). 
  • Homeopathy has been part of part of the clinical practice of the NHS since 1948, and to my knowledge its clinical practice has never been brought into question.
  • Homeopathy is cost-effective, consisting of a modest consultation fee, and the modest cost of homeopathic remedies.
  • Homeopaths, suitably qualified and regulated, are available throughout England, and the rest of the country (see the 'Find A Homeopath' website).

               "Complementary and alternative medicine (CAMs) treatments can, in principle, feature in a range of services offered by local NHS organisations. A treating clinician would take into account an individual’s circumstances and medical history in deciding what would be the most appropriate treatment for their condition. CCGs will have specific policies on the commissioning and funding of CAMs, and may have also developed local policies on priorities with regards to the funding of treatments. A GP would have to work within such policies in providing any treatments on the NHS."

Now, this is where government policy comes in, something that this Department of Health response seems to totally ignore. Note in the above response that treatments available to the patient are to be determined by the 'treating physician, who will decide "what would be the most appropriate treatment for their condition". Then cast you mind back to 2010, and the new government's White Paper. It made an important policy decision, easily reproduced here.

"No decision about me without me" 

Just a few simple words, but with massive meaning. They do NOT mean that the 'treating physician' will decide on 'the most appropriate treatment'. It puts the patient at the centre of treatment decisions. And many patients, including myself, will always choose homeopathic treatment rather than the pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines routinely handed out by the 'treating physicians' of the NHS.

So the government, and the Department of Health in particular, needs to decide what it's policy is, and if it seeks to place the patient at the centre of decision-making, central government cannot wash its hands of decisions that will only reduce and restrict patient choice. Not, at least, without admitting that it no longer believes in patient choice; or without making 'patient choice' part of the 'proposed national guidelines' which will inform CCG's in coming to their decision.

               "The Department of Health supports an approach to evidence-based prescribing which does not support the commissioning of services which are not clinically and cost effective. We are not aware of any evidence that demonstrates the therapeutic effectiveness of homeopathic products. The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) does not currently recommend that homeopathy should be used in the treatment of any health condition, whilst primary care prescribing data shows that there has been a significant decline in the prescribing of homeopathic products over the last 10 years. Furthermore, a good number of NHS organisations are reviewing their funding of homeopathic treatments and some have already stopped funding such treatment altogether.

Here, at last, is the real position of the Department of Health.

Yet, look closely at all these people and organisations brought in by the Department of Health to decide what patients can, and cannot have in terms of medical treatment within the NHS.

  • the treating physician
  • CCG's
  • the evidence base of medical science
  • NICE

So is the patient in this brave new world of NHS reform? Are we moving, ever closer, towards "No decision about me without me"? Or is patient choice dead? Is the concept of health freedom something quite foreign to the Department of Health?

This response only reinforces my belief that patients are going to need an alternative health service, one that is populated by homeopaths, naturopaths, herbalists, acupuncturists, reflexologists, and other alternative therapists, one that is quite separate and distinct from the NHS. Why?

Conventional medicine is failing - fast. Doctors can no longer prescribe painkillers safely. There is an 'Antibiotic Apocalypse' on the way, according to the Chief Medical Officer. Benzodiazepine drugs are an ongoing disaster. Antidepressants and antipsychotic drugs are no better. So many pharmaceutical drugs are on the way to being withdrawn and no new drugs are coming through the pharmaceutical pipeline. The NHS is in constant crisis. It cannot recruit enough doctors, who cannot afford to pay their indemnity insurance for the damage their treatments cause to patients. And, on the other side, an ever-increasing number of patients are realising that the drugs and vaccines the NHS are handing out are harmful - patients are becoming resistant to them, and this will only get worse.

So let the NHS go. Let conventional medicine monopolise it, and allow it to fail alongside the pharmaceutical drugs industry. This particular patient may shed a quiet tear, the end of a socialist dream, making the best medicine freely available to all. But the NHS is no longer about patients, or patient choice, or health freedom, the things I care about. It operates for the drug companies that control it. So good riddance, and long live the medical therapies of the future.


Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Calpol - do you give it to your children?

Calpol is Paracetamol in syrup, and passed off as a safe medicine for children in Britain, and in many other countries. It is advertised to parents and children as being "tough on pain and fever, but gentle on delicate tummies"

Indeed, most parents will use Calpol believing that it is completely safe for their young children. There is little general information available to say that it might be harmful, particularly as it is such a readily available  'over-the-counter' medication, aimed specifically at children.

Yet as Calpol is Paracetamol it can cause the same serious and dangerous side effects of Paracetamol, especially in children   So although there are general warnings on the packets, such as "keep out of reach and sight of children" and "do not give any other products that contain paracetomol" the real dangers are not spelt out.

If they were, Calpol sales would plummet!

The paper insert in Calpol packets gives instructions about when not to give the medicine, when to speak to a doctor or pharmacist after giving the medicine, and a section on side-effects -which mentions the following:

     • Skin rashes and other signs of allergy.
     • Becoming unusually tired
     • Unexpected bruising or bleeding
     • Getting more infections than usual.

Yet the known side effects of paracetamol are more serious than this. They include liver damage, asthma, skin disease, cardiovascular problems and stroke, kidney failure, gastrointestinal bleeding, blood cancer - and death!

Liver and kidney damage is mentioned on the leaflet - if people "use medicine containing paracetomol every day for a long time (several months or more)".

Unfortunately, this indication about timing is contrary to the most recent research about adults taking Paracetamol, which indicates that organ damage can arise in just a few days rather than months!

Still, a packet of Calpol I saw recently did say that it did not have any added sugar! Well, that's all okay then! But I still think I would be looking for a safer, gentler, more effective, homeopathic alternative to dealing with a child in pain!

Monday, 2 October 2017

SIDs, Cot Death. Can we trust what conventional medicine tells us?

I have written about SIDs on several occasions, pointing out that conventional medicine claims it does not know what causes SIDs (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome - or cot death), and that one reason for this is that the only known cause for cot deaths are vaccines. Perhaps it is a kind of intentional amnesia.

The disease inducing effects of pharmaceutical drugs. SIDs

Sudden Infant Death. Is it caused by conventional medical drugs?

Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDs), Co-Sleeping, and the DPT vaccine

The USA Vaccine Court has recently come to an important decision, that there was sufficient evidence to rule that vaccination caused a child to die from SIDs. The ruling can be found here. It is an important ruling because it shows that independent assessment of the evidence can show two things, first, that vaccines are not safe, and second, that the cause of SIDs, or cot deaths, are not unknown.

This is in direct contractions to what conventional medicine tells us - that vaccines are safe, and that the cause of cot deaths are unknown.  The court looked at the package inserts of the vaccine involved, the DPT vaccine, and found that they included a long list of severe adverse reaction. It would appear that when doctors tell us that vaccines are safe they do so only by disregarding the information in front of them.

There are now millions of parents who, over the years, have testified to the fact that their children, healthy prior to a vaccination, became unhealthy and severely damaged shortly afterwards. Conventional medicine has routinely denied such claims. Anecdotal, they say. Unscientific, they pontificate. There is no evidence linking SIDs to vaccines, they say, hoping that no-one will read the evidence in the package insert.

The vaccine court has not usually been so open or honest in the years it has functioned, paying USA taxpayers money out in compensation for the damage caused by the pharmaceutical industry. This decision suggests that something is happening. Perhaps the criticism of the court, hitherto a good friend of the drug companies, has been heard. Perhaps it is getting increasingly difficult to get away with stating that vaccines are safe when they are clearly not.

In this case, the subject of the petition, JB., was born 4 weeks prematurely, and when he was 5 months old he attended his 'well baby' meeting. JB's dad said he was smiling during the meeting, and he was described as "healthy, co-operative, well-nourished and well developed". He had me numerous 4-month developmental milestones, despite his premature birth. He was then vaccinated. Later that day, according to his dad, HB was no longer laughing or cooing like he normally did. He was not moving as much, and he seemed quiet and withdrawn. That night he developed a fever, and did not sleep well. Less than 24 hours later, JB was dead.

How many times have we heard similar accounts? How often have these been ignored by conventional medicine?

How can we imaging what the parents go through, the fathers and mothers of normal healthy babies, who visit their doctors, who they trust, and accept vaccination because they are told they are safe?

Why did these parents win the case when so many others lost? Apparently the case was well documented, the medical examination showed that the child was healthy. It was evidence difficult for doctors to deny, otherwise, presumably, they would have denied it.

So what is conventional medicine doing in order to find out the cause of SIDs? Have a look at this research, and try to fathom what they are looking at! All too technical for most people!

               "..... research is directed at defining the causes of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS)..... testing the idea that SIDS ..... is due to a developmental brainstem defect in autonomic and/or respiratory control during sleep. Focusing specifically on the arcuate nucleus in the ventral medulla area of the brainstem ..... (the) team is identifying abnormalities that put an infant at risk for sudden death during sleep. While continuing to study the anatomy and neurochemistry of the ventral medulla in SIDS victims ..... (the) team is also looking at the function and pathology of the ventral medulla in animal models. The ultimate goals of this research are to define ventral medullary abnormalities in living infants and to suggest ways of preventing the abnormalities from leading to sudden infant death."

Well that's clear then. Except it's not! Like most scientific medical research it is difficult for most people to understand this. It is looking for cause from within the body, it is assuming that there is something wrong internally. Perhaps, it other words, it is deliberately obfuscatory. It is failing to look in the right place. Intentionally? Would a genuine study into the possibility that vaccine damage caused SIDs get funding from the main funder of medical science - the pharmaceutical industry?

There is a further question. Why do parents have to take such situations to court in order to find out why their child had died? Why does a court have to hear the case to conclude that the proximity of the sequence - a healthy child - a vaccination - a dead child - might suggest that the vaccine was the cause of death. Is it really possible that doctors, paedriatricians, and pathologists were unable to see the possible link? Are all these professional medics in denial? Do they have to be in denial to maintain their position within the conventional medical establishment?

Instead it falls to organisations like Green Med Info to listen to parents, to make the (all-to-obvious) link, and to try to inform the public of the dangers of vaccination. Green Med Info have produced a database. It says, amongst many other things, that there has been over 600 cases of SIDs following vaccination in the years 1990 to 1997 - that is, between 20 and 30 years ago, and just in the USA. And still, the conventional medical establishment tells us that they do not know the cause of cot deaths.

In Britain, the NHS estimates that about 300 babies "die suddenly and unexpectedly every year". But, we are told, we should not to be alarmed as "SIDS is rare and the risk of your baby dying from it is low". Well, okay. But the NHS does not tell us how many deaths there should be before we are alarmed! And what do they tell us about the cause of SID's, and 300 death per year?

               "The exact cause of SIDS is unknown, but it's thought to be down to a combination of factors."

So what are these factors? Experts, we are told, believe that SIDS occurs at a particular stage in a baby’s development, and that it affects babies who are vulnerable to certain environmental stresses. It mentions premature birth, low birthweight, and "other reasons not yet identified". It mentions tobacco smoke, getting tangled in bedding, a minor illness, or a breathing obstruction. It mentions an association with co-sleeping (sleeping with parents).

               "Babies who die of SIDS are thought to have problems in the way they respond to these stresses and how they regulate their heart rate, breathing and temperature."

But not a mention of any link with vaccination! The conventional medical establishment maintains its silence. It is in denial. It points to an important conclusion. Doctors cannot be trusted to tell us the truth about SIDs, and cot death.

Friday, 29 September 2017

Is Conventional Medicine a Criminal Enterprise?

Is conventional medicine, dominated as it is by the pharmaceutical industry, a criminal enterprise? The common feature of every criminal enterprise is that it profits from illicit and illegal activities that harm other people - and is this not exactly what the pharmaceutical industry does?

There have been a number of recent examples of this 'criminal activity' in recent weeks (the trigger for this log), and regularly over the years, all demonstrating that drug companies not only do great harm to people, they do so knowingly, they do not play by the rules and regulations set up for them, and that they do everything possible to prevent discovery and prosecution.

Regular readers of this blog will understand well that the pharmaceutical industry, with its drugs and vaccines, harms patients, cause disease and death. The industry underplays the harm it does by calling the harm 'side effects', or 'adverse drug reactions'. In fact, pharmaceutical are actually the cause of  disease and death. Some research demonstrating this was reported in the Mail Online. It involved 380,000 elderly patients, and showed that antidepressant drugs do more harm than good, and actually increase the risk of death by 33%!

"Warning for those on antidepressants: The commonly prescribed drugs raise the risk of an early death by 33%".

Most conventional drug and vaccine treatments have been subject to similar research findings over the years, but little or nothing ever happens. It is important to understand why.

Successful criminal enterprises become very wealthy, and they seek to use their money to subvert the systems that have been established to control them. The pharmaceutical drug companies to this. They use their wealth to purchase the medical 'science' that conducts drug trials, and the drug regulatory systems set up to oversee them. This science is supposed to ensure that no drug or vaccine is marketed that is dangerous or harmful to patients. But drug companies have used their wealth to effectively takeover medical science, and the drug regulatory systems around the world. Hence, we have this recent news from France.

France to prosecute its drug regulator and Servier in scandal over diabetes drug
France’s drug regulator, and one of its leading drug companies, Servier, will stand trial as legal persons over the marketing of the anti-diabetes and weight loss drug, benfluorex (marketed in France as Mediator). This drug killed between 500 and 2300 people before being pulled from the market in 2009.

Most important and influential health organisations, whose word is supposed to be impartial, but putting the interests of patients at the centre of health care, have been infiltrated and bribed into corruption by the drug companies. The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) is one such organisation, and another piece of recent news highlights what is happening.

On 18th September 2017, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and his team outlined various criminal acts committed by employees and consultants of CDC, "whose questionable ethics and scientific fraud have resulted in untrustworthy vaccine safety science". His report highlights massive corruption and 'criminal misconduct' within the organisation, designed to hide the truth about drug and vaccine treatments, and in effect, to help pharmaceutical companies to continue to profit by harming patients.

The Mafia have always used similar tactics. They hide their criminal activities by using their wealth and power to undermine and subvert potential opposition, and any attempt to control their activities.

Certainly the pharmaceutical companies are prepared to spend unimaginable amounts of money to control potential opposition. They control politicians and governments. They infiltrate and dominate national health service provision throughout the world. They fund (and therefore control) medical science, and drug regulatory agencies to ensure that they always come up with the 'correct' outcomes! They invest heavily in mainstream media organisations - to an extent that they can no longer report on conventional medical harm and corruption, and still survive economically.

I have little in common with the rabid 'right' in the USA. But they have, at least, identified the problem, the enormous infiltration by the pharmaceutical industry at a medical, media and political level. Recently, the Bolen Report have been focusing on the extent of medical interference in the medical process in America. In his report on "Big Pharma’s Influence in Congress" Bolen describes and identifies the enormous amount of money being employed by the pharmaceutical industry to support its agenda. Although I have little time for his particular political stance, his analysis does show that elected politicians, who are supposed to represent the interests of their electorate, have been subverted to an extent that they speak only for the interests of the conventional medical establishment. Criminal enterprises always seek to protect themselves at a political and governmental level, and the pharmaceutical companies have been enormously successful in doing so.

If a creature looks like a duck, walks like a duck, behaves like a duck, it is most likely to be a duck!

The pharmaceutical industry looks like a criminal enterprise because it harms patients with its drugs and vaccines, and profits enormously by doing so. It uses its enormous wealth to infiltrate, dominate and control potential resistance and opposition. It subverts public institutions, established to control their activities. And it does all this in order to carry on its business unhindered. Frequently, these activities are found to be illegal and corrupt. They are found guilty, and pay the fines in many cases that remain unreported and unknown. At the same time, it uses its influence in the organisations and institutions it controls, to parade itself as public spirited, whilst keeping the harm it causes away from public attention.

So for all these reasons, there is no doubt, in my mind, that the pharmaceutical industry represents a criminal enterprise. It is time we all stood up to say "enough"!

Chronic illness and disease is running at epidemic levels, in great part caused by harm cause by the so-called 'side effects' of pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines. It is time to bring our politicians, our governments, medical science, drug regulation, the mainstream (especially public service) media to task.

We all need to be protected from the pharmaceutical industry.

Friday, 22 September 2017

Another Pharmaceutical Drug to be 'Controlled': Gabapentinoids / Lyrica / Neurontin

The business of the pharmaceutical companies is to come up with new drugs that purportedly are capable of treating illness.They do research, they test, they present drugs to the drug regulatory system, which approve them as both safe and effective, and then doctors give them to patients.

The history of new pharmaceutical drugs is that they never prove to be as safe or as effective as the claims initially made for them. The conventional medical establishment, aided and abetted by the mainstream media, then hides this information from patients for as long as possible, but as evidence accumulates, their lack of effectiveness, and the serious and often lethal harm they can cause, can no longer be censored. Drugs are then banned, withdrawn, or in this most recent case, 'controlled'.

The latest pharmaceutical drug to be 'controlled' in Britain are Gabapentinoids, perhaps better known as gabapentin and pregabalin, or by its trade names, Lyrica and Neurontin. This follows a number of studies about the 'side effects' they cause, and a sudden rise in the number of deaths related to it.

If you have not heard this news, don't be surprised! It is not the kind of news that drug companies, conventional doctors, or indeed our mainstream news media are likely to tell us. So here is an outline of what has happened, taken from the GP e-magazine, Pulse.

               "Home Office minister Sarah Newton told Pulse that the Government had accepted recommendations from advisers to make them a class C drug, subject to a consultation. It comes after official figures revealed there were 111 deaths related to pregabalin in 2016 and 59 related to gabapentin, compared with four and eight respectively in 2012."

I notice that the Home Office minister has not told us! And I do wonder, from this statement, why the 4 and 8 deaths in 2012 were considered acceptable, whilst the 111 and 59 deaths were considered unacceptable. Each of these patients are equally dead! And their death was caused by a pharmaceutical drugs! Pulse then asks whether Gabapentinoids is going to be "the new diazepam" before continuing with the story.

               "The Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD) wrote to the Home Office in January 2016 calling for the drugs to be controlled, warning that ‘pregabalin and gabapentin present a risk of addiction and a potential for illegal diversion and medicinal misuse’."

January 2016 is now 20 months ago. Why does it take so long before the medical establishment moves to protect patients from pharmaceutical drugs that are known to be harmful? Pulse then goes on to provide information about a number of recent studies (not reported in the media of course) that have recommended that GP's refrain from prescribing the drugs.

               "An Addiction paper in May this year, from University of Bristol researchers, suggested GPs consider alternatives to pregabalin and gabapentin after finding the recent substantial increase in prescriptions to be closely correlated with a rise in the number of deaths associated with gabapentinoids in England and Wales, with a 5% increase in deaths per 100,000 increase in prescriptions."

               "A Cochrane Review from June this year concluded that gabapentin ‘can provide good levels of pain relief to some people with postherpetic neuralgia and peripheral diabetic neuropathy’, but added: ‘Evidence for other types of neuropathic pain is very limited… Over half of those treated with gabapentin will not have worthwhile pain relief but may experience adverse events."

So the drug will now be 'controlled', not, you should notice, withdrawn or banned, so it can still be prescribed to patients! This is because the drug, in addition to being unsafe and ineffective, is also addictive. It is commonly misused, and is know to create dependency. One study, according to Pulse, from the University of Kentucky in the USA, found that misuse of gabapentin was at a "staggering" 40 to 65% among patients with prescriptions. Pulse also quotes Dr Steve Brinksman, clinical director of the drug and alcohol treatment professionals group SMMP as saying that the drug has "psychotropic effects, which means patients are likely to continue taking them even if they are not proving effective. They probably do have a withdrawal effect – though that has not been proven conclusively yet."

It always astounds me that whilst in every other walk of life the 'precautionary' principle applies. But it conventional medicine harm has to be proven 'conclusively' before any action is taken to protect patients. Yet, in most of the Pulse articles that I read I always find that the comments made by doctors tell us much more about what is going on within conventional medicine. Following this article, some GP's are seem to be neither surprised or saddened by the situation.

               "Good. They are dirty drugs and I'm glad their risk combined with limited therapeutic efficacy is being highlighted. "

               "Long overdue; minimal therapeutic value, often prescribed beyond both evidence and licence, widely abused."

Yet conventional doctors have been prepared to prescribe these drugs to patients for over 20 years! And will no doubt continue to do so. Other doctors seem resigned, cynical, or in despair.

              " Oh well. Back to amitriptyline then. It has so many side effects no one could possibly abuse it could they? Some individuals will abuse anything including imodium and cyclizine. According to the new NICE guidelines on back pain all that we can offer patients is our commiserations - x-rays and analgesia are off the table. Someone is going to get sued at some point for failing to x-ray what later turns out to be metastatic disease, multiple myeloma or osteoporotic collapse!"

Other doctors realise, and bemoan the fact, that they have no effective drugs to treat pain.

               "Soon we won't be allowed to prescribe any painkillers. *sigh."

               "Better tell the pain clinics then."

               "I know we can give people with chronic pain colouring books and teach them to be resilient."

               "Can’t use NSAIDs, opioids, or gabapentinoids. I do agree they should be a controlled drug. But what I am supposed to use when paracetamol is leaving my patients in pain?"

               "Some patients will have to live with pain, doctors are not gods."

No, indeed, doctors are not Gods, although they have been presented as such for a long time now! Worse, on their own admission, they have no effective medical treatment to offer their patients. It is little wonder that morale within the NHS is at such a low ebb. As I have said, many times, on this blog is that the crisis in the NHS has nothing to do with lack of resources, nothing to do with poor management, but everything to do with the failure of conventional medicine, controlled and dominated as it is by the pharmaceutical companies. Moreover, there are more serious questions now need to be addressed.

  • When will doctors, the NHS, and the media tell their patients about the ineffectiveness, the dangers, and addictiveness of these, and other drugs they are using?
  • When will it be acknowledged that conventional medicine has no effective treatment for most of the chronic diseases?
  • When will patients be told, openly, honestly, and transparently, about the side effects of the pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines they are given by doctors, and that these side effects actually cause serious chronic disease, and death.
Without these questions being answered, patients will continue to be unable to make informed choices about their medical treatment.



Monday, 18 September 2017

The BBC, the reporting of Medical Science, MMR and Autism

     "We, who are not scientists, are entitled to have opinions, so we are entitled to express them. So the BBC, and any other news organisations, are OBLIGED, not just entitled, to present them."

This is a quote from John Humphrys on the Today Programme, BBC radio, on 12th September 2017. He was interviewing Steve Jones, Emeritus Professor of Human Genetics at University College, who had reviewed the way the BBC reported science. Scientists, he said, were once 'God-like figures' who were not questioned by journalists. Now, so the argument went, they are questioned, and doubted, often in a hostile manner. Several examples were given about how, why and when science should be questioned.
  • Nuclear power, in the 1950's. We were told that the first nuclear plants were producing electricity, but we were not told that the main reason for their existence was to produce nuclear bombs.
  • John Gummer, a Tory minister, who tried to persuade us that beef was safe to eat, and gave his daughter a beef-burger to prove it.
  • Andrew Wakefield and the MMR controversy. The Smith/Humphrys verdict was that this was "not scientific" and led the many parents refusing to vaccinate their children, "a complete disaster", a "car crash" of science reporting!
  • The Tobacco industry, which denied for many years the connection between smoking, lung cancer and health.
  • The current debate on climate change with climate change deniers.
It was at this point that Humphrys asked the (very legitimate) question about whether we can always trust science, and he made the point that has been quoted above. Read it again, and take it in, completely!

We can all have opinions - and news organisations like the BBC are OBLIGED (not just entitled) to report it. Otherwise, Humphrys stated, "there is no debate".

The Health Debate
Well, there is undoubtedly no debate about health issues, nor has there been for at least the last 20 years! Indeed, the BBC have refused to engage in a debate about health since the time of the Wakefield controversy! I wrote seven blogs on the non-existed health debate back in 2012, and since then the situation has not changed. The mainstream media refuses to discuss important health issues that are constantly being ranged, but are not heard.

So, as usual, Wakefield was dismissed out of hand by both Smith an Humphrys. As a result of the controversy people refused to vaccinate their children, and the implication (as always) was that vaccinations are good! Autism was mentioned, Smith commenting that 'autism was just being talked about at that time'

Yes, indeed it was. And during the intervening years, autism has grown to epidemic proportions. 

So if Wakefield was wrong (and Humphys is quite entitled to his opinion) what has caused this epidemic of autism. Conventional (sometimes called scientific) medicine still does not know apparently. This is what NHS Choices says.

               "The exact cause of autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is currently unknown. It's a complex condition and may occur as a result of genetic predisposition (a natural tendency), environmental or unknown factors."

So the science of Smith and Humphrys has condemned one explanation for autism, but is still quite unable to supply another. Genetic predisposition? Autism was unknown before the 1940's, so where did these genes suddenly appear from? A natural tendency? Is this really the best that medical science can come up with?

So, Mr Humphrys, I disagree. And, as you say, I have a right to my opinion. Actually, I am far from  alone in having this opinion. Nor do I think that vaccinations are a good thing, as I do not believe in injecting myself (or anyone else) with poisons like mercury, aluminium, and other noxious subjects. So are the BBC is obliged to know about these opinions? If so, why are our opinions never aired on the BBC, or any other mainstream media source?

  • I can understand that conventional medicine might not want to admit the link between vaccines are autism (and ADHD, Allergies, and Alzheimers, and much else). But I cannot understand why the mainstream media, including the BBC, refuse to put forward and question the views of anti-vaxers.
  • I can understand that the commercial media does not want to 'bite the hand that feeds them', the pharmaceutical companies are massive advertisers on which media companies have become almost completely dependent. But the BBC?
So, Mr Humphys, just as you said, when someone's opinions are ignored there is no debate. One side, medical science, is reported, ad nauseam - new miracle drugs, wonder cures, life changing breakthroughs in treatment. But anyone concerned about the impact of toxic pharmaceutical drugs are vaccines are never heard, and conventional medical spokesmen are never asked why, despite these regular breakthroughs, autism, and most other chronic diseases (cancer, diabetes, arthritis, and many, many more) are now running at epidemic levels. 
  • When will journalists have the courage to ask what I want them to ask - when, with all the money are resources being poured into conventional medicine, can we expect a decline in the incidence of disease? 
  • And more important, are the pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines we are regularly told are so good for us causing these disease epidemics through their so-called 'side effects' and 'adverse reactions?
More specifically, when will the mainstream media inform us about medical events that demonstrate that we are dealing with a deeply fraudulent medical system? For instance, when will it be reported that the scientist who led the medical research that 'proved' there was no link between MMR and Autism has actually admitted that he destroyed important data that would have proven the link? 

I have asked the BBC about this, and blogged about it in 2016. They told me that it was not newsworthy! Fraudulent medical science, not newsworthy? A medical system in denial about a serious link between disease and vaccines, not newsworthy? It would appear that it is okay for the BBC to report favourably on medical science, but any unfavourable news is to be censored! 

So, Mr Humphrys, there is, indeed, no debate. My opinions, and the opinions of an ever-growing proportion of the public, are not being heard. You might says that we are 'entitled' to know about opinions contrary to science. But it would appear that the BBC does not feel 'obliged' to tell us about them. And in the meantime, the rates of Autism continue to rise.



Thursday, 31 August 2017

Dental Amalgam. What can we learn from the EU ban?

Anyone going to a dentist who is found to have a cavity, caused by tooth decay, has the tooth drilled, and the resulting hole filled with dental amalgam, a liquid mercury and metal alloy mixture. Mercury, which makes up about 50% of dental amalgam, is one of the most poisonous substances known. In addition, amalgam consists of silver, tin, copper and other trace metals. And our dentists have been putting this in our mouths now for over 150 years.

The European Union (EU) is now proposing to ban dental amalgam for children, and pregnant and breastfeeding mothers on 1st July 2018.

The Dental Tribune says this about the ban. "A new study, conducted on behalf of the European Commission, recommends phasing out dental amalgam use over the next few years owing to mercury’s negative impact on the environment. According to the recently published study results, the ban should be combined with improved enforcement of the EU waste legislation regarding dental amalgam."

The ban itself raises important questions. Do the restrictions mean that dental amalgam is safe for adults? Are we less susceptible to harm than children and pregnant mothers? Is amalgam really being banned because of its 'negative impact on the environment' rather than its negative impact on our health? And does the delay in implementing the ban mean that dental amalgam is safe to use up to the date it becomes effective?

The answer to all three questions has to be "NO". And important lessons should be learnt about how conventional medicine operates from the hopeless tardiness of this ban, namely:

  • the pretence that the disposal of amalgam damages the environment, but does not damage us!
  • the absence of the 'precautionary principle' when conventional medicine damages our health.
  • the time that dangerous conventional medical practices are allowed to harm patients without action being taken.
  • the ongoing denial that conventional medical treatments are dangerous to our health.
  • the failure of the mainstream media to inform the public about these harmful and dangerous practices.

The pretence that the disposal of amalgam damages the environment, but does not damage us!
It is quite likely that the disposal of the metals is a problem for the environment. But if this is so, for conventional medicine to then pretend that the same metals do not damage patients is quite absurd! Remember where dental amalgam is put - in our mouths - in a moist environment - what what do metals do in moist environment? They leach, and the metals, including the mercury, leaches into our bodies.

The absence of the 'precautionary principle' when conventional medicine damages our health.
As I have written before, the precautionary principle is not applied to conventional medicine. In any other walk of life, when a product or a procedure is thought to be potentially harmful (even if it has not been proven beyond doubt) that product or procedure is suspended until such time that the evidence is clear, one way or the other. However, as far as health is concerned, conventional medical products and procedures are never suspended until evidence of harm is overwhelming.

The time that dangerous conventional medical practices are allowed to harm patients without action being taken.
There has been evidence that dental amalgam is dangerous for decades. I did some research and found the BBC were reporting on these over 20 years ago. In 1999 the published an article on the fears about mercury poisoning. Five years earlier, in 1994, 23 years ago, a BBC Panorama programme was broadcast on 'The Hazards of Mercury Fillings'. This shortened version of the programme can be found here, and I urge you to watch it. Observe the evidence about mercury that was available to us then, and the denials that were being made by the representatives of the conventional medical establishment at the time. Note, in particular, that at one point, evidence of the link between mercury and Alzheimer's disease was mentioned, and (of course) routinely denied!

Conventional medicine has always had a love affair with mercury, for reason quite unknown to me! Drugs like Calomel and Protiodide were both widely used in the 19th century, and gradually (tardily) withdrawn because of their toxicity. Did they learn the lesson - that mercury is toxic? No, new mercury based drugs were marketed, which harmed patients, and were eventually (tardily) withdrawn. Go to this link to read more about conventional medicine's ongoing dalliance with dangerous drugs that were eventually banned.

Today, many of the vaccines doctors inject into our bloodstreams, and into our children, contain mercury - in the form of thimerosal. For instance, the flu vaccine still contains thimerosal, and perhaps unsurprisingly it has been linked to Alzheimer's disease - although always routinely denied by the conventional medical establishment!

The ongoing denial that conventional medical treatments are dangerous to our health.
If, in the past, the conventional medical establishment has routinely denied the dangers of products and procedures they use with their patients, how can patients be sure that the treatment they receive today are any safer. In short, they cannot know this! The best predictor of future performance in past performance! This is one of the main reasons for this blog - to warn people not only about harmful and dangerous pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines - but to make it clear that doctors throughout the ages have been in denial about their dangers. They still are! Nothing has changed, and the banning of amalgam fillings in just one more proof of this.

In the 1970's I regularly visited my dentist. My mum always told me that I should! Regularly I was told that I had a cavity. Regularly dental amalgam was put in my mouth. Then I discovered dentists were paid for doing so! About five years ago I had all my amalgam fillings removed. About two years ago I asked my dentist whether he still used dental amalgam. He said yes. I asked him why, given that it has already been banned in some countries. He said that he knew nothing about this, and he told me that amalgam was perfectly safe. Norway banned it in 2008! For over 5 years Sweden, Denmark and Germany have either banned or restricted the use of mercury fillings. But my dentist 'was not aware'!

The failure of the mainstream media to inform the public about these harmful and dangerous practices.
The BBC Panorama film, referred to above, comes from a time when our public broadcaster pursued health issues openly and honestly, in recognition of the principle that people needed to know about such important issues. Unfortunately, this is no longer the case. The news has  not been covered in the mainstream media, including the BBC, even though the proposed EU ban on dental amalgam has been known since the end of July 2017.

So, one month later, there has been no mention of this by the BBC, either on television, radio, or on their health news website! How things have change in the last 15 years. But let's be absolutely clear what this means to us, as patients.

  • The mainstream news media will certainly know about the proposed ban, and have omitted to publish anything about it. I presume they do not think it is newsworthy!
  • Amalgam has been put into our mouths for over 150 years, harming us, and our media does not think this is newsworthy!
  • The conventional medical establishment has been covering up the dangers of mercury-based treatment again, and our media does not think this is newsworthy!
  • Between the announcement of the ban, a month ago, and the implementation of the ban over the next two or three years, many dentists will presumably continue putting amalgam fillings into the mouths of their patients. And our media does not think that warning us about this is sufficient newsworthy!

The mainstream media is always quiet about the harm conventional medicine is doing to us with their drugs and vaccines - and the amalgam fillings they put in our mouths. They are little more than an echo chamber for the pharmaceutical companies! They are slavishly compliant to the needs and agendas of the conventional medical establishment. They no longer investigate beyond what they are told. They believe what they are told. They do not believe anything that suggests conventional medicine is not a bonus to our health. So all we know is the ‘good’ (which is not always good)! We know nothing the bad!

So when we become ill, as a direct result of conventional medical treatment, we are not aware of the cause. We continue to take the 'wonder' drugs and vaccinations in the belief that they are beneficial. We are ignorant of the harm they cause. We must begin to ask if a large part of the responsibility for this iatrogenic lllness rests with the mainstream media.

Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Canakinumab. A New Wonder Drug! Promoted by the mainstream media

The mainstream media, urged on by their pharmaceutical sponsors, have announced that the drug Canakinumab 
is a new wonder drug. This Telegraph headline gives a flavour of what the pharmaceutical industry wants us to know. 
"New wonder drug hailed as biggest breakthrough in fight against heart attacks and cancer".

Wonderful news, except that regular readers of this blog will probably know that I am not over-impressed with such claims. During the last 60 years we have been deluged with similar claims for a wide variety of new drugs that have never materialised. Even their most success drugs are now failing - painkillers are too dangerous for doctors to prescribe - antibiotics are becoming increasingly unable to kill bugs which are now largely resistant to them, and so on. And we now face epidemics of chronic disease, largely as a result of the side effects and adverse reactions to these same drugs.

The drug costs £40,000 per patient per year! Yet, as usual, there is no mention that the new wonder drug might cause serious side effects. But of course, it does, and these are outlined on the Drugs.com website. It starts with a warning. 

               "Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug." (My emphasis).

So patients are advised to contact their doctor, and get medical help immediately if any of the following side effects are experienced.
  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever
  • Wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Signs of infection like fever, chills, very bad sore throat, ear or sinus pain, cough, more sputum or change in color of sputum, pain with passing urine, mouth sores, or wound that will not heal.
  • Cough that does not go away.
  • Weight loss.
  • Dizziness or passing out.
  • Very bad irritation where the shot was given.
  • Trouble swallowing.
  • Very upset stomach or throwing up.
  • A heartbeat that does not feel normal.
  • A very bad and sometimes deadly problem called Macrophage Activation Syndrome (MAS) may rarely happen in people with juvenile arthritis.
Canakinum is also known to cause headache, stomach pain, upset stomach or throwing up, diarrhoea, muscle pain. weight gain, sore throat, runny nose, and flu-like signs.

If the mainstream media was motivated, in any way, to protect patients from iatrogenic harm as they clearly are to promote pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines, they may have wanted to take time to read, and mention these problems associated with this new wonder drug to their readers!

Regular readers will also know that I don't always report on them (it would become somewhat boring and monotonous), but there are reasons for doing so in this case. I went on to read some of the comments made on the Telegraph article. They are interesting, and you should read them too! They are almost entirely cynical about the article, to say the very least. It shows that people are beginning to realise that the tactic of announcing a new 'wonder drug' is a marketing ploy, one which never materialises! 

Perhaps the mainstream media might also read the comments, and learn from them. Their promotion of pharmaceutical drugs is meeting reasoned and thoughtful resistance. Continuing to promote pharmaceutical drugs is damaging the credibility of the press and media with the public.
     "Canakinumab was associated with a higher incidence of fatal infection than was placebo. There was no significant difference in all-cause mortality (hazard ratio for all canakinumab doses vs. placebo, 0.94; 95% CI, 0.83 to 1.06; P=0.31)."

So no real benefit in terms of improved longevity compared to a sugar pill; dead is still dead, regardless of cause. Certainly not worth £40,000 per year.
  • Hmm. Stains do not have a sound record but I do hope this new product will really help those that need it. Each year, it is suggested by my GP that I take up Statins. I always refuse because I am not vulnerable to heart attacks and my parent never suffered from them . Furthermore, my Cholesterol and Triglycerides readings when taken, are below alert  levels. So why am I so encouraged? Because they will help me. I cannot resist the thought that NICE who promote the prescription of this drug, are paid a commission on sales. I believe the Global annual sales of Statins now exceed $50 Billions per year and that is one big incentive to push the product.
  • BTW did you kniow that cancer is now a  $125 Billions per year Industry? In the USA alone? With that sort of income, why would anyone want to create a cure?
  • Oh dear, a monoclonal antibody therapy. 1 vial of 150 mg costs 9927.80 quid. I cannot see NICE paying for it. Not four times per year per patient. We shall see.
  • Another week - another wonder drug you'll never hear about again. The establishment don't really want you to have 'wonder drugs' that work. Although they are quite happy for you to have 'wonder drugs' with bad side effects - like statins. What on earth benefit does it have to them to help OAP's to continue to live longer by giving them expensive life prolonging drugs? 
  • Not again!
  • Hold on I am sure I read about the wonder drug interleukin decades ago.
  • The non mainstream healthcare sector has believed for years that inflammation can cause major health issue. There is evidence linking inflammation to insulin resistance and obesity yet this is often ignore by the protectionist medical industry. Look at Linus Paulings Vic C, and Lysene protocol for reducing cholesterol and heart failure. Totally ignored by mainstream medicine because there is simply no profit in it. The possibility that inexpressive, uncontrolled substances may eliminate the need for complex 8 hour operations and months of expensive drugs doesn't sit well with those who provide the drugs and carry out the operations.
  • The Wikipedia article on canakinumab says, 'On Aug 27, 2017 the results of the CANTOS trial were announced ... CANTOS saw a 15% reduction in deaths from heart attacks, stroke and cardiovascular disease combined. CANTOS also observed serious side-effects, and no overall survival benefit.'Presumably then you're less likely to die of the things they're trying to treat, but more likely to die of the side-effects, and the two approximately cancel each other out.
  • Everyone has to die of something eventually. I am 78, and just about the only one of my large group of friends not on medication. Many of them take statins, among other things. My doctor has tried, numerous times, to get me on them in spite of my cholesterol, blood pressure and heart all being perfectly fine. I have had a chest x-ray and blood tests recently, due to a chest infection. All the results were ok. I would rather die quickly of a heart attack, or fairly quickly of cancer than linger into old age and end up sitting in a nursing home with dementia and wasting my childrens' rather small inheritance on fees. I have always had a healthy suspicion of taking medication, and of the drug companies who make a fortune from pushing it. I lead a fairly active life, and will only take something if my GP can convince me that it is really needed. MY plan is to go out with a bang, not a whimper! Fingers crossed that I manage it!
  • Actually what many Doctors won't tell you is that HIGH Cholesterol in the elderly is associated with ''longevity''! I'm reminded of a woman in America who had a cholesterol reading of 15 points (uk) which is approximately 3 times the guideline of about 5. Almost forgot. She was active, sharp, and ''105 years old''.
  • It's an anti-inflammatory which works by knocking out the immune system. Use very carefully!
  • Biggest breakthrough since STATINS eh! Shoot yourself in the foot why don't cha! Red rag to a bull time, so here we go ... Let's be clear. In spite of all the HYPE concerning STATINS they have NEVER been shown to prevent Heart-Disease or Heart Attacks, or even prevent a single Death ... And yet with the help of a corrupt culture of medical disinformation and a superb advertising campaign they are a 30 billion dollar a year industry. But perhaps far more worrying, Statins are increasingly linked to all manner of health problems, from Cancer to Alzheimer's and ironically to the one most common to all ... PREMATURE AGING. And somewhat strange that a suspect band of ?Experts? are at now odds with so many GP's and for that matter, even the literature of Lipitor the no1 best selling Statin drug in the world, which states .... ''Lipitor does not prevent heart disease or heart attacks''! ...... So why is it being prescribed on such vast scales, by so many medical practitioners .... ? Corruption?
  • Hmm...... biggest breakthrough since statins. There is still alot of controversy regarding statins and even the medical profession can't agree with each other. I know plenty of people who have stopped taking these meds due to serious side affects, including memory loss. The pharmaceutical companies obviously want to push these drugs because of increased profits. I stopped taking statins due to serious side affects and feel alot better off them. Regarding this new drug, l hope it lives up to expectations.
  • Why do I greet such headlines with a degree of cynicism? I suppose it's a bit like the reverse crying wolf.
  • 200 000 people  x 40000 Pounds equals eight billion pounds per annum. Can't see this happening soon.
  • Did someone buy some Novartis shares on Friday?
  • OR, you could just include turmeric in your daily diet ritual which has proven anti-inflammatory properties without an injection or side effects.
  • I would also advise the DT to read more widely on whether this is truly a wonder drug.  The NEJM's editorial concludes with the following sentence, "the modest absolute clinical benefit of canakinumab cannot justify its routine use in patients with previous myocardial infarction until we understand more about the efficacy and safety trade-offs and unless a price restructuring and formal cost-effectiveness evaluation supports it."
  • Probably why they're interested in the further cancer research - I believe that if you find a new treatment for an existing drug, the patent clock is either restarted, or at least elongated.