Letter to Dr. Gerald Lucey, Editor-in-Chief, PEDIATRICS (9-13-01)
Dr. Gerald Lucey September 13, 2001 Editor-in-Chief, PEDIATRICS Fletcher Allen Health Care McClure 718 111 Colchester Ave. Burlington, VT 05401 firstname.lastname@example.org Dear Dr. Lucey, Although you published my letter  on the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Guidelines  for the diagnosis of the invented, never-validated "neurobehavioral disorder"/ "disease"ADHD, there was no response from the J.M. Perrin or M. Stein of the AAP Subcommittee on ADHD, from the AAP itself, or, from yourself ,or any member of the editorial board of PEDIATRICS. Surely, if there were any proof of its existence as a diagnosable disease; a detectable abnormality within the child/person, someone would have referenced it in a response. Surely, if there were no such proof; if my charges went unanswered because there was no proof, they would have expressed a willingness to change the wording of the Guideline "to reflect the scientific and medical facts of the matter," as I requested. But they didnt do that either, prompting the question, do we speak here of the practice of medicine or of the business of medicine, with the two being mutually exclusive. Without a doubt, US parents and the public-at-large have been lead to believe that ADHD is a "brain disease" due to a "chemical imbalance of the brain," for which a "chemical balancer," a pill, is the only logical treatment. That they have come to believe as much means that their informed consent rights have been abrogated; that they have been lied to. Who are the purveyors of this lie? A young mother from Connecticut, with a child thus victimized, just mailed me a copy of an article from PEDIATRICS  entitled "An Adolescent Who Abruptly Stops His Medication for Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder." Herein, M. Stein, Professor of Pediatrics, University of California, San Diego, and a member of the Subcommittee on ADHD of the AAP, writes, "Factors that impact compliance include their belief that the treatment will be effective, the parents understanding of the disease and how " In this article about ADHD, this is as if to say that it is a disease. Next, Stein writes of a teen with leukemia, unresponsive to chemotherapy, who then refused a recommended bone marrow transplant. Of this case, Stein writes, "The present case (that of Robbie, with ADHD)  is of an adolescent who also refused a medical treatment " Not only does Stein imply that ADHD is an actual disease, he has the audacity to compare it to leukemia. Writing of Robbie, the adolescent who stops his own methylphenidate (Ritalin), Dr. Mary-Ann Schafer, Professor of Pediatrics, and Dr. Glen Elliott, Associate Professor of Psychiatry, both of the University of California, San Francisco, state: "Robbie may have heard something from a teacher or other professional that most kids "outgrow" ADHD by adolescence. However, ADHD is not only a disease of childhood and early adolescence. One third of children with the syndrome continue with obvious symptoms through adolescence and into adulthood " Here we have not just the implication that ADHD is a disease; an abnormality at home, at school, and socially while off (medication) or, if the need is shown on appropriate medication " Here, Shafer and Elliot leave no doubt they would condition basic rights, including a drivers license, on Robbies behavior within the person, rather we have a forthright statement of fact that it is. Nextas if for emphasis, it is called a syndrome, which, in medicine is tantamount to calling it a disease, since this term also implies the presence of an objective physical/chemical abnormality. With no facts to back it up such statements, do they constitute anything other than marketplace propaganda, intent on making "patients" of normal children/persons? As if to urge Robbie not to jettison his diagnosis; not to desert the ranks of the diseased in which he has, so artificially, been placed, Shafer and Elliott write, "Robbie needs to hear the message that in most cases, ADHD is a life-long challenge that needs attention." Next, drawing upon biological psychiatrys incessant comparisons of all things emotional/behavioral to real diseases they write, "Robbie is not unlike any middle adolescent with a chronic disease like diabetes mellitus " On page 976, Shafer and Elliott write: "Consider tying the ability to obtain a drivers license with his ability to continue to perform acceptably at home, at school, and socially while off (the drug) or, if the need is shown by this trial, on appropriate medication " To condition fundamental rights, such as a drivers license upon behavior or compliance in taking a prescription drug for a disease that does not exist, is not science or the ethical practice of medicine, but is tyranny. I find it disturbing indeed that medical academia, and its journals have become a participant in the deception of the US public that is "biological psychiatry"the baseless, pseudoscientific claim that all emotional and behavioral problems are "diseases" due to "chemical imbalances" of the brain. This is hardly in keeping with the medical-legal obligation of all physicians to determine whether or not our patients have an actual disease, and, if so which one. Implicit herein, is that we have a duty to tell all of those having no disease, that they have no disease, that they are normal. Biological psychiatry, practiced now through the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) Guideline on ADHD, tells them, instead that they have a disease, a syndrome, and clearly implies, just as Shafer and Elliott do, that it will be "a life-long challenge." Six million entirely normal US children have been fraudulently diagnosed ADHD/diseased/abnormal and put on addictive, dangerous, sometimes deadly, Schedule II, controlled psychostimulants. With no actual disease on the "risk" side of the "risk" vs. "benefit" equation, this is wholly unjustifiablea veritable cancer upon the children and families of the nation; a veritable cancer upon "Robbie," until he had the good sense to spit out both his Ritalin and his fraudulent ADHD diagnosis. Sincerely, Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD 1303 Hidden Mountain Drive El Cajon, CA 92019 email@example.com References 1. Baughman FA. Diagnosis and Evaluation of the Child With Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. PEDIATRICS. May 1, 2001, p. 1239. 2. Clinical Practice Guideline: Diagnosis and Evaluation of the Child with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactiviity Disorder. Committee on Quality Improvement, Subcommittee on Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. PEDIATRICS. 2000;105:1158- 3. Stein MT, Schafer M-A, Elliott GR, Levine S. An Adolescent Who Abruptly Stops His Medication for Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. 2001; 107:974-978.