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Saturday, August 5, 2000


Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD 8/5/00 (may copy with attribution)

[Dr. Baughman-
replying to a letter from Dara (a concerned mother) - 8/5/00

Hi. I was wondering if you could help me. I’m very worried about my son. He
is extremely hyper a lot of the time. And he also talks inappropriately
(doesn’t make sense) sometimes. He went to Special Ed for 2 years because
they felt he was speech delayed. He did excellently there and they all feel
he should go to regular kindergarten. He was also evaluated by the school
district who felt that he is a bit hyper, but special ed would be too slow
for him because he is very smart. So, he will not be getting special ed
anymore. He masters computer programs right away. And he CAN make sense, but
talks ridiculously silly a lot.

[Dr. Baughman-
That he seems ‘very smart’ masters computer programs right away
and CAN make sense suggests to me that most important of all he is
within normal limits, intellectually, which would suggest he is
neurologically normal

He also is obsessed with touching my chin
while sucking his thumb, and now that I got him to stop, he talks about
chins, OK, do you think there is something wrong yet?

[Dr. Baughman-
this suggests nothing physically, neurologically abnormal

I have to tell you he
is extremely loving, happy, maybe even manic!!! He is an only child. I am
extremely hyper – can’t go NEAR caffeine, so I guess I gave him this. I try
to be relaxed around him, but maybe I just ooze hyperness myself.

[Dr. Baughman-
nor is this a distinct abnormality

what should I do? I’m so afraid that if I send him to a neurologist, they
will say he is ADHD and should go on meds. I don’t want that at all. Please
help!! Thanks, dara

[Dr. Baughman-
This, given the prevalence of profit-seeking prescribing (both in
regard to diagnostics and therapeutics) is a real danger in every
physician/patient encounter. From 1965 to 2000 the number of physicians
rose from 140/100,000citizens to 280/100,000 resulting in each physician
having ½ the patients, seeing ½ the amount of real disease, today than
they was in 1965. To compensate, financially, physicians first took to
prescribing more treatment, and later, to inventing new ‘disorders’ and
‘diseases’ in order to make ‘patients’ of normal persons. This in fact
is the root cause of the US health care crisis. The AMA and the
Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) are aware of this
situation and, acting—rather, not acting, out self interest, have cut
back not at all. Still the glut of MDs and DOs worsens, and so much
money is spent on money-seeking, unnecessary care that not enough is
left over to treat the real disease among persons who cannot pay the
exhorbitant price our system exacts.

It can be dangerous not to go to a doctor if you have a real disease.
It can also be dangerous to go to doctors, in time and places of
physician glut, if you, your children have no real disease.

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