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Editorial Issue 113

by Sandra Goodman PhD(more info)

listed in editorial, originally published in issue 113 - July 2005

It has been awhile since I have been riveted by a genuinely exciting, inspiring scientific tale of discovery that clinically alleviates symptoms of long-sufferers of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, also known as ME (Myalgic Encephalomyelitis) – CFS/ME.

So, when I received the review by Dr Derek Pheby of Professor Basant Puri's book Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – A Natural Way to Treat ME (Hammersmith Press 2005), I was intrigued about the promising and significant clinical and objective MRI scan results experienced by sufferers of CFS/ME using specifically formulated essential fatty acids.

Professor Puri grippingly relates how his scientific research collaborations regarding the role of essential fatty acids into brain function have led to discoveries such as fatty acid modifications within the brains of CFS/ME sufferers, even measurable differences in MRI brain scans in sufferers. Professor Puri was awarded his PhD following his co-development of a technique to measure changes in parts of the brain between successive MRI scans.

I followed his tale with great interest, as it involved esteemed great researchers including the prematurely deceased Dr David Horrobin (please see review of Adam and Eve: How Schizophrenia Shaped Humanity ). It was Dr Horrobin, who founded Efamol and was a world expert on essential fatty acids, who, earlier in his role as Editor of Medical Hypothesis first read and mentored my first germanium article Therapeutic Effects of Organic Germanium Medical Hypotheses. 26: 207-15. 1988.

Read the review of Professor Puri's book (see page 55); it is a must-read for every sufferer of CFS/ME, as well as all those interested in the biochemistry and function of essential fatty acids, which play huge roles in Depression, ADHD, even the quality and lustre of our skin, nails and hair.

Unlike cancer, heart disease, AIDS and other 'sexy' conditions, CFS/ME doesn't often receive much media attention. However, as evidenced by the considerable body of publications even within Positive Health (PH) over the past decade (www.positivehealth.com/article-list.php?subjectid=51) there is a serious medical, social and biochemical story about this condition which has been so frequently patronizingly called 'Yuppie flu' by the medical profession.

Imagine suffering for decades from debilitating and devastating fatigue, muscle aches, cognitive and memory dysfunctions, only to be dismissively fobbed off by your doctor, informed that it was 'all in your mind' and told to pull up your socks and stop being a malingerer. This is not a fantasy scenario – this is the real-life situation for many tens of thousands of CFS/ME patients. Controversy within the medical profession regarding this condition has occasionally surfaced into the public eye with documentaries and Parliamentary Reports investigating the involvement of Psychiatry in hijacking the diagnosis and treatment of CFS/ME patients who have been severely bullied and harmed by the medical profession. An extract from The Chief Medical Officer's Working Group Report on CFS/ME (2002) reveals the true scope of these harmful activities:

"…In the UK, patients with myalgic encephalomyelitis (ME, also known as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome or CFS), particularly children, have suffered gross and barbaric abuse and persistent denigration as a consequence of the beliefs of certain psychiatrists who are attempting to control the national agenda for this complex and severe neuro-immunological disorder.

These psychiatrists are shown to be clearly in breach of the first tenet of medicine – first do no harm – in that by their words and deeds they have wreaked havoc in the lives of ME/CFS patients and their families by their arrogant pursuit of a psychiatric construct of the disorder which ignores the abundant clinical and scientific evidence (widely presented in the international medical and scientific literature) of the organic nature of ME/CFS.

There have been persistent and frequently covert attempts by these psychiatrists to subvert the international classification of this disorder, with destructive consequences for those affected.

To the serious disadvantage of patients, these psychiatrists have propagated untruths and falsehoods about the disorder to the medical, legal, insurance and media communities, as well as to Government Ministers and to Members of Parliament, resulting in the withdrawal and erosion of both social and financial support.

Influenced by these psychiatrists, Government bodies such as the Medical Research Council have continued to propagate the same falsehoods with the result that patients are left without any hope of understanding or of health service provision or delivery. As a consequence, Government funding into the biomedical aspects of the disorder is non-existent…"

It is refreshing to witness the dedication and commitment of such scientists as Professor Puri to the clinical evidence and results of research demonstrating improvements to CFS/ME patients. A feature Recovery from ME/CFS by Denise Kingsley-Acton will be published in the August Issue 114 of Positive Health. I genuinely hope that Professor Puri will also contribute an article in a future issue of PH, detailing his work with CFS/ME.

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About Sandra Goodman PhD

Sandra Goodman PhD, Co-founder and Editor of Positive Health, trained as a Molecular Biology scientist in Agricultural Biotechnology in Canada and the US. She has focused upon health issues since the 1980s in the UK. Author of 4 books, including Nutrition and Cancer: State-of-the-Art, Vitamin C – The Master Nutrient, Germanium: The Health and Life Enhancer and numerous articles, Dr Goodman was the lead author of the Consensus Document Nutritional and LifeStyle Guidelines for People with Cancer and compiled the Cancer and Nutrition Database for the Bristol Cancer Help Centre in 1993.

 

In publishing in Positive Health PH Online authoritative articles and book reviews by leading proponents of numerous alternative cancer treatment approaches, Dr Goodman has demonstrated her passion about the necessity of making available to all people, particularly those with cancer, considerable clinical expertise in areas of Nutrition and Complementary Therapies. She is a member of the Therapy Advisory Panel of the Penny Brohn Cancer Care, Scientific Expert Committee member of the Alliance for Natural Health and a Patron of the Avalon Complementary Medicine Trust in Wells, Somerset. Nutrition and Cancer.

 

Dr Goodman and Mike Howell, her long-term partner, seek individuals with the resources, structural organization and interest to continue and expand the legacy of Positive Health PH Online forward into the 21st century, adding facilities to conduct online seminars, fund raise for alternative cancer research, as well as to promote leading holistic organizations and businesses internationally. Follow her Blog and purchase Nutrition and Cancer: State-of-the-Art.  Dr S Goodman may be contacted privately for Research, Lectures and Editorial services via: sandra@drsgoodman.com     www.drsgoodman.com  sandra@positivehealth.com   and www.positivehealth.com

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