Please protect the community

The primary functions of government are to maintain order, settle conflicts, and protect the community. So I am told.

Generally I am a small state man. In fact I refer to myself, when I don’t think anyone important is listening, as an anarchist. I believe that humans should be allowed as much freedom as is possible, without being allowed to seriously harm others. Rules and regulations and bureaucracy are not really my thing. So I am achingly reluctant to demand that the State gets involved in creating yet another agency, or add to its powers in any way.

But sometimes the State must intervene to carry out one of its three primary functions. Namely, to ‘protect the community.’

Where Governments around the world have to step in, right now, is to gain proper control of the creation of medical guidelines. Something that they have spectacularly failed to do, up to now.

As you may be aware, a row is rumbling under the surface about European guidelines on the use of beta-blockers in surgical operations, guidelines that were based on corrupt research. Doctors following these guidelines have probably killed 800,000 people. Give or take.

Some people have written into this blog stating that the numbers cannot be that high, and that the calculations are probably wrong. They were not my calculations, I hasten to add. My view on this is that many many thousands have certainly died unnecessarily. It doesn’t really matter if it was one hundred thousand, five hundred thousand, or eight hundred thousand.

How many would be acceptable?

The answer is, of course, none. But when guidelines go wrong the potential for killing hundreds, thousands, or even millions, is always there. If, for example, your guidelines state that fifty per cent of the population must take a drug for a condition, and these guidelines are wrong, you can kill millions,.

Recently, I did the back of a fag packet calculation on the number of people who were killed by the advice that patients must be managed with six weeks of strict bed rest after a heart attack. Here is some advice from that era: ‘The patient is to be guarded by day and night nursing and helped in every way to avoid voluntary movement, or effort.’ Thomas Lewis.

According to my figures, and I am not going into them here, strict bed rest for six weeks after a heart attack killed fifteen million people worldwide. Yes, fifteen million. More than died in the fighting in the first and second world wars added together.

This, I hope, gives you some idea of the potential death toll when medical guidance goes wrong. Given this, you would hope that the process that leads to the creation of guidelines would be checked, and double checked, then triple checked, then monitored.

You would also hope that the evidence underpinning the guidelines was free from bias, and corruption. Furthermore, that all data – positive or negative – would be freely available, with no possibility of hiding anything away. You would also hope that those creating the guidelines had no possible conflicts of interest.

The fact is that NONE of these things are true. We have a system that is almost perfectly free from scrutiny of any sort. Many, if not most, guidelines are based on trials that are designed, set up and run by the pharmaceutical companies. They own and control the data, and are under no obligation to let anyone else see it, if they don’t want to. Negative data are regularly buried, never to see the light of day.

A few brave souls e.g. Ben Goldacre, Fiona Godlee (editor of the BMJ), and Peter Gotzsche have been demanding that all clinical trial data are made available for scrutiny, but almost nothing has happened. Currently Roche are refusing to release data on their flu drug Tamiflu. Various studies remain unpublished, no data released. The UK Govt. seems powerless to act. Or maybe it just doesn’t want to, with so much money at stake.

Last year AbbVie and InterMune, two drug companies, took legal action against the European Medicines Agency to stop them releasing any data from clinical studies, and to ensure that no trials data could made available, anywhere, to anyone, ever again. I like to think I helped to kick this monstrous and terrible legal action into touch. But, companies still do everything in their power to ensure that data will not, ever, be released.

Then we have the enormous problem that that ‘experts’ chosen to write guidelines work hand in glove with the pharmaceutical industry. The US guidelines on cholesterol lowering written in 2004 were put together by nine people. Here is a conflict of interest statement. I have put this up before, but I think it bears almost endless repetition:

ATP III Update 2004:  Financial Disclosure

Dr. Cleeman: (Chairman) has no financial relationships to disclose.

Dr. Grundy: has received honoraria from Merck, Pfizer, Sankyo, Bayer, Merck/Schering-Plough, Kos, Abbott, Bristol-Myers Squibb, and AstraZeneca; he has received research grants from Merck, Abbott, and Glaxo Smith Kline.

Dr. Bairey Merz: has received lecture honoraria from Pfizer, Merck, and Kos; she has served as a consultant for Pfizer, Bayer, and EHC (Merck); she has received unrestricted institutional grants for Continuing Medical Education from Pfizer, Procter & Gamble, Novartis, Wyeth, AstraZeneca, and Bristol-Myers Squibb Medical Imaging; she has received a research grant from Merck; she has stock in Boston Scientific, IVAX, Eli Lilly, Medtronic, Johnson & Johnson, SCIPIE Insurance, ATS Medical, and Biosite.

Dr. Brewer: has received honoraria from AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Lipid Sciences, Merck, Merck/Schering-Plough, Fournier, Tularik, Esperion, and Novartis; he has served as a consultant for AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Lipid Sciences, Merck, Merck/Schering-Plough, Fournier, Tularik, Sankyo, and Novartis.

Dr. Clark: has received honoraria for educational presentations from Abbott, AstraZeneca, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Merck, and Pfizer; he has received grant/research support from Abbott, AstraZeneca, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Merck, and Pfizer.

Dr. Hunninghake: has received honoraria for consulting and speakers bureau from AstraZeneca, Merck, Merck/Schering-Plough, and Pfizer, and for consulting from Kos; he has received research grants from AstraZeneca, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Kos, Merck, Merck/Schering-Plough, Novartis, and Pfizer.

Dr. Pasternak: has served as a speaker for Pfizer, Merck, Merck/Schering-Plough, Takeda, Kos, BMS-Sanofi, and Novartis; he has served as a consultant for Merck, Merck/Schering-Plough, Sanofi, Pfizer Health Solutions, Johnson & Johnson-Merck, and AstraZeneca.

Dr. Smith: has received institutional research support from Merck; he has stock in Medtronic and Johnson & Johnson.

Dr. Stone: has received honoraria for educational lectures from Abbott, AstraZeneca, Bristol-Myers Squibb, Kos, Merck, Merck/Schering-Plough, Novartis, Pfizer, Reliant, and Sankyo; he has served as a consultant for Abbott, Merck, Merck/Schering-Plough, Pfizer, and Reliant.

http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/guidelines/cholesterol/atp3upd04_disclose.htm

Those companies that I have marked in bold sell (or at the time sold) statins and/or other cholesterol lowering medications. A mere eight members (the chairman was employed by the NIH who was not allowed close ties with industry), and we have almost seventy direct financial conflicts of interest with companies who made, and sold, cholesterol lowering agents.

How we can possibly allow doctors with enormous financial conflicts of interest to create guidelines that will be followed around that world, and will affect hundreds of millions (in this case billions) of people….How can this possibly be allowed.

We currently have a system of guideline creation that relies on three things being true, if they are to be sare – all three things:

1: That the clinical trial data are not corrupt, or biased

2: That negative data are made available when requested

3: That the medical experts tasked with creating the guidelines are completely unaffected by their financial conflicts of interest

The fact is that none of these critical requirements are followed….even remotely.

How many other guidelines out there are wrong, damagingly wrong, and horrifyingly wrong? How many millions of people are being put at risk by a system that is wide open to corruption, and bias? I have not the slightest idea, but I suspect many….

The public are most certainly not being protected. We have put the foxes in charge of the chicken coop, with entirely predictable results. Time for the farmer to pull out the shotgun and start blasting away. Time for the state to start doing what it is there to do. Namely, ‘protect the public.’

64 thoughts on “Please protect the community

  1. Alastair McLoughlin

    You ask “How can this possibly be allowed?”
    I answer $, € and £
    Oversimplified I know, but probably true.

    Reply
    1. Robert Park

      I would have thought it was more connected to a personality weakness than to money; the currency in the lives of those types is credibility and credentials; the Cinderellas and Cinderfellas of society who seek to be Kings and Queens. (Send in the men with the white coats)!

      Reply
  2. Sue Richardson

    Just one question in the light of these utterly dreadful facts: is there anything, anything at all, that the ordinary, non-medical, non-influence-holding member of the public, can do? or do we have to stand by and watch helplessly?

    Reply
    1. Robert Park

      Remember, “S/he who stands and stares also serves”! Simply express you dissention as often as you can publicly and privately.

      Reply
    2. Mary Adair

      Sue, many “ordinary”, non-medical, non-influence-holding members of the public can share what they know and believe. Write letters to those of influence, deluge them with letters of opposition. You do not have to stand by and watch helplessly. Make some noise everywhere you go. I don’t mean that literally, but stand up and be heard and counted. That is how what you as a human being who truly cares about the welfare of his fellow man should and CAN DO!!! You are far from helpless if you are following this post. It is a sign of strength and intelligence.

      Reply
      1. Sue Richardson

        Good advice from Mary and (Robert). I’ll just keep talking anyone who will listen. I have actually had some ‘converts’ but also some glazed eyes, and the ‘here she goes again’ looks too. No matter – as a certain store would say, ‘every little helps’. Thanks for the advice.

  3. Tony Collingwood

    One thing that concerns me about medical guidelines is this: for whose benefit are they? Are they for the benefit for the public? Or do they constitute a vehicle for protecting the backsides of medical practitioners? If a guideline prescribes a certain method of diagnosis and treatment which is open to criticism, does the guideline then protect any medical practitioner that adheres to it from liability in the event that the prescribed method causes harm to the patient? Do certain institutions such as the Royal College of Physicians have a conflict of interest in formulating guidelines affecting patients when those guidelines appear designed to protect members of the institution practitioners rather than benefit the patient? Is it possible that such institutions have on occasion been hijacked by a faction within the membership that have the self-serving agenda of engineering issue of guidelines which protect them in the event medical negligence litigation?

    From my own experience, I think there is every likelihood that guidelines have been and will continue to be generated out of self interest rather the the well-being of the public.

    Reply
    1. GG

      Yes you are right. Were the RCP is concerned their guidelines (oh sorry the RCP says they are not guidelines, just a statement that doctors do not need to follow) concerning primary hypothyroidism are keeping patients sick. Patients are not getting the adequate diagnosis, care and treatment they need because of the RCP’s statement. These guidelines are not helping patients because doctors are religiously following the RCP guidelines at the expense of patient health.

      The RCP claims evidence backing up their statement but in reality such evidence does not exist in a form that is usually required in the medical or academic arena when making claims of having evidence. The evidence that is claimed to be overwhelming is in fact based on experience and expertise. Add to the mix any potential conflicts of interest that those on the committee that drew up the guidelines, sorry statement, might have had and then we are back to the usual pile of poo.

      Reply
      1. Tony Collingwood

        As you probably know, when in 2009 the RCP issued the “guidelines”, namely the position statement on the diagnosis and treatment of primary hypothyroidism, it drew a storm of well-informed criticism which the RCP chose not to answer in any substantive sense. Moreover, the RCP has refused to reveal who authored the position statement despite the RCP’s proclamation of being transparent. I very much suspect that the individuals responsible were motivated by factors other than benefit to the public. Without knowing who the authors are, it is difficult to determine what the real underlying motivation was. The RCP’s extreme reluctance to engage with anyone who questions the position statement rather suggests that there is something devious afoot. One thing is certain: the position statement has not benefited the public one iota. Anyone interested in this issue might like to visit:

        https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/position_statement_on_primary_hy

        Note the RCP has not attempted to respond to that request for information even though it does respond to FOI requests on other subjects. One has to wonder why the RCP is so determined not to come clean.

      2. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        I suspect it may be pure bloody mindedness by the RCP, and a refusal to change their minds. I cannot believe that is any money to be from levothyroxine manufacturers. It is cheap as chips. “Why do people insist on defending their ideas and opinions with such ferocity, as if defending honour itself? What could be easier to change than an idea?” J.G. Farrell, The Siege of Krishnapur.

      3. Jennifer

        Well done Tony, in your attempts to get disclosures.
        I am afraid I am more than despairing than ever now, seeing as how such eloquent representations as yours are hitting brick walls…..my bleating on is of no consequence to improving the lot of us simple folk….so I leave it to the likes of you and the Dr Kendricks of this world to get results. I feel so inadequate, but will continue to follow these wonderful blogs in the hope that you eventually succeed in your missions.

      4. S Jones

        There may be little money to be made from levothyroxine. But there is oodles of cash to be made in the treatment of problems caused by untreated or under-treated hypothyroidism. High cholesterol which naturally must be treated with statins, dementia, brain fog, joint and muscle pain, heart disease, heart attacks and stroke, weight loss treatment, debilitating fatigue, and osteoporosis (to name but a few of the problems) must generate millions, while also generating years of misery for the poor patients. Many of them can’t work, live on benefits, and have shortened, miserable lives. And worst of all is that they are not believed by the medical profession. Their TSH is in range, so they must be lying. The TSH blood test tells the doctor that the patient is well, so their symptoms must be in their head.

        And things are getting worse! In the interests of saving money, fewer and fewer T4 and T3 tests are being done. And this isn’t necessarily happening at the behest of GPs. In many cases it is the clinical biochemists in the labs who are refusing to do the tests despite the GPs requesting them. So people who don’t know the patient or their symptoms and who aren’t qualified doctors are deciding the fate of people with thyroid issues by refusing to do the necessary blood tests.

        There is a whole feedback loop involved in thyroid problems that affects the hypothalamus, the pituitary, the thyroid and the adrenal glands. And what about conversion problems from T4 to T3 or high reverse T3 or problems with the receptors in the body? The number of things that can go wrong is legion. But all that modern medicine cares about is whether TSH production from the pituitary falls within a reference range so wide it is an abyss for sufferers to fall into.

        Apparently, according to endocrinologists, there is a process in the body that never fails and is always perfect. Conversion of T4 to T3 never goes wrong and this is why levothyroxine is the only treatement necessary for treatment. So T3 should never be prescribed, and is never needed. Does anyone really believe that tripe? I don’t know of any other process in the body that is believed to be perfect in 100% of cases.

        People who have self-medicated with T3 are accused of being similar to heroin addicts. When a patient says to an endocrinologist that they have got better with T3, they are told “Heroin makes people feel good too, but we don’t prescribe that.”

        And people with thyroid issues are stigmatised as being “Fat, middle-aged, menopausal and mad”. Some of us aren’t fat, some of us are young or old, some of us are male, and if we are mad it is because we are angry. But we are condescended too and patronised, sent on our way being told to eat less and exercise more, we are fine, your blood tests are great, go away and don’t darken my door again.

      5. Dr. Malcolm Kendrick Post author

        What I cannot find, probably due to uselessness in searching, is clear evidence as to why conversion of T4 to T3 does not occur (or may not occur). What are the reasons for this….I am only asking, so I can go and have a look. Please point me in the right direction.

      6. Sheila Turner

        Hi Malcolm
        If you are seeking clear evidence as to where all this is going wrong – and what is really happening within endocrinology, read the editorially acclaimed paper by Eric Pritchard. MSc. (published 24 June 2013) entitled ‘Reducing the Scope of Guidelines and Policy Statements in Hypothyroidism’ that proves that doctors who are denying the active hormone T3 to patients who need it – are practising outside of their scope. This is not only medical negligence, it is criminal negligence.
        Reducing the scope of guidelines and policy statements is necessary to allow doctors to properly treat patients who have deficiencies in physiology that is not thyroid or endocrine but is functionally between the thyroid gland and the production of symptoms” i.e. post-thyroid physiology. The problem for doctors is simple. This physiology operates with the active thyroid hormone triiodothyronine (T3) which is effectively banned from prescriptions by endocrinology and medical associations in spite of it being available, approved, and effectively indicated.
        Reducing the scope requires examination of the many facets that support these guidelines and policy statements:
        1. Doctors are licensed and disciplined by the General Medical Council or other boards of medicine. Practicing in ways other than those condoned by medical associations or medical custom can invite an expensive time consuming investigation and can end a medical career. Consequently the fears of such draconian possibilities force strict, if not over compliance, with accepted medical practice.
        2. There are two classes of definitions for “hypothyroidism” ‘linguistically proper’ and ‘popular’. The proper definition only implicates the thyroid gland while the popular definition implicates the entire TOTAL| Thyroid System. Since the thyroid tests are based upon the proper definition and patients identify with the popular definition, physicians and patients talk past each other. Unfortunately if either type of definition were stipulated in guidelines or statements, this whole problem would not exist.
        3. The post-thyroid physiology was discovered decades ago and has been investigated by many studies since. But the medical practice guidelines and policy statements for hypothyroidism do not address or disclaim this physiology. Logically then medical treatment of this physiology the ban of T3 should not exist.
        4. Unlike all other sciences medicine dismisses counterexamples as mere anecdotes. But other sciences find them to be valuable corrections of bad or incomplete theories. Some patients have been virtually resurrected with T3 and/or supplements for post-thyroid chemistry. But medicine dismisses these successes. No counterexample is considered by evidence-based medicine.
        5. Evidence-based medicine recommends ignoring all studies that are not based upon randomized clinical trials. Consequently, the reviews (meta-analyses) of three randomized clinical trials ignored 98% of the available studies including warnings that T4 does not work for all and the investigations of post thyroid physiology. Further, the reviewed studies were not based upon subjects with post thyroid deficiencies. Consequently, the application of these studies the ban of T3 is not valid.
        6. Some of the patient counterexamples have had to regain their health via T3 more than once. Consequently – their experiences fit the challenge de-challenge re-challenge test which indicates that T3 is beneficial for some patients.
        7. Doctors avoid the prescription of T3 by not performing tests on the post-thyroid physiology. Routinely – this leaves the doctor with inadequate information for proper differential diagnosis. That is “solved” by prescribing antidepressants or claiming some un-treatable disease like Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. However the incompleteness of testing for differential diagnosis also invalidates informed or valid consent which is due to all patients.
        8. Endocrinology also claims T3 is ‘dangerous’ because it produces excessive variations of T3 in the blood. Since T3 has a half-life or exponential decay -this can be mathematically analyzed. This analysis shows that by taking T3 three times daily produces a variation far less than the “normal” range and potentially as low as the normal rhythms of the body.
        9. Bone loss and heart attack dangers are also addressed in the peer-reviewed professional paper “Reducing the Scope of Guidelines and Policy Statements in Hypothyroidism ” [http://tpauk.com/docs/reduce-scope-final.pdf]

      7. Tony Collingwood

        Dr Kendrick, in response to your request for information on T4 to T3 conversion, you may find the following article helpful.

        http://nahypothyroidism.org/deiodinases/

        Incidentally, while levothyroxine is indeed as cheap as chips, Abbott Labs sold about $200 million dollars of the stuff in Q1, 2013, see

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_largest_selling_pharmaceutical_products

        However the real point is that levothyroxine does not do the trick for everyone. A significant number of people benefit from T3 and/or natural dessicated thyroid, including many who are in range on the TSH assay but hypothyroid at the tissue level. The RCP position statement purports to deal with primary hypothyroidism but goes further than that and appears to be a deliberate ploy to mislead practitioners into thinking that anyone in range on the TSH assay cannot possibly have a thyroid-related condition treatable with thyroid medication (especially T3 and/or natural dessicated thryoid such as Armour). I know for a fact that this is exactly what is happening and, as a result, many sufferers are having to self-treat using thyroid medication sourced from the internet because their GPs refuse to prescribe it under the NHS. Of course, if sued for medical negligence they have the get-out that they are only following the “guidelines” provided by the RCP position statement.

        Take yourself Dr Kendrick: how would you deal with a patient complaining of symptoms suggestive of hypothyroidism if the blood tests came back with the TSH in the “normal” range? Would you tell them that they cannot possibly have a thyroid-related condition (the RCP position statement would support you in this) or would you examine the patient more closely for signs and symptoms of hypothyroidism and consider prescribing at least a trial course of thyroid medication?

      8. S Jones

        If you don’t want to approve this for your blog I will completely understand!

        It is my understanding that one reason (of many) for treatment failure is because of the effect of hypothyroidism on the gut. The sufferer produces insufficient stomach acid. It seems to be a little known fact that insufficient stomach acid and too much stomach acid produce almost identical symptoms from the point of view of the patient. The sufferer ends up being prescribed proton pump inhibitors which makes the problem worse. (And proton pump inhibitors really are addictive – getting off them is a nightmare!) What the sufferer actually needs is more stomach acid, and that doesn’t even need a prescription. You can buy betaine hydrochloride pills at supplement shops or online. No cash for big pharma there though…

        As a result of the above, the patient suffers more and more nutritional deficiencies, in nutrients such as iron, vitamin D, vitamin B12, magnesium, zinc and folate, which adds to the physiological stress that the patient is under. There are knock-on effcts on the gut bacteria as well. If you look at this link there are some references at the bottom (it is the references I want to point out not the rest of the link) :

        http://tpauk.com/forum/content.php?685-draft-letter-you-may-wish-to-send-to-your-doctor

        This link may also be of interest and also has loads of references :

        http://nahypothyroidism.org/deiodinases/

        And can I point out this link which makes a good case for treating subclinical hypothyroidism :

        http://www.pulsetoday.co.uk/thyroxine-reduces-cvd-risk-by-40-in-under-70s/13846392.article

        And then a few months after the above was published, the following article appears which made me extremely angry :

        http://www.pulsetoday.co.uk/clinical/dilemma-doubt-over-thyroxine-prescription/20004874.article

        Lots of people with hypothryoidism have been told by various doctors “I want you to come off your medication for six weeks to find out your baseline”. They never say that to diabetics or people with high blood pressure or heart disease, or people with epilepsy. And doctors think this is a perfectly reasonable thing to do. They don’t realise that they are torturing their patients and condemning them to weeks of pain because they simply don’t see hypothyroidism as a big deal. They apparently see it as no more of an issue than a mild case of flu.

  4. Christopher Palmer

    As far back as 1974 a team headed by Hideshige Imai1 established that cholesterol is not atherogenic in itself, but oxidised cholesterol is. This means that raised levels of cholesterol alone cannot explain the risks of heart disease but oxidative stress, bearing upon cholesterol, to result in the production of oxycholesterols might do so quite reliably.

    That some of the cholesterol present in our bodies may be commuted to oxidised cholesterol is an increasing prospect if there are more oxidising agents present or too few anti-oxidants available to combat (counter) them. Rath and Pauling may have been half-right all along, despite widespread assassination of their theory.

    There may be be several oxidising agents capable of placing cholesterol under oxidative stress but the potential of homocysteine to lead them looks to be very real. If the notion of a cortisol-homocysteine-oxycholesterol (CHO) axis holds promise for describing the business of atherogenesis then the axis permits integration of the several well accepted and long established lifestyle and environmental risk factors into the theory and physiology.

    To bind the above with your mention of bed rest for heart attack victims I should like to point out that bed rest would invariably involve electrical isolation from ground, and isolation from ground may induce arrhythmia in the normal cycles and levels of cortisol. The habit of ‘earthing’2 is rather striking in its established capacity to normalise levels and cycles of cortisol3. If a patient undergoes any procedure that requires a stay on the wards it would be prudent if an earthing sheet was part of the deal.

    Notes:
    1, Angiotoxicity and Arteriosclerosis Due to Contaminants of USP-Grade Cholesterol;
    Hideshige Imai, PhD & others (1974).
    http://legacy.library.ucsf.edu/documentStore/n/k/r/nkr20a00/Snkr20a00.pdf
    2, http://earthinginstitute.net/
    3, The Biologic Effects of Grounding the Human Body During Sleep as Measured by Cortisol Levels and Subjective Reporting of Sleep, Pain, and Stress; Maurice Ghaly and Dale Teplitz (2004)
    http://74.63.154.231/here/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/Ghaly__Teplitz_cortisol_study_2004.pdf
    [For the sake of record Clint Ober (the re-discoverer of earthing) describes Ghaly as a sceptic who set out to prove Ober wrong. In the event the cortisol connection with earthing, and cortisol’s capacity to bear upon homocysteine might actually be the scientific finding of the century, as big a breakthrough in medical science as any of Pasteurs work.]

    I was wondering if you have sourced yourself a copy of Dr Kilmer McCullys latest work on homocysteine; Homocysteine: Biosynthesis and Health Implications; Kilmer S McCully (Editor) pub. 18/1/2014. I returned a preview via google books which indicated Dr McCully may now have linked homocysteine with cholestane triol and cholestane triol with the modified behaviour of cells/mitochondria to result in the development of atheromas. That cortisol may bear upon homocysteine also looks promising. Seems the work may be worthy of a critical read. On my wages I have to hesitate before shelling out so much upon a textbook that is clearly published with the professionals in mind, and with a price to match.

    Reply
    1. Mary Adair

      Christopher, this is very interesting and I have believed in this theory of oxidative stress being the culprit in many illnesses. Your post and attachments are much appreciated. I have only recently learned about earthing, but pray tell, and forgive my ignorance, but what is an earthing sheet?
      Thanks for this most enlightening post.

      Reply
  5. Mary Adair

    Interesting…when my husband had his first by-pass surgery, they had him on his feet within hours of the surgery. I think he went home the next day. But, if he had remained immobile for that long a period, I doubt he would have made it. It seems utter nonsense to see it in writing. Hopefully, we will see the same thing evolve with the use of statins…sooner than later, I hope.

    Reply
  6. Anne

    Think you might have missed my comment in the previous thread as I’d only just read it having recently been discharged from hospital after cardiac surgery and have been having bad recovery problems, so I’ll post again here…though I think I’ve discovered that these beta-blockers are given to surgery not cardiac related ?

    Well I had cardiac surgery three weeks ago to replace my aortic valve as I as born with a bicuspid one. I am on a beta blocker, 25mg Atenolol per day. I wish I could read this research. Find out how these people died, why the beta blocker killed them. Very worrying for me to read this as it is impossible for me to judge whether this beta blocker is bad for me or not.

    Anne

    Reply
  7. tannyo

    I distrust government control, after all, government control is responsible for the food pyramid/plate and much bad advice in the United States. Governments consistently make bad decisions when telling us what to eat, what drugs to take, what exercise is good for us…

    I am however for laws that require more transparency and release of trial data. If they don’t release their trial data, then the drug gets pulled from the market. It’s the keep it simple method.

    Reply
  8. Robert Kingsbury

    Yet another article in which you seem to be banging your head in despair Dr.K……but don’t; no-one changes the world overnight. You have opened the eyes of thousands of people (mainly those who actually use their brain instead of acting like lemmings). You have done so much to expose the corruption and failings of others and you have educated and inspired many of us who would otherwise accept the garbage our GP’s and “health professionals” dish out. As well as your constructive criticism, you have offered credible alternatives in explaining cardiovascular and other problems. Keep banging the drum; the support for you is growing and many of us are doing our best to spread the word too. Your time will come.

    Reply
    1. Mary Adair

      Ditto Dr. K, from across the pond. Robert Kingsbury is so right. I finally have found not only answers, but a chance at a better quality of life. Having lived the nightmare of statin side effects, I cannot fathom where I would be today had I not read your book and purchased Statin Nation. Since so many of our doctors here in the USA were quoted and interviewed, it gave me much hope to know there are honorable and well meaning physicians who have confirmed what I felt for years…that something was terribly wrong and there was a reason for it. I was petrified to get off statins. I am not afraid any longer. The chapter in your book that deals with stress as a major factor in many illnesses including heart disease, was particularly hard hitting for me. I lived my life under enormous stress for years. I forgot how to relax and live in the moment. My own brother, too, was under enormous stress when he died of a heart attack. Since we were little kids, he would tell me how much he hated Mondays. He carried that awful feeling with him throughout his life. He died on a Monday, on his way to a doctor’s appointment with a cardiologist. When I read the last page, and put the book aside, I finally had closure on the manner and way in which he lived and died. It all made perfect sense. You sir, are not only a scientist, but have a unique perspective on sociological factors as they relate to disease. I did not even realize that as I closed the book, I had tears running down my cheeks. His death has haunted me for years and I was able to heal…at last.

      Thanks,
      Mary

      Reply
  9. Jennifer

    This is certainly food for thought, isn’t it?
    You know the old saying , ” ignorance is bliss, ’tis folly to be wise’…..oh no it isn’t! I prefer to know, so I can choose which direction to take my body. But big business tells us lies, or fails to disclose the truth, as you have indicated, and that is problematic.
    Having abandoned all medications, I am now declining requests for medical interventions. The testing business has little to do with making me feel better, in fact, my anxiety for 10 years was high, getting over one test, then facing another, and yet another, year in year out. All resulting in multiple medications, but lacking any other advice.
    I have declined my ‘flu jab, (based on convincing research ). I have received a call from the surgery, then a letter, and finally another phone call. I am being pestered for my annual Blood Pressure to be taken…….why? So they can ignore my healthy home readings yet again.
    Why is the medical industry hell bent on looking into my every nook and cranny in the hope of plying me with more and more meds? So intent on giving me stuff ‘just in case’. Yet, reluctant to give me relevant information; indeed, hiding research results and stifling debate.
    It is all being done to maximise profits and salaries, and so ‘to pot’ with the detrimental effects on Mr and Mrs Cannybody. I feel we are just being used as a means to an end for big business profiteering, with little benefit to us.
    Please, Dr Kendrick, do keep working on getting to grips with this issue of inappropriate medicalisation.
    I am tackling the medication issue as best I can on a purely personal basis ( sorry if that sounds selfish), because I am also bound up on researching the intricacies of our diabolical food supply.
    Heavens, is there no end to the influence of these big businesses unduly coercing our intelligentsia. This is a seriously unhealthy state for all of us, projecting us towards premature deaths.

    Reply
  10. Robert Park

    What you are drawing to attention is not a feature which exists solely within the field of medicine but is pandemic to society. I do not want to usurp your current thread but anyone who is interested in the global scene may wish to view this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jAdu0N1-tvU
    To those who would like to know only about how the health of the world’s ecosystem and its population is currently being affected then simply go to point 1.19.10 on the video, which is near its end, to be amazed. The entire video is worthy of watching as it is something of a wake up call.

    Reply
  11. Mary Adair

    The lack of transparency is indeed troubling. I, too, do not consider myself liberal per se, however, we pay taxes to have police and fire protection and pay public officials (all of whom should have the people’s best interest at heart), to ensure people’s lives are protected. Government exists to ensure we the people are not denied our fundamental right to protection. Those most responsible for our food and drug oversight whether government or private have a special duty and should consider it an honor to protect the public from harm. That is what any civilized government should do. If anyone refuses to release any part of a drug or food study, they should immediately come under investigation by the Federal Attorney General. I, too, distrust too much government control, but this process of total transparency should be non-negotiable. I have to agree with Tannyo. As I learned when I bought and viewed “Statin Nation”, in early 1980’s America, the government entity that was responsible for the oversight of these food and drug studies was cut to reduce government overhead. However, that is one such government spending cut that should have been left alone. So much for living a long and fruitful life!!!

    Reply
  12. Janice Rawlinson

    Thank you Dr Kendrick, you’ve restored a little of my lost faith in the medical profession. Regretfully, the medical profession tend to frighten the living daylights out of me. You wouldn’t care to take a look at the diagnosis and management of hypothyroidism, would you?

    Reply
      1. sandy

        Dear Dr Dr. Malcolm Kendrick,
        Could I ask your opinion ?
        As a raised cholesterol level is a recognised clinical sign in hypothyroidism, and cholesterol is where hormones are manufactured (among other things). Could it be a possibility that a raised cholesterol level be natures way of trying to produce more thyroid hormones ?

      2. sandy

        Thank you for your honest reply to me (see below) very much appreciated.
        Please keep up the good work but don’t burn yourself out.

  13. Elayne Gravenor

    Thank you for that interesting article perhaps you should have a look at how hyperactive patients are being bullied into treatments that they don’t want. Is it perhaps to get them back under their GP’s quicker, why do Endocrinologists not investigate new methods of treating people.

    You have renewed my faith in some of the medical profession

    Reply
    1. lorrainecleaver7

      Oh totally agree! They whipped out my thyroid gland even although I was well controlled on carbimazole and could have stayed on it for a decade longer! As soon as it was removed, in came hypothyroidism hell. No, the levothyroxine won’t make anyone rich (and the GP QOF only award them 1 point for dispensing it) but the resultant high cholesterol, high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, depression etc etc do indeed yield more profits for both doctors (those QOF awards rise steeply here, 35 for depression diagnosis!) and pharma.

      As to Guidelines, we seem to be positively encouraged by SIGN, the Scottish Guidelines network to put forward a proposal for Hypothyroid guidelines. Every fibre of our being is saying don’t go there! Guidelines are only as good as the evidence used to write them, and with 50% of evidence never published, as well as the poor quality of much evidence, http://blogs.bmj.com/bmj/2014/01/31/richard-smith-medical-research-still-a-scandal/ it would be like jumping out of the frying pan in to the fire.

      Reply
  14. Butsch

    Maybe the solution lies not in calling for any institution but maybe everyone is responsible for his/her own health. Which means not to trust any “Doctor” or “medical guideline” blindly. As Barry Groves put it: Trust you doctor like you would trust a used car salesman.

    Reply
  15. Professor Göran Sjöberg

    I enjoy your blog very much since I fully share your feeling of “disgust” in front of what is going on in the “medical community” where I see the natural science, as I know it, being violated all the time.

    But perhaps it is with most people, as with me, that you need to get personal experience of the medical system, through a heart attack or something equivalent, to be able to open your eyes and find out for your self.

    I agree with you that it is the guideline system which is the key together with open access to clinical studies.

    Reply
  16. Robert Park

    I subscribe to your views Butsch. I keep receiving letters from the NHS annually advising me on the benefits of the flu-jab and persuading me to get it. The person in-charge of this field of propaganda is a qualified medic for a post that could easily and more economically be managed by an administrator. Furthermore, in the field of natural medicine (researched 1953 or thereabouts) there is a known cure that can rid, even the worst influenza symptoms in around five hours without any adverse side-effects but the cartel of pharmaceutical companies do not want this information to circulate in the public arena. The cure costs a few pence and is available in most supermarkets but your GP is unlikely to direct you there.

    The GPs surgery has a booklet explaining all that needs to be known about its facilities and near its end it says that it encourages patients to become involved in the management of their own health (presumably it is intended to mean ill-health) but gawd bless anyone who dares attempt to do so!

    GPs these days tend to spend most of their time watching a computer monitor and whenever I visit I am certain that there are times when they do not see me.

    Reply
      1. Robert Park

        artgerecht42

        Medical research discovered that coconut had the same fatty acid profile as mother’s milk and one of those fatty acids is known as Lauric acid.

        When viruses enter the body they hide in an envelop of protein which protects them from the immune system. The interesting feature about Lauric acid is that it destroys this protective coating which allows the immune system to do its task which it does effectively and efficiently.

        There are many natural substances which are equally beneficial but here are a further two; olive leaf extract and oregano oil. Each has a curative effect although act differently but, more importantly, they are synergistic to each other and are potent killers of viruses (except AIDS).

        Coconut, any of its products, although its oil is recommended, will eradicate influenza in around 10-12 hours. When olive leaf extract is added the time interval reduces to 7-8 hours but when oregano oil is also added the cocktail eliminates the infection in around 5 hours.

        It is not advisable to use any of those natural products as prophylactics owing to the adaptive nature of viruses otherwise much larger doses will be required. Normally, when the snuffles appear one dose is sufficient but otherwise it is dosage dependent, meaning, the more taken the more effective the cure.

        When in the presence of anyone who has influenza or a cold simply take a lump of creamed coconut block (about the size of a square inch) to protect oneself.

        Those products have long shelf lives and can be purchased from either a supermarket or a health food store. When I last purchased creamed coconut block (prior to the quantitive easing programmes coming into effect) it cost between 65-75 pence.

        In the past 35 years (probably longer) I have had influenza for one day when I had to take about 4 fluid ounces of coconut oil to get rid of it.

        This is my family’s favourite remedy.

      2. Sue Richardson

        This is very interesting. I cook with coconut oil and know of many of it’s advantages. Hadn’t heard of this one though. Like many others I too, have not taken up the ‘don’t forget your flue jab’ yearly advice. It may have been a pure coincidence, but a lovely old gentleman I knew a few years ago had his jab, got the flu and a fortnight later he was dead! Put me off even before I had read anything adverse about the flue jab!

  17. Suzanne Looms

    Dr Kendrick I read a blog post by Dr Mike Eades on how mindless implementation of guidelines affected his elderly father’s health. One element stood out (new information for me), which was about Lipitor inducing insulin resistance and possibly causing diabetes. Can you point me in the direction of any further information on statins and diabetes? (I’m concerned about an elderly woman with diabetes, who has been prescribed statins to protect her heart).

    http://www.proteinpower.com/drmike/statins/statin-madness/

    Reply
      1. Mary Adair

        And Dr. Kendrick, I have heard statins trigger diabetes more so in women, as well. It is just bad news. My husband got off statins about three months ago. He had a check up today. He is able to get rid of his diabetes medicines. I think that is strong evidence for good eating and getting off statins. We are both elated and his doctor is amazed. She is starting to understand. He still takes CoQ10 daily as well.

        Mary

      2. Suzanne Looms

        I was asking for more, because I’m in a tricky position. I’m not medically qualified, but dealing with GP patients in another role. I find GPs very averse to being challenged with scientific evidence. I look for information to give patients directly. When I talked to this elderly woman (no heart disease or previous heart attacks) about side effects of statins (and groups for which they don’t work), she worried about her cholesterol. (Ditto when talking to her about stabilising blood sugar through carb restriction and increasing non-industrial fats). She complains of other symptoms that could be triggered by statins or at least exacerbated by them.

  18. Suzanne Looms

    I agree with previous comments about the difference you’re making. A friend asked me for information on statins, for other buddies who are baffled by all the conflicting advice from doctors and others in the field. I forwarded lots of information and links to blogs by various medical practitioners. The feedback was that your blog had completely changed their thinking and given them solid ground for future health choices. Keep up the great work!

    Reply
    1. S Jones

      I just wanted to second what Suzanne said. If it hadn’t been for you, your blog and reading your book, Dr Kendrick, I would now be on statins, terrified of having a heart attack because my cholesterol was high. Now I’ve learned to love my cholesterol and stopped worrying – if anything, I believe my cholesterol might be a little too low!

      Reply
  19. lorrainecleaver7

    Dr Kendrick, Dr Kilmer McCully supports our petition for better thyroid testing and treatment and his submission here goes in to some detail on how many things can go awry with conversion of T4 to active T3 http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/S4_PublicPetitionsCommittee/General%20Documents/PE1463_BB_Kilmer_McCully_09.12.13.pdf It’s fearsome to a layperson like me, even with no thyroid and a will to learn but am sure you will grasp what he is saying.

    Reply
  20. Sandra Whyte

    DrPatrickKrupka:- ‘Thyroid symptoms w/ normal labs? You’re NOT crazy!’ Explains why our TSH/T4 tests can show normal, and gives reasons why we are not converting.

    Also Antonio Bianco (Bianco Lab) explains the DEIODINASES:- http://deiodinase.org/

    Reply
    1. Mary Adair

      Sandra this video was most interesting. Both my children have hypothyroidism. One had cancer of the thyroid an had to have hers removed at quite a young age. My son, who just turned 23 has noticed more hair loss and greater fatigue. This helped me to understand the process. His labs have been normal. So, we are going to see an Endocrinologist who also believes in natural remedies as well. This was a real eye opener! Thanks so much!!

      Reply
  21. Chris

    More than 90% of the population does not know anything about cholesterol other than it is bad when it’s high. This is a big challenge for well instructed doctors like you to promote a message that is contrary to all the guidelines out there.

    However, you should never stop posting articles like this one. I definitely think it will eventually pay off. You’re not alone in your endeavor Dr. Kendrick!

    Chris

    Reply
  22. Valerie Adams

    Thank you for another thought provoking post. I’m reminded of another set of guidelines that have been completely reversed twice in my lifetime -with potentially devastating results – those related to babies’ sleeping positions in relation to cot death. My mother’s generation were told that babies must sleep on their back; thirty years ago we were ordered (it truly was that strong) by midwives and health visitors alike to ensure that our babies slept on their stomachs; now the wheel has turned and babies are on their backs again. And of course if we follow the wrong set of guidelines and babies die, it’ll be the feckless parents to blame – never the so called experts.

    Reply
    1. Mary Adair Richard

      Charlie, this was an eye opener. It is evident that exaggeration is the rule of the day when it comes to those hell bent on making money at the expense of ignorance.

      I just watched a fictional movie last evening where a pharmaceutical company was just finishing up human trials on a new medication. One of the doctors running the trial had been informed that at least one trial participant had died and others were in the hospital with similar symptoms. There was a sector of the population (for whom the medication was intended to help) the decent doctor thought, that may actually be harmed by the new drug soon to be released and approved by the FDA. When he voiced his legitimate concerns to the pharmaceutical company’s owners, they were enraged. The doctor told them that more studies needed to be undertaken before he would say the drug trials were complete. He wanted to add a disclaimer at the very least to the FDA if need be. They knew this would cost much more and also feared that the drug would be tabled such that they might lose all their precious profits. The owners did not want him to disclose this information so close to the anticipated release of the drug. When the doctor refused to capitulate to them, they killed him. Now, I realize this was fiction and I am not saying this happened in any specific instance, but it makes you think about how desperate people are to chase the almighty dollar to the detriment of the public. There are those who just don’t CARE about their fellow man. I also read (can’t believe everything you read) that when the patents were being sent for approval on statins, the pharmaceutical company or companies knew that these statins diminished CoQ10. They thought that adding CoQ10 would be better for people overall. But, they did not want to spend the extra dollars to add the CoQ10 (or do further studies I imagine) to any statins. Further, they did not forewarn doctors to suggest their patients take this supplement along with statins. The result? The record speaks for itself and I happen to believe this story could very well have a lot of truth to it. The often brutal side effects of diminished CoQ10 was apparently hidden for quite some time. Now, the large national retail vitamin and supplement chains often advertise the benefit of taking CoQ10 with their statins. I often wonder how many lives might have been saved or improved had we been advised of this information some 24 years ago. Of course, I do not believe in statins at all for prevention. I believe that they should never have been on the market. However, if the story is true, it is just another example of the greed and dishonesty that permeates the pharmaceutical industry.

      This was an interesting but not totally surprising treatise on the subject of obesity. I learned a lot Charlie. Thank you.

      Reply

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