The Women’s Weekly and Other Medical Journals
Dr John Welch goes eyeball to eyeball with the iridologists, and takes a look at some famous faces
Chiropractic Treatment of Infertility
During idle moments I read medical journals such as the Australian Women’s Weekly. In this case the issue was March 1999 and I really must speak to the Librarian about the disgracefully outdated journals currently held by the medical library.
Following extensive investigations for infertility, our reporter consulted Dr Naomi Perry, an Adelaide chiropractor, who “was doing revolutionary work treating women with infertility by manipulating their spines.” The chiropractor discovered that “Concepta” (not her real name) had a spinal curvature (scoliosis). This is hardly surprising since chiropractors diagnose this disorder in 100% of their patients, it being a central tenet of the chiropractic theory of subluxations. After four months of manipulation a pregnancy was confirmed. If the writer had stood on her head for two hours every night , a pregnancy would have eventually occurred since this event is a function of time for most couples.
Gypsies have the greatest success in predicting pregnancy. This is because they have crystal balls and can see it coming.
The White Stuff?
I was disappointed to miss the International Iridiology & Sclerology Conference held recently in Auckland. Iridologists have now discovered new secrets of divination using the sclera (white of the eye). This immediately reminded me of Ken Ring’s demonstration of “reading” elbows, knees or any part of the body for that matter. As far as iridology is concerned it doesn’t matter whether the iris, sclera, eyelid or the nostril are “examined”. Given a gullible customer, iridologists can spout any old rubbish and they will be believed. Nevertheless, there were some inspirational papers: “Pupillary ruff phenomena in the iris” presented by a senior iridology lecturer at the South Pacific College of Natural Therapies, and “Emotional resistance patterns in the sclera” by a US visitor whose qualifications included a ND (doctor of naturopathy) and a PhD from the University of Wakula Springs, the same one attended by Tarzan. The rather alarming claim is made that “it (iridology) is poised to become mainstream within this decade in many countries like NZ”.
Given the composition of the Health Minister’s committee on alternative medicine, this is a distinct and unwelcome possibility.
Health Secrets of Your Face
Each of the five elements which form the basis of acupuncture-earth, fire, water, wood and metal-have a corresponding face shape which tells the analyst about a person’s talents, personality and potential health problems. Kate Winslet sought the help of a facial analyst when she needed to shed 25 kg of weight gained during her pregnancy. For her “wood” face she was told to “prune” back on sugar, wheat and dairy products. The diet worked so well she not only shed some ugly fat but got rid of her husband…
The face is viewed as a map with different areas representing parts of the body. For example, the forehead represents the bladder and the area between the eyes relates to the spleen and gall bladder. Never be tempted therefore, to squeeze any pimples in this area!
Catherine Zeta-Jones has a “metal-type” face that doubtless describes her attraction to Michael Douglas who is certainly “well-metalled”.
New Zealand Woman’s Weekly 15 October 2001
US cancer institute funds trials of complementary therapy
The Gonzalez regime is a program of dietary modification, supplements and “detoxification” using coffee enemas. The supplements include animal glandular extracts, vitamins, trace minerals, papaya and magnesium citrate. Gonzalez has based his treatment on pseudoscience and anecdotal evidence of success has seen US$1.4 million dollars wasted on a formal clinical trial. I predict that the treatment will be a complete failure but this will not deter Dr Gonzalez from continuing to promote this worthless treatment. Neither will this deter gullible individuals from wasting money on this fraud. Rectal coffee could well be dangerous as the following account will demonstrate.
British Medical Journal Vol 320 24 June 2001 p1690
Fatal heart attack from a health food product
A woman collapsed and died soon after drinking a “natural” health drink containing guarana and ginseng. She had a faulty heart valve as well as a history of palpitations and had been warned to avoid caffeine, which is a heart stimulant. Her blood caffeine level was 19mg/L, the equivalent of drinking about 20 cups of coffee. The caffeine concentration in the drink was 60 times greater than levels found in cola drinks. Guarana seeds contain about 5 percent caffeine.
Medical Journal of Australia 174:520-1, 21 May 2001
Dangerous Chinese Medicines
Traditional Chinese medicines are basically placebos and when they do seem to work it is largely due to the illegal insertion of potent western medicines such as steroids. They can also contain mercury and arsenic, as well as toxic herbs and even banned animal species.
An Indonesian man was brought to a Hospital emergency department and was found to be confused due to a low blood sugar. After an injection of glucose he recovered and was able to tell his medical attendants that he was taking a Chinese remedy called “Zhen Qi”. The label on the bottle listed the ingredients as ginseng, pearl, ram’s horn, bark and “frog extract”. Gas chromatography revealed that the mixture also contained glibenclamide, a potent oral hypoglycaemic agent used for treating diabetes!
For once I join with naturopaths, homeopaths and alternative health practitioners everywhere, in condemning this cynical attempt to make sure harmless and ineffective quack remedies actually work by the inclusion of dangerous but effective drugs.
British Medical Journal Vol 323 6 Oct 2001 p702, p770