Chiropractor who treated thyroid disease sentenced for practicing medicine without a license – Consumer Health Digest

And yet another story of an alternative medical provider being found guilty of pushing beyond the scope of his license. His business license that is.

In 2017, Diem T. Nguyen, D.C., who advertised herself as “Dr. Thyroid” and offered non-drug treatment for s spectrum of thyroid disorders, has been sentenced to serve three years probation and ordered to repay two of her victims. [Johnson D. Board to decide professional fate of El Dorado Hills chiropractor convicted of practicing medicine without license. Fox 40, Sept 19, 2017] At the time of her arrest, she operated New Life Integrative Wellness clinics in Elk Grove and El Dorado Hills, California. In 2013, when she did business as NorCal Natural Integrative Healthcare, her Web site offered “A New Thyroid Treatment Approach That Moves Directly To The Underlying CAUSE Of Your Thyroid Problem. . . By Utilizing Advanced Lab Measurements and a Comprehensive Functional Approach!”

Naturopathy’s top critic profiled – The Skeptics

Worth the read. There is far too much ‘magical thinking’ given over to naturopathy with far too little oversight or insight. Here’s a story you don’t see every day. And yes, Bastyr is threatening a lawsuit to this woman, in order to shut her up. Not a good move. Makes them look just like the Big Pharma that they hate so much. One thing that strikes me as I read the article, is that much of the appeal of naturopathy could be alleviated if insurance companies dropped the requirements that medical professionals only deal with one issue at a time to get billed. Patients and doctors alike hate this.

Quartz Media has published the remarkable story of Britt Hermes, a former practitioner who abandoned naturopathy when she concluded that what she had been taught was not valid. The article states: “For the past few years, after realizing she had been swindled in her education, Hermes has waged a war on naturopathy. On blogs and in online publications, she has opened a window into a profession that resists external scrutiny of its training and practices.” [Rathi A. The journey of a “doctor” who joined the cult of alternative medicine and then broke out of it Quartz, Sept 30, 2017] Last year, Hermes’s blog, “Naturopathic Diaries,” won the Ockham award for the best blog of the year given by The Skeptics magazine.

“Their training…amounts to a small fraction of that of medical doctors who practice primary care,” Atwood wrote. “An examination of their literature, moreover, reveals that it is replete with pseudoscientific, ineffective, unethical, and potentially dangerous practices.”

Quartz article on Naturopaths

Adulteration by synthetic therapeutic substances of traditional Chinese medicines in Taiwan. – PubMed – NCBI

“The controversies regarding the combination of synthetic therapeutic substances and traditional Chinese medicines without adequate labeling should be resolved through regulatory actions for better safety of drug use.”

Adulteration of proprietary Chinese medicines and health products with undeclared drugs: experience of a tertiary toxicology laboratory in Hong Kong – Ching – 2017 – British Journal of Clinical Pharmacology – Wiley Online Library

Proprietary Chinese medicines (pCMs) and health products, generally believed to be natural and safe, are gaining popularity worldwide. However, the safety of pCMs and health products has been severely compromised by the practice of adulteration. The current study aimed to examine the problem of adulteration of pCMs and health products in Hong Kong.

NYTimes: In Hong Kong, Folk Remedies Are Sickening Patients

The rise of use of Chinese traditional remedies has been going on for sometime here on the West Coast in particular. My late wife tried many substances in a vain attempt to save her life. It always made me wonder as to who was overseeing the possible abuse of these remedies, and many of them are available on the Internet with no regulation at all.

Concern over new ad in Port Townsend Leader

A suspicious advertisement caught my eye this week. I noticed on page C9 of the Port Townsend Leader an ad that read:

DON’T DIE FROM CANCER! (yes, all in Caps). Ask us about our breakthrough results. 

My late wife died here in town in 2005 after a long battle with cancer. I followed her on a journey through the world of fraudulent cancer treatments which included a trip to a Mexican “Stem Cell” clinic, and many other obvious frauds.  We spent tens of thousands of dollars chasing supposed cures for her terminal cancer. I wrote a book on it called The Good Bits, which is about to be published late this year or early next.

My concerns were raised seeing this ad. There are many companies on the Internet selling cures for cancers. The FDA has no good way to regulate these advertisers as many are published outside the US.  There is rarely any peer reviewed documentation in the advertising to read that would give an individual any sense of real science being done on the work.  So I did some investigating. Here’s what I found.

The organization promoting this cure is called the Berkeley Institute International. The ‘medical director’ of the ‘cure’ that they are promoting is  Dr. Kenneth Matsumura, who they claim is the “Medical Director, ALIN Foundation,Berkeley, CA USA”

Dr. Matsumura is a world-renowned scientist. He developed the HeartAlarm® Wristwatch that gives advanced warning against heart attacks, invented the bio-artificial liver, and invented the artificial pancreas which in collaboration with Johnson & Johnson, NASA invited onto the Space Shuttle. His bio-artificial liver has been acclaimed for being one of the Top 10 Most Important Inventions of the 21st Century in Medicine and Science, ranking his bio-artificial liver with YouTube® and iPaD®. His bio-artificial liver was honored by TIME magazine as an Invention of the Year in 2001.

In searching on Google there is only one news story about Dr. Matsumura, which is from the New York Times on Oct 9th, 2005. He apparently filed a recall petition against Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger. There is no mention of his anti-cancer work, his supposed work with NASA or Johnson and Johnson.  There are no news articles about a HeartAlarm or bio-artificial liver. The one link on Google to the Time story appeared dead. It did not resolve to a web page. Here is the only article I could find.
Also in the advertising it mentions that Dr. Matsumura is part of a non profit organization called the Alin Foundation, which is behind this clinic. Guidestar shows that they have not filed appropriate forms with the IRS. Guidestar says”
“This organization’s exempt status was automatically revoked by the IRS for failure to file a Form 990, 990-EZ, 990-N, or 990-PF for 3 consecutive years. Further investigation and due diligence are warranted.”
“This organization has not appeared on the IRS Business Master File in a number of months. It may have merged with another organization or ceased operations.”
Their NTEE code is listed as

“Religion Related, Spiritual Development N.E.C. (X99)”  Note that they are not setup as a medical non profit! 

They are advertising:

“8-Week SEF Chemotherapy® to Take Place of 6-9 Month “Adjuvant” Chemo-radiotherapy”

Their “Enrollment Criteria” includes:

Our therapy is now accepting patients with stage II-early stage IV non-small cell lung, breast, and pancreatic cancers.  We are accepting other cancers on a case-by-case basis.

• Patient must be 21 years or older
• Patient with histopathologically confirmed metastatic breast, pancreatic, or non-small cell lung cancer in stages II-early stage IV.
• Patients must have a life expectancy of over 12 weeks.
• Patient must have a neoplastic lesion definable by diagnostic means, or be capable of providing objective means of measurement of disease progression.
• Patient must have a peripheral white cell count of at least 2400 cells per cubic millimeter of blood and neutrophil count of at least 2000 cells per cubic millimeter.
• Patient must have a platelet count of at least 100,000 per cubic millimeter of blood.
• Patient must have adequate renal and hepatic function.
• Patient must not have had a prior anticancer therapy within 3 weeks, nor any ongoing toxicity associated with prior anticancer therapy.
• Patient must not have concurrent anti-hormonal or corticosteroids therapy.
• Patient must not have significant pleural effusion.
Previous Results

In April 2010, Dr. Matsumura and his colleagues at the ALIN Foundation announced an historic achievement: all cancer patients treated with the SEF Chemo® in 2006 not only went into remission, but remained cancer-free without the toxic side effects normally associated with chemotherapy.
(my highlighting. There is no peer-reviewed data to support this claim)
The results on patients undergoing SEF Chemo® are nothing short of stunning.
(Again, no data to corroborate this marketing statement).
One oncologist, who regularly refers patients to us, remarked that he knows of no other place in the world where achievements such as ours are being accomplished.

Results are still early, (but they have been doing this since 2006)  but we are getting response on virtually every patient we treat, as compared to the 20-30% response rates of conventional chemotherapy on the types of cancers we are treating.  If we begin treatment while the volume of cancer cells in a patient is still limited (as opposed to advanced late stage IV), we are achieving clinical remissions consistently.  By clinical remission we mean that when we use imaging studies with x-rays, MRIs, or ultrasound we cannot find any trace of cancer.

Dr. Matsumura recently announced an 8-week SEF Chemo® treatment that is an alternative to conventional adjuvant chemo-radiotherapy. After this announcement, many early-stage breast cancer patients, who have refused conventional therapies, approached our clinics.  We recently treated a nurse with stage I breast cancer with SEF Chemo® because she did not like what she read about either the radiotherapy or chemotherapy for her situation.  She underwent 8-cycles of our therapy with no side effects and kept all her hair.

Even with patients who respond quickly, it is our practice that patients undergo a minimum of 8 cycles of therapy to reduce the possibility of reocurrence.

Furthermore, lung cancer patients with today’s conventional chemotherapy eventually succumb within a year.  In an effort to explore the broad spectrum of efficacy of SEF Chemo®, the treatment of more and more types of cancer have been undertaken.   SEF Chemo® has also been proven successful with non-small cell lung, pancreatic, colon, bladder, liver, cervical, and prostate cancers, which comprise substantially most of the cancers that plague human kind today. SEF Chemo® continues to deliver stunning results.

This new therapy appears to be consistently reliable and far superior to today’s conventional treatments.  Only time will tell if our long-term remissions will turn into cures.”
All these marketing claims are offered with no peer reviewed scientific data.  It is impossible to find any background on this cure that is scientifically validated. A Google search for SEF Chemo did not return any results under “news” which is where any article done by a reputable news organization would have published scientific data on it.

It can only be concluded that if you feel it necessary to investigate this clinic’s treatments, you go about it with a good deal of skepticism. They don’t discuss prices that they charge, and that would be the first thing I would be asking them. I will be forwarding this information onto the State Attorney General asking him to look into this company’s advertising claims.

European Union’s science advisors denounce homeopathy

Interesting news from Europe.

The European Academies’ Science Advisory Council (EASAC), has published a statement to reinforce criticism of the health and scientific claims made for homeopathic products and call upon policy-makers to improve consumers’ right to correct information. The statement notes that (a) the mechanisms of action claimed for homeopathy are implausible and inconsistent with established scientific concepts, (b) there are no known diseases for which robust evidence exists that homeopathy is effective beyond a placebo effect, and (c) promotion of homeopathy can lead to harmful delay in getting effective medical care and can undermine public confidence in the nature and value of scientific evidence. The Council recommends:

  • There should be consistent regulatory requirements to demonstrate efficacy, safety, and quality of all products for human and veterinary medicine, to be based on verifiable and objective evidence, commensurate with the nature of the claims being made.
  • Without such evidence, a product should be neither approvable nor registrable by national regulatory agencies for use as a medicinal product.
  • Evidence-based public health systems should not reimburse homeopathic products and practices unless they are demonstrated to be efficacious and safe by rigorous testing.
  • The labeling of homeopathic products should be similar to that of other health products; that is, there should be an accurate, clear and simple description of the ingredients and their amounts in the formulation.
  • Advertising and marketing of homeopathic products and services must conform to established standards of accuracy and clarity. Promotional claims for efficacy, safety and quality should not be made without demonstrable evidence.

The EASAC reflects the views of 29 European national science academies and academic bodies. [Homeopathic products and practices: assessing the evidence and ensuring consistency in regulating medical claims in the EU. EASAC, Sept 2017]