Ozone therapy in naturopathic medicine

ozone molecule
Ozone is not cyclic in the same way that is it not a safe or effective medical treatment.

Tomorrow, Monday May 23, 2016, licensed naturopaths and their students will “storm” the offices of lawmakers to lobby for naturopathic medicine. This day will mark the culmination of the annual naturopathic lobbying event called D.C. Federal Legislative Initiative (DC FLI) organized by the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians.

Yesterday, I wrote a guide to understanding the main lobbying points used by naturopaths. The bottom line is that naturopaths’ pants are on fire.

While licensed naturopaths grossly misrepresent themselves to advance their agenda of being recognized as “primary care physicians” and gaining access to the Medicare program, they also don’t like to talk much about their use of illegal and dangerous treatments. And, they don’t like to face the evidence that naturopathic doctors are incapable of self-regulation in a manner that upholds medical ethics and professional standards.

Today’s post focuses on the naturopathic use of ozone therapy.


What is ozone therapy?

Ozone is a molecule made up of three oxygen atoms, which makes it unstable and highly reactive. Ozone is toxic and an environmental hazard. It is well established that ozone gas can damage the respiratory system. There is no safe or effective medical application of ozone.

A great deal of energy is required to make ozone. It is produced naturally in the upper atmosphere in reactions driven by intense ultraviolet radiation, which protects the surface of the Earth from being blasted with this UV. Ozone can also be produced artificially in specialized machines employing high-voltage electricity.

The U.S. FDA and Health Canada do not allow manufacturers of ozone generators to advertise or sell them for medical purposes. In 2010, the FDA seized dozens of ozone generators sold for treating cancer, AIDS, and hepatitis. This does not seem to deter naturopaths from acquiring them for use in clinical practice.

Licensed naturopaths market ozone gas for just about anything. I have seen ozone advertised by naturopaths for chronic diseases, cancer treatment, Lyme disease, viral infections, chronic fatigue syndrome, autoimmune diseases, “detoxification,” and to “boost the immune system.”

Ozone can be administered to patients by bagging the gas over a skin infection or by blowing it into the ear, nose, mouth, rectum, or vagina. If you were concerned about Gwyneth Paltrow’s vaginal steaming, imagine if she got her hands on an ozone generator!

Ozone is most commonly delivered by naturopaths through a process called autohemotherapy: blood is removed from a patient’s vein, infiltrated with ozone gas, and then returned to the patient’s blood supply. I have also seen this blood-ozone mixture exposed to high-intensity UV radiation before it is re-injected.

The practice of autohemotherapy carries significant risks without any health benefit. Patients have died. Plus, autohemotherapy has been an illegal practice in Germany since 1984, but you will find naturopaths advertising ozone therapy as “commonly used in Europe.”

The naturopathic use of ozone across North America

The legality of ozone therapy performed by naturopaths varies throughout the United States and Canada, despite the procurement of ozone generators for medical use being a federal crime. Some naturopathic state or provincial associations have been able to write the use of ozone therapy into their licensing laws, such as in Alberta or British Columbia. Other states, such as Oregon, have banned the naturopathic practice of ozone therapy.

Let’s take a look at my home state, California.

Ozone therapy in California: A case study

The California Naturopathic Doctors Act, passed in 2003 and amended in 2013, does not permit the use of any gas. Thus, it is illegal to administer ozone to patients. Technically, it is also illegal for licensed naturopaths to administer oxygen. I am assuming emergency situations are an exception, but I could not verify this. I think it is safe to assume that hyperbaric oxygen chambers are also outside of California naturopaths’ scope of practice.

Last December, licensed naturopaths in California were able to earn continuing education credits in a course that taught how to “confidently use ozone therapies in clinical practice with an understanding of the safety concerns.” The class was just two and a half hours and taught by a licensed naturopathic doctor who graduated from Bastyr University. The course is “approved by the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians and Oregon Board of Naturopathic Medicine.”

Naturopathic CE for Ozone TherapyIn December 2015, the then president of the California Naturopathic Doctors Association, Setareh Tais, was alerted that someone from overseas had filed a complaint against two licensed naturopaths in Vermont for using ozone autohemotherapy. In response, Tais sent out an email to naturopathic doctors in the California professional association.

Tais urged licensed naturopaths in California to make sure that they practice within their legal scope and follow the “naturopathic oath.” The reasoning behind her plea is telling:

We currently have active legislation to expand our scope. Any complaints against our members, especially in “gray areas” of our current scope, could be damaging to the progress of this and future bills. Please take a moment and review your website to ensure you are offering services within your scope of practice.

Tais makes no mention of the dangers of ozone therapy. It is troubling that she characterizes the use of ozone therapy as a “legal gray area,” when in fact, the law is unambiguous. She is clearly more interested in the political advancement of California naturopaths over the safety and well-being of patients. She missed an opportunity to act as a professional leader who demonstrates ethical integrity:

A complaint against a licensed naturopathState laws governing medical professions typically include mandatory reporting clauses. These laws require that a licensed medical professional who learns of illegal activity or professional misconduct report their findings to the authorities.

I know Arizona’s version of this law well. I reported the actions of my former boss to the naturopathic regulatory board and Arizona attorney general when I discovered that the “special treatment” he was injecting into cancer patients was imported from abroad and not FDA-approved.

While a mandatory reporting law does not appear in the California Naturopathic Doctors Act, it seems reasonable that somewhere else in California law holds all medical practitioners to this crucial standard of professional integrity. If Tais knew that licensed naturopaths were practicing outside of their scope of practice in California, she should have reported them to the state board. Maybe she did. I want to give her the benefit of the doubt, but her email just doesn’t reflect this possibility.

Tais is one of few and far between naturopaths who fully support the CDC childhood immunization schedule. She runs a naturopathic vaccine advocacy group called NDs for Vaccines. On the one hand, Tais is supporting the medical standard of care regarding childhood immunizations. But, on the other hand, she may be turning a blind eye to illegal practices of licensed naturopaths in California. If I am right, here is yet another example of a lack of consistency in “holistically” applying ethical standards to naturopathic medicine.

On May 20th, 2016, a complaint was filed with the California Naturopathic Medicine Committee concerning the use of ozone therapies in the practices of 34 licensed naturopaths. The use of ozone by 17 practitioners was confirmed via phone calls, while the other 17 practitioners could not be reached by phone. All 34 offenders advertise the use of ozone on their practice websites. Obviously, they did not read Tais’s email.

Ozone across the country

A brief google search for “naturopathic” and “ozone” returns far too many results showing licensed naturopaths across the U.S. advertising the use of ozone therapy in their clinical practices.

In some states, it seems licensed naturopaths are getting away with using this dubious therapy because the law indeed is ambiguous. For example, is ozone therapy illegal if “oxygen” or “medical gas” is listed in a naturopathic formulary?

In other states, such as California, where ozone use by licensed naturopaths is absolutely illegal because it is not listed in naturopathic formularies, state regulatory boards seem to be doing a terrible job of regulating the profession. Have a try Googling the name of the following states + naturopathic + ozone.

(FYI: Not in alphabetical order.)

Oregon

According to Oregon Board of Naturopathic Medicine, which took disciplinary action against an ND for using ozone therapy in 2001, “The therapeutic use of ozone or aetherol, or the use of any ozone or aethezol generating device is strictly prohibited by the Oregon Board of Naturopathic Medicine.”

Yet, 19 licensed naturopaths in Oregon are advertising the use of ozone therapy on their websites. A complaint against these licensed naturopaths was also filed with that state’s regulatory board.

Oregon Naturopathic Formulary

Arizona

Arizona state law requires substances to be supplied for intravenous use by a manufacturer registered by the FDA or compounded by a licensed pharmacy in the United States. Thus, autohemotherapy using ozone is not permitted as the generators are not approved for medical use. It is not clear if other non-intravenous applications of ozone are within the naturopathic scope of practice. There does not appear to be a publically available formulary, although no gaseous substances are mentioned in the law.

Naturopathic Rules and Statutes in Arizona

Montana

Montana has ambiguous wording in its law regarding the use of ozone. “Oxygen” appears in the naturopathic formulary. Perhaps naturopathic doctors would argue that ozone falls under this term. This should not fly. Oxygen gas and ozone gas are very different in chemical reactivity and functionality in the body.

Naturopathic Physician Natural Substance Formulary List

Washington, D.C.

Ozone gas is not included in the D.C. naturopathic formulary. “Oxygen” is listed under the miscellaneous subheading. Again, this is ambiguous.

D.C. Naturopathic Physician Formulary 

Minnesota

The Registered Naturopathic Doctor Practice Act in Minnesota lists “oxygen,” but not ozone.

Registered Naturopathic Doctor Practice Act, scope of practice

Hawaii

The Hawaii naturopathic formulary lists “medical gas,” but provides no further clarification. It is unclear whether or not ozone or even nitrous oxide gas can be legally administered by licensed naturopaths. I would place ozone in the gray zone here. This is terribly ambiguous.

Hawaii Naturopathic Formulary

Washington

The Washington state formulary does not list ozone or any other gas as an approved substance for therapeutic use.

Washington State Legislation WAC 246-836-210

Alaska

Naturopaths are not allowed to administer ozone or any other gas. Additionally, the law explicitly restricts NDs from administering any substance considered a “poison.”

Alaska Naturopathic Statues

Colorado

Ozone and gases are not listed in the naturopathic formulary.

Colorado Naturopathic Formulary

Kansas

Ozone and gases are not listed in the Kansas administrative regulations pertaining to the practice of naturopathy.

Kansas Statutes for Naturopathy 

Maine

Ozone is not listed in the standards relating to prescriptive authorities and collaborative relationship in Maine. “Oxygen” is included under the “specific medications” heading.

Standards relating to prescriptive authorities and collaborative relationship document 

Maryland

Naturopaths in Maryland are strictly limited to administering oxygen only in an emergency situation.

Message from the Maryland Board of Physicians 

New Hampshire

Ozone and gases are not listed in the scope of practice for licensed naturopaths in New Hampshire.

Naturopathic Health Care Practice

North Dakota

Naturopaths cannot administer ozone or any gas in North Dakota.

North Dakota Century Code

Vermont

Ozone is not listed in the naturopathic formulary. “Oxygen” is listed under the “miscellaneous” heading.

Naturopathic Physician Formulary Rules

Utah

Ozone is not listed in the formulary. “Oxygen” is listed under the “miscellaneous therapy” heading.

Naturopathic Physician Practice Act Rule

Licensed naturopaths are “on notice”

Patients deserve to know that the services offered by licensed medical practitioners are approved by health regulators for effectiveness and safety. Ozone therapy meets none of these benchmarks.

The licensing of naturopaths has not led to patients having increased access to medical care delivered by competent and ethical practitioners. Instead, naturopathic licensing has caused thousands of patients to be exposed to dangerous, expensive, and illegitimate therapies at the hands of practitioners without quality medical training, under the guise of government approval.

To the licensed naturopaths reading this post: you are once again “On Notice.”

The choice is yours. Will you report the licensed naturopaths using illegal therapies to your state boards? Or, will you turn a blind eye and allow misconduct to continue running rampant in the naturopathic profession?

Image credit: Bin im Garten under a CC license.
  • Carine Perron

    Thank you for this post. It is sad how this untested, unproven therapy is being used. But I want to make one correction. When used as autohemotherapy (MAHT), ozone therapy isn’t as dangerous. What is, and what has been outlawed in parts of Europe, is DIV or direct IV injection of ozone. Reports of death by embolism. Sadly, many alternative providers in the US are doing this as well. There is a well known proponent in NYC, a podiatrist nonetheless, that brags about treating children with autism with this method!

    • https://www.naturopathicdiaries.com Britt Hermes

      Thanks Carine for clarifying this point. Auto-hemotherapy is also banned in Germany.

      • Carine Perron

        I think you’re wrong about this. While not approved by their National Health Insurance, it’s not banned, and is used fairly commonly. But this isn’t really an important point for your topic. Thank you for the post.

  • NS Alito

    The U.S. FDA and Health Canada do not allow manufacturers of ozone generators to advertise or sell them for medical purposes. In 2010, the FDA seized dozens of ozone generators sold for treating cancer, AIDS, and hepatitis.

    Golly, I make turbo encabulators that only have narrow use in the tea cozy manufacturing process. I could triple the price on them and sell them to treat yin/qi/aura vibrational misalignments, which are–as we all know–the primary source of many vague diseases that conventional doctors refuse to acknowledge.

  • Ben Philipps

    Somebody must be doing something right. Ozone has been used safely for years and this site appears to be a troll trying to scare the public. Google all the successful ozone therapies including DIV and make an intelligent decision. This all sounds like the Vaccine lobby.

    • https://www.naturopathicdiaries.com Britt Hermes

      I’m actually impressed with your creativity involved in your nuts-o idea above.

    • JGC

      Where can I find evidence demonstrating the safety and efficacy of ozone therapies published in first or second tier peer-reviewed journals, Ben?
      I mean, there is some–right?

  • Ben Philipps

    Below please find some Ozone PubMed

    Intraarticular Ozone Therapy for Pain Control in Osteoarthritis of the Knee – Full Text View – ClinicalTrials.gov
    https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT00832312
    Intramuscular oxygen-ozone therapy in the treatment of acute back pain with lumbar disc herniation: a multicenter, randomized, double-blind, clinic… – PubMed – NCBI http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19478653?dopt=Abstract
    Disc ozone
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3299380/
    Ozone: A versatile Agent An Overview
    https://ispub.com/IJPSP/10/1/1400

    • Thomas Mohr

      Ben Philipps, the papers you cite point towards a very limited role of Ozone in pain settings.as for your last paper: Quote: “Ozone has beneficial effects on every part of the body. The effects include inactivation of bacteria, viruses and fungi, dissolution of malignant tumors, enhancement of circulation, activation of the immune system, stimulation of oxygen metabolism and formation of peroxides.”

      If one has that much ozone in your body that it kills baceteria viruses and fungi, that person is dead. As with malignant tumors: that person is dead. I.a.W. the paper is bullshit.

      • Barbara Durfee

        unfortunately your ignorance is showing. Ive seen documented cases of MRSA cured with ozone.. infections where conventional medicine recommended amputation. You pontificate without knowledge

        • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

          Where are these cases documented then? You claim without evidence.

        • Thomas Mohr

          I guess you are confusing intravenous ozone therapy with hyperbaric oxygen therapy which is actually NOT alternative medicine. Do you know the difference between these two modalities ? However, if your cases are so documented, where is the citation ?

    • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

      Reference one is not a study. Ref two, couldn’t get the full text but appears as though the groups were on concurrent medications. Ref. three, there was no control group and anaesthetic used. Ref four, a review that’s an opinion piece not a study.

    • JGC

      Uhhh…Ben?
      If you’re going to offer a clinical study in support of your claims, perhaps it would be better to offer one where results have actually been reported, rather than one which, although the study was estimated to be completed in December 2013 is “currently recruiting participants” and no study results have been reported?
      In fact, the last communication to the ClinicalTrials by someone involved in the study was in June of 2012

  • Marcel

    Without intending to belittle the dangers of treating patients with ozone, shouldn’t this be called bozone therapy?

  • Pola Polish

    I don’t know how much credence one can give to someone living in Germany and still being completely unable to properly research facts pertaining to ozone therapy in that same country. What does that say about all the other presented “facts” in this article? Living myself in Germany and speaking and reading fluently in German I can attest to the fact that the information about ozone therapy in Germany in this article is completely false.

    Articles as such are quite interesting in the sense of being Kafkaesque mind benders. The author tries to apply the laws and regulations of an industry which is the 3rd leading cause of death in the US, as being ethically superior. Medical errors claim around 250,000 deaths per year, that’s additional to the around 100,000 deaths due to correct and proper pharmaceutical usage prescribed by medical doctors who have followed all the laws and regulations and having “quality medical training with government approval”. I want to see numbers form the naturopathic medical field which come even remotely close to those.

    I guess it’s fair to assume that all those “alerts from oversees” and the “complaints of a former ND residing outside of the country” mentioned in the article really is the author herself. Interestingly, that she does not disclose that. Why? What is her agenda? Reporting naturopathic doctors for doing no harm to patients? Interesting past time activity …

    Furthermore it’s interesting that the most outrageous claims of “naturopathic licensing has caused thousands of patients to be exposed to
    dangerous, expensive, and illegitimate therapies at the hands of
    practitioners without quality medical training, under the guise of
    government approval.” remain without any references. No sources are cited to substantiate those allegations. Where are the documented numbers of “thousands of patients” being actually HARMED by naturopathic medicine? Similar to the HUNDREDS of thousands of documented cases of patients being actually harmed by conventional medicine?

    All in all this author seems to emerge as a rightful heir to Stephen Barrett of the quackwatch “fame” who has been by now sufficiently discredited as a professional racketeer. Quite an accomplishment …

    • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

      You are making an awful lot of assumptions with no facts to support them. The reason you can’t find hard numbers on naturopaths is because they are self-regulating and have no adverse reporting scheme the way medicine does. And they work hard to keep it that way.

      All in all this author seems to emerge as a rightful heir to Stephen
      Barrett of the quackwatch “fame” who has been by now sufficiently discredited as a professional racketeer. Quite an accomplishment …

      If it’s such an accomplishment then you’ll have no problem providing some evidence of this.

      • Pola Polish

        “assumptions with no facts to support them.” sorry, you’re confusing my comment with Britt’s article it seems.

        • Thomas Mohr

          Three logical fallacies do not make an argument. So far you have not presented any data at all.

          • Pola Polish

            Well you have. And it speaks volumes LOL …

            • Thomas Mohr

              Yes, indeed I did. You did not, so WHERE ARE YOUR DATA ????

              • Pola Polish

                So far I’m kinda enjoying the embarrassement you’re presenting … LOL …

                • Thomas Mohr

                  Once again, where are your data ?

                • Thomas Mohr

                  Once again, where are your data ?

              • Pola Polish

                So far I’m kinda enjoying the embarrassement you’re presenting … LOL …

            • Thomas Mohr

              Yes, indeed I did. You did not, so WHERE ARE YOUR DATA ????

        • David

          Ok Pola…
          Many naturopaths believe in homeopathy and the use of nosodes instead of vaccines.
          Do you not agree that giving a child water instead of a vaccine is not dangerous? Can you see how naturopathic beliefs can endanger thousands as Britt as asserting.

          • David

            Ok, it is one in the morning and that was very poorly written lol.
            I meant to say…”Do you agree, that giving a child water instead of a vaccine is dangerous?” What if we were to replace all vaccines with homeopathy?

      • Pola Polish

        “The reason you can’t find hard numbers on naturopaths is because they
        are self-regulating and have no adverse reporting scheme the way
        medicine does” If that’s the case, so what are Britt’s allegations that naturopathic medicine endangers thousands of patients based on?

        • Thomas Mohr

          for instance this:

          http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/13870135/

          Untreated breast cancer, the data also apply to people doing only naturopathy because this is NO effective treatment for breast cancer. 5 year survival 15%. This is a fraction of those who can be healed by chemotherapy. As I said, looking at mortality this is desastrous to Naturopathy.

          • Pola Polish

            Oh boy, did you catch that part about “untreated cancer”? How is this showing that naturopathic cancer treatments are inferior to chemotherapy? And this is data from more than 100 years ago … ??!! Is this your display of rigorous scientific research? Hey, this is turning more entertaining than I thought …

            • Thomas Mohr

              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16978951.

              By refusing chemotherapy, 9 patients increased their estimated 10-year mortality rate from 17% to 25%.

              A small study but valid

              https://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/alternative-medicine-use-and-breast-cancer-2012-update/

              Where are your data ?

              • Pola Polish

                9 patients? Dude are serious? Sorry, but I really can’t take you seriously now. Get your statistical knowledge updated. Any study below n=30 is meaningless.

                • Pola Polish

                  And again avoiding my arguments … this is a pattern. Gets kinda boring …

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    If you would have *read* the whole thing and would have comprehended it, you would have found following:

                    http://wjso.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1477-7819-10-118

                    now, where are your data ?

                  • Pola Polish

                    Wow, do I really need to point out the obvious deficiencies of this study?
                    I guess I do, although the way you come across it seems hard to believe you wouldn’t see them yourself. Maybe it’s just part of engaging me in a futile discussion?
                    Well ok, I’ll indulge, but only because I’m a nice person.

                    Here we go: There are n=87 participants but they have different stages of cancer, I, II, III. In each group n is smaller than 30 again. This is really where the discussion should end. Since any study with n<30 is really statistically insignificant, as pointed out above. Putting someone with stage I cancer in the same group as stage III cancer, obviously does not meet a rigorous scientific approach.
                    Of those participants who have refused any conventional therapy, delayed therapy (surgery) or did alternative treatments – they all have been put in one group. Huh? And of those who did alternative treatments again there was anything from "herbal treatments, vitamins, special diets" to "PRAYERS" (emphasis mine). So of those who did alternative treatments (50), 48 might have relied on praying, 1 on Vit c IVs and 1 on a vegan diet or … who knows what and in what constallation since "the details of CAM [complementary and alternative medicine] received by our patients were not available". So, really it's hard to take such a study seriously. How this is supposed to show that naturopathic treatments are less effective than conventional ones? When a) treatments such a prayers are put together in the same group as … what? Vit IVs (we don't know since this data has not been collected) b) there are different stages of cancer and of each stage there is less than n=30 participants.

                    And 37 received therapies which were unknown.

                    And to point out the obvious: this is not a randomized, controlled, double blind study … but a "retrospective chart review" ehem.
                    And I don't really need to point out the fallacy of that now, do I?

                    Also: it tracks cases over a 26 year period where quality of treatments again might have varied considerably.

                    There are of course more things to point out with this study which really renders it useless for anything … but I think I pointed out the most important ones …

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    First, studies with a low number of participants are NOT insignificant, they may lack power which is a function of effect size and n. That means given a large enough effect size, even studies with much lower participants can be valid. Second, apparently I have to point out to you that randomized double blind trials on likely ineffective treatments are forbidden by the Helsinki declaration. To demand such a thing within a deadly disease speaks volumes about you. Third, so far you have not provided anything with respect to data, not even the worst designed study. In other words your claims are about the deadly treatments are bullshit.

                  • Pola Polish

                    Sorry, you need to get your statistical knowledge up to speed. Any study with n<30 is indeed mostly irrelevant. Reading studies correctly is like speaking a foreign language. If you don't have the skills, you shouldn't engage in it. Not that I'm a pro by any stretch of the imagination, but it seems I am more aware of the bare basics, at least more than you.
                    Also your trying to turn around my words and arguments is getting kinda …. meh …
                    Where am I "demanding" a randomized controlled study with cancer patients? I'm again just using the statistical language which I had assumed you were good in with all those cries for studies and data from me. And fact is that randomized, controlled, double blind studies are considered the most rigorous ones. If you're trying to refute that, you're rendering your argument irrelevant.
                    Again: reverting to personal attacks as you're doing is of course a sign of defeat. Which I have no problem in accepting 😉 .
                    And of course the continued avoidance of my arguments … it's really getting not very stimulating LOL.

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    Quote: “Any study with n<30 is indeed mostly irrelevant." Citation ?

                    Quote: "Where am I "demanding" a randomized controlled study with cancer patients?"

                    Here: Quote: "And to point out the obvious: this is not a randomized, controlled, double blind study … but a "retrospective chart review" ehem. And I don't really need to point out the fallacy of that now, do I?"

                    Quote: "And fact is that randomized, controlled, double blind studies are considered the most rigorous ones. If you're trying to refute that, you're rendering your argument irrelevant." Fact is, randomized controlled double blind studies are ethically forbidden if treatments that are likely inferior to standard care are involved. In such a case retrospective studies are the ONLY way. Given the low incidence of women choosing alternative medicine over standard treatment, and the vast effect difference this study is valid. Period.

                    With regard to interpretation of data, for you it might be a foreign language, for me it is not.

                    We are still waiting on your data.

                  • Pola Polish

                    “Quote: “Any study with n<30 is indeed mostly irrelevant." Citation ?" Remember that remark by you if I wanted a study proving that gravity exists or something to that effect? See, same applies here. If you're talking statistics it's assume you've done your homework. I'm not gonna do it for you.

                    "Quote: "Where am I "demanding" a randomized controlled study with cancer patients?"

                    Here:
                    Quote: "And to point out the obvious: this is not a randomized,
                    controlled, double blind study … but a "retrospective chart review"
                    ehem. And I don't really need to point out the fallacy of that now, do
                    I?""

                    Again just lame attempts at trying to twist my words. I do nowhere DEMAND that such an unethical study be performed. Just pointing out that the one you presented isn't. Which of course didn't stop medical researchers of conducting just such unethical studies in the past …

                    "Given the low incidence of women choosing alternative medicine over standard treatment, and the vast effect difference this study is valid. Period."

                    Given the low incidence of women choosing alternative medicine over standard treatment and the lack of application of rigorous scientific methods during this "data review" (not really a study), it is not valid. Period.

                    "We are still waiting on your data." What data would that be?

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    Quote: “Given the low incidence of women choosing alternative medicine over
                    standard treatment and the lack of application of rigorous scientific
                    methods during this “data review” (not really a study), it is not valid.
                    Period.” Have you calculated the power of the study ? No ? Stick to your own standards and underline your claims with hard data.

                    Quote: ” What data would that be?” The one underlining your claims for a starter ?

                  • Pola Polish

                    My claim was and has been that the above article by Britt lacks any data for her claim that “naturopathic licensing has caused thousands of patients to be exposed to dangerous, expensive, and illegitimate therapies”. Still waiting for it ….

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    Don’t lay a smokescreen. Have you estimated the power of the study, yes or no ? If not you can not claim that the study is not valid.

                    Second, the study is largely irrelevant anyway and only demonstrates effect size. Llarge parts of naturopathic therapies have been shown not to work (e.g. homeopathy as demonstrated by a large Australian study). Administering treatments that do not work to sick people is per definition causing patients to be exposed to dangerous, expensive and illegitimate therapies. Dangerous at least by delaying a real treatment, expensive in the sense that every penny for a not working treatment is wasted and illegitimate in the sense that it is unethical to treat patients with treatments that do not work This is self evident therefore Britt does not need to provide *any* data. Now where are your data about deadly treatments ?

                  • Pola Polish

                    “large parts of naturopathic therapies have been shown not to work.” – so have large parts of allopathic therapies.

                    “Administering treatments that do not work to sick patients is per
                    definition causing patients to be exposed to dangerous, expensive and
                    illegitimate therapies” – you mean more dangerous than administering treatments which have the known side effect of death?

                    “Dangerous at least by delaying a real treatment, expensive in the sense
                    that every penny for a not working treatment is wasted and illegitimate
                    in the sense that it is unethical to treat patients with treatments that
                    do not work This is self evident therefore Britt does not need to
                    provide *any* data”
                    Dangerous in the sense of actually causing death is unethical – this is self evident, therefore I do not need to provide any data.

                    See how that works? Great, huh?
                    Any more brilliant arguments?

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    Every treatment has as potential side effect death so that is a non sequitur. Since you use the word allopathic medicine I assume you are into naturopathics. How do you ethically justify applying treatments that are known not to work to patients risking that they might be harmed by not receiving a working treatment ? How do you ethically justify to charge your patients for that ?

                  • Pola Polish

                    By the way this part is a perfect culmination of your reasoning (or lack thereof), it’s worth repeating:

                    “This is self evident therefore Britt does not need to provide *any* data.”

                    Which comes after asking me 20 or 50 times to provide “hard data” and endless cries for “studies” from me. LOL hahahhahaa!!
                    So I need to provide evidence, but all you say is self-evident and doesn’t need proof hahahahaaaa!
                    All one needs to do to expose a blind fanatic: is just let him ramble on. Sooner or later the inability to reason and double standards become evident. Works every time.

                    I assume from the display of fervent protection of Mrs. Hermes to the point of displaying a seemingly immunity to public embarrassment that you’re her husband?

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    Dodging the answer again ? In other words, since you are into naturopathic medicine it is fully acceptable to you to subject patients to non-working treatments without fully informing them about the experimental/non-working nature of these treatments – otherwise they won’t do that. It is ethically fully acceptable to you take money for that. It is also fully acceptable to you that these patients are endangered by a possible treatment delay. Further you can not provide any data whatsoever to your claim that medical treatments are deadly, i.e. increase the mortality rate. This is exactly the reason why naturopaths should not be allowed to practice. The discussion is closed.

                  • Pola Polish

                    “The discussion is closed.” I accept your defeat.

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    It is you who have not provided any data. It is you who have provided either non sequiturs, plainly false information (e.g. regarding the power of studies) or logical fallacies (e.g. tu quoque arguments).

                  • Pola Polish

                    But it’s you who is giving up … lol …

                  • Pola Polish

                    “It is you who have not provided any data.”
                    No, that’s you. Any valid data that is. And as you have pointed out, you or your wife (I assume?) do not need to provide any data. You’re above that, right? LOL …

                    “It is you who have provided
                    either non sequiturs,”
                    Nope, you again.

                    “plainly false information (e.g. regarding the
                    power of studies)”
                    Playing around with the p-value, power of a study or other parameters, that’s 101 of how to make a study fit one’s argument. That is after you omitted addressing my critique points of your “chart review” (not really a valid study).

                    “or logical fallacies (e.g. tu quoque arguments).”
                    Nope, that’s you again.

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    Quote: “Any non working modality or any modality which has been found in clinical medical settings to reliably and repeatedly induce death falls under the category of being harmful to patients – don’t you get that?”

                    Provide data about treatments in medicine that “reliably and repeatedly induce death” as would be seen in mortality rates.

                  • Pola Polish

                    Given the poor to ridiculous quality of the studies you provided I really don’t see a reason to try to impress someone who is unable to distinguish a valid study from an unvalid one. This type of comparing studies like penis lengths really just leads to embarrassment, see your example.

                  • Pola Polish

                    “You have tried to counter the argument that there is no need to present
                    data on self evidency of the dangers of non working treatments with
                    argument that the same applies to dangers of deadly treatments. This is
                    true. However, in order to make a valid point for your line of
                    argumentation you have to prove *by providing data*.

                    Ok, so let me summarize: one does not need to provide data to subtantiate a point, except one does, if one is me. If one is you or your wife (I assume?) one does not.
                    Ok, that’s logical … (irony).

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    Lte’s sum up.

                    1) Contrary to what you claim now you have started the discussion with a tu quoque argument, i.e. that medical treatments also have a certain death rate. Aside being a tu quoque argument, the fallacy in this argument is that it is mostly medical *errors* that lead to death and not treatements.

                    2) You have failed to provide evidence that medical treatments (as opposed to medical errors) are “reliably” deadly which would increase the mortality.

                    3) Although having some statistical knowledge you have admitted that a) you are not a professional and b) interpretation of clinical study is like speaking a foreign language. This renders you unfit to correctly interpret a clinical study which has been demonstrated conclusively by you picking on single studies instead of reviewing the evidence as a whole.

                    4) Despite repeated requests by me and others you have failed to provide *any* evidence to back up what seems to be your main claim, namely your tu quoque argument that medical treatments are reliably deadly, with deadly being defined as increasing mortality rate and not lowering it. Instead you have dodged the question thus leading to the conclusion (a) that you can not provide data, which in turn (b) renders your argument invalid according to your own standards

                    5) Despite repeated requests you have not provided any data on the superiority of naturopathic treatments which .. see 4.a and 4.b and (c) renders your first tu quoque argument invalid.

                    6.) You have tried to counter the argument that there is no need to present data on self evidency of the dangers of non working treatments with argument that the same applies to dangers of deadly treatments. This is true. However, in order to make a valid point for your line of argumentation you have to prove *by providing data*.that the treatment critizised falls into one category. While data on naturopathic treatments not working are that ubiquitous that one does not need to cite specific studies, data on your claim that medical treatments being “reliably” deadly have to be cited in order for your argument to stand. Note: This is restricted to state-of-the art medical treatments and NOT medical errors which you constantly intermix with medical treatments, likely on purpose. You have failed to do so, rendering your point moot.

                    7.) finally you claim that medical treatments are deadly based on data mainly on medical errors and misdiagnoses. This conclusion is simply not valid. Moreover by confounding these data you show that you do not know the definition of medical treatement which is namely a state-of-the-art modality based on correct assumptions such as diagnosis, parameter measurement etc. This and the failure to present data on your assumption, namely that medical treatments are reliably deadly renders you unfit to assess the validity of Britts argument.

                  • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

                    Funny considering what a fool you have made of yourself trying to dissect a study which was unfavourable to your dogma. And utter failure to provide any evidence of claims that any naturopathic modality is superior to medicine.

                  • captain N

                    so what kind of medicine we talking about here? the ones sold in infomercials with an insert the size of a phone book? You want a list of all the science based medicine that has failed and caused death? They are tested for a reason.. Mostly on small defenseless animals, then desperate humans with no money, who generally run into health problems during testing periods.. Money speaks louder than words though i guess.. or someones well being. You are a sad person.

                  • captain N

                    Just so you know, The internet is no place to go around promoting drugs.. Even if you are affiliated with pathetic blog sites like skeptical raptor, which quite frankly is just a complete waste of a mouse click.. Nothing but a bunch of anonymous failures who need to hide behind a computer screen because they have no REAL life.

                  • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

                    Anonymous like you and Polish?

                  • captain N

                    do i push drugs? You people are even more pathetic than 2 am infomercials

                  • captain N

                    so what kind of medicine we talking about here? the ones sold in infomercials with an insert the size of a phone book? You want a list of all the science based medicine that has failed and caused death? They are tested for a reason.. Mostly on small defenseless animals, then desperate humans with no money, who generally run into health problems during testing periods.. Money speaks louder than words though i guess.. or someones well being. You are a sad person.

                  • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

                    Your ignorance of clinical trials is appalling. Yes please list SBM that has failed along with so-called natural modalities which are superior. Just because aeroplanes sometimes crash doesn’t mean magic carpets work.

                  • captain N

                    Im pretty sure the drugs you’re taking aren’t working…

                  • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

                    I think the striking difference in education between woo-worshippers and SBM proponents is rather glaring. Hung up on that list huh?

                  • captain N

                    whats a woo worshipper?

                  • captain N

                    why do online deadbeats who live the most pathetic lives always try to invent words? You are a ZERO in the science industry.. In fact, judging by how you spend your time, you are also a complete zero of a person, as is gorski the frog, Although i’m sure he has trouble grasping that fact. The websites he’s affiliated with are cringe worthy, and look like they were designed by a 7 year old, as do all the useless blogs that litter the internet. Im guessing no one donates? All he does is post cracker garbage about conspiracy theorists.. It truly is complete trash, probably worse than tabloids.

                  • Pola Polish

                    “Every treatment has as potential side effect death so that is a non sequitur” – Potential vs. proven to actually induce either by checking it against a placebo or by observation in clinical settings, that’s a world of difference. And is the basis of all science: observation. Speaking about non sequiturs ….

                    “Since you use the word allopathic medicine I assume you are into naturopathics. How do you ethically justify applying treatments that are known not to
                    work to patients risking that they might be harmed by not receiving a
                    working treatment ? How do you ethically justify to charge your patients
                    for that ?”

                    Another common sign of admitting defeat in an argument: introducing a new argument into the discussion to deflect. And: making assumptions about the other person again in order to deflect the discussion. Which is of course due to lack of valid counter-arguments.
                    It’s ok, I accept this display of defeat LOL …

                  • Pola Polish

                    “Every treatment has as potential side effect death so that is a non
                    sequitur. Since you use the word allopathic medicine I assume you are
                    into naturopathics. How do you ethically justify applying treatments
                    that are known not to work to patients risking that they might be harmed
                    by not receiving a working treatment ? How do you ethically justify to
                    charge your patients for that ?”

                    The displayed line of thought perfectly illustrates how you construct your arguments I think.
                    First, you make an assumption. You do not seek to verify it, since you do not ask me whether I’m really a naturopath. So from that unverified assumption you construct your further argument or more a deflection of the true argument.

                    It’s very telling …

                    Not to mention that the attempt at a personal attack is yet another common sign of defeat in an argument …

                  • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

                    First, you make an assumption. You do not seek to verify it, since you
                    do not ask me whether I’m really a naturopath. So from that unverified
                    assumption you construct your further argument or more a deflection of
                    the true argument.

                    You mean like your crazed accusations of who Ms. Hermes is, what she does and being paid by pharma to blog?

                  • Pola Polish

                    My claim was and has been that the above article by Britt lacks any data for her claim that “naturopathic licensing has caused thousands of patients to be exposed to dangerous, expensive, and illegitimate therapies”. Still waiting for it ….

                  • Pola Polish

                    “Stick to your own standards and underline your claims with hard data.” If that study satisfies your standards regarding scientific method, then there is really very little common ground we have …

                  • Pola Polish

                    “Stick to your own standards and underline your claims with hard data.” If that study satisfies your standards regarding scientific method, then there is really very little common ground we have …

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    BTW, re n<30: in this trial one needs roughly around 20 (even less) patients per group to reach a power of 0.8. with this effect size. So far to your "anything below 30 is meaningless".

                    We are still awaiting your data demonstrating the deadlyness of medical treatments.

                  • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

                    Sorry, you need to get your statistical knowledge up to speed. Any study
                    with n<30 is indeed mostly irrelevant. Reading studies correctly is
                    like speaking a foreign language. If you don't have the skills, you
                    shouldn't engage in it. Not that I'm a pro by any stretch of the
                    imagination, but it seems I am more aware of the bare basics, at least
                    more than you.

                    Bwahaha. Anyone who refers to a sample size they don’t like as “statistically insignificant” doesn’t know the first thing about statistics. Thomas is correct that sample size is power and it doesn’t matter if it’s small as long as it has enough power to detect effect size determined prior to sampling. Duh. Thomas is also correct that you are woefully ignorant to complain that the study isn’t an RCT. You obviously don’t know squat about research ethics. I’m reading the study and will comment on that in a bit.

                  • David

                    Pola you are a farce. I have a master in epidemiology and statistics. You need to get your statistical knowledge up to speed. Learn how to calculate the sample size of a study. Your lack of understanding of statistics, just highlights your lack insight

                  • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

                    Here we go: There are n=87 participants but they have different stages
                    of cancer, I, II, III. In each group n is smaller than 30 again. This is
                    really where the discussion should end. Since any study with n<30 is
                    really statistically insignificant, as pointed out above.

                    Wrong. There were 522 participants for the final analyses. Again, you can’t say a group size is statistically insignificant; it’s simply the wrong nomenclature.

                    Putting someone with stage I cancer in the same group as stage III
                    cancer, obviously does not meet a rigorous scientific approach

                    Read the paper again. They were matched using the same stage at diagnosis. Given the hypothesis, sample size and advanced stage of CAM and other treatment refusers at the time of admission and plotting 5 year survival, it’s perfectly reasonable to analyse together. Where did you learn stats and study design? A naturopath?

                    Of those participants who have refused any conventional therapy, delayed
                    therapy (surgery) or did alternative treatments – they all have been
                    put in one group. Huh? And of those who did alternative treatments again
                    there was anything from “herbal treatments, vitamins, special diets” to
                    “PRAYERS” (emphasis mine). So of those who did alternative treatments
                    (50), 48 might have relied on praying, 1 on Vit c IVs and 1 on a vegan
                    diet or … who knows what and in what constallation since “the details
                    of CAM [complementary and alternative medicine] received by our patients
                    were not available”.

                    This is a preliminary study; the investigators simply wanted to look at differences between refusal of treatment with sub-group analyses of CAM, unknown and duration of refusal of medical care. The differences were quite remarkable and statistically significant. Given the claims by CAM “practitioners” that their modalities are far superior to standard care and standard care doesn’t work, a.) The effect should not have been so pronounced.

                    How this is supposed to show that naturopathic treatments are less
                    effective than conventional ones? When a) treatments such a prayers are
                    put together in the same group as … what? Vit IVs (we don’t know since
                    this data has not been collected) b) there are different stages of
                    cancer and of each stage there is less than n=30 participants.

                    The fault of this lay with you naturopaths who refuse to conduct studies to demonstrate safety and efficacy of your modalities and develop a standard of care with rigorous oversight and an adverse event reporting system.

                    And to point out the obvious: this is not a randomized, controlled,
                    double blind study … but a “retrospective chart review” ehem.
                    And I don’t really need to point out the fallacy of that now, do I?

                    Please do because at this point you wouldn’t know a fallacy if it bit you in the arse. Not to mention your incorrect (again) use of the term.

                  • Pola Polish

                    “Wrong. There were 522 participants for the final analyses. Again, you
                    can’t say a group size is statistically insignificant; it’s simply the
                    wrong nomenclature.”

                    The number n=87 is quoted on pages 1, 2 and 3 of the paper.
                    the number “522” doesn’t appear one time in the whole paper.
                    it seems we’re not talking about the same thing?

                    “Read the paper again. They were matched using the same stage at diagnosis.”

                    The paper does nowhere say that. On the contrary, on page 2 it says

                    “Table 2 describes the stage of disease at initial presentation and disease status on referral to the tertiary cancer center.”

                    Looking at table 2 on page 3 you see 3 different groups according with stages of cancer, I, II, III. So patients in both groups had those 3 different stages at the beginning of the review.

                    “The fault of this lay with you naturopaths who refuse to conduct studies to demonstrate safety and efficacy of your modalities and develop a standard of care with rigorous oversight and an adverse event reporting system.”

                    This is of course a nonsensical argument on so many levels ….

                    Suffice it to say that you obviously haven’t read the paper, as I have pointed out above. Or we’re not talking about the same thing.

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    Quote: “The number n=87 is quoted on pages 1, 2 and 3 of the paper. the number “522” doesn’t appear one time in the whole paper.
                    it seems we’re not talking about the same thing?”

                    Your n is *one* study arm and not the total number of participants as you assume. The total number is calculated by 87*5 + 87, vz Materials and Methods matching ratio 1:5.

                    This one of the gravest errors one can make.

                    Quote: “Read the paper again. They were matched using the same stage at diagnosis.”The paper does nowhere say that.

                    It does. Vz. Material and Methods, statistical analysis, matching variable. Not reading the analysis method properly is also one of the gravest errors one can make.

                    These two points *alone* prove *conclusively* that interpreting clinical studies is indeed speaking a foreign language for you, and a language you do not know.

                  • Pola Polish

                    Yes, that would then be lesson 102 on how to make your date fit your argument.
                    The total number is still n=87. They then dissected and amplified that number mathematically to achieve a significant result.
                    But the actual number of patients taken into consideration for the was still 87. Not 522 (where does this number appear in the paper?), nor 87×5 which would be 435.

                    And of course what we see here again is the focus on tangential information and more to the point arguments i brought forward like the fact that different modalities have been clumped into alternative therapies, or that 37 of those patients have done unknown modalities (which could have been also no therapy at all, we don’t know), or that “delayed” surgery has been cited as part of alternative treatment. Huh?

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    Quote: “The total number is still n=87. They then dissected and amplified that number mathematically to achieve a significant result. But the actual number of patients taken into consideration for the was
                    still 87. Not 522 (where does this number appear in the paper?), nor
                    87×5 which would be 435”.

                    Oh my God, where do I begin ?

                    First the study consists of two arms. The state of the art treatment arm and the non state of the art treatment arm. The latter (and this alone) is 87. For the state-of-the art treatment patients where matched and randomly assigned at a matching ratio of 1:5, i.e. 5 patients for every CAM arm patient. That makes 87 CAM arm patients and 435 state-of-the art arm patients (5×87) or a total of 522 patients. That means, the number of patients taken into consideration was 522 and not 87 as you falsely claim. For a comparison between state-of-the art and CAM it would not make sense to take into consideration only the CAMS would it ? BTW, the size of the study also sinks your n<30 argument.

                    If one needs evidence that you ca not even read the study correctly, then this is it.

                  • Pola Polish

                    87 patients who supposedly did CAM methods (not really, since delayed surgery or prayer or unknown modalities can hardly be considered as alternative healing methods).

                    That’s 87 patients in the flesh.

                    Not 522 or 435 who did CAM modalities which could have been misunderstood from the comments above.

                    So for the calculation of survival in the alternative methods group, 87 was used. With the already explained nonsensical grouping and lacking data which renders this whole “chart review” irrelevant.

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    You really do not understand the study, do you ? The hypothesis is – to put it simply – does severe deviation from state of the art treatment of breast cancer patients (as for instance by CAM, prayer, or delayed surgery) harm patients as been shown by survival ? The answer is YES. You can wiggle and whine as much as you want. For a power of 0.9 and an effect size of 40% a number of 87 patients in one study arm is more than enough. In fact the effect is so strong that one would need only 44 patients to show it. This is less than 1 tenth of the study size. Period.

                  • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

                    I see and thank Thomas Mohr for trying to provide an explanation for you but you still fail to grasp the methods. If the hypothesis was to compare standard care v. refusal of standard care (pick your poison) then where did the pool of standard care patients come from for comparison which you can clearly see in Figure 1. I trust you can do some basic maths even though you fail at statistics.

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    BTW, in order to reach a power of 0.9 you need only 22 patients per arm with an effect size of this magnitude. In both arms this number is exceeded by far which makes this study very robust.

                • Pola Polish

                  And again avoiding my arguments … this is a pattern. Gets kinda boring …

                • Thomas Mohr

                  In science we read the *entire* material before we open our mouth. Where are your data ?

                • Thomas Mohr

                  In science we read the *entire* material before we open our mouth. Where are your data ?

              • Pola Polish

                9 patients? Dude are serious? Sorry, but I really can’t take you seriously now. Get your statistical knowledge updated. Any study below n=30 is meaningless.

            • Thomas Mohr

              http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16978951.

              By refusing chemotherapy, 9 patients increased their estimated 10-year mortality rate from 17% to 25%.

              A small study but valid

              https://www.sciencebasedmedicine.org/alternative-medicine-use-and-breast-cancer-2012-update/

              Where are your data ?

        • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

          Not all naturopathic disasters go undocumented you know; the profession just does a good job of keeping any reporting scheme out of their system.

    • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

      You are making an awful lot of assumptions with no facts to support them. The reason you can’t find hard numbers on naturopaths is because they are self-regulating and have no adverse reporting scheme the way medicine does. And they work hard to keep it that way.

      All in all this author seems to emerge as a rightful heir to Stephen
      Barrett of the quackwatch “fame” who has been by now sufficiently discredited as a professional racketeer. Quite an accomplishment …

      If it’s such an accomplishment then you’ll have no problem providing some evidence of this.

    • Thomas Mohr

      Let’s dissect your somewhat elaborate answer. So Britt – as a master’s student in biomedical sciences is not fully aware of the fine prints of German Health law ? So what ? Second, medicine has to be further perfected, so what ? Your tu quoque argument is rejected on grounds of logical fallacy as any tu quoque argument. The luck of naturopathic medicine is that up to now it flew below the radar and therefore very few studies exist estimating the damage done by naturopaths. However, the few that exist, especially in cancer research spell doom for naturopathy. Shorter survival, higher death rates and lower quality of life. The argument that naturopathic drugs are harmless is fallacious. Of course nobody dies because of a raindance performed or swallowing some echinacea preparation. However, the harm done by naturopaths is done by creating the illusion of an effective treatment, the resulting delay of real treatment which might prove deadly.

      Two examples: An NPLEX Test case where a woman presented herself with sky high blood pressure and a suspected angina pectoris. Differential diagnosis GERD. The recommended treatment was homeopathic resp. aspirin which is not state of the art in either angina or GERD. Moreover, drugs to lower the blood pressure and thus lowering the risk of a heart attack were NOT mentioned. If this woman would have died of a heart attack a week later, of course the homeopathics would not have caused her death. However, the naturopath is clearly responsible by a) not refering her to a cardiologist and b) creatung the illusion of an effective treatment.

      The case of the toddler in Canada which demonstrates the point with utmost clarity. Instead of urging the parents to go to the hospital immediately the naturopath involved prescribed a drug witout effect. The parents, in the delusion that their child is receiving treatment delayed the visit to the ER until it was too late.

      Finally regarding your assertion of Britt laying her finances open. Instead of providing evidence for ozone therapy you use a) the argument that Britt got something minor wrong, b) a tu quoque argument and c) the paid shill fallacy. This is your third strike and you are out.

      • Pola Polish

        Quoting cases where something would have could have happened or should have not happened after administration of naturopathic medicine vs. hundreds of thousands of documented deaths due to conventional medicine? This is the type of logical ineptitude most blind supporters of conventional medicine fall for. Which is really nothing else than a display of fanatical belief, aka religion. Not science.

        • Thomas Mohr

          Let me explain something to you. You are claiming Naturopathy is superior to conventional medicine. Stick to your own standards and post the studies.

          • Pola Polish

            “You are claiming Naturopathy is superior to conventional medicine” Really? Might want to quote where I said that?

            • Thomas Mohr

              Where are your data to support your point of view of deadly treatment, i.e. rising mortality rates due to treatment ? Either you present them of be called somebody distributing bullshit.

              • Pola Polish

                Where is Britt’s data to support her point of view of “naturopathic licensing has caused thousands of patients to be
                exposed to dangerous, expensive, and illegitimate therapies”?

                • Pola Polish

                  Either she present them or be called somebody distributing bullshit ….

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    I have asked you two times a simple question. Apparently you can not answer it which disqualifies you on grounds of lack of knowledge.

                  • Pola Polish

                    in my original posting i’ve pointed out some obvious inaccuracies and logical fallacies in the article. And asked questions. They have remained unanswered so far. Instead you’re trying to engage me in some tangential discussion and are completely avoiding my questions. I guess I can take this as point taken? Since so far there has been no valid retort of my arguments?

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    To which arguments exactly ? To the one to provide data why routinely applying treatments that have been shown not to work is dangerous for sick people ? May I ask if you need data to show that things having a mass fall towards the next center of gravity ?

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    To which arguments exactly ? To the one to provide data why routinely applying treatments that have been shown not to work is dangerous for sick people ? May I ask if you need data to show that things having a mass fall towards the next center of gravity ?

          • Pola Polish

            “Stick to your own standards and post the studies.” Good try in avoiding to discuss the most glaring inconcistencies and inaccuracies in Britt’s article which I’ve been pointing out so far.

            • Thomas Mohr

              You have pointed out nothing. You have used three logical fallacies. In science pointing something out means

              a) Presenting data to underline your point of view of deadly treatnments. People dying is NOT suffcicient you need rising mortality rates.

              b) Presenting data that naturopathy is superior with regard to that. A comparison of breast cancer data untreated vs treated spells doom for naturopathy. There are a few other studies to the same effect.

              In both you have failed despite being asked repeatedly.

              • Pola Polish

                I’m not conducting science here. I’m pointing out factual inaccuracies, and lack of data, hence substance of the above article, hence low quality. The author or supporters of the author should provide those if they feel that my critique is unsubstantiated. That’s how you retort an argument. Instead what I’m witnessing is an obvious attempt to avoid answering the questions I have raised. I guess because there are no good counter-arguments?

                • Thomas Mohr

                  Quote: “I’m not conducting science here”. Apparently not. Apparently you also have not read the article or do you not see the links ? Maybe you should read Kimball Atwood or Edzard Ernst. There are numerous papers out there addressing the efficiacy of naturopathic treatments like homeopathy, chiropractic etc. Applying treatments with no effciacy to sick people is per definition endangering them and is per definition expensive.

      • Pola Polish

        “However, the harm done by naturopaths is done by creating the illusion
        of an effective treatment, the resulting delay of real treatment which might prove deadly.” So let’s ban something because it MIGHT prove deadly? But let’s allow something which has already proven to be deadly, see pharmaceuticals and modern medicine? Now that’s some type of argument you might want to find some fancy Latin expression for.

        • Thomas Mohr

          “But let’s allow something which has already proven to be deadly, see pharmaceuticals and modern medicine?” Nice try but it won’t fly. Stick to your own standards and show studies that application of a certain treatment *rises* mortality (which is the definition of a deadly treatment). If not, be called somebody distributing bullshit. A hint, just because some people die this does not make a treatment deadly.

          Are you familiar with the legal concept of failure to render assistance ? This is exactly what naturopaths are doing.

          • Pola Polish

            I think Britt should go first and show the data or studies that show that “naturopathic licensing has caused thousands of patients to be exposed to dangerous, expensive, and illegitimate therapies” or be called sombody distributing bullshit.

            • Thomas Mohr

              I care a rat’s fart of what you think. Where are your data ?

              • Pola Polish

                I care a rat’s fart of what you think. Where is her data?

                • Thomas Mohr

                  OK, you can not present data to underline your claims. You’re out.

                  • Pola Polish

                    Out of what? LOL …

                  • Pola Polish

                    Out of what? LOL …

                • Thomas Mohr

                  OK, you can not present data to underline your claims. You’re out.

            • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

              I believe she already did. The topic is ozone therapy. Can you provide any evidence of its safety and efficacy? All I see is a gross ignorance of basic chemistry by naturoquacks.

            • Marcel

              You want bullshit? Look no further than homeopathy, which many if not most naturopaths embrace.

    • Thomas Mohr

      Let’s dissect your somewhat elaborate answer. So Britt – as a master’s student in biomedical sciences is not fully aware of the fine prints of German Health law ? So what ? Second, medicine has to be further perfected, so what ? Your tu quoque argument is rejected on grounds of logical fallacy as any tu quoque argument. The luck of naturopathic medicine is that up to now it flew below the radar and therefore very few studies exist estimating the damage done by naturopaths. However, the few that exist, especially in cancer research spell doom for naturopathy. Shorter survival, higher death rates and lower quality of life. The argument that naturopathic drugs are harmless is fallacious. Of course nobody dies because of a raindance performed or swallowing some echinacea preparation. However, the harm done by naturopaths is done by creating the illusion of an effective treatment, the resulting delay of real treatment which might prove deadly.

      Two examples: An NPLEX Test case where a woman presented herself with sky high blood pressure and a suspected angina pectoris. Differential diagnosis GERD. The recommended treatment was homeopathic resp. aspirin which is not state of the art in either angina or GERD. Moreover, drugs to lower the blood pressure and thus lowering the risk of a heart attack were NOT mentioned. If this woman would have died of a heart attack a week later, of course the homeopathics would not have caused her death. However, the naturopath is clearly responsible by a) not refering her to a cardiologist and b) creatung the illusion of an effective treatment.

      The case of the toddler in Canada which demonstrates the point with utmost clarity. Instead of urging the parents to go to the hospital immediately the naturopath involved prescribed a drug witout effect. The parents, in the delusion that their child is receiving treatment delayed the visit to the ER until it was too late.

      Finally regarding your assertion of Britt laying her finances open. Instead of providing evidence for ozone therapy you use a) the argument that Britt got something minor wrong, b) a tu quoque argument and c) the paid shill fallacy. This is your third strike and you are out.

    • Marcel

      Stephen Barrett discredited as a racketeer? Since when and how do arrive at such a characterization?

      You want racketeers? Look no further than the 100s of delinquents in the U.S. marketing supplements with illegal or unsupportable claims. Numerous naturopaths could readily be included among them.

      As to your assumptions that “Medical errors claim around 250,000 deaths per year, that’s additional to the around 100,000 deaths due to correct and proper pharmaceutical usage prescribed by medical doctors”, I would encourage you to read the recent article by Dr. David Gorski (aka, ORAC) who critically reviews those figures.

  • Pola Polish

    So basically what we have is a student living oversees, being married to someone who is also still a student, I can imagine finances are tight? So writing anti-naturopathic articles at a time when there is a proposed bill of making naturopaths prime health care providers in 50 states – now that’s quite a coincidence? Or more to the point: quite a lucrative way to finance one’s studies?
    It would be really interesting to see the financial disclosure of the Mrs. Hermes. I’m more than willing to bet that there would be more than one contribution by the pharmaceutical lobby or similarly minded organizations …

    • Thomas Mohr

      Britt should take your bet. How much are you willing to risk ? EUR 1.000.– ? EUR 10.000.– In Germany bets are contracts enforceable by law.

    • JGC

      Your use of the classic “Pharm Shill” gambit is duly noted.
      That said, have you any substantive criticism to offer with regard to the Ms. Hermes’ blog post?

      • Pola Polish

        “have you any substantive criticism to offer with regard to the Ms. Hermes’ blog post?” yes, feel free to read my comment below.

        • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

          All I see is a pile of straw and vapid shill accusations.

        • JGC

          I didn’t see substantive criticisms of Ms. Hermes’ post in your comment below. Pola. You began with a non sequitor, attacking evidence based medicine. Surely you’re familiar with the phrase “Problems in the airline industry do not argue magic carpets can fly”?

          You then offered what is either an ad hominem attack or an attempt at poisoning the well, by suggesting the author possess some undisclosed agenda rather than addressing the substance of her post itself.

          Then you ignore the citations demonstrating that naturopaths in a large number of states, despite ozone therapies being explicitly outside their legal scope of practice, are offering ozone therapies to suggest that there’s no support for her statement “naturopathic licensing has caused thousands of patients to be exposed to dangerous, expensive, and illegitimate therapies”.
          So where have I missed your substantive response? Was it you comparison to Stephen Barret (as if that would be a bad thing)?

          • Pola Polish

            “are offering ozone therapies to suggest that there’s no support for her
            statement “naturopathic licensing has caused thousands of patients to be
            exposed to dangerous, expensive, and illegitimate therapies”.” That was it, you got it. This is quite a substantive criticism. She’s basically claiming something and it’s quite a serious claim without providing any data, source or reference to support it. So it’s a baseless, and potentially very damaging assertion.

            Yeah, she goes on and on citing alleged legal side stepping by numerous naturopathic practitioners although she omits to cite more than one actual case of harm done by a naturopath. So it’s all citations and giving “notice” by a former ND (clearly, herself) to naturopathic doctors who have not done any actual harm to a patient. So she’s basically engaging in playing bureaucratic watchdog over a demographic she failed to show that it warrants a watchdog. She fails to substantiate her argument since she cites no data which shows that naturopathic doctors have definitely put “thousands of patients at risk”. And she does not even live in the US anymore?! What’s up with that? Plus: being in a legal gray zone does not automatically mean that one acts illegally, yet she does not seem to care for that rather important distinction ….

            • Thomas Mohr

              You challenge Britt to supply data for her statement that “”naturopathic licensing has caused thousands of patients to be
              exposed to dangerous, expensive, and illegitimate therapies”.

              *Any* non working modality that is adminstered instead of a wotking therapy to sick people falls under this category. Don’t you get that ?

              • Pola Polish

                “*Any* non working modality that is adminstered instead of a working
                therapy to sick people falls under this category. Don’t you get that ?”

                Any non working modality or any modality which has been found in clinical medical settings to reliably and repeatedly induce death falls under the category of being harmful to patients – don’t you get that?

            • BatwingCandlewaxxe

              You sound like a shill for the “Natural Health” industry and their paid government lobbyists. When are you going to stop hiding behind a pseudonym and disclose your conflict of interest? How much are you being paid to attack whistleblowers like Britt Hermes?

            • BatwingCandlewaxxe

              You sound like a shill for the “Natural Health” industry and their paid government lobbyists. When are you going to stop hiding behind a pseudonym and disclose your conflict of interest? How much are you being paid to attack whistleblowers like Britt Hermes?

          • has

            “I didn’t see substantive criticisms of Ms. Hermes’ post in your comment below.”

            Obviously you need to purchase new spectacles. Have you tried shopping on Htrae?

      • Marcel

        I suppose that in cases like this, we should copy and paste the list of major pharmaceutical companies who manufacture dietary supplements.

    • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

      Project much? Are you accusing Ms. Hermes of shilling because your beloved naturopaths do?

    • Axl Rosacea

      That’s exactly what someone in the pocket of Big Naturo would say. How do we know you aren’t being paid to attack those who speak the truth? New regulations make it harder for naturopaths to “practice.” Unless something changes, you will be out of business. I imagine you’re all scared about the future. Who is paying you to write these comments? What will we see on your financial disclosure? We know there are contributions from naturopathic organizations, which is why you will never show us.

    • Marcel

      Yeah? I would be willing to wager that no pharmaceutical company would dare send her as much as a single cent.

      • has

        $48K over 30 years? IIRC Ms Hermes’ Bastyr education ripped her for something like a quarter million over just 4, which makes you an absolute piker by comparison.

        Yet somehow it’s only ever Big Pharma who are in it for the money, and doubtless AltMed vendors everywhere would far rather be paid in kitten smiles and sunbeams than Filthy Allopathic Cash – a payment method I strongly recommend AltMed consumers propose to their homeochiroquacktic practictioner upon their next visit and see how far that gets them.

        • Marcel

          Agreed. But getting ripped off for the amount in less than a year still hurts.

    • Marcel

      Yeah? I would be willing to wager that no pharmaceutical company would dare send her as much as a single cent.

    • David

      This is what the public does not understand. Naturopaths pose no financial threat to MDs. MDs speak out against naturopaths because they truly want to protect their patients from charlatans and quacks that can harm them. When an MD opens their practice they are overbooked the day they start. A naturopath has to become an associate and wait years to build up a practice.

    • Petticoat Philosopher

      Wait, you thinking she’s raking in the big bucks for posting on her own blog?

  • Gerrit Egberts

    Ozone did a lot for me in my Lyme battle!

    • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

      Evidence please. Anecdotes =/= data.

  • Pola Polish

    So we have a former nauropathic US doctor who lives in Germany and calls US naturopathic offices from oversees to put them on notice and to file complaints about them although none of the complaints pertain to a single case of actual HARM done to a patient. And then she uses those personally filed complaints as evidence that those offices are dangerous, act illegally and are putting patients in harms way. So basically she creates her own “evidence”. And the most interesting part: she obfuscates that very fact.

    • Thomas Mohr

      We have presented studies that *show* that chosing CAM over state of the art medical treatment harms patients. We have also demonstrated conclusively that you are unable to assess the material correctly (or even read it correctly for that matter). Therefore you are in no position to assess whether Britt creates her own evidence or not. If one defines harming patients as the application of non-working treatments, thus delaying working treatments, a delay which rises the probability of serious consequences, a vast body of medical literature shows that naturopaths do indeed so (e.g. within the entire field of homeopathy).

      • Pola Polish

        “We have presented studies that *show* that chosing CAM over state of the art medical treatment harms patient.”
        As a matter of fact you completely failed to do so. Instead you provided a study from over hundred years ago which was dealing with mortality in untreated cancer patients, not patients using alternative or naturopathic methods.

        Then you provided another study with 9 participants, which obviously needs to be dismissed as statistically insignificant.

        Then you followed it up with a study which looked at 87 women with breast cancer who were clumped in one group of patients having used alternative methods although the methods were unknown in 37 of those women, and in the remaining 50 were such various modalities as prayer, diet, or vitamins, or just delayed surgery. All those were in one group with different stages of cancer without differentiation or follow up or even correct documentation what the actual treatments consisted of, as the authors of the paper themselves admitted: “Unfortunately, the details of CAM received by our patients were not available, since most of these patients refused to be followed up.”

        “We have also demonstrated conclusively that you are unable to assess the material correctly (or even read it correctly for that matter).” What you have demonstrated and confirmed is that you (and your wife?) are using a double standard. Asking me over and over again to provide data and studies and then admitting that you or the author of the article do not need to provide either, because all you and she says is supposedly self-evident. So you rendered your whole argumentation irrelevant.

        “If one defines as harming patients the application of non-working treatments, a vast body of medical literature shows that naturopaths do indeed so (e.g. the entire field of homeopathy).”
        Which again you and the author of the article failed to provide evidence for. Instead quoting sub-par or irrelevant “chart reviews” (not really studies), stating outright that you do not need to provide evidence for any claims, or just by fabricating your own “evidence”.

        • Thomas Mohr

          Quote: “Then you followed it up with a study which looked at 87 women with
          breast cancer”

          Nope. It was 522 women with breast cancer

          “who were clumped in one group of patients having used
          alternative methods although the methods were unknown in 37 of those
          women, and in the remaining 50 were such various modalities as prayer,
          diet, or vitamins, or just delayed surgery.”

          Nope. It was a matched comparison state-of-the-art vs various alternative treatments.

          ““We have also demonstrated conclusively that you are unable to assess
          the material correctly (or even read it correctly for that matter).”
          What you have demonstrated and confirmed is that you (and your wife?)”

          One who does not recognize a two armed study when he sees one and wrongly assumes that one arm is the total number of patients considered is not fit to assess any clinical study correctly. Aside that, you are not even able to read a profile correctly, or do you think an archeologist would be capable to interpret clinical studies and uncover your grave errors ? FYI I am a biotechnologist with 25+ years experience in computational biology and quite a long list of peer reviewed scientific papers.

          • Pola Polish

            “Nope. It was 522 women with breast cancer”

            Actually, it was over 15,000 women with breast cancer.
            But only 87 who supposedly (but not really since using “unknown modalities” or delayed surgery is not really alternative medicine) used alternative treatments.

            • Thomas Mohr

              50 had a CAM treatment. This is still way above the necessary number of patients needed to achieve sufficient power. Additionally there is a subanalysis of CAM vs unknown clearly demonstrating inferiority of CAM treatment. Continue to sink yourself.

              • Pola Polish

                87 who used supposed alternative methods.
                37 of those were unknown methods.
                Of the remaining 50 there were such things as diet, delayed surgery, prayer, vitamins …
                Just by repeating the poor data of this “chart review” you do not make it look any more relevant.

                • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

                  All of the 87 delayed surgery and/or standard care and that was the point. You just don’t have the chops to do this so quit while you’re behind.

              • Pola Polish

                “50 had a CAM treatment. This is still way above the necessary number of patients needed to achieve sufficient power. Continue to sink yourself.”
                Continue dodging any relevant argument as to the quality of the numbers, not quantity.

                • Thomas Mohr

                  As I said. Somebody who is not able to recognize a two armed study is not in the position to assess the quality of the data behind it. Aside that you critizise the inclusion of diet, etc into alternative medicine, probably based on the fact how you define alternative medicine. Let me explain something to you. It does not matter how YOU define alternative medicine. It matters how community defines alternative medicine and that is: […] any practice that is put forward as having the healing effects of medicine, but does not originate from evidence gathered using the scientific method or is not part of biomedicine, For the relevant citations see Wikipedia. This includes diet, prayer and even standing on your head for 30 minutes a day. I.o.W. the grouping is valid.

                  • Pola Polish

                    Yep, another great display how to make the most nonsensical grouping in a study look relevant. This is good. That’s basically a behind the curtains look of how bad data can be made to look good. Just play around with the definitions, numbers, employ a scientist with a few decades experience behind his/her belt and voila! We have made a new scientific discovery! LOL

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    Whine and wiggle as much as you want. The authors have done the definition correctly according to scientific standards. Your definition of alternative medicine does not matter. Period.

                • David

                  You really do not understand study design. Prior to conducting the study a sample size calculation was performed to assess the required amount of patients.

          • Pola Polish

            “FYI I am a biotechnologist with 25+ years experience in computational
            biology and quite a long list of peer reviewed scientific papers.” I wouldn’t proclaim it that loudly. Kinda puts a bad light on the other biotechnologists out there 😉 … but on the other hand shows so well how even a well experienced, and (I assume) highly educated scientist can engage in the most nonsensical, farcical, irrelevant, logically fallacious or logically lacking argumentation. Which is another case in point to not give much credence to “studies” in peer reviewed papers.

            • Thomas Mohr

              You persisted in your very basic error with regard to study size even when two people pointed it out clearly to you. In fact you began the entire discussion with logical fallacies and failed to provide data for your claims. You are simply not in the position to judge about logical fallacies.

            • MI Dawn

              Wow, Pola. I just read the study. It didn’t take me that long, but I was easily able to see the many ways you were wrong in your representation.

              185 women refused standard treatment after biopsy confirming breast CA. 87 of those women were under 75; those women were included in the study as most breast cancer studies exclude women over 75.

              Those 87 women were matched regarding age, stage of cancer, and year of diagnosis with 5 women each (i.e. 5 women who had standard treatment to each women who elected CAM).

              50/87 of those women informed the doctor they were refusing standard treatment for CAM. 37/87 of those women did not inform the doctor what they were going to do.

              In 5 years, 66 of those 87 women were dead. 61 of those women died from metastatic breast cancer so a survival rate of 43.2%. In comparison, 81.9% of the women who elected standard treatment were still alive (remember, these women were *matched* on stage of cancer.

              If you are giving me 82% chance of surviving compared to only 43% chance – I’ll take the 82%.

              Now – point out my errors. I took all my data from the study.

              • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

                She ran away rather than admit her errors and engage in discussion. Typical.

              • Pola Polish

                As far as i can tell you correctly copied the data from the study and understood it. That’s how I understand it as well. The problem is that this study was quoted to show the inferiority of naturopathic treatments vs conventional treatments when it comes to cancer. I pointed out the arguments why this study cannot be used for such purposes above multiple times, but here once again: Delayed surgery or “unknown modality” or “prayers” or taking vitamins are being all clumped together in one group. I really don’t see how “delayed surgery” can be viewed as part of alternative treatments. Maybe according to wikipedia, but wikipedia certainly is not an expert on alternative medical treatments. So we don’t know how many of those 50 women were treated with what. Prayers are treated the same as for example Vit C IVs (or whatever, we don’t know since the review didn’t track that data). So it could be that 45 of those 50 women were “treated” with prayers or maybe only 2, again, this data is not provided.
                This is a very good example of how confusing studies can be when one looks at just the numbers without looking at the quality of the numbers.

                What I really find surprising is that this fanatical belief of the superiority of conventional medicine vs. alternative medicine as it is displayed on this page seems to hinge on this one really poorly designed “data review” (it’s not a real study). Is this really the best fervent believers in conventional medicine can present to support their argument? If so, then it’s really interesting.

                • Thomas Mohr

                  First, ” Maybe according to wikipedia, but wikipedia certainly is not an expert on alternative medical treatments” You don’t know how Wikipedia works, do you ? They quote the scientific definition, and this definition includes prayers. Second, delayed surgery due to a CAM trial has to be included if you assess the damages done by CAM. I also bet the survival rate with CAM only is even more catastrophic than with CAM plus delayed surgery.

                  You have been refuted by a biotechnologist with 25+ years of experience in the field, including statistics, by a scientist knowing how to read studies and a professional statistician. You yourself admitted you are not a professional. You did not even understand the basic design of the study. So your assertion about this study is of no value whatsoever and does not matter in any way. You are torpedoed and sunk.

                  • Pola Polish

                    Citing one’s credentials or academic titels instead of actually giving a valid response to an argument, that’s another common display of defeat. So nothing new from you. It’s ok I get it, you feel overwhelmed LOL …

                    “They quote the scientific definition, and this definition includes
                    prayers are included. Second delayed surgery due to a CAM trial has to
                    be included if you assess the damages done by CAM.” Anything to make your really lame “study” look somehow acceptable, huh? Is this really the best you got?

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    Any scientist worth only one tiny little bit would have posted data to refute the study. The only thing you do is pulling your own definition of CAM out of the hat until reality fits your assumptions. Sorry, but this will not fly. This here is a primary example for the Dunning-Krüger effect.

                  • Pola Polish

                    What? Refuting a study by posting a counter study? That’s not refuting a study or an argument but engaging in the equivalent of infantile penis length comparisons. You refute a study by pointing out errors, fallacies, inaccuracies of the given study or argument which I have been doing so far and which you have repeatedly shown to be completely overwhelmed by, since all you present are just deflections, personal attacks, citations of academic or professional credentials or repeated proclamations that I’m out or sunk LOL …
                    Quite embarrassing.

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    You have discussed based on a bunch of severe errors. That is not discussion, that is showing blatant incompetency. Just for your information, pointing out your incompetency is NOT an ad hominem since you yourself have proven it conclusively.

                  • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

                    You’re a real piece of work. Your blatant lies and gross misunderstandings about study design and interpretation are all here for anyone to read and you are still trying to desperately cling to some shred of faux dignity with silly aggression and deflection.
                    You were wrong about the study group size and number.
                    You were wrong about the hypothesis being tested.
                    You were wrong about binning by cancer stage.
                    You used made-up nomenclature to dismiss the study.
                    And you were wrong about the results.

                    And here you are still trying to hand-wave it away as though no one is paying attention.

                  • Pola Polish

                    “You were wrong about the study group size and number.
                    You were wrong about the hypothesis being tested.
                    You were wrong about binning by cancer stage.
                    You used made-up nomenclature to dismiss the study.
                    And you were wrong about the results.”

                    What is interesting is that you seem to understand all those parameters very well and still not understand that this “study” is of very poor quality and not able to convincingly show that naturopathic treatments are inferior to conventional ones when treating breast cancer in women … instead you revert to personal attacks. Again just a sign of defeat and inability to refute one’s argument.

                  • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

                    You just don’t get the hypothesis tested do you? It wasn’t just CAM, it was delay of treatment some of who chose alternative treatments. Your ignorance of the study has been thoroughly catalogued. An honest person would admit their error and move on but you’re just digging deeper.

                  • Pola Polish

                    I think you just don’t understand the context in which this study was presented to me.

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    I think you also do not get the context the study was presented. You asked about data that CAM harms patients. The study clearly shows that recipients of CAM who refuse or delay state-of-the art treatment – for what reasons ever – have half the survival rate of women who do not. I.o.W. CAM has harmed patients by exactly the way I told you, i.e. by ineffective treatment that delays state-of-the art treatment – a notion which you also did not understand. Since you do not even understand that, you could not interpret the real importance of the study.

                  • http://justthevax.blogspot.com/ Science Mom

                    No it’s just that you didn’t understand the study and are being dishonest about it now. Here’s a lovely case report for you. Very straight forward, no stats so should be easy for you to understand: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25895240

                  • David

                    Pola!
                    You keep saying that people on here blindly believe that conventional treatments work and naturopathy does not. The only thing you are right on is that there are few studies comparing conventional treatments to naturopathic treatments
                    But a big HOWEVER… There are literally thousands of papers written every year showing over and over the efficacy of conventional treatments varying from prostaglandins for glaucoma, to chemotherapy for cancers to vaccines in disease prevention. I can show you thousands and thousands of studies with Undebatable significance. Can you show us any studies that anything unique to naturopathy even works ??????

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    The probably best researched field is homeopathy and there the verdict is clear. It does not work. With regard to botanical medicine, there is a study of cravatto et al who reviewed 1000 medically used plants. Some 150 had enough clinical data to allow for a deeper analysis, eight plants showed enough effect to warrant deeper investigation, roughly 20 more plants showed some effect. I.o.W. roughly 10-20% of the plants which could be analyzed showed at least some effect. Taken into account that many “traditional” medicines were developed by coincidence, garnished with experience but tainted with observational bias one could expect a certain success rate which might lie a little above what could be expected by chance. The numbers of Cravotto et al fit well into this model. Therefore it would be an educated guess that 80% of traditional medicine as applied largely by naturopaths is simply not working. Aside that I do not think Pola will ever come up with data supporting her point of view. If she could she would long have done that way before she was sunk in the combined fire of people who know science.

                  • captain N

                    By the way is gorski the frog still bum chums with dr fata? I heard they go way back.

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    BTW, just because YOU – a non professional to whom interpreting clinical studies is a foreign language – do not understand the implications of a grouping does not mean it does not make sense. To three professionals – to whom clinical studies are *not* speaking in a foreign language it *does* make total sense. Now guess what that means ?

                  • Pola Polish

                    The argument that one the other person’s argument is dismissed because she/he does not have the academic credentials to make a valid argument, is really is just yet another attempt to deflect and not really engage in the argument, so yet another display of defeat.

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    Again you are wrong. This is not about academic credentials. This is about competency in interpreting clinical studies. You have made *several* extremely severe mistakes, assuming that n is 87 to begin with, not understanding the effect between power and study size, continuing over not understanding the design of the study (you assumed that only the CAM arm was the study) to not realizing the matching despite it was clearly stated in the paper. This non-understanding goes that deep that we had to point out *three times* how big the study really is. You could be a professor of clinical studies at Harvard University, yet your opinion still would not matter due to proven incompetency.

                  • Pola Polish

                    “we had to point out *three times* how big the study really is”. Wrong what you pointed out were the numbers of the total “study” which were used.

                    “You have made *several* extremely severe mistakes, assuming that n is 87
                    to begin with, not understanding the effect between power and study
                    size, continuing over not understanding the design of the study (you
                    assumed that only the CAM arm was the study) to not realizing the
                    matching despite it was clearly stated in the paper”

                    Again further deflection of the argument of the poor quality of the numbers of the study and a focus on the numbers themselves.

                    “(you
                    assumed that only the CAM arm was the study)” – this is a wrong assumption. As so many you have made without caring to verify them. Which seems to be the mode of your general reasoning.

                    This really poor “chart review” – is this really the best “study” you got to show to inferiority of alternative treatments?

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    Quote: “”(you
                    assumed that only the CAM arm was the study)” – this is a
                    wrong assumption” Nope, it is not. We had to point out three times the real size of the study to you. You yourself said that this study consists of 87 women of various non-standard treatments lumped together. This is conclusive proof that you did not realize the true design of the study. Your critics is based on this study design under the erroneous assumption that this study aims at differentiating between different CAM treatments. It has been pointed out to you *repeatedly* that this is a preliminary study aimimg at assessing the risk of chosing CAM treatment in general over state of the art treatment. With regard to this hypothesis, the study is not only adequate but fit to answer the question. Additionally you use an own, flawed definition of CAM. Taken together these facts invalidiate your entire criticism.

                    You are not only incompetent in statistics but also slain with a very weak memory.

                  • Pola Polish

                    The following things were clear to me from the start:
                    The whole “study” took into consideration over 15,000 women. Of those 185 refused conventional treatment.
                    Of those again 87 were selected for the study, they were under the age of 75.
                    The survival rate of the 87 was compared to the group of women who did conventional medicine.
                    This was clear to me from the beginning.
                    If you compare mortality rates, of course you need at least 2 different groups. That was clear.
                    What I admit was not clear to me is that they used only a fraction of the 15,000 to compare the survival rate to the 87 women.

                    All this does not change the fact that the 87 cases and how their treatment was documented, the type of treatments they received (or not), the definition of CAM the ‘study’ uses, renders it mostly irrelevant.

                    This is the main point. How the 87 women were looked at and how their numbers were evaluated. That’s why I only mentioned that number. But I did understand that it was a 2 armed study and the total size of it.

                    Again, it’s about quality of the numbers.

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    Quote: “Yes, that would then be lesson 102 on how to make your date fit your argument. The total number is still n=87. They then dissected and amplified that number mathematically to achieve a significant result. But the actual number of patients taken into consideration for the [study] was still 87. Not 522 (where does this number appear in the paper?), nor 87×5 which would be 435.” Dated 6:58 a.m., Tuesday May 24. This was after you have been explained the study design.

                    I.o.W. you explicitely deny the true size of the study, plus you could NOT understand the design of the study because you could NOT find the total study size. Actually it needed three explanations till you understood that.

                    Quote from now: Quote: “This was clear to me from the beginning.”

                    Note: Scientists usually have an extremely well functioning memory. You probably should keep this in mind if you try to whine yourself out of something. How do Americans rhyme so nicely ? Liar, liar pants on fire !

                  • Thomas Mohr

                    To further underline my argument, another Quote:

                    “Then you followed it up with a study which looked at 87 women with breast cancer who were clumped in one group of patients having used alternative methods although the methods were unknown in 37 of those women, and in the remaining 50 were such various modalities as prayer, diet, or vitamins, or just delayed surgery.”

                    I.o.W. initially you though this was a study with n=87 with one arm and came to the correct assumption that such a study is meaningless. Too bad for you that the study had a second arm with 5 times as many comparisons. This is further underlined by your wrong claim that any study with a size below 30 is meaningless.

                    This proves beyond any doubt that you initially thought this is a one-armed study with 87 participants.

  • Tom Burkholder

    Ozone has a trigonal planar structure, but is not an equilateral triangle as shown in the illustration. This is the structure: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/8/8c/Ozone-CRC-MW-3D-balls.png

    • https://www.naturopathicdiaries.com Britt Hermes

      Yes. I thought it would simply represent what is wrong with the ozone practice. Maybe I will switch the picture tomorrow.

    • The Bofa on the Sofa

      Hey, maybe that’s one of “the differences between medical ozone and other forms of ozone” that Brendan Cochrane, ND teaches in his seminar?

      Yeah, it’s completely wrong, but then again, everything else he says is bullshit anyway.

  • The Bofa on the Sofa

    I know I am late to the party, but had a question and a couple of comments.

    The question: do Naturopaths take organic chemistry?

    Because I know that MDs take orgo. And, believe it or not, sometimes that orgo learning can come in handy. Like in the case of ozone.

    Now, ozone is not an organic molecule, but most organic classes do touch on the reactions of organic molecules with ozone. The most important reaction is the cleavage of alkenes. Ozonolysis is a very efficient and clean way to cleave olefins into aldehydes and ketones. Moreover, it is highly applicable, and works for all kinds of double (and triple) bonds in a wide range of molecular environments.

    Ultimately, from a biochemistry point-of-view, when I think about treating with ozone, my first thought is, it’s chopping up double bonds. So when Brendan Cochrane, ND is talking about the pharmacology, does he talk about that?

    And when I read about auto-hemotherapy using ozone, my thought is about what parts of the blood are being oxidized? Because that’s all that going to happen. There are too many double bonds in blood components and ozone is too reactive for it to stick around. Moreover, ozone is known to otherwise oxidize proteins and peptides (including hemoglobin), even when they don’t contain double bonds. So you mix ozone and blood, it degrades by oxidation (note that this accounts for Carine’s comment below about how auto-hemotherapy is not as dangerous; it makes sense to me, because as soon as the blood is returned to the body, the reaction by-products are cleaned out by the liver).

    MDs don’t always appreciate the connection between their orgo class and medicine, but there are sometimes when it comes into play. This is one case where seemingly esoteric learning (“Alkenes are cleaved into ketones and aldehydes upon ozonolysis; stronger oxidants like permanganate cleave to carboxylic acids”) is helpful for recognizing the consequences.

    When my wife was in vet school, she would ask me about stuff in pharmacology. She would show me a drug and ask me what I thought. Using my knowledge of organic chemistry, I could usually have a pretty good idea of how the drug worked. Sometimes, that darn old orgo comes in handy…