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L*** M***** wrote:

Please help my very bright son who is 8. A Neuro Psych. assessed
him, found IQ of 120, and most academic strengths well above 90th%

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
all psych testing in BS, none are biological absolutes, so if you
beleive in the "nice" things such as "gifted", IQs of 120, 140, whatever it
takes to get in the "gifted program, you set yourself (and your child) up
for all of the negative labels too, and their "treatments." ]

finds a debilitating problem with speed of processing and filtration of

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
this to is pure BS and HS too and you cannot tell where one
ends and the other begins, what's more they take your money for it]

. He will see a speech Path. for slow word retrieval

[Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD:
more BS/HS--BS/
HS everwhere you turn, take your son, without delay and get away from these
people, nothing but harm can result. If your son is 8 and very bright and
has a spoken and reading vocabulary at or above age and grade level he is
normal or brighter, that to be deterimined by the ongoing test of education
and life. Saying he has a has vocabulary in 15-18 yr. old range, is the
most accurate indicator we have that he is normal, brighter. Get out of
there for these and reasons in the letter to editor of Chronicles magazine I
attach. All he needs is a school--private, parochial or home school that
you have assured does not confuse psych fraud with education. Hard to find
but thats what he needs, not more dx.]

, but has vocabulary in 15-18
yr. old category. Dr. "had" to assign a "code" for public school and chose
ADD-Inattentive. I don't believe in ADD or ADHD and I don't want him labeled
as such. Can you recommend a Dr. for acacdemic/behavior assesment who does
not diagnose ADD or ADHD in the Seattle, WA area?
Sincerely,  L*** M*****

Dr. Baughman's implied argument (in "Making a Killing," Vital Signs,
Chronicle Magazine, June, 2003, cowritten by B.K. Eakman) that, if there is
no objective means of
diagnosing a disease, then there is no need for medical treatment, is
akin to throwing the baby out with the bath water.   Up until relatively
recently, medicine relied on clinical criteria (the combination of the
patient's self-report and the physician's subjective observation) in
making a diagnosis of disease or health.  Many non-psychiatric
diagnoses, including acute appendicitis and multiple sclerosis, are
still made on largely clinical grounds with scant or conflicting
laboratory or imaging evidence.

Psychiatry relies on the clinical
method exclusively because no one really knows yet what causes
psychiatric illness.  Despite the abundance of hypotheses and some
interesting advanced neuroimaging studies, there is no way yet to
diagnose psychiatric disease by means of a blood test or an imaging
study.  In this way, the modern psychiatrist resembles the general
practitioner of the 19th century who could describe and classify
various illnesses but who had only vague or incorrect ideas about their
cause and treatment.  The inability to confirm a diagnosis by technical
means should not cause us to doubt the existence of a disorder when one
is apparent.  There are and always have been unfortunate individuals
who hallucinate, experience delusions, or become profoundly disabled as
a result of a severe mood disturbance.  Sometimes, the cause of these
symptoms is physical and measurable.  Most of the time, these patients
are either physically "normal" or have physical abnormalities that are
apparently unrelated to their psychiatric disturbance.  The absence of
objective diagnostic tools in psychiatry is one of the greatest
obstacles facing the field today.  Yet the suffering of psychiatric
patients is real, and we have to diagnose and treat them to the best of
our abilities with the means currently available, no matter how

Psychiatry is hardly the only medical field that is heavily influenced
by the pharmaceutical industry.  Criteria for treating elevated
cholesterol, blood pressure, and blood sugar are becoming increasingly
more stringent, with combination drug therapy being the rule rather
than the exception of treatment, even for mild cases that could and
should be managed with lifestyle changes alone.  It is an oversight to
target the psychopharmaceutical industry as "a kind of legal drug
cartel" because the same companies that manufacture antidepressant
medications also make expensive nonpsychiatric drugs designed to
correct "chemical imbalances," albeit of a different kind.  The
expansion of the illness model to include borderline and possibly
normal cases is happening across medical disciplines because most
medical research is

So far as ADHD is concerned, hardly anyone ever wonders about the
possible environmental contributions to what is undoubtedly a pattern
of increasing distractibility, hyperactivity, and behavioral
instability in today's children.  The jury is still out as to whether
ADHD is a "disease" and whether it is associated with brain
abnormalities.  The real question is whether this is a condition that
is produced in susceptible children by early and excessive exposure to
television and other visual media technology that condition the growing
brain into developing a short attention span and a drive for constant
novelty.  In our society, it is much easier just to "treat" this
disorder with drugs, since, this way, the market wins, and no one has
to make any difficult choices about how to rear children.

-Boris Vatel, M.D.
Evansville, IN

Fred A. Baughman Jr., MD responds to Vatel (this letter to the editor of
Chronicles was submitted today 7 31 03.  I do not yet know what the final
edited form will look like):

Dr. Vatel, a psychiatrist, adheres to the
belief system-not science-that all psychiatric/emotional/behavioral problems
are "diseases"/ "chemical imbalances" of the brain.   We are inundated with
such claims, mostly in ads for psychiatric drugs-"chemical balancers".
Where have these "diseases"/ "chemical imbalances come from?  I have been a
neurologist since 1964 and I have discovered real brain and genetic
diseases.  I am not aware that a single psychiatric/emotional/behavioral
condition has been proved to be a brain abnormality/disease.

In 1948, neurology and psychiatry were formally split by the American Board
of Psychiatry and Neurology, neurology to deal with organic disease of the
nervous system; psychiatry with emotional and  behavioral problems in the
neurologically/ physically normal.  Nor did psychiatry object.  It wasn't
until the sixties, with psychiatric drugs being marketed, that Big Pharma
and psychiatry merged and, as market strategy-not science-declared that all
emotional and behavioral problems were "diseases"/ "chemical imbalances"
needing "chemical balancers"- pills.

There are no biological tests in psychiatry because there are no
biological/physical abnormalities to test for-not one.  This is why I wrote
Attorney General Janet Reno, April 15, 1998: " the single biggest health
care fraud in US history is the misrepresentation of attention deficit
hyperactivity an actual disease, and the drugging of  millions
of entirely normal American children."  In fact all of
psychiatric/emotional/behavioral problems represented to be  "diseases"/
"chemical imbalances" of the brain, are a fraud.   Every such representation
to a patient is an abrogation of their informed consent rights, and medical

They regularly invoke their "voluminous" literature.  Their "disease"
research is not "poor" or "misguided" science; it is not science at all.
In that not a single psychiatric "disease" has been validated by proof of a
confirming abnormality (example: elevated blood sugar in diabetes, malignant
cells in cancer), all of their "research" is done on children/subjects who
are physically/medically normal, although labeled with one or more of
psychiatry's 347 subjective "disease" labels.  With our tax dollars and
"unrestricted grants" from Big Pharma, they apply state-of-the-art
technology to subjects  with no abnormality/disease (other than the drugs
they are on), generating a deceitful, pseudoscientific literature (replete
with press releases)  for their every  "proof," all of it
fraud and deception.

A young father testified in Ritalin hearings in Nashville, Tennessee, in
December, 1997: : "My ten year old's psychiatrist said the Ritalin was for
his "chemical imbalance."  I asked him for the lab results.  He stuttered,
and stammered, then 'lost it,'confessed he had no such records, and banished
us from his office."

Such is the nature of  "biological" psychiatry.

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