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View Full Version : Have you ever been contacted by bogus therapists/quacks?



Alistair
01-17-2013, 03:31 PM
I've been contacted by two people who claim to be able to cure scoliosis just with exercises, I'm just very cynical by nature and hate people taking advantage of others' illnesses. How do you recognise a quack? Is it common in the USA to be contacted by these people claiming to be able to do what's not scientifically proven? If only all the questions about scoliosis had straight answers (awful pun there) there would be no room for doubts and temptations..

jrnyc
01-17-2013, 03:38 PM
i certainly hope it is not common here...
i have never had it happen to me...
sounds despicable!

jess

Pooka1
01-17-2013, 08:55 PM
I've been contacted by two people who claim to be able to cure scoliosis just with exercises, I'm just very cynical by nature and hate people taking advantage of others' illnesses.

In the immortal words of our estimable moderator, "Ask for a money-back guarantee." Or ask for evidence. That will get them off your back.


How do you recognise a quack?

They never have evidence to back up their claims.


If only all the questions about scoliosis had straight answers (awful pun there) there would be no room for doubts and temptations..

If anyone can cure scoliosis through exercise then why is there still surgery?
If humans evolved from apes then why are their still apes?
If humans were created from dirt then why is there still dirt?

So many questions... so little time. :-)

LindaRacine
01-17-2013, 11:03 PM
Did they contact you via a PM on this site?

titaniumed
01-18-2013, 09:19 AM
There is no “cure” for scoliosis and there wont be for a long time. There are just too many pieces in the puzzle and its way beyond a single layman.

People want a cure, and want to believe there is a cure, and will listen to these “types” that try to sell. Hanging up the phone or simply clicking delete is the easiest way to handle this.

Funny how people in the ALS community don’t get these calls. Maybe these “types” are not that gutsy. This kind of activity with these people will get severe results, they wont hear it.

There is a difference between someone who uses the word cure and the word help. Only you can decide which kind of help is best.

It might be easier to figure out why apes are here. Maybe it has something to do with banana control. Hmmm......

They are the banana police! That’s it! (smiley face)

Ed

mariaf
01-18-2013, 09:29 AM
If anyone can cure scoliosis through exercise then why is there still surgery?


Exactly.

Or as our mothers all taught us "if it sounds too good to be true, then it IS too good to be true".

I can't tell you how many times I have heard parents of children with newly-diagnosed, significant curves
(35 degrees, 45 degrees, and even higher) ask "can a chiropractor fix this? he said he could" or "someone from CLEAR said they can treat/fix this - and my child won't need surgery - is it true"? Not word-for-word, but you get the idea.

My answer is always the same- that children with scoliosis (and some of these are JIS cases) should only be treated by a pediatric orthopedic surgeon who specializes in scoliosis. For JIS cases, even better if they have experience with early-onset cases.

But I'm afraid there will ALWAYS be people out there looking to make a buck from people desperately wanting to help their kids avoid surgery. Of course, we'd all prefer our kids not need surgery. And these people know it.

Same is true for those targeting adults with scoliosis - it's just that my experience has been mostly with parents of children.

Pooka1
01-18-2013, 10:40 AM
Exactly.

Or as our mothers all taught us "if it sounds too good to be true, then it IS too good to be true".

I can't tell you how many times I have heard parents of children with newly-diagnosed, significant curves
(35 degrees, 45 degrees, and even higher) ask "can a chiropractor fix this? he said he could" or "someone from CLEAR said they can treat/fix this - and my child won't need surgery - is it true"? Not word-for-word, but you get the idea.

My answer is always the same- that children with scoliosis (and some of these are JIS cases) should only be treated by a pediatric orthopedic surgeon who specializes in scoliosis. For JIS cases, even better if they have experience with early-onset cases.

But I'm afraid there will ALWAYS be people out there looking to make a buck from people desperately wanting to help their kids avoid surgery. Of course, we'd all prefer our kids not need surgery. And these people know it.

Same is true for those targeting adults with scoliosis - it's just that my experience has been mostly with parents of children.

Excellent post, Maria. Well stated.

Quackery in the field of scoliosis is rampant because the surgery sounds daunting to people. Quacks are just mining a ready-made well of credulity that is fueled entirely by the thought of avoiding surgery. So the issue of evidence of efficacy for non-surgical treatments is side-stepped in the minds of patients. This is partially enabled by the evisceration of science education people in the US receive. If you aren't taught that evidence matters and that science is the only way of knowing then you are more likely to just rely on faith which is NOT a way of knowing. It's only a way of believing which doesn't work with serious medical conditions.

Another way of identifying quacks is how they prefer to discuss things OUTSIDE their field like surgery instead of ponying up evidence for their treatment. This is the CLEARest sign that they have no evidence. The blind leading the blind leading the naked on surgery is never going to substitute for the lack of evidence for these other treatments. It always amazes me to see people who think chiros can talk intelligently about surgery. Not only do they have no training in that but the training they do get is not up to par with the world of real science and real medicine (see my thread on chiro schools in the US).

Pooka1
01-18-2013, 07:57 PM
It might be easier to figure out why apes are here. Maybe it has something to do with banana control. Hmmm......

They are the banana police! That’s it! (smiley face)

The only reason apes are here is because of the particular way the Ediacaran fauna happened to evolve. As (I think) Gould said, you can't rewind the tape and play it again and expect it to come out the same way. With the same Ediacaran fauna, some other assemblage might have evolved which might not have included apes or humans (aka less hairy apes). Happenstance. Paleontology is fascinating.

Alistair
01-20-2013, 05:24 PM
Did they contact you via a PM on this site?

No, I left my email address on a public post on the ISICO blog, the for-some-reason-highly-regarded Italian institute, in the space of a year I've been contacted twice and I was curious to know if it's a common thing in the US as well, but judging by how many 'miracle' cures you can stumble upon on youtube I think it probably quite common elsewhere.


If anyone can cure scoliosis through exercise then why is there still surgery?

As I've often pointed out on this very same forum I'm very very sceptical of unproven therapies, but still, the fact that so little is known about scoliosis makes room for reputable and less reputable therapists to try their luck. Certainly one in a million cases like Martha Hawes are in some way helping these potential quacks, it's fair to say.

Pooka1
01-20-2013, 05:50 PM
As I've often pointed out on this very same forum I'm very very sceptical of unproven therapies, but still, the fact that so little is known about scoliosis makes room for reputable and less reputable therapists to try their luck. Certainly one in a million cases like Martha Hawes are in some way helping these potential quacks, it's fair to say.

I agree.

Hawes, the most evidenced case (i.e., serial radiographs provided), is also the most atypical. That would explain why there are not cadres of patients saved from surgery using Hawes' methods.

PT is a CONSERVATIVE treatment for pain in adults and children. It possibly is a CONSERVATIVE treatment for progression in growing kids. It is an ALTERNATIVE treatment for progression in adults.

Q: What do you call ALTERNATIVE medicine that work?

A: Medicine.

mariaf
01-21-2013, 07:15 AM
Q: What do you call ALTERNATIVE medicine that work?

A: Medicine.

I heard it put another way as well.

Q. ALTERNATIVES to what?

A. To things that work.

Pooka1
01-21-2013, 08:12 AM
I heard it put another way as well.

Q. ALTERNATIVES to what?

A. To things that work.

LOL. I like that better. :-)

mariaf
01-22-2013, 12:44 AM
Feel free to use it then :-)