JREF Homepage Swift Blog Events Calendar $1 Million Paranormal Challenge The Amaz!ng Meeting Useful Links Support Us
James Randi Educational Foundation JREF Forum
Forum Index Register Members List Events Mark Forums Read Help

Go Back   JREF Forum » General Topics » Science, Mathematics, Medicine, and Technology
Click Here To Donate

Notices


Welcome to the JREF Forum, where we discuss skepticism, critical thinking, the paranormal and science in a friendly but lively way. You are currently viewing the forum as a guest, which means you are missing out on discussing matters that are of interest to you. Please consider registering so you can gain full use of the forum features and interact with other Members. Registration is simple, fast and free! Click here to register today.

Tags cam

Reply
Old 6th January 2008, 06:30 AM   #81
fls
Penultimate Amazing
 
fls's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 10,236
Originally Posted by vaidya View Post
HERBS ARE NOT DRUGS!!
Then why do you treat them as drugs? Aren't you the one that just gave us pages and pages of references studying the medicinal effects of herbs?

Linda
__________________
God:a capricious creative or controlling force said to be the subject of a religion.
Evidence is anything that tends to make a proposition more or less true.-Loss Leader
SCAM will now be referred to as DIM (Demonstrably Ineffective Medicine)
Look how nicely I'm not reminding you you're dumb.-Happy Bunny
When I give an example, do not assume I am excluding every other possible example. Thank you.

Last edited by fls; 6th January 2008 at 06:32 AM.
fls is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 06:55 AM   #82
MinorityView
Guest
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 24
There is a big difference between the abstract ideal of Science and the way it is actually practiced in medicine. The picture most people on this board manifest when they talk about medicine and science looks like this:

Drugs work and sick people always get better.

All drugs are carefully tested in double-blind clinical studies and the results of these studies move smoothly into medical practice.

Reactions and results in practice are close to or identical with the reactions and results in the clinical trials.

No drugs are ever used off-label.

Doctors are whizzes at diagnosis and never get things wrong or prescribe the wrong drug.

Individuals can make valid cost/benefit analyses of treatment for themselves based on the result of drug effectiveness studies.

Reactions to drugs are accurately reported once they are out in the market place.

There is not now and never will be a better way to determine the best course of treatment for any illness than clinical trials.

Drugs are the best way to treat anything and everything that ails humanity. Diet, exercise, adequate sleep, herbal medicine or any other alternative approaches are all nonsense.

And the only reason anyone ever turns to alternative medicine is because they are stupid. Bad experiences with doctors and drugs never, ever play a role in such a choice!

Pure fantasy.

The way things work in real life is a lot more like this.

A pregnant woman visits her doctor and is told that the doctor likes to induce births. The woman doesn't bother to do the research (trusting doctors can be dangerous) and doesn't discover that that induction isn't justified without a medical need (and the doctor saying "I wanna" is not such a need. So she has an unnecessary medical induction, resulting in an unnecessarily difficult birth, resulting in an exhausted mother and a messed up baby.

or

Someone has minor surgery and is prescribed an anti-inflammatory drug. After a few days they realize (due to a minor cut on a finger) that the drug is actually provoking inflammation. They explain this to the doctor, who says, "Yes, that can happen occasionally."

or

Doctor prescribes a treatment for a minor problem. Doesn't work, does cause side effects, but the side effects aren't spotted as side effects, so the doctor prescribes a drug to treat the side effects, and of course this one doesn't work either, because of the misdiagnosis, and the new drug causes side effects, too, which aren't spotted either and by the time the person has gone through 6 or 7 drugs they are seriously ill. At this point the patient finally catches on to the fact that every time they go to the doctor they a)get a prescription and b)end up feeling sicker. So they go to an alternative doc, go through a detox and start feeling better. After this experience, for some reason, they feel some distrust of doctors. (this exact story happened to someone I know, who nearly died, purely as a result of medical science)

And I haven't even touched on conflicts of interest, ghost-writing of drug studies, corruption in the publication process, the revolving door between the regulators and the regulated, the constant generation of new drugs that are only slightly different from the older drugs, but coincidentally arrive just as a patent is going to run out...

When it comes to the way medicine is actually practiced, you guys are total suckers. No skepticism manifests at all. Hilarious!

Last edited by MinorityView; 6th January 2008 at 06:58 AM.
MinorityView is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 07:21 AM   #83
fls
Penultimate Amazing
 
fls's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 10,236
Originally Posted by MinorityView View Post
There is a big difference between the abstract ideal of Science and the way it is actually practiced in medicine. The picture most people on this board manifest when they talk about medicine and science looks like this:

Drugs work and sick people always get better.

All drugs are carefully tested in double-blind clinical studies and the results of these studies move smoothly into medical practice.

Reactions and results in practice are close to or identical with the reactions and results in the clinical trials.

No drugs are ever used off-label.

Doctors are whizzes at diagnosis and never get things wrong or prescribe the wrong drug.

Individuals can make valid cost/benefit analyses of treatment for themselves based on the result of drug effectiveness studies.

Reactions to drugs are accurately reported once they are out in the market place.

There is not now and never will be a better way to determine the best course of treatment for any illness than clinical trials.

Drugs are the best way to treat anything and everything that ails humanity. Diet, exercise, adequate sleep, herbal medicine or any other alternative approaches are all nonsense.

And the only reason anyone ever turns to alternative medicine is because they are stupid. Bad experiences with doctors and drugs never, ever play a role in such a choice!

Pure fantasy.

The way things work in real life is a lot more like this.

A pregnant woman visits her doctor and is told that the doctor likes to induce births. The woman doesn't bother to do the research (trusting doctors can be dangerous) and doesn't discover that that induction isn't justified without a medical need (and the doctor saying "I wanna" is not such a need. So she has an unnecessary medical induction, resulting in an unnecessarily difficult birth, resulting in an exhausted mother and a messed up baby.

or

Someone has minor surgery and is prescribed an anti-inflammatory drug. After a few days they realize (due to a minor cut on a finger) that the drug is actually provoking inflammation. They explain this to the doctor, who says, "Yes, that can happen occasionally."

or

Doctor prescribes a treatment for a minor problem. Doesn't work, does cause side effects, but the side effects aren't spotted as side effects, so the doctor prescribes a drug to treat the side effects, and of course this one doesn't work either, because of the misdiagnosis, and the new drug causes side effects, too, which aren't spotted either and by the time the person has gone through 6 or 7 drugs they are seriously ill. At this point the patient finally catches on to the fact that every time they go to the doctor they a)get a prescription and b)end up feeling sicker. So they go to an alternative doc, go through a detox and start feeling better. After this experience, for some reason, they feel some distrust of doctors. (this exact story happened to someone I know, who nearly died, purely as a result of medical science)

And I haven't even touched on conflicts of interest, ghost-writing of drug studies, corruption in the publication process, the revolving door between the regulators and the regulated, the constant generation of new drugs that are only slightly different from the older drugs, but coincidentally arrive just as a patent is going to run out...

When it comes to the way medicine is actually practiced, you guys are total suckers. No skepticism manifests at all. Hilarious!
Please don't present a strawman and expect us to respond to it. Nobody here has advanced those ideas that you are attributing to us.

I am curious, though. If you see those problems cropping up in a field that is heavily monitored and regulated, what would you expect to see from a field that is unmonitored and unregulated?

Linda
__________________
God:a capricious creative or controlling force said to be the subject of a religion.
Evidence is anything that tends to make a proposition more or less true.-Loss Leader
SCAM will now be referred to as DIM (Demonstrably Ineffective Medicine)
Look how nicely I'm not reminding you you're dumb.-Happy Bunny
When I give an example, do not assume I am excluding every other possible example. Thank you.
fls is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 07:23 AM   #84
robinson
Banned
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 6,136
Yay Minority view! Though fortunatly, it isn't as stark as all that, all the time, you have opened up the issues, the ones that you might think an an antiquack blog would talk about. To discover it is yet another homeo/chiro/herbal/altmed bashing site, was a bit disappointing. What about the quack Doctors? The drug induced deaths/disabilities? The super bugs? The dirty little hospital secrets? The crooked drug trials, the meds that don't work but still sell. the horrible deadly dangers of bad medicine?

How come no Doctor ever rats on the quack Doctors? How come Hospital figures are hidden? Why are Doctors so slow to use new treatments, but so quick to prescribe new drugs?

Labeling things a strawman doesn't make them go away.

Last edited by robinson; 6th January 2008 at 07:25 AM.
robinson is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 07:54 AM   #85
JJM
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Posts: 1,855
Originally Posted by robinson View Post
{snip} To discover it is yet another homeo/chiro/herbal/altmed bashing site, was a bit disappointing. What about the quack Doctors? The drug induced deaths/disabilities? The super bugs? The dirty little hospital secrets? The crooked drug trials, the meds that don't work but still sell. the horrible deadly dangers of bad medicine?
To discover someone else who thinks those complaints are relevant to quackery is disappointing. What about starting such a thread (or blog) by yourself?

Originally Posted by robinson View Post
How come no Doctor ever rats on the quack Doctors? How come Hospital figures are hidden? Why are Doctors so slow to use new treatments, but so quick to prescribe new drugs?
Factual basis? Relevance?

Originally Posted by robinson View Post
Labeling things a strawman doesn't make them go away.
It does, for the cognoscenti.
JJM is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 08:06 AM   #86
robinson
Banned
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 6,136
Do you have any idea how many blogs/websites/forums there already are? That "attack" mainstream science based medicine?

The Blog mentioned here says: Science Based Medicine
Exploring issues and controversies in the relationship between science and medicine

Now that would be interesting reading, especially if it is Doctors writing it. I find issues and controversy between science and medicine fascinating. To discover it is just an "antiquack" blog, is sad.

The real issues that matter to sick people have more to do with money, side effects, dangers, dissatisfaction, mistrust, and dishonesty. These issues actually effect lives, and every failing of modern science based medicine sends desperate people searching for alternatives. People don't just turn away from medicine and Doctors out of the blue. They don't start searching for alternatives when they are satisfied.

The huge failing of science based medicine is when science is not used, and ego, money, politics and ignorance interfere with helping people get better, or worse, lead to them getting sick and dieing.
robinson is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 08:16 AM   #87
fls
Penultimate Amazing
 
fls's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 10,236
Originally Posted by robinson View Post
Yay Minority view! Though fortunatly, it isn't as stark as all that, all the time, you have opened up the issues, the ones that you might think an an antiquack blog would talk about. To discover it is yet another homeo/chiro/herbal/altmed bashing site, was a bit disappointing. What about the quack Doctors? The drug induced deaths/disabilities? The super bugs? The dirty little hospital secrets? The crooked drug trials, the meds that don't work but still sell. the horrible deadly dangers of bad medicine?

How come no Doctor ever rats on the quack Doctors? How come Hospital figures are hidden? Why are Doctors so slow to use new treatments, but so quick to prescribe new drugs?
I don't know how many people blog on these issues. I don't read blogs except for what gets linked to from here. However, all those issues and more are discussed at length in the medical literature. There are of great interest to doctors as well. Probably more so, since we are privy to way more dirt than you.

Quote:
Labeling things a strawman doesn't make them go away.
It is a strawman to pretend that anyone in this thread said "no drugs are ever used off-label", "drugs work and sick people always get better", "individuals can make valid cost/benefit analyses of treatment for themselves based on the result of drug effectiveness studies", etc.

Linda
__________________
God:a capricious creative or controlling force said to be the subject of a religion.
Evidence is anything that tends to make a proposition more or less true.-Loss Leader
SCAM will now be referred to as DIM (Demonstrably Ineffective Medicine)
Look how nicely I'm not reminding you you're dumb.-Happy Bunny
When I give an example, do not assume I am excluding every other possible example. Thank you.
fls is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 08:22 AM   #88
robinson
Banned
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 6,136
Originally Posted by MinorityView View Post
There is a big difference between the abstract ideal of Science and the way it is actually practiced in medicine. The picture most people on this board manifest when they talk about medicine and science looks like this:...

And I haven't even touched on conflicts of interest, ghost-writing of drug studies, corruption in the publication process, the revolving door between the regulators and the regulated, the constant generation of new drugs that are only slightly different from the older drugs, but coincidentally arrive just as a patent is going to run out...

When it comes to the way medicine is actually practiced, you guys are total suckers. No skepticism manifests at all. Hilarious!
I think it is a valid point. Speaking to the perception of "skeptics" that post here. It does seem at times that it is almost a religious stance, that "Modern Medicine" is infallible, and all alternatives are quackery.
robinson is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 08:26 AM   #89
Rolfe
Anti-homeopathy illuminati member
 
Rolfe's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: NT 150 511
Posts: 37,262
Herbs are not drugs? Really?

I'm sure those kids the drug squad picked up last night with a pocketful of skunk will be so relieved to hear this....

Rolfe.
__________________
"The way we vote will depend, ultimately, on whether we are persuaded to hope or to fear." - Aonghas MacNeacail, June 2012.
Rolfe is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 01:45 PM   #90
Gord_in_Toronto
Penultimate Amazing
 
Gord_in_Toronto's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 14,408
Originally Posted by vaidya View Post
i dunno gord, i am not a homeopath or slightly interested in homeopathic medicine, although i have seen a couple products like traumeel effectively relieve pain - i don't try to explain it, but hey if it works i don't care because my practice isn't tied to fundamentalist belief structures

you might also note that apart from the economic and social use of cow dung, people in india are devoutly religious and many also view the cow as a divine symbol, representing love and devotion, like the mother who gives her milk to nourish her child

perhaps you will critique this as well

at some point gord_in_toronto, you will come across as a poo-obsessed uniformed bigot

sorry to spoil your party, but your diapers needed changing
Hilarious! Shouldn't you be taking a dose of St. John's Wart of something?

PS Cows are delicious.
__________________
"Reality is what's left when you cease to believe." Philip K. Dick
Gord_in_Toronto is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 04:34 PM   #91
The SkepDoc
Thinker
 
The SkepDoc's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 171
[quote=robinson;3308482]
The Blog mentioned here says: Science Based Medicine
Exploring issues and controversies in the relationship between science and medicine
Now that would be interesting reading, especially if it is Doctors writing it. I find issues and controversy between science and medicine fascinating. To discover it is just an "antiquack" blog, is sad.
QUOTE]

It is NOT just an "antiquack" blog. The only one who has called it that is the person who started this thread. The purpose of the blog is to promote science-based medicine. The blog will indeed be criticizing quackery because quackery is not based on good science, but it will also be criticizing anything in conventional medical practice that is not based on good science. As a matter of fact, one of the entries I am preparing is about the overuse of antibiotics.

There is a lot of confusion about how to evaluate research studies. Some people think that if they can show positive results from a placebo-controlled double blind trial that constitutes proof. The reality is far more complex. The majority of published research is unfortunately wrong. If anyone is interested in learning more about this subject, I can recommend an excellent book, Snake Oil Medicine, by R. Barker Bausell. My book review of this book will be on the blog on Tuesday. It is the principles described in this book that guide the authors of the Science Based Medicine blog.

There are many medical doctors and PhDs who really don't understand how to apply the scientific method rigorously to medical claims. And alternative medicine proponents like Vaidya don't begin to understand why all the studies they throw at us do not convince us. Reading Bausell's book or reading the SBM blog over time should increase their understanding of how good science can be better applied in medicine.
The SkepDoc is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 05:01 PM   #92
Hawk one
Emperor of the Internet
 
Hawk one's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: Right below The Hat.
Posts: 13,216
Originally Posted by MinorityView View Post
The picture most people on this board manifest when they talk about medicine and science looks like this:

Drugs work and sick people always get better.
Actually, the picture you get when you actually study it carefully is rather like this:

Because of extensive testing, we can make fair conclusions about things like how effective a drug is, why and when it's effective, why and when it's -not- effective, possible side effects (why does "natural medicine" just about never, ever disclose side effects to their products?) and stuff like that. Heck, side effects that may actually have occured for completely unrelated reasons (thus simply being a coincidence and not really a side effect) gets slammed on the package of any medicine simply because it cannot be ruled out. Give me -one- example of "natural medicine" choosing to reveal that kind of thing.

Since nobody here has ever claimed that people always get better from conventional medicine, the rest of your post is deemed irrelevant, considering it's based on this strawman/lie.
__________________
Boynott everything!

Roxane - My evil feeds on your hatred. I am like a big evil thing that feasts on hatred and probably also fear. Nom nom.

Roxane is a ninja star without me.
Hawk one is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 07:04 PM   #93
vaidya
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 85
[quote]
Quote:
However, none of the in vitro and animal research you have provided confirms information gathered through traditional means.

you can't have it both ways linda

the double-blind placebo controlled trial cannot be used to ascertain the mechanism of action of polyherbal pharmacy, which is how the vast majority of herbalists practice

so, we are forced to accept the current paradigm to explain ourselves, and despite the odds, there is still a large body of evidence that supports clincal usage

i will state again that the onus is on you to disprove efficacy

i posted a case history on glaucoma - your comments are notably absent - in fact, you conveniently pick and choose what you respond to, which only demonstrates your bias

you may not like it, but this only one small example of many many more case histories that would be difficult to analyze according to your criteria, but instead of re-examining your criteria, it is easier and much more convenient for you to disregard it

in this case, the ophthamalogist stated that the ONLY way she could reduce eye pressure was with pilocarpine - she wasn't sure so she came to see me, and low and behold within a few months my protocol reduced IOP to normal without pilocarpine

i have also reversed scotoma on visual field tests, another apparent impossibility

the fact that you and other skeptics don't like the quality of the studies i posted is irrelevant - that situation is not inherent to herbs themselves but to a research model that is heavily dominated by magic bullet thinking, in which there is NO money available to do solid research on botanicals

once again, the onus is on you to disprove the efficacy of herbal medicine, but developing a research model that speaks to the paradigm of its use, not try to jam a square peg in a round hole

as i said, contact Dr. Marja Verhoef at the Canadian Interdisciplinary Network for CAM Research (http://www.incamresearch.ca) and ask her about the inherent difficulty in designing appropriate research models for CAM practices

if you dare - then report back to us
until, all your comments are irrelevant


Quote:
Let's take aloe for example (chosen simply because it's first on this list). Traditional uses are as follows:

"Transparent gel from the pulp of the meaty leaves of Aloe vera has been used topically for thousands of years to treat wounds, skin infections, burns, and numerous other dermatologic conditions. Dried latex from the inner lining of the leaf has traditionally been used as an oral laxative."

And

"Alopecia (hair loss), antimicrobial, arthritis, asthma, bacterial skin infections, bowel disorders, chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic leg wounds, congestive heart failure, damaged blood vessels, elevated cholesterol or other lipids, frostbite, heart disease prevention, hepatitis, inflammatory bowel disease (IBS), kidney or bladder stones, leukemia, lichen planus stomach ulcers, Merkel cell carcinoma, parasitic worm infections, protection against some chemotherapy side effects, scratches or superficial wounds of the eye, systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), tic douloureux, untreatable tumors, vaginal contraceptive, yeast infections of the skin."

Research confirms that it is an effective laxative, and that is one of the circumstances under which observation is more reliable - when the effects are immediate, such as with vomiting, laxatives or pain.

Weaker evidence suggests that it is effective in psoriasis, seborrheic dermatitis and genital herpes. None of those conditions are on the list of traditional uses, although they could fall under "numerous other dermatologic conditions".

Poor evidence suggests that it is useful for lung cancer prevention (not on the list), canker sores (not on the list), type II Diabetes (not on the list), HIV infection (not on the list), skin burns (on the list), Ulcerative Colitis (not on the list, but could fall under "bowel disorder"), wound healing (on the list).

Fair to good evidence suggests that it does not work for mucositis associated with cancer treatment (not on the list but could fall under "protection against some chemotherapy [it was radiation therapy in the study] side effects), pressure ulcers (could fall under some of the listed categories), and radiation dermatitis (could fall under dermatologic conditions).

So far this suggests a poor correspondence. Other than its use as a laxative (one of the few observations which is pretty reliable), its other traditional uses are either poorly supported by the evidence or contradicted by the evidence. And important possible uses for aloe were missed (e.g. diabetes, HIV). This means that it would be foolish to assume, without information gathered through the use of the scientific method, that it would be effective for anything else on that list. And it also suggests that traditional use may not even be a good source of inspiration for areas of exploration.

That is an example of the kind of analysis (albeit in a grossly abbreviated form) that I based my comment about "nuggets of useful information" on. I have already performed an investigation - that is how I came to the conclusion in the first place. Your information is demonstrably unreliable. That you think the onus should be on me to show that information that may be false (by definition) is actually false, else you will continue to believe it true, is a demonstration of exactly what distinguishes alternative medicine from medicine.
this isn't my analysis - it comes from the mayo clinic, who are hardly bastions of herbal medicine

i would even try to defend them - however, i do know how that plant has been used for several thousand years in India, and is used to this day

once again, the onus is on you to disprove, not the other way around
lack of evidence, even with the biased criteria you establish, is NOT proof

however, clinical results do count, as per the case hx of the glaucoma patient i posted
vaidya is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 07:10 PM   #94
vaidya
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 85
Quote:
And alternative medicine proponents like Vaidya don't begin to understand why all the studies they throw at us do not convince us. Reading Bausell's book or reading the SBM blog over time should increase their understanding of how good science can be better applied in medicine.
[/quote]

given that your system of medicine, even just looking at physician-prescribed medication as the #3 cause of mortality in the US, you haven't a leg to stand on
vaidya is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 07:16 PM   #95
vaidya
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 85
Quote:
I am curious, though. If you see those problems cropping up in a field that is heavily monitored and regulated, what would you expect to see from a field that is unmonitored and unregulated?
herbal medicine evolved and has been practiced for thousands of years before the flexner report - in retrospect, it is easy to see that Flexner was making a power grab under the guise of "regulation

tell me, how did licensing prevent the ENRON fiasco?
does licensing stop pharmaceuticals from the #3 cause of mortality?

since when did being a skeptic mean that you can't also respect freedom of choice, esp. where that choice - demonstrably - causes no statistical harm

you are playing politics linda
vaidya is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 07:19 PM   #96
robinson
Banned
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 6,136
Originally Posted by The SkepDoc View Post
It is NOT just an "antiquack" blog. The only one who has called it that is the person who started this thread. The purpose of the blog is to promote science-based medicine. The blog will indeed be criticizing quackery because quackery is not based on good science, but it will also be criticizing anything in conventional medical practice that is not based on good science. As a matter of fact, one of the entries I am preparing is about the overuse of antibiotics.
Fantastic to hear. I'm 100% behind evidence based medicine, as well as evidence based science. It is heartening to know Doctors like yourself are aware of the pitfalls of medicine, and the difficulties of evaluating studies and probably a lot of issues us mere mortals don't even run into.

IMO, bashing homeopathy is like debating with flat earthers.
robinson is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 07:21 PM   #97
vaidya
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 85
Originally Posted by fls View Post
Then why do you treat them as drugs? Aren't you the one that just gave us pages and pages of references studying the medicinal effects of herbs?

Linda
if the term "drug" wasn't a political football, and objectively meant anything used with a medicinal effect, then we could call herbs drugs

but likewise, we we also have to include therapeutic diets as a drug, as well as homeopathic and flower remedies, massage oils and liniments, etc etc,

the fact of the matter is that your profession has gobbled up the proprietary usage of the term "drug", just like "pharmacy" and "prescription", and describing a herb as a drug is simply power grab

your failure to acknowledge the reality only demonstrates your bias, and unfair thinking
vaidya is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 07:30 PM   #98
The SkepDoc
Thinker
 
The SkepDoc's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 171
Skeptics and critical thinkers do not accept testimonials as evidence, and they understand that the burden of proof is on the person making the claim. They understand that no one study can stand in isolation, that truth is determined by looking at the entire body of research and considering quality and coherence. They also accept that humans are prone to all kinds of errors and that rigorous science is the best tool we have to avoid such errors. They understand that criticizing scientific medicine for its flaws is meaningless unless its flaws are put into perspective with its many benefits. They are not likely to trade scientific medicine for an alternative medical system without some very convincing evidence that that other system has a better overall outcome. Herbal and other traditional medicine is still practiced widely in China, but the Chinese are voting with their feet and choosing Western scientific medicine whenever they can get it. A recent Skeptics Guide to the Universe podcast interviewed a man in China who told us that even the Chinese government thinks traditional Chinese medicine is less effective, but they are encouraging it to keep the cost of treatment down; only the old folks and the poor are still using it.
The SkepDoc is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 07:36 PM   #99
The SkepDoc
Thinker
 
The SkepDoc's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 171
Originally Posted by robinson View Post
IMO, bashing homeopathy is like debating with flat earthers.
Yes, but unfortunately those flat earthers are infiltrating medicine. Dr. Novella recently participated in a conference at a medical school where half the panel was seriously advocating homeopathy and trying to come up with half-assed rationales for proposed mechanisms. There are still plenty of MDs who prescribe homeopathic remedies and believe in them.

Arguing with true believers is hopeless, but we have to keep speaking out so that others don't think we accept those beliefs. There are lots of consumers buying homeopathic remedies who still have no idea what homeopathy is all about, and we need to try to get the message to them.
The SkepDoc is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 07:44 PM   #100
Chris Haynes
Perfectly Poisonous Person
 
Chris Haynes's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Wacky Washington Way Out West
Posts: 4,267
Originally Posted by vaidya View Post
in response to vitriol and ignorance, i have responded, hopefully with even a little adequacy

if i have been able to make even a small impression on some of you, then my job is done

however, and more to the point of the original thread:

HERBS ARE NOT DRUGS!!
Oh, deer!

Perhaps you should sit down for a spell, then go make yourself some nice foxglove tea and a snack of apricot pits and castor beans.

Do enjoy yourself.



























Do not ingest those herbs, please!!! They are all poisons, and can kill you. If you want to play PubMed cites check out this one:
Acute cyanide toxicity caused by apricot kernel ingestion.
A non-fatal case of intoxication with foxglove, documented by means of liquid chromatography-electrospray-mass spectrometry
Fatal ricin toxicosis in a puppy confirmed by liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry when using ricinine as a marker.
Hepatotoxicity from castor bean ingestion in a child.

A more complete list of poisonous plants is listed here (note that some are used in pharmaceuticals, notably foxglove and yew):
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_poisonous_plants

You should take a virtual tour of this place:
http://nnlm.gov/pnr/uwmhg/

And if you are visiting the area you can sign up for real tours here:
http://www.biology.washington.edu/greenhouse/k12.html
__________________
I used to be intelligent... but then I had kids

"HCN, I hate you!"
( so sayeth Deetee at http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?p=1077344 )...
What I get for linking to http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/
Chris Haynes is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 07:59 PM   #101
robinson
Banned
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 6,136
Originally Posted by The SkepDoc View Post
Yes, but unfortunately those flat earthers are infiltrating medicine....
There are lots of consumers buying homeopathic remedies who still have no idea what homeopathy is all about, and we need to try to get the message to them.
In regards to "homeopathic", there is a real and serious thing going on, that I was unaware of, until the other day. A friend stopped by the local health food store to get some "homeopathic medicine" for her dog. I told her flat out, homeopathic remedies are worthless. She said she had used it before, and it worked well. So I looked at the bottle, read the label. It wasn't homeopathic at all, it was an herbal formula. It was called "homeopathic", but in reality it was an herbal tincture, and knowing the condition and the herbs involved, it would indeed help the poor wee beast.

A quick look at the data online confirmed this phenomenon. A "homeopathic formula"

http://www.ultimateanimals.co.uk/aca...es_wormer.html
Quote:
Ingredients: Chamomilla, Valeriana, Borax, Cypripedium Pub, Ignatia A, Colch, Verat A in 20% USP alc. in purified water.15ml bottle.
Another one.
http://www.enaturalremedies.co.uk/pu...or_anxiety.htm
Quote:
Melissa Officinalis

Lavandula Augustifolia

Passiflora Incarnata
Somehow herbal remedies are being sold as homeopathic remedies. Obviously animals are immune to the placebo effect, and one thing I know about pet owners, they know when something works on their pet. I did some checking and there is a huge amount of "homeopathic" stuff that is using the label, but is in fact, herbal remedies.

This may be one reason for the growth of "homeopathic" remedies. I don't know how or when "homeopathic" became a selling point, but it looks like a lot of things being marketed as "homeopathic" are in fact herbal remedies, which is a completly different issue.

I'm going to check the "human" remedies and see if this is going on there as well.

Last edited by robinson; 6th January 2008 at 08:00 PM.
robinson is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 08:16 PM   #102
vaidya
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 85
[quote]
Originally Posted by Hydrogen Cyanide View Post
Oh, deer!

Perhaps you should sit down for a spell, then go make yourself some nice foxglove tea and a snack of apricot pits and castor beans.

Do enjoy yourself.
another armchair skeptic - like cockroaches out of the woodwork...

btw, do you know how William Withering "discovered" digitalis? he learned about it from a Shropshire herbalist that had been successfully treating "cardiac dropsy" for years, without any knowledge of cardiac glycosides or any "chemicals"

this was the first herb lost to herbalists - once they isolated the glycosides it was taken away by "regulators" who apparently knew more than the very people who introduced it to them!

there is ample evidence of this kind of arrogance and conceit in medicine, and it plays itself out again and again
vaidya is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 08:25 PM   #103
Chris Haynes
Perfectly Poisonous Person
 
Chris Haynes's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Wacky Washington Way Out West
Posts: 4,267
Originally Posted by Hydrogen Cyanide View Post
...A more complete list of poisonous plants is listed here (note that some are used in pharmaceuticals, notably foxglove and yew):
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_poisonous_plants

...

As a gardener I know there are more and better lists of poisonous plants out there (when my children were small I concentrated on edible landscaping to make sure it was a safe garden, that has changed now since I have added delphiniums and daffodils). That list includes Autumn Crocus, but I also grow Saffron Crocus that also bloom in the fall and are NOT poisonous. I just forgot where I put poisonous plant websites in my "Favorites" list.

Many long years ago I took a course on Medicinal Herbs. One thing I came away was that sometime what one would think would be safe, was not really. I was pregnant at the time and I remember being told that blackberry and raspberry teas are good for stimulating the cervix, so to NOT drink them until the pregnancy is far far along (and I did at 38 weeks, but still had to be induced at 42 weeks!).

The instructor did caution us on plant identification, mentioning that a couple had died by making tea from foxglove thinking it was some other plant. She also mentioned that recent research had shown that comfrey could be poisonous. I checked pubmed on comfrey and found this interesting paper on animals, milk and the poisonous plant they might eat:
http://jas.fass.org/cgi/reprint/68/3/892

I should also explain that both food and herbs contain chemicals. Well, actually, everything contains chemicals. It does us absolutely no good to eat stuff without chemicals, because we need them to live. Vitamins are chemicals, and if we are deprived of some like Vitamin C and D we can become very ill. Some of the elements we get from food and herbs are calcium and iron... without them we would become very ill.

Also, if some foods are consumed at certain times they can effect medications, or even the absorption of other nutrients. One common thing is that grapefruit juice affects medicinal drugs (lots of PubMed links with lots of long chemical drug names).

Also, some foods do effect people in adverse ways. My sister has lactose intolerance and cannot digest dairy products. I know a few people who have gluten intolerance. Also, every year there is a tragic story of someone having a deadly allergic reaction to peanuts, shellfish, and other foods.

So please do not automatically equate food, herbs and natural with "safe" or even "healthy".
__________________
I used to be intelligent... but then I had kids

"HCN, I hate you!"
( so sayeth Deetee at http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?p=1077344 )...
What I get for linking to http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/
Chris Haynes is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 08:35 PM   #104
vaidya
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 85
[quote]
Originally Posted by The SkepDoc View Post
Skeptics and critical thinkers do not accept testimonials as evidence, and they understand that the burden of proof is on the person making the claim. They understand that no one study can stand in isolation, that truth is determined by looking at the entire body of research and considering quality and coherence.
what's your position on off-label use of pharmaceuticals by doctors?
vaidya is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 08:44 PM   #105
Chris Haynes
Perfectly Poisonous Person
 
Chris Haynes's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Wacky Washington Way Out West
Posts: 4,267
[quote=vaidya;3310345]
Quote:

another armchair skeptic - like cockroaches out of the woodwork...

btw, do you know how William Withering "discovered" digitalis? he learned about it from a Shropshire herbalist that had been successfully treating "cardiac dropsy" for years, without any knowledge of cardiac glycosides or any "chemicals"

this was the first herb lost to herbalists - once they isolated the glycosides it was taken away by "regulators" who apparently knew more than the very people who introduced it to them!

there is ample evidence of this kind of arrogance and conceit in medicine, and it plays itself out again and again
Yes, yes... that is what is important! Herbs are the where real medicine started, it is very important to understand that.

Oh, and how to use the "shift" key on your keyboard. There is one located on both sides, it helps to make what you write more literate. Though I suspect with the quality of the verbiage used by you, there is a faint hope of that.

It also helps if you actually read and understand the content of the posts you are responding to.
__________________
I used to be intelligent... but then I had kids

"HCN, I hate you!"
( so sayeth Deetee at http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?p=1077344 )...
What I get for linking to http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/

Last edited by Chris Haynes; 6th January 2008 at 08:57 PM. Reason: other thoughts
Chris Haynes is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 08:44 PM   #106
vaidya
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 85
[quote=Hydrogen Cyanide;3310377]As a gardener I know there are more and better lists of poisonous plants out there (when my children were small I concentrated on edible landscaping to make sure it was a safe garden, that has changed now since I have added delphiniums and daffodils). That list includes Autumn Crocus, but I also grow Saffron Crocus that also bloom in the fall and are NOT poisonous. I just forgot where I put poisonous plant websites in my "Favorites" list.

Many long years ago I took a course on Medicinal Herbs. One thing I came away was that sometime what one would think would be safe, was not really. I was pregnant at the time and I remember being told that blackberry and raspberry teas are good for stimulating the cervix, so to NOT drink them until the pregnancy is far far along (and I did at 38 weeks, but still had to be induced at 42 weeks!).

The instructor did caution us on plant identification, mentioning that a couple had died by making tea from foxglove thinking it was some other plant. She also mentioned that recent research had shown that comfrey could be poisonous. I checked pubmed on comfrey and found this interesting paper on animals, milk and the poisonous plant they might eat:
http://jas.fass.org/cgi/reprint/68/3/892

Quote:
I should also explain that both food and herbs contain chemicals. Well, actually, everything contains chemicals. It does us absolutely no good to eat stuff without chemicals, because we need them to live
.

the term "chemical" is also a vernacular term, meaning something synthesized in a lab, or isolated chemicals deprived of the biochemical milieu in which they were metabolized

like when a mother of a baby doesn't want to give her child OTC cough syrup because of all the "chemicals"

skeptics will deride her, but she is exactly right to be worried about these chemicals, as has been evidenced recently with warnings issued by both the FDA and Health Canada

safe alternatives do exist, such as mullein tea, something that has an enormous body of traditional and empirical use behind it - and it "works" at least enough to the satisfaction of the mother, who sees her child getting better

it might not be the hard evidence that skeptics require, but they apply a double standard to almost everything so its easy to dismiss their opinions

Quote:
So please do not automatically equate food, herbs and natural with "safe" or even "healthy"
there is nothing 100% or 100% healthy - everything has risk - even breathing or walking down the street

its how we calculate these risks, and the evidence that demonstrates harm

so far, herbs and supplements have demonstrated a margin of safety far beyond that of pharmaceuticals, which is exactly what people are driving at when they call them "safer" or "healthy"
vaidya is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 08:47 PM   #107
vaidya
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 85
Quote:
Oh, and how to use the "shift" key on your keyboard. There is one located on both sides, it helps to make what you write more literate. Though I suspect with the quality of the verbiage used by you, there is a faint hope of that.
[/quote]

actually, me and ee cummings are doing it just to bug you
i hope it has its desired effect
vaidya is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 08:58 PM   #108
Chris Haynes
Perfectly Poisonous Person
 
Chris Haynes's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Wacky Washington Way Out West
Posts: 4,267
[quote=vaidya;3310403]
Quote:

what's your position on off-label use of pharmaceuticals by doctors?
What does that have to do with herbs?
__________________
I used to be intelligent... but then I had kids

"HCN, I hate you!"
( so sayeth Deetee at http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?p=1077344 )...
What I get for linking to http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/
Chris Haynes is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 09:04 PM   #109
fls
Penultimate Amazing
 
fls's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 10,236
[quote=vaidya;3310154]
Quote:


you can't have it both ways linda

the double-blind placebo controlled trial cannot be used to ascertain the mechanism of action of polyherbal pharmacy, which is how the vast majority of herbalists practice
Why not? The DBPCT doesn't put any restrictions on what you use or how you use it.

Quote:
so, we are forced to accept the current paradigm to explain ourselves, and despite the odds, there is still a large body of evidence that supports clincal usage

i will state again that the onus is on you to disprove efficacy
Why? The 'evidence' that supports clinical usage is of the type that is easily wrong. For all I know, it could all be wrong. Why should I trust that, until proven otherwise?

Quote:
i posted a case history on glaucoma - your comments are notably absent - in fact, you conveniently pick and choose what you respond to, which only demonstrates your bias
There isn't much to say. The IOP will vary by 10 mm Hg in people with glaucoma, depending upon time of day and other factors. A variation mostly of a few mm Hg and a maximum of 8 is what we'd expect to see if the herbal supplement had no effect.

Quote:
you may not like it, but this only one small example of many many more case histories that would be difficult to analyze according to your criteria, but instead of re-examining your criteria, it is easier and much more convenient for you to disregard it
I didn't find that difficult to analyze.

Quote:
in this case, the ophthamalogist stated that the ONLY way she could reduce eye pressure was with pilocarpine - she wasn't sure so she came to see me, and low and behold within a few months my protocol reduced IOP to normal without pilocarpine
You have assumed that you are responsible for the change even though it's just as plausible that you are not. If multiple possibilities exist, what makes you think yours is the one that is right?

Quote:
i have also reversed scotoma on visual field tests, another apparent impossibility
There are several causes of scotoma, some of which resolve on their own.

Quote:
the fact that you and other skeptics don't like the quality of the studies i posted is irrelevant - that situation is not inherent to herbs themselves but to a research model that is heavily dominated by magic bullet thinking, in which there is NO money available to do solid research on botanicals
How can there be no money available to do solid research when you've spent pages and pages giving references? You gave three references earlier for clinical trials using Black Cohosh. Money was available for those. Really, how much more expensive do you think it would have been to add blinding and randomization to the mix?

Quote:
once again, the onus is on you to disprove the efficacy of herbal medicine, but developing a research model that speaks to the paradigm of its use, not try to jam a square peg in a round hole
But you have given no valid reasons for why the techniques used to explore and understand, in every other scientific field, cannot be applied to herbals, other than, "it doesn't allow us to yield the answers that we want."

Quote:
as i said, contact Dr. Marja Verhoef at the Canadian Interdisciplinary Network for CAM Research (http://www.incamresearch.ca) and ask her about the inherent difficulty in designing appropriate research models for CAM practices

if you dare - then report back to us
until, all your comments are irrelevant
I read through the information on that site. I am already familiar with the ideas presented there.

Quote:
this isn't my analysis - it comes from the mayo clinic, who are hardly bastions of herbal medicine
No it doesn't. The Mayo Clinic merely hosts the information provided by Natural Standard which looks like a bastion of herbal medicine to me.

Quote:
i would even try to defend them - however, i do know how that plant has been used for several thousand years in India, and is used to this day

once again, the onus is on you to disprove, not the other way around
lack of evidence, even with the biased criteria you establish, is NOT proof

however, clinical results do count, as per the case hx of the glaucoma patient i posted
You are simply wrong. You are effectively saying, "I can do any crazy and stupid thing I want and you can't stop me."

Linda
__________________
God:a capricious creative or controlling force said to be the subject of a religion.
Evidence is anything that tends to make a proposition more or less true.-Loss Leader
SCAM will now be referred to as DIM (Demonstrably Ineffective Medicine)
Look how nicely I'm not reminding you you're dumb.-Happy Bunny
When I give an example, do not assume I am excluding every other possible example. Thank you.
fls is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 09:07 PM   #110
fls
Penultimate Amazing
 
fls's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 10,236
Quote:
given that your system of medicine, even just looking at physician-prescribed medication as the #3 cause of mortality in the US, you haven't a leg to stand on
As I pointed out earlier, that statement is wrong. It gives a very poor impression of your scholarship if you cannot be bothered to check whether anything you say is actually correct.

Linda
__________________
God:a capricious creative or controlling force said to be the subject of a religion.
Evidence is anything that tends to make a proposition more or less true.-Loss Leader
SCAM will now be referred to as DIM (Demonstrably Ineffective Medicine)
Look how nicely I'm not reminding you you're dumb.-Happy Bunny
When I give an example, do not assume I am excluding every other possible example. Thank you.

Last edited by fls; 6th January 2008 at 09:20 PM.
fls is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 09:17 PM   #111
fls
Penultimate Amazing
 
fls's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 10,236
Originally Posted by vaidya View Post
herbal medicine evolved and has been practiced for thousands of years before the flexner report - in retrospect, it is easy to see that Flexner was making a power grab under the guise of "regulation

tell me, how did licensing prevent the ENRON fiasco?
does licensing stop pharmaceuticals from the #3 cause of mortality?
It must since it isn't.

Quote:
since when did being a skeptic mean that you can't also respect freedom of choice, esp. where that choice - demonstrably - causes no statistical harm
Your words are not reassuring considering that you deliberately avoid looking for the possibility of harm, and you deny it when others point it out to you, as demonstrated in the Black Cohosh thread.

My interest extends to protecting others from fraudulent practices, and making good use of my resources (public funds).

Linda
__________________
God:a capricious creative or controlling force said to be the subject of a religion.
Evidence is anything that tends to make a proposition more or less true.-Loss Leader
SCAM will now be referred to as DIM (Demonstrably Ineffective Medicine)
Look how nicely I'm not reminding you you're dumb.-Happy Bunny
When I give an example, do not assume I am excluding every other possible example. Thank you.
fls is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 09:25 PM   #112
vaidya
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 85
Quote:
Why not? The DBPCT doesn't put any restrictions on what you use or how you use it.
there is simply no way to study this effectively, because every person would have to be given the same formula against a placebo - but that doesn't actually reflect how herbal medicine is practiced, since herbal formulas are compounded on the basis of the individual signs and symptoms

Quote:
Why? The 'evidence' that supports clinical usage is of the type that is easily wrong. For all I know, it could all be wrong. Why should I trust that, until proven otherwise?
we have established that you have preconditioned bias that won't allow to shift your paradigm - see the problem with DBPCT above

Quote:
Quote:
i posted a case history on glaucoma - your comments are notably absent - in fact, you conveniently pick and choose what you respond to, which only demonstrates your bias
There isn't much to say. The IOP will vary by 10 mm Hg in people with glaucoma, depending upon time of day and other factors. A variation mostly of a few mm Hg and a maximum of 8 is what we'd expect to see if the herbal supplement had no effect.
how convenient! the fact is, her IOP has remained normal since, despite a year of it being consistently high prior to coming to see me

you may try to attribute this to being an artifact or normal variation but that would be illogical


Quote:
How can there be no money available to do solid research when you've spent pages and pages giving references? You gave three references earlier for clinical trials using Black Cohosh. Money was available for those. Really, how much more expensive do you think it would have been to add blinding and randomization to the mix?
c'mon linda, put your glasses on!
comparatively the amount of $$ spent on herbal research is a drop in the bucket

this is why there are very few phase II or III clinical trials on herbs - who is going to pay for it? once again, your statements demonstrate your ignorance of this field of research


Quote:
Quote:
as i said, contact Dr. Marja Verhoef at the Canadian Interdisciplinary Network for CAM Research (http://www.incamresearch.ca) and ask her about the inherent difficulty in designing appropriate research models for CAM practices

I read through the information on that site. I am already familiar with the ideas presented there.
glad to see you can read a website, but the site actually contains very little info and none relating to the research problems i refer to - what? are you chicken? give her a call and ask some questions instead of insulating yourself with ignorance


Quote:
Quote:
this isn't my analysis - it comes from the mayo clinic, who are hardly bastions of herbal medicine
No it doesn't. The Mayo Clinic merely hosts the information provided by Natural Standard which looks like a bastion of herbal medicine to me.
Natural Standard is NOT a bastion of herbal medicine
for one thing, there are no herbalists that work for them

they are also a comparatively new organization as well, and with their first newsletter they had so many facts wrong that they were bombarded with complaints from the herbal community

DBs like Natural Standard exist to help companies with their marketing, not as a source of clinical information - except perhaps doctors who haven't had any proper CAM training, but because they see the results of using pharmaceuticals on their patient population, are looking for alternatives


Quote:
"however, clinical results do count, as per the case hx of the glaucoma patient i posted"

You are simply wrong. You are effectively saying, "I can do any crazy and stupid thing I want and you can't stop me."
???!!! how you can compare this to reversing an objective indications of glaucoma in a patient? your comparison is irrational
vaidya is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 09:26 PM   #113
vaidya
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 85
Originally Posted by fls View Post
As I pointed out earlier, that statement is wrong. It gives a very poor impression of your scholarship if you cannot be bothered to check whether anything you say is actually correct.

Linda
no its not - i posted an additional reference that you did not comment on
please read the thread more carefully linda
vaidya is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 09:31 PM   #114
vaidya
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 85
Quote:
Your words are not reassuring considering that you deliberately avoid looking for the possibility of harm, and you deny it when others point it out to you, as demonstrated in the Black Cohosh thread.

My interest extends to protecting others from fraudulent practices, and making good use of my resources (public funds).
Linda[/quote]

you have deliberately avoided answering my question with regard to 74,000 acetaminophen related injuiries, and why you choose to go after a herb with a handful of ADRs

it demonstrates your bias, once again

i say put your own house in order before you comment on others

by the way, did you know that AMA in ayurveda means "toxin"
see, we can come up with clever little takes on your acronyms too
vaidya is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 09:33 PM   #115
vaidya
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 85
Quote:
My interest extends to protecting others from fraudulent practices, and making good use of my resources (public funds).
YOUR resources indeed!
and then you wonder why there is so little of the evidence that you ask for!

you are quite a piece of work linda!

Linda[/quote]
vaidya is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 09:35 PM   #116
vaidya
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 85
Quote:
what's your position on off-label use of pharmaceuticals by doctors?
What does that have to do with herbs?
shhh... i'm trying to finish the trap for The SkepDoc
it won't be hard - lets wait and see!
vaidya is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 09:53 PM   #117
vaidya
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 85
Quote:
Skeptics and critical thinkers do not accept testimonials as evidence
<snip>
A recent Skeptics Guide to the Universe podcast interviewed a man in China who told us that even the Chinese government thinks traditional Chinese medicine is less effective, but they are encouraging it to keep the cost of treatment down; only the old folks and the poor are still using it.[/quote]

so, apparently testimonies don't count eh? except when it supports your own bias! and this, all in the same paragraph!! more evidence of double-standard thinking

you guys are freaking hilarious!!! your heads are so far up your skeptical butts you can't even see it!
vaidya is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 09:55 PM   #118
verisimilidude
Student
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 32
Lately I've noticed that many "snake oil salesmen" have come with some rather impressive credentials, such as the Nobel Prize, National Medal of Science, and professor positions at major universities. I won't mention names, but they're readily available by a search engine inquiry.

This is a scary trend. I've seen several associated with many "miracle cure" type of products with little or no scientific support.

Is their association simply motivated primarily by financial gain? In the long run, wouldn't the loss of respect and credibility among their peers offset any short term economic benefit?

How is a layperson expected to discern between academics who remain committed to the scientific method and those who sell out to embrace more mundane incentives?

Last edited by verisimilidude; 6th January 2008 at 09:59 PM.
verisimilidude is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 09:56 PM   #119
Chris Haynes
Perfectly Poisonous Person
 
Chris Haynes's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Wacky Washington Way Out West
Posts: 4,267
vaidya said
Quote:

actually, me and ee cummings are doing it just to bug you
i hope it has its desired effect
It makes you look uneducated and stupid. Forums have a culture. If you lurk on a forum you will see what kind of culture it has. This forum will judge you on your rhetoric and grammar.
__________________
I used to be intelligent... but then I had kids

"HCN, I hate you!"
( so sayeth Deetee at http://forums.randi.org/showthread.php?p=1077344 )...
What I get for linking to http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/
Chris Haynes is online now   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 6th January 2008, 10:22 PM   #120
vaidya
Scholar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Posts: 85
Originally Posted by Hydrogen Cyanide View Post
vaidya said

It makes you look uneducated and stupid. Forums have a culture. If you lurk on a forum you will see what kind of culture it has. This forum will judge you on your rhetoric and grammar.
oh yes mum, thanks mum, sorry mum
what what jolly good and all that crap

perhaps you should ask yourself why you take time to _publicly_ critique my typing form instead of the substance of my posts
vaidya is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Reply

JREF Forum » General Topics » Science, Mathematics, Medicine, and Technology

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 08:10 AM.
Powered by vBulletin. Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
2001-2013, James Randi Educational Foundation. All Rights Reserved.

Disclaimer: Messages posted in the Forum are solely the opinion of their authors.