Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Articles on Quackery

Black Triangle made a reference to this interesting article from The Sunday Times - Ireland.

Simon Singh is one of the good guys, and in his article No miracle cure for junk science he is debunking alternative remedies (i.e. they should be subject to the same scientific testing as other drugs).

Another article from the Sunday Times - Ireland, by Richard Oakley, Ads warns about alternative medicine shows that when people are ill, they are vulnerable and they will clutch at anything they can:

The need for tighter control was brought into focus by the case involving Mineke Kamper, a homeopath in Co Mayo. Kamper, 72, told two patients she was treating not to attend doctors. Both patients died from curable conditions.

Jacqueline Alderslade, 55, from Hollymount in Mayo, died on July 2001 from complications relating to asthma. An inquest was told she had recorded in her diary that Kamper had advised her to give up the medication she had been taking, except for a Ventolin inhaler. Kamper denied the allegation, but refused to attend the hearing.

In the second case Paul Howie, a 49-year-old picture framer from Ballinrobe in Mayo, died in April 2003 when he was suffocated by a treatable cancerous tumour in his neck. His inquest heard that Kamper had advised him and his wife that he should not seek conventional care.

Kamper also stayed away from this hearing and it has since emerged that, although she was practising homeopathy, she was not fully qualified to do so. An analysis of the treatments she gave to Howie showed that they contained no active ingredients.

In the UK Quackery will be offered to prison inmates:

Holistic massages and aromatherapy to soothe away the stresses of life behind bars are to be offered to inmates at Britain's newest prison. To a chorus of protests, the managers of Peterborough Prison are advertising for two part-time holistic therapists to "offer treatments such as reflexology, aromatherapy, acupuncture, Indian head massage, reiki and shiatsu alongside general relaxation and other health promotion groups.

Living in UK (and other places?) you are indirectly supporting Quackery by paying your tax bill.

See who links to your web site.