People are Stupid, Ctd

This was never going to end well…belief in hocus pocus. It was a stupid belief that led to her death. This is nothing short of quackery. The “health” practitioner should be prosecuted for some sort of culpable homicide.

All this mumbo jumbo and hocus pocus, like the stupid belief that homeopathic “remedies” that are nothing more than water are stronger somehow than medicine…just goes to prove that People are Stupid.

A natural health practitioner treated a woman with a lesion on her head for 18 months, even though the practitioner recognised from the beginning that the lesion “looked cancerous”.

By the time the woman sought hospital treatment, the lesion was 10 x 11cm and some underlying bones were damaged, the Health & Disability Commissioner (HDC) said.

The woman was diagnosed with cancer and underwent major surgery but died a year later.

She had first consulted the iridologist and natural health practitioner about the lesion in February 2008. At the time the woman thought the lesion was a cyst.

Iridology is the diagnosis of a patient’s health by looking at their irises.

The provider recognised from the beginning that the lesion “looked cancerous” and that it was beyond her ability to treat, the HDC said.

Despite that, the provider treated the lesion for 18 months.

“To do so, the provider spent many hours each day at the woman’s house and the woman and provider went on holiday together.”

Treatment of the lesion included picking out dead skin, cleaning the lesion, and the use of topical and oral remedies.

Although initially the lesion appeared to improve, it later grew larger, was frequently infected, bled frequently, and smelled unpleasant. The woman became weak and was in severe pain, the report said.

The provider did not retain any records of the care she provided and no other health practitioner treated the woman’s lesion during that time.


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  • Mr_Blobby

    All for holding people accountable, and she should be. But the medical profession also has a lot to be held accountable for too.

    • steve and monique

      Just wondering if any medical professionals saw this lady before the natural health practitioner. What sort of quals do some of these quacks need to recklessly “treat” people. Perhaps if there were high standards and people were held as accountable as actual doctors and specialists, maybe not so many plonkers would be practising and taking peoples lives into their hands.

  • Mike

    It’s no more quackery, mumbo jumbo or hocus pocus than praying to the sky fairy to cure your cancer.

    • Brian Smaller

      Yes – I find it funny how people can deride one sort of magic and then laud another. Guess you have to believe…..kind of like the woman in the article.

    • Tristanb

      Well of course. But that’s if you’re only relying on prayers to God and not seeking proper medical help.

      But other than a few fundies and cults, most religious leaders aren’t going to tell you to skip the curative chemotherapy for your kid’s cancer and let God do the work. Those that do are the same weirdos who don’t believe in evolution or think the big bang didn’t happen.

      Sadly many of these alternative medicine people have an irrational hatred of science and technology (much like the Greens) and ensure their clients are aware of their disdain.

  • NotLen

    The word is that Steve Jobs had refused conventional medicine, instead choosing to go with “natural” remedies. He would probably be still alive if he had real treatment.

  • Jman

    Yes it’s amazing how many seemingly intelligent people fall for these charlatans. Count yourself among the gullible if you indulge in acupuncture, magnetic healing (like those Biomag mattress underlays) homeopathic remedies the list goes on.

    • Karlos

      It amazes me how people think the the current medical proffession has the answers to everything that ails ya. First port of call should always be to a medical proffessional, but I would always look at alternatives if the former isn’t working. The medical ‘prffossionals’ put me on Prozac for my depression, made me worse! Tried alternative theoropies (St John’s Wart and a high fish diet) along with exercise, and I was feeling 10x better in no time. I agree this lady was an idiot, I don’t agree that alternative medicines have no place in modern society.

      • Jman

        Eating lots of fish and exercising are hardly “alternative therapies”. Any good doctor would recommend that. As for St Johns Wort, a brief bit of research tells me that it appears to have some accepted benefits for mild depression. As such it would also no longer be considered “alternative medicine.” For something to be “alternative” it needs to be unproven and unable to show any actual benefit in testing. If scientific studies show that something actually works, then it becomes accepted as part of mainstream medicine and is no longer “alternative”.

    • WayneO

      Oh the biomag sham, and yet it’s somehow evil to live near power lines with their electromagnetic radiation…. These muppets will claim it’s somehow “different” but a magnetic field is a magnetic field. Idiots.

      Has anyone seen those plastic wrist bands that sell for $100 to improve your “natural energy field” ??? Some very smart businessman has created a way to turn 4 cents worth of rubber into $100. What an absolute genius.

  • Richard McGrath

    I say let patients choose their health practitioner. It will become (and has become) very apparent which treatments work for certain conditions. People should be able to opt out of orthodox medicine, as it doesn’t cure every illness (I should know, I work part-time as a GP). But most importantly, we should stop the government subsidisation of Western medical practitioners. In fact, get the government out of funding medical treatment altogether. Give people their tax dollars back and let them choose whatever level of health care they wish to purchase.

  • Tristanb

    The main issue isn’t how this iridologist acted as a “professional”, it’s how she acted as a human being.

    Now I know that to get into alternative medicine you have to be a bit callous, a bit manipulative and deceitful. After all, you’re actively making up bullshit to tell your client so you can take more of their money. But you could say the same about NZ judges.

    But this practitioner felt her patient had cancer, and actively discouraged her from seeking help. She sat there, taking this woman’s money as the cancer grew and grew.

    This goes beyond the amorality of bullshitting rich hippies that sniffing cloves will help their headaches. You’d have to have an evil streak in you to watch this malignant tumour eat away at another human being’s skull, just because…. Actually, I don’t know why anyone would do it, other that purposely to see someone else suffer.

  • Sooty

    Name and shame. The only way to stop other people getting the same treatment.

  • OneTrack

    Darwin works again

  • Lion_ess

    A favorite is the psychics who can’t go past the first letter when guessing people’s names