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Friday 28 July 2017

Health. A surge of honesty in the mainstream media?

Is the mainstream media experiencing a surge of honesty when dealing with health issues, and particular about pharmaceutical drugs? Such is the dishonesty we have been subject to during the last 15-20 years such a thing may seem too good to be true. But in recent days, three matters have come to my notice.

A BBC Panarama programme called "A prescription for murder" was broadcast on 26th July 2017. Expecting little better from our so-called 'public broadcaster' I watched the programme with little expectation that they would do anything else than support the pharmaceutical line. But to my surprise it dealt with a serious problem seriously, and did not absolve SSRI antidepressant drugs from blame. The programme suggested that SSRI antidepressant drugs could cause violence, and that they were implicated in several mass shootings in America. The question had been seriously addressed and investigated, and there was some balance, even fairness, in the broadcast. Doctors from both sides of the argument were interviewed, and it seemed to be a genuine effort to delve into whether these pharmaceutical drugs did cause violence, and in particular whether they were implicated in the mass shooting at a Colorado cinema in July 2012.

It is a programme that the BBC, and the rest of the mainstream media, could and should have been producing and drawing attention to many years ago. I have written about it several times.

If the BBC had been prepared to be honest and critical at that time, the 2012 shooting they focused on might have been prevented, alongside many others that have happened subsequently!

Then there was the Mail Online article, MMR - The Truth, published on 27th July 2017, which not only re-examined the link between the MMR vaccine and Autism, a link denied by conventional medicine, and the mainstream media, for over 20 years, but the role of Dr Andrew Wakefield, whose position is rapidly being vindicated. So why is the Vaccine-Autism link suddenly being revived now. after two decades of denial and censorship?

Even the Natural News website is asking the same question when it observed that the 'Mainstream media is finally starting to cover stories about FOOD CURES working better than prescription drugs'. Why indeed? What are the reasons for this sudden surge of honesty in the mainstream media about the limited value, and the dangers of pharmaceutical drugs? Have news outlets suddenly forgotten who is paying for their bills? Or is this just a temporary aberration? And will they soon be brought back into line by the financial might of the pharmaceutical industry?

Maybe, but maybe not. In a recent blog I pointed out that the BBC, and the mainstream media generally, had a lot of questions to answer, "questions that will become increasingly important to people as the real harm caused by pharmaceutical drugs becomes more obvious, and conventional medicine becomes completely indefensible", and also suggested the consequences of the media continuing to deny the truth about what has been happening to our health. In particular, I asked the following,

  • how many people have taken pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines because they have not been made aware of the dangers?
  • how many people have taken conventional medication for illness for years in the belief that it would make them better - because no-one has ever questioned this assumption?
  • how many people have suffered the side effects, adverse reactions, and really the illness and disease, that are being caused by pharmaceutical medicine?

I predicted that the failure to tell people about the serious harm caused by pharmaceutical drugs for 20 years and more might eventually rebound on the media.

               "how many of these people can rightly accuse the mainstream media that they are seriously ill, or that their friends and relatives have died, because the media has failed to question or investigate the dishonest and fraudulent practices of the pharmaceutical industry?"

Perhaps this is what is now happening. The media are beginning to recognise that conventional medicine, based on pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines, is no longer defensible, no longer credible, that media censorship will ultimately result in people holding them accountable for not doing what they should be doing - honestly informing people about health, how conventional medicine is failing, and how the pharmaceutical industry has been damaging our health for decades.

So the media is culpable. If, for example, the link between the MMR vaccine and Autism has been covered up for over 20 years, people will want to know why they have not been told the truth. They will certainly blame the drug companies, and the doctors who have prescribed disease-inducing drugs. But they will also, quite rightly, blame the mainstream media, for their silence, their support of the pharmaceutical industry, their censorship of health issues.

How many people would still be alive, and/or healthier today, were it not for conventional medicine, media silence, and the unquestioning faith we have given pharmaceutical drugs.

For the media, honesty about such matters now represents self-interest. Actually, it probably always has done so. But even a too late conversion is better than no conversion at all!

How the NHS owes Homeopathy - every day! A case of mucocele.

A homeopath-colleague has told me about a condition she has treated recently. Her son developed a Mucocele. This NHS website describes the condition as follows.

               "A salivary mucocele is a cyst that arises in connection with minor salivary glands. They are common and are usually superficial. Mucoceles mainly appear in the lip but can also occur in cheeks and the floor and roof of the mouth. They appear as a bluish/translucent swelling just under the lining of the mouth. They may have a history of bursting, collapsing then refilling which may be repeated."

The mucocele was diagnosed, and my colleague treated it, trying several different remedies, all without success. As the NHS website says, "if the mucocele is small and doesn't cause any problems it can be left alone with no surgical intervention", but in this case it was neither small or problem-free, so eventually the dentist referred the case on in order to have it removed surgically, which apparently is "the treatment of choice" in conventional medicine.

However, before the operation happened my colleague tried another remedy. It had an immediate effect. This is how she described it.

                "The next morning the Mucocele was a baggy sack, like it had drained from the inside. By the end of the week, his lip was looking normal, no swelling what so ever. He has cancelled his operation. All I can say is thank God it takes the NHS so long to offer help, it gave us time to get rid of a very ugly looking lip. It will be interesting to see what his dentist has to say about this on the next visit, as she was the person that referred him for an operation."

On the surface, this is a simple, straightforward event. A mucocele was diagnosed, and an operation was planned. But when a good homeopathic remedy was found for the condition it was quickly and effectively cured, and the operation cancelled.

               "NHS England’s view is that, at best, homeopathy is a placebo and a misuse of scarce NHS funds which could better be devoted to treatments that work."

This story is just one, small example, of how homeopathy DOES work. It is replicated day after day, with conditions more serious, and less serious than this one. So, first of all, the NHS (dominated as it is by the pharmaceutical industry) is wrong! Homeopathy is far more than placebo. If homeopathy was placebo the patient would have been cured with the first remedy, not the third or fourth one he was given!

Yet, more importantly, homeopathy worked to cure a nasty mucocele with a simple remedy, and so an operation was not required. How much money has the NHS saved because of that one simple remedy? How much is the NHS in debt to homeopathy?

I don't know the answer, but it will no doubt run into £1000's. My recent blog calculated that the NHS were complaining that they spend £115,000 on homeopathy each year. Not many mucocele operations have to be saved in order to repay that amount! And homeopaths are doing this every day with thousands of patients with hundred's of conditions.

Yet the situation is probably worse than this as far as patients are concerned. Predictably, the NHS will fail to ask other, more fundamental questions about this situation.

Is the NHS aware how the cure happened, is it interested?
Has the NHS bothered to ask how the cure was done, so that future patients can benefit similarly, without the need for an expensive and intrusive operation?
Has the NHS offered its thanks and congratulations to homeopathy for the cure?
Or will the NHS continue to attack Homeopathy, saying it is little more than placebo, and continue to say that money spent on homeopathy is a waste of taxpayers money?

It is not just a lack of gratitude that causes this lack of NHS interest and insight. It is the vested interests of the pharmaceutical industry, and an NHS that is almost entirely dominated by pharma drugs and vaccines, and a conventional medical establishment protecting its vested interests. They are unable to admit that homeopathy is safer, more effective, and above all, less expensive than conventional medicine.

Tuesday 25 July 2017

Charlie Gard. The role of Conventional Medicine in 'new' and 'rare' diseases

Charlie Gard suffers from a rare genetic condition called mitochondrial depletion syndrome. This causes brain damage and muscle depletion. I am deeply suspicious about what is going on, not least the role being played by the conventional medical establishment. I have three main questions.
  • What is the cause of this new, 'rare', 'genetic' disease?
  • What is the USA new treatment that is now being offered, and why is it being offered?
  • Why is this treatment being rejected by the British medical establishment?
In particular, I want to raise the question of the role that has possibly been played by pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines.

When Charlie was born, on 4th August 2016, he was described as a 'perfectly healthy' baby, born at full term with a 'healthy weight'. However, Charlie's parents, Connie and Chris, began to realise that he had difficulty raising his head and supporting himself compared to other babies of similar age. In October 2016, as a result of his being lethargic and his shallow breathing he was admitted to the Great Ormond Street Hospital. Here, Charlie went through a multitude of tests and examinations, which all lead to the diagnosis - mitochondrial depletion syndrome.

This is a condition where the cells of the body cannot use energy appropriately, leading to organs and muscles being unable to function properly. Charlie's condition deteriorated rapidly. He was placed in intensive care and was soon being kept alive by medical technology. The conventional medical establishment stated that there is no known cure for the condition, that Charlie had no chance of recovery, so they proposed to turn off his life support. The parents disagreed, leading to a long court battle, going right up to the European Court of Human Rights, all of which found against the parents.

Charlie's parents fought hard against this medical prognosis, which was that there has been 'irreversible brain damage', that he could not see, hear or feel, that he would never be able to breathe unaided, or swallow food, and had little or no awareness of the world around him. It has also been reported that he had fits that were "difficult to control".

Charlie's parents refuted this prognosis, convinced that Charlie did respond to their voices and touch, that he had awareness of the world around him, and they did not accept the view of the medical profession, and the courts, that his condition was irreversible. Indeed, they searched for potential cures and contacted a US doctor who offered an experimental treatment, called nucleoside therapy, which might, he said, offer some hope of reversing the condition. The treatment was expensive, but through crowd funding the parents raised the money, over £1 million. The courts however, based on the evidence provided by medical staff at Great Ormond Street Hospital, refused to allow Charlie to be moved to the USA for the treatment, as it was not 'in his best interests'. Medical opinion was that Charlie’s brain was damaged beyond repair, and that it was not in his best interests to transport him to the USA, that the risks of the treatment outweighed any potential benefit. The said that the treatment would be futile, merely serving to prolong his suffering.

The situation was presented by the media in an emotional way. The 'dreadful plight' of the family produced massive public sympathy and the donation of an enormous amount of money to spay for Charlie's treatment. The 'worst nightmare' of the parents was contrasted with the 'heartless and unfeeling' NHS, unwilling or too inflexible to save the child's life.  There were comparisons drawn with another recent case, where the NHS refused treatment for another young child, Ashya King. In terms of issues of parental choice there are similarities.

In truth, the Charlie Gard situation was probably far more complex than the Ashy King case, involving the machinations of a medical establishment which I suspect would be involved in a massive cover-up. So I will now outline my three concerns, each of them long-standing issues being raised in this blog.
  • What is the cause of this new, 'rare', 'genetic' disease?
Readers of this blog will know that I have always been sceptical of 'new' and 'rare' diseases. Invariably, these 'new' diseases are usually caused by pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines, especially when they are called 'syndromes'! So what is the cause of mitochondrial depletion syndrome? I looked at this on the Right Diagnosis webpage, and the various pages that it refers to. Yet, as so often with conventional medical, there is no description of 'cause' anywhere - just detailed and very intricate descriptions of various Mitochondrial diseases.

Describing what is happening, or going wrong, within the body is NOT the same as what is causing the body to function incorrectly.

So this case, if the mitochondria is not working properly, there is no reason given about WHY the mitochondria is misbehaving. The reason for the misbehaviour, the actual cause of the condition, is not addressed. Of course, it is said that the condition is 'genetic', which is a kind of catch-all, explain-everything formula so often used by conventional medicine to avoid having to look into the real causation.

So what is the cause of 'mitochondrial depletion system' and other mitochondrial syndromes? Are pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines involved? There is, of course, no evidence for this in the public domain. Conventional medicine is not looking to blame itself, and so will not even be looking at this possibility. But there are some indications or clues that it might be.

For instance, autism was a 'new' disease in the 1940's. There is strong evidence that autism and vaccines are linked, vigorously denied by the conventional medical establishment. One of the features of this link is that the child develops normally during the early months of their lives, but shortly after vaccination (often the DPT and MMR vaccines) the problems begins, development stops or is skewed from the normal.

This appears to be so in the Charlie Gard case. I have no idea whether Charlie was given a DPT (or 5-in-1) vaccine. Reading through the many hundreds of comments on their fundraising page I was surprised at how many people have said that their children, or someone in their family, has had this disease, or something similar. So perhaps it is not so 'rare' as the conventional medical establishment believes! If so, it is even more important to find the real cause of these 'new' diseases. But as I have outlined in other blogs, conventional medicine is NOT honest about the side effects of their vaccines, or other drugs. For instance, on the 5-in-1 vaccines, NHS Choices website says this:

               "The vaccine ... has few side effects, although it's common for babies to be a little irritable afterwards. They may also have a short-lived small bump, redness and swelling at the injection site." 

The Patient Information Leaflet (PIL) is considerably more revealing. Not many parents read it, not many are given it to read. It mentions allergic reactions, like 'difficulty breathing', and temporarily stopping breathing (apnoea). It mentions collapse, loss of consciousness, lack of awareness, and above all, fits. Certainly, some of these known (but unheralded) 'side effects' bear some relationship to what Charlie experienced? So is this worth investigating, is the vaccine a possible 'cause' of this 'new' disease?

Certainly, as far as the conventional medical establishment are concerned, they would admit no suggestion of iatrogenic causation! They don't want to be held responsible. It is easier to dismiss what has happened to Charlie as a 'new' disease, of 'unknown' cause, and of course, no known cure!

I have written about the DPT vaccine before. The conventional medical establishment are determined that patients should not know about the dangers, and the mainstream media support them in this cover-up. In my blog, written in 2013, I outlined the serous side effects of the DPT vaccine (which is merely an older version of the '5-in-1' vaccine) mentioned in the PIL, which includes seizures and difficult breathing. More pointedly it is the only known cause of Sudden Infant Death syndrome, which is rarely, if ever, mentioned to parents before their child is vaccinated! So the conventional medical establishment is well practiced in denying the effects of pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines, and if they are prepared to deny that 'death' is a side effect, they are more than likely to deny that the vaccine might be the cause of Charlie's problems!
  • What is the USA new treatment that is now being offered, and why is it being offered?
No-one knows much about nucleoside therapy except that it is untested, unproven, yet massively expensive. Conventional medicine has always thrived on new treatments, new breakthroughs, cutting-edge technology that is going to save mankind from dreadful diseases. Such treatments are heralded when they are new, only to be found wanting with age, and usually discarded many years later when they are found to be ineffective, or dangerous. The 'Ages of Drugs', how pharmaceutical drugs pass from being a 'wonder cure' to being banned, is something I have blogged about in 2014. Each of these treatments serve a purpose for those companies or individuals peddling them. But rarely are they of any assistance to patients, or combating illness.

Moreover, conventional medicine is a profits-driven business. If there is money to be made there is usually someone within the conventional medical establishment to exploit it! So if a pharmaceutical drug or vaccine causes a rare disease, with no cure, there will be someone looking for and developing an expensive treatment to overcome it!
  • Why is this treatment being rejected by the British medical establishment?
Yet the conventional medical establishment in Britain opposed the use of this particularly therapy. Why did it do so? There are already some reports that it has serious side effects. Yet, of course, we have all  been de-sensitised to the dangers of side effects, and we have all become too prepared meekly to accept these as 'unimportant'. And when a loved-one, especially a child, is dying these 'side effects' do not seem so important in comparison!

Yet however serious those side effects might be, conventional medicine does not usually prevent a treatment being tried. Indeed, it has a history of doing so, even when the treatments are known to be potentially harmful. But on this occasion they decided that the treatment would not work, and that it was not in Charlie's best interests! I merely ask - why?

It seems like the Gard family fell between two stools, two well-known aspects of the conventional medical establishment. One stool may have been concerned with denial and cover up, whilst the other was concerned with raising hopes, and making a substantial profit by doing so.

There may also have been a bit of 'professional pride' in what happened too. Doctors like to present themselves as experts, not as people who cause disease, or who sell expensive drugs and vaccines that purport to be effective when the track record of conventional medicine tells us they are probably not!

Charlie's parents fought hard to save their son's life, and despite their efforts, they failed. Yet there are important lessons that can be learnt from the Charlie Gard situation.
  • No-one should ever have an illness, or contract a disease, without checking whether pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines have caused it. This is why I am developing my 'DIE's website (the Disease-Inducing-Effects of Pharmaceutical Drugs).
  • When conventional medicine talks of 'new', or 'rare' diseases, be aware that pharmaceutical drugs may well be the cause, and consider what drugs the patient has been given prior to contracting it..
  • When conventional medicine says that a disease has a 'genetic' cause, begin to ask questions, and research into your family's medical background. 
  • When doctors talk about the 'causes' of a disease, but then merely offer a description of what is going wrong within the body, be deeply suspicious. Conventional medicine does know the difference, and there is probably a reason for them not wanting to focus on cause.

Monday 24 July 2017

Banning Homeopathy on the NHS

There is (yet another) move to ban doctors prescribing homeopathy on the NHS in England. For many of us who appreciate the effectiveness of alternative medical therapies, and homeopathy in particular, and know about its safety, such attacks will not come as no surprise! The NHS has, over the years, become the mouthpiece of the pharmaceutical industry. The NHS is Big Pharma's preferred contact with patients. It serves as their retail outlet, par excellence, the source of their mighty profits in Britain.

The news was extensively covered in the mainstream news media throughout the weekend of 22nd-23rd July 2017. The doctor's e-magazine Pulse announced it with this headline, and discussed the possibility with no great regret!

So what should our response be? The growing homeopathic community is gearing itself up for another battle with the conventional medical establishment. Yet, I am going to raise an important question - is it really worth it? One radical response might be just to go along with the suggestion, and decide to withdraw homeopathic services from the NHS! 

              One advantage would be that it would help the public understand that the NHS has positioned itself as a monopoly supplier of conventional medicine, and it would ditch the pretence that an important NHS objective is to provide patients with the 'best medicine available'! 

               Another would be to end the pretence that homeopathy had anything more than a tiny, minuscule presence within the NHS in any case!

               Another would be to disabuse those patients who currently believe that if homeopathy could help them their doctor would recommend it and refer them on. The reality is that they don't, they won't, and the can't!

So perhaps the time has come for alternative medicine to establish itself as an alternative source of medical assistance, with alternative outlets, and to demonstrate that it is something quite different and separate to what is available on the NHS.

The thousands of patients who have benefitted from homeopathy might disagree vehemently with such a suggestion, especially those who would be unable to afford treatment outside the publicly-funded NHS. But the reality is that very few people, in very few areas of England, have any access to NHS homeopathy whatsoever. In London and Bristol there are small homeopathic hospitals. If someone is lucky, very lucky, they might have a doctor in a local surgery who practices homeopathy alongside conventional medicine. But most patients (like myself) live in areas where there is absolutely no access to homeopathy whatsoever, or to any other kind of alternative therapy. And if we ask the NHS for anything other than conventional treatment, it is routinely refused.

Another reason to withdraw homeopathy from the NHS, for me, would be that no reasonable or rational argument will ever suffice to persuade the conventional medical establishment of the case for homeopathy. This becomes clear if we look at the reasons NHS England is putting forward to ban homeopathy. This is contained in an NHS England consultation paper. The question it seeks to ask and answer is this:

               "Approve formal public consultation on products which are considered to be relatively ineffective, unnecessary, inappropriate or unsafe for prescription on the NHS."

Initially this question was asked because of the large number of pharmaceutical treatments that conventional medicine itself know to be ineffective, including drugs like paracetamol, tramadol, co-proxamol, dosulepin, prolonged-release Doxazosin, immediate-release Fentanyl, Glucosamine and Chondroitin, travel vaccines, and several others. Yet these treatments are still being prescribed by doctors. The reason for the consultation exercise is outlined in the NHS paper.

               "Last year, 1.1 billion prescription items were dispensed in primary care at a cost of £9.2billion. Over 90% of prescriptions currently issued are exempt from a prescription charge. It is vital that the NHS achieves the greatest value from the money that it spends, and we know that across England there is significant variation on what is being prescribed and to whom. Often patients are receiving medicines which have been proven to be ineffective or for which there are other more effective and/or cheaper alternatives, and products which it may no longer be appropriate to prescribe on the NHS."

This appears to be a perfectly reasonable thing to do! It is quite right that NHS England should not be spending public money on ineffective (leave along harmful) pharmaceutical drugs. They are the drugs that conventional doctors have been prescribing for decades, at great cost, and belatedly found to be ineffective and useless for patients.

Homeopathy, and herbal treatments too, were added as an after-thought! The NHS knows little about these therapies, as they demonstrate with the two reasons given for their inclusion: homeopathy is ineffective - and homeopathy costs the NHS a lot of money.

               "NHS England’s view is that, at best, homeopathy is a placebo and a misuse of scarce NHS funds which could better be devoted to treatments that work."

Let's examine both reasons. First, what evidence does NHS England use to demonstrate that homeopathy is 'ineffective'? They provide none, other than 'their view', stated in the sentence above, that homeopathy is 'placebo'. Is it just me, or is anyone else fed up with this particular mantra?
There will almost certainly be a vigorous response from the homeopathic community to the new attack by NHS England, no doubt the most forthright coming from ARH itself. The responses will repeat all the evidence we have used, time and time again, to demonstrate that homeopathy is a safe and effective medical therapy. But will our response have any effect on our detractors, or the conventional medical establishment generally? Or in a few years hence will we be faced with another attack that states, without any supporting evidence, that homeopathy is 'just placebo'?

And so to cost. We are now told that homeopathy costs the NHS a lot of money, which is better spent on 'treatments that work'! So how much money is this exactly? The NHS paper is able to tell us, at least vaguely and tentatively!

               "Data on the residual use and cost of homeopathy on the NHS are hard to come by. A recent Freedom of Information request by a third party suggested that at least £578,000 has been spent on prescribed homeopathy over the past five years, with the total cost being higher than that when the cost of consultations was factored in."

If these figures are anywhere near correct, it means that NHS England is spending about £115,600 each year on homeopathy! Let me remind you about the figures (already quoted above from the consultation document) about the money NHS England wastes on 'ineffective' treatments!

               "Last year, 1.1 billion prescription items were dispensed in primary care at a cost of £9.2 billion." 

Of course, I assume (to use their own words) that this total cost will "be higher than that when the cost of consultations are factored in"! So, ignoring the issue of consultation costs, NHS England is concerned that homeopathy is costing them 0.001257% of their total drugs budget. (Now, is this right, I have struggled with these figures, one being so high, the other so minuscule! Anyone who wants to correct this, please do contact me!)

On the other hand, the NHS England consultation document is 9 pages long, and one entire page is devoted to its dismissal of homeopathy; that is, it takes up 11.11111% of the document!

So after these two considerations, the fundamental question is this - is there really any point in engaging such people in discussion? Is it not a waste of time and energy? Will they listen to anything we have to say? Is their stance so rigid, so dominated by the self-interests of their failing medical system that whatever we say will be ignored? 

Call me irascible, call me intolerant if you will, but I have long since ceased engaging with medical fundamentalists, so-called skeptics, who are not prepared to say anything beyond what the pharmaceutical industry wants them to say!

Does the homeopathic community not have better ways of spending their time? Homeopaths are treating so many more patients now who have been damaged by conventional, drug-dominated, NHS medicine. At the same time conventional doctors are having a bad time finding anything that is safe, or effective, to prescribe to their sick patients. The NHS itself is in constant crisis, with patients who do not get better, with a wide variety of chronic diseases now at epidemic levels, and paying for treatments that are slowly bankrupting it.

So my question is - why do we not let them get on with it? Let the NHS fail, as it inevitably will, alongside their painkillers which are now accepted as too dangerous to prescribe, their antibiotics which no long work, and all their other drugs that are causing epidemic levels of chronic disease with which they cannot cope!

Homeopathy will survive without the NHS. But the NHS will not survive without homeopathy, or indeed without other safe and effective alternative therapies.

So my suggestion is that homeopathy leaves the NHS. It is not a silly idea. Indeed, it is an eminently practical one. It will mean that we will need to develop our organisational structure. In each city and town, in every area of the country, we will have to ensure that there are alternative medical clinics, quite separate and distinct from conventional doctor's surgeries. Each clinic will have important tasks to undertake.
  • Each one will need to show they are offering something different, at a time when many more people are looking for alternative treatments for their chronic illness. 
  • Each one will need to demonstrate that they are effective in treating all kinds of illness, at a time the NHS failing to do so, and is therefore quite unable to cope with patient demand. 
  • Each one will need to demonstrate that they are offering safe medical therapies, when so may patients are currently suffering the chronic side effects of pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines.
Initially, those people who cannot afford to pay for alternative treatment will be excluded as alternative medical centres will not be publicly funded. Sadly, the safest and most effective treatments will be available only to those who can afford to pay, something I would personally regret (but it is not far from the current situation anyway). Perhaps for a time 'low-cost' clinics can be set up to ameliorate the situation. Perhaps we could look into starting up some kind of alternative insurance scheme. 

Yet this is likely to be a temporary problem. As the NHS runs out of viable treatments; and public money to pay for these treatments; and as more and more patients are empowered to insist on having patient choice, the demand for safer and more effective treatment will ensure that the demand for homeopathy, and other alternative treatments, will increase. When this happens, the NHS will not be able to avoid referring sick patients, for whom they have not treatment, to alternative clinics, and paying for doing so.

So perhaps it is time that homeopathy decided to stand alone. Instead of waiting to be banned, we should withdraw. We have survived for decades without the support of any appreciable public funding, and what is more, we have done so when conventional medicine has been given to patients, free at the point of need, and during the decades drug companies have been telling us that they had 'wonder drugs', the 'miracle cures', that would end illness and disease forever.

Well, why don't we just let them get on with it?

Wednesday 19 July 2017

Benzodiazepines. Repulsive drugs that are still harming patients

Benzodiazepines are repulsive pharmaceutical drugs that have caused millions of patients great harm over decades. They should have no place in a civilised, caring society.

Yet the continued to be prescribed by doctors. The conventional medical establishment must know about the harm they cause - and yet they have done little to protect patients.

I will not repeat what I have already written about 'Benzos', but everyone should know about them, and no-one should agree to take them. There are, after all, safer, and more effective ways of treating anxiety and depression.

               "Benzodiazepine drugs have been described as a 40-year plus horror story for tens of thousands of people in the UK, a scandal that has never been properly addressed. This first benzodiazepine drug, Librium, was discovered in 1955, and came to the market in the early 1960's. For many years benzodiazepines were considered to be 'wonder drugs', to the extent that prescriptions soared to 32 million in the UK in 1978. Only then were the adverse effects were recognised, initially by the patients taking them, and only slowly and very reluctantly by the conventional medical establishment.

               The scandal of these drugs broke in the 1980's, after it was accepted that thousands of patients had become horribly addicted to drugs like Librium and Valium. The victims complained of DIEs such as blackouts, epileptic seizures, memory loss, brain damage, insomnia and personality change. What is far worse is that many people who suffered these Benzodiazepine effects still do so, many years later - so clearly these were real DIE's, and not merely short term  side-effects' or 'adverse reactions' as they are often described!"

Yet doctors still prescribe the drug to millions of people throughout the world, subjecting patients to the same harm they were suffering over 40 years ago.

Benzodiazepine drugs should have been banned many years ago, but at least there are now restrictions on their prescription now. Guidance to doctors state that they must not be prescribed for longer than 4 weeks! Yet it would appear that conventional medicine, slave as it is to the pharmaceutical industry, just ignores the guidance!

  • So what use is medical science if it is capable of unleashing dangerous drugs on patients?
  • What use are medical guidelines, based on medical science, and produced to safeguard patients, are routinely ignored by doctors?
  • From where can patients look for unbiased advice about the safety of pharmaceutical drugs if their doctors refuse to do so?
The BNF (British National Formulary - the doctors 'bible' on drug contraindications and side effects - clearly recommends that benzodiazepine drugs should be prescribed ONLY in short courses, and certainly no longer than four weeks. The reason is the high risk of dependency, the adverse neurological and cognitive side effects, and the severe dependency and withdrawal symptoms they are known to produce.

The new research shows that about 100,000 benzodiazepine and Z-drug users in Britain were taking the drugs for at least 12 times longer than the BNF recommends, and that many patients were taking them for over a year.

Patients on the drug found that 43% wanted support to come off the drugs, and that just over 119,000 patients in the UK may also be interested in making use of withdrawal services.

               "Many of the patients experiencing problems with prescribed medicines may have avoided the associated harms if existing prescribing guidelines had been followed.’

Many more would have avoided the consequences of Benzos if they had not been put on them in the first place! But conventional medicine has little safe to offer patients, whether for anxiety or anything else, so doctors continue to justify the prescription of Benzodiazepine drugs. In a Pulse article about the study,  Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard is quoted as saying: 

               "Benzodiazepines and other psychotropic drugs can be very effective when they are prescribed appropriately and in accordance with clinical guidelines; something that GPs are highly trained to do, taking into account the unique physical, psychological and social factors potentially affecting the health of the patient in front of us, and in conversation with them."

Yes, Professor Stokes-Lampard, doctors may be trained to safeguard patients from dangerous drugs and vaccines - but they are clearly not doing so!

Instead, the conventional medical establishment continues to look for reasons to prescribe dangerous drugs like Benzodiazepines. Just a few days earlier the Pulse magazine published an article stating that a study had found there was "no increased risk of death with benzodiazepine use". I have not bothered to research who funded this research, but pharmaceutical money is probably not far away! But what does this type of research tell patients?
  • That Benzodiazepine drugs may cause sleep disturbances and rebound insomnia, restlessness, irritability, elevated anxiety (yes really, an anxiety drug causes increased anxiety), weakness, blurred vision, panic attacks, tremors, sweating/flushing, nausea/vomiting, seizures, psychosis, hallucinations, dependence and withdrawal symptoms.
  • But never mind all this, be satisfied , at least the drug does not kill you!

Friday 14 July 2017

Depression. Why 'Talking' Therapies are better than Pharmaceutical Drugs.

These people all knew why talking therapies are better than pharmaceutical drugs in the treatment of depression. They have described so much more succinctly the power of the mind over our mental health than ever I could!

“There is no true healing unless there is a change in outlook and peace of  mind.”
Edward Bach.

“No matter how good things get, my capacity to make myself unhappy is always equal to it!”
Hugh Prather

“The best way to stay depressed is to keep thinking of all the reasons why you’re depressed.”
RD Laing

“If you are still hurt by something that happened when you were twelve, it is the thought that’s hurting you now.”
James Hillman.

The greatest discovery of my generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitude.”
William James. The Principles of Psychology.

“Thought is not reality, but it is through thought that our realities are created.”
Sydney Banks.

The reason for depression is to do with what is in our mind, not the chemicals in our brain. 

And if treatment is needed, Homeopathy is so much safer and more effective than conventional medicine because it seeks to support our minds, not mess with our brains.

Many thanks to Ian Watson for providing me with these quotations, during a marvellous lecture entitled "Insight. The Key to Healing", given at the Alliance of Registered Homeopaths' Annual Conference in May 2015.

The Contaminated Blood Scandal. The worst cover-up in NHS history?

The UK government has announced an inquiry into the contaminated blood scandal of the 1970's and 1980's. This gap represents the usual 30 year plus gap between a scandal, an Establishment cover-up, and a proper inquiry into what happened. This time-lapse is, for example, similar to the recent Hillsborough disaster, amongst many other scandals that usually results in a time span sufficient to ensure that people or organisations responsible for the scandal no longer have to face the consequences of what they have done, or they have lost their power and influence to prevent a full investigation.

It is now admitted that the contaminated blood scandal involved around 7,500 patients, and caused the death of at least 2,400 people. The prime minister, Theresa May, has spoken about the "appalling injustice" that happened when thousands of NHS patients were given blood products infected with hepatitis C and HIV. Indeed, many have called the scandal 'the worst treatment disaster in the history of the NHS'. Patients were not told about the potential risks, and May has said, after all this time (over 40 years in this case), that patients deserve answers about how it happened, and why.

  • So is the contaminated blood issue a scandal? Yes, a serious one.
  • Has there been a cover-up by the NHS? Almost certainly!
  • Is it an important inquiry which can lead to belated justice for all those people who have suffered? Hopefully so.

Yet is this really the worst NHS scandal ever? Are there more serious, ongoing scandals associated with the NHS arising from their almost total reliance on dangerous pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines known and proven to be dangerous to our health? My 'DIE's (the 'Disease-Inducing-Effects' of Pharmaceutical Drugs and Vaccines) website picks out the drugs and vaccines that are known to cause serious illness and disease.

Each page demonstrates that there have been many more NHS scandals, affecting many more people, who have taken a vast number of dangerous drugs and vaccines, and as a direct result contracted these diseases.

So the NHS, and the conventional medical establishment generally, have been, and continues to be implicated in cover-ups involving most of the pharmaceutical drugs they have been giving to patients during the last 70 years. They have done so despite the overwhelming evidence pointing to a direct connection between pharmaceutical drugs and serious illness. They have rarely been subject to serious enquiry. Indeed, most drugs and vaccines have still not been recognised as a serious threat to our health.

Despite these exceptions, it is more usual for drugs and vaccines to cause disease, only for the evidence to be denied by the medical establishment, ignored by the mainstream media, or countered with bland reassurances from doctors that the 'benefits' of the drug outweigh the 'risks'.

The result is that we are now experiencing chronic illnesses and diseases at epidemic levels - diseases like ADHDAllergyDementiaArthritisAsthmaAutism, a whole host of Auto-immune diseasesCancerChronic Fatigue (ME)DiabetesHeart diseaseKidney diseaseLiver diseaseOsteoporosis, and many others. Add to this the rise of several killer Superbugs, and a variety of mental health diseases, like depression and anxiety, our society is probably sicker now than it has ever been.

All these disease are known to be caused, and/or exacerbated by pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines. Each link, to each of the diseases listed above, gives details of the drugs and vaccines known to be associated with them.

  • So how many children have been damaged by vaccines? 7,500. How many children have died as the result of vaccination? 2,400? Undoubtedly the figures are far higher than this.
  • How many women have suffered breast or cervical cancer as a direct result of HRT treatment? More that 7,500? How many have died? More than 2,400?
  • How many people currently taking Statin drugs have contracted the many serious illnesses and diseases associated with them, or will do so in the future?
  • How many older people now suffer dementia because they have taken a combination of drugs and vaccines that are known to cause dementia. More than 7,500? How many have died as a result of drug-induced Alzheimer's disease? More than 2,400? Without any doubt.

It is often said that there are simple ways of keeping healthy, and avoiding illness. A good, well-balanced diet is one. Exercise is another. Without doubt, avoiding pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines, at all cost, has become another - as well as finding a safer, more effective medical therapy for when we do become ill.

Wednesday 5 July 2017

Low Morale in the NHS - what is this the real reason?

Evidence of low morale within the National Health Service is plain to see. Indeed it has been evident for many years, and it is undoubtedly increasing. The reasons given for this low morale are usually as follows:

  1. Lack of investment in the NHS.
  2. Staff salaries have been subject to pay freezes for the past decade.
  3. High and ever-increasing demand for medical services owing to an ageing population.
Yet each of these reasons, as the real cause of staff demoralization, needs to be seriously questioned if a solution is to be found. 
  • The New Labour government, between 1997 and 2010 increased spending on the NHS massively, by three-fold, from about £40 billion to about £110 billion. Since then the NHS has been 'protected' from the spending cuts imposed by Tory-led governments on other departments. The NHS is not underfunded.
  • Staff salaries have been frozen to 1% annually, but salaries in other parts of the public sector have been similarly frozen, and generally within the private sector wages have been stagnant. And doctor's are amongst the highest paid public employees, and nurses, although not brilliantly paid, once argued that their profession was more about vocation than remuneration.
  • The demand for health services have increased rapidly, as they have increased ever since the NHS was established in 1948. In recent years increased demand has been demonstrated in two sectors in particular, GP surgeries and hospital accident and emergency (A&E) departments. But it also apparent in lengthening waiting times for treatment and operations, and the many treatment 'targets' that are now being missed. Blame for this increased demand is routinely placed on 'an ageing population', but do elderly people really constitute the main reason for health service demands? It seems unlikely, and I have never seen statistics to prove it.
There is another reason for low morale, but it is one that is never mentioned within the conventional medical establishment, the government, the NHS, or indeed the mainstream media. And this is that the NHS medical system, based as it is on pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines, is failing. There is little confidence, even amongst the conventional medical profession, that these drugs are working, or that vaccines are preventing illness. 

The froth of conventional medical confidence may still be heard at the surface, but it is clear that the inner confidence has gone. 

And there is a growing realisation that pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines not only offer sick people ineffective treatment, but treatments that actually produce increasing levels and seriousness of sickness through their so-called 'side effects' and 'adverse reactions'. In other words, doctors are nurses are not making patients better, they are making them sicker. Is there anything more demoralising than such a realisation. 
  • Consider a football or cricket team who, hard as they tried, always lost; who were constantly beaten by teams (bacteria and viruses) that they once believed they could beat. 
  • Think of the tennis player who, however hard he/she works to return the ball (the patient) back safely over the net - only to find it return, even harder, even more difficult to return successfully.
Being a medical professional, working with treatments that, at best, ameliorates sick patients, and, at worst, exacerbates sickness (and cause death too) must be a deeply frustrating experience. Is there any wonder that morale is low, that staff are becoming increasingly demoralised, and leaving the profession, often for lower paid, lower status jobs. And what about the suggested solutions?
  • More money for the NHS will only be spent on the same old, failed treatments, and so will do nothing to improve the morale of staff.
  • Increased salaries will see staff doing the same old things, and with no greater success.
  • The population will continue to age for many years to come; but so too will the illnesses and diseases that are striking patients at younger and younger ages.
Staff morale, and the problems of funding the NHS, will only improve when money is spent on more effective medical therapies, and treatments that do not cause additional disease, and are capable of actually making patients better. It would be a win for government funding, a win for the NHS, a win for doctors and nurses, and most certainly a win for patients.

Medical Science. Does one hand know what the other is doing? Aspirin and PPI drugs - the implication for patients.

Medical science is a wonderful thing, we are told. It provides us with the evidence base that underpins conventional medicine. It tells our doctors whether a drug or vaccine is effective. It informs us when conventional medicine is unsafe for patients.

Or does it? Consider these two pieces of recent news, straight from medical science!

The first concerns aspirin, and has been covered by the mainstream media. For instance, the BBC headline, 14th June 2017, said:

               "People over 75 taking daily aspirin after a stroke or heart attack are at higher risk of major - and sometimes fatal - stomach bleeds than previously thought, research in the Lancet shows."

This seems clear enough, although you might ask why the mainstream media is carrying a 'bad news' story about pharmaceutical drugs. The reason is simple. Medical science has made it into a 'good news' story, and the media as usual has merely parroted the transformation. These are the BBC's next sentences,

               "Scientists say that, to reduce these risks, older people should also take stomach-protecting PPI pills. But they insist aspirin has important benefits - such as preventing heart attacks - that outweigh the risks. And they warn that stopping aspirin suddenly can be harmful."

So that's alright again. If one drug is dangerous, take another one at the same time! And, as usual, the benefits outweigh the risks! And don't stop taking the drug, even if it is harmful, because stopping taking the harmful drug is also harmful. Okay? Does that all make sense? In essence we are being told:
  • Pharmaceutical drugs may be harmful, but another drug will reduce the harm it causes!
  • Pharmaceutical drugs may be harmful, but the benefits still outweigh the risks!
  • It may be harmful taking pharmaceutical drugs, but it is also harmful stopping taking them!
However, there is worse! Another piece of medical science has recently led to new guidance being given to our doctors. This advice concerns PPI (proton pump) drugs, widely used by millions of people for indigestion, acid reflux, and other stomach complaints. And, of course, for people taking their daily aspirin! You may not have heard about this new advice on the mainstream media, the reason being simple, it constitutes 'bad' news, and as yet there has been no attempt to spin it into something good! You can read it here, in the doctors e-magazine, Pulse (4th July 2017), in an article entitled "GPs should ‘limit use and duration’ of PPIs". This is what it says,

               "Prescribers should be more vigilant about only prescribing PPIs when necessary as they are associated with increased risk of death, according to a new study. The observational study found that there was a heightened risk of death in patients taking PPIs compared to patients taking other drugs that reduce the amount of stomach acid produced, such as H2 blockers, leading researchers to suggest that doctors should be more selective about who they prescribe the drugs to."

So, thanks to medical science, the picture now seems much clearer (sic), and it goes something like this. 
  • Patients are asked by their doctors to take aspirin in order to avoid a stroke or heart attack.
  • Unfortunately, aspirin may cause fatal heart bleeds.
  • So to protect again these fatal heart bleeds, we are told to keep taking the aspirin, but in addition to take PPI drugs too!
  • However, PPI drugs also heightens the risk of death!
So what will our doctors do? Are they conflicted? Are they confused? Well, they have certainly been warned by medical science!

               "The findings in our study highlight a potential excess risk of death among users of PPI, and in particular among cohort participants without gastrointestinal comorbidities, and that risk is increased with prolonged duration of PPI exposure."

Yet once again a 'scientific' study that has linked a pharmaceutical drug to patient harm comes with a warning that the patient should not stop taking the harmful drug. 

               "Although our results should not deter prescription and use of PPI where medically indicated, they may be used to encourage and promote pharmacovigilance and emphasise the need to exercise judicious use of PPI and limit use and duration of therapy to instances where there is a clear medical indication and where benefit outweighs potential risk."

So now, older people over 75 years of age are taking two drugs, both of them dangerous, all in order to prevent them having a stroke or heart attack. So perhaps there is a third drug available, to counteract the dangers caused by PPI drugs? Watch this space! I will tell you about it as soon as I hear!

Yet surely it is good that our doctors now know that there is an inconsistency here. The Pulse article points out the inconsistencies of what are doctors are being asked to do,

               "The findings come as research published in June suggested that GPs should be co-prescribing PPIs in patients taking daily aspirin to reduce the risk of gastrointestinal bleeds in the elderly."

Pulse does not suggest a solution, and the GP comments at the foot of the Pulse article indicates that they are as conflicted and confused about the situation as medical science. "So many confounders here", says one. Another is more dismissive, "people who drink fluids and eat solids have a risk of death". Another goes further, "everything has a risk. Let us not eat, breath or walk, one might get cancer, from food and PM2.5 particles, or one might slip and fall". One might, indeed! But eating, drinking and breathing is not a voluntary action, like taking a dangerous drug! Another doctor appears more phlegmatic, "I would have thought this would be good news? Cut polypharmcy, cut expense, cut workload, cut risk.... why are we moaning?" And yet another doctor believes that if patients had to pay for their drugs the situation would be different. 

              "Any Drug prescribed will be taken only when necessary ONLY WHEN PATIENTS PAY FOR IT. When everybody is charged for medications, patient will ask doctors DO I REALLY HAVE TO TAKE IT? IS IT A MUST? At current rate of 89 % public not paying for medications, no matter of how much we telling people will work."

So even doctors are telling us we should not be taking the drugs! But doctors continue to prescribe them. Perhaps it might help if the mainstream media, and the conventional medical establishment, including our doctors, began to tell patients about the real harm done by the drugs and vaccines, we would all be better able to make an informed choice!

Sunday 2 July 2017

BBC News and Fake Health News

I have been asked why I often comment on BBC's reporting of health news. Is it really any worse than the reporting of other news agencies? The answer is 'No' - it is no worse. But the BBC is a public service broadcaster. It is paid by licence fee payers, ordinary citizens, and it is NOT funded by Big Business, and Big Pharma in particular.

Most other news agencies ARE dependent on the largesse of big advertisers. So advertising pharmaceutical drugs is important to their survival, and drug companies can threaten their viability if they refuse to spend their money on 'critical' advertising outlets. This does not make these uncritical news agencies any better than BBC News, but it does provide a reason for their support and promotion of dangerous drugs and vaccines, and their lack of interest in patient safety.

BBC News has no such excuse. They take every opportunity to promote Big Pharma drugs and vaccines, usually without any mention of the dangers. And they regularly attack homeopathy and other safer and more effective alternative therapies quite gratuitously. As a licence payer myself, and as someone who would suffer from the drugs and vaccines they tirelessly promote if I were to believe what they tell me, I object to the 'fake news' they regularly promote.

These are the blogs I have written over the last fews years about BBC News coverage of health issues, these being the main ones. Do have a read by clicking on each one!

April 2012. Diabetes and Statin drugs.

May 2012. BBC News whitewashes Statin Drugs

July 2012. BBC News. A sudden conversion to honesty?

November 2012. BBC News supports drug taking (Ritalin) to enhance work performance!

January 2013. Breast Cancer and Tamoxifen. BBC meekly announces 'great news'.

August 2014. Aspirin and the Media (BBC News)

September 2015. Autism, the MMR Vaccine, and Media Censorship.

December 2015. The refusal of BBC News to report important health information

April 2017. BBC News. Advertising another dangerous drug for the pharmaceutical industry.

April 2017. BBC News. A statement on Vaccine Policy.

June 2017. Statin drugs going out of favour?  (BBC News promoting a new vaccine).

As more people are discovering the dangers of pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines, often by tragic  personal experience, as more patients are turning to safer medical therapies, as conventional medicine gradually dies, and bankrupt nations, through its inability to deal with epidemic levels of chronic disease (if not actually creating them in the first place!) the craven attitude of BBC News needs to be highlighted. The craven and unquestioning attitude of the BBC to pharmaceutical drugs, it's total failure to investigate and question the serious health issues that have confronted us throughout this time, needs to be a matter of record.

BBC News, and the mainstream media generally, have a lot of questions to answer, questions that will become increasingly important to people as the real harm caused by pharmaceutical drugs become obvious, and conventional medicine become completely indefensible?

  • how many people have taken pharmaceutical drugs and vaccines because they have not been aware of the dangers?
  • how many people have taken conventional medication for illness for years in the belief that it would make them better - because no-one has ever questioned this assumption?
  • how many people have suffered the side effects, adverse reactions, and really the illness and disease, that are being caused by pharmaceutical medicine?
  • how many of these people can rightly accuse the mainstream media that they are seriously ill, or that their friends and relatives have died, because the media has failed to question or investigate the dishonest and fraudulent practices of the pharmaceutical industry?

So I will continue through this blog to castigate BBC News (and the rest of the mainstream media) as a promoter of 'fake' health news. Hopefully, in time, many more people will want to know why their 'public service broadcaster' has failed, if not actually refused, to tell them the truth.