Doctor’s Data is a fraud

Doctor’s Data is a quack group that quacks around with data it produces for patients. That information is then used to create unjustified fears in healthy patients.

PZ has a post on this I’m going to copy and paste. I normally wouldn’t do this for an entire post (mostly for aesthetic reasons), but I know how much charlatan Christopher Maloney hates when people do that. I mean, I get it. Exposure isn’t good for alternative woo medicine business.

I don’t envy Stephen Barrett at all, but this is going to be good. Barrett is the doctor behind QuackWatch a wonderful resource for exposing bogus medical claims. Among the many subjects of common charlatanry he’s taken apart, one is the use of invalid tests to justify useless treatments, like chelation therapy, which is a goldmine for quacks. Do the doctory thing of drawing a little blood while wearing a white lab coat, send it off to a ‘lab’ that does a few tests and sends back a very official looking mass of data, and then the quack gazes into it and announces that you need powdered newts’ eyes, or whatever nostrum he’s peddling that day.

Barrett explained in thorough detail how the reports of one such ‘lab’, called “Doctor’s Data”, were jiggered to create unnecessary fears in patients.

Now Doctor’s Data is suing him.

This is going to be such a hassle for Barrett—a pointless, frivolous suit by con artists who don’t like the fact that he has publicly exposed their scam. But it is also deliciously ironic, because the suit will also make Doctor’s Data more widely known as a fraud. Everyone should go read the relevant articles on QuackWatch:

* How the Urine Toxic Metals Test Is Used to Defraud Patients
* CARE Clinics, Doctor’s Data, Sued for Fraud
* Be Wary of CARE Clinics and the Center for Autistic Spectrum Disorders (CASD)
* Three brief articles in Consumer Health Digest:
o Slate article blasts the urine toxic metals test
o Shady clinic and lab under legal assault
o “Autism specialists” sued
* Laboratories Doing Nonstandard Laboratory Tests

Spread the news far and wide. Make sure everyone knows Doctor’s Data is a fraud.

And if you want to help out monetarily, Quackwatch accepts donations.

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17 Responses

  1. If Baloney Maloney doesn’t like it then post it again every day for two weeks.

  2. I’ve written up a post on the background and rationale for Dr. Barrett to have written the articles Doctor’s Data objects to. As I sometimes do, I have a running list of blog posts and articles commenting on the issue. I’ve included yours.

    http://lizditz.typepad.com/i_speak_of_dreams/2010/07/health-consumer-activist-subject-to-legal-threats.html.

    It’s kind of nice that when you search for “Doctor’s Data”, other than the paid link the second one that comes up is Dr. Barrett’s post on why they are suing him.

  3. Many heavy metals BIND to tissues. They do not circulate in the blood, to be removed by the kidneys into the urine, except for maybe a few days to a couple weeks. After that, urine or blood can’t reveal true poisoning or toxicity. Without provoked testing, you have no idea of heavy metals burden–unless poisoned the day before the test. The reference level is non-provoked, because you shouldn’t have poisons your body can’t remove.

    Doctors Data toxic metals tests were especially useful as a GUIDE to how much mercury I had & how efficiently my body was eliminating it. This was supervised by a qualified professional–an ND who is NOT a quack. Mercury toxicity is a serious issue which most MDs don’t take seriously. MDs don’t have all the answers. There will always be charlatans, & many of them are MDs. Does Barrett write about them???

  4. This is written for whomever is reading this and is willing
    to admit that the truth is often hard to come by.
    ( the preceding email written by Lu Lu is correct. )

    First I would like everyone to know that Dr Stephen
    Barrett is a member of NCAHF. One of its premiere
    members was and maybe still is Victor Herbert, MD,

    Dr Herbet believes and his organization believes
    that heavy metal poisoning and its associated
    treatment with chelation is scientifically unverifiable.
    Around 15 or 20 years ago Dr Herbet brought
    a law suit against a doctor Warren Levin, claiming
    that Dr Levin among many things used chelation
    therapy and that it was “quackery”, as he said
    many times in his court testimony. Dr. Levin
    in his defense brought in many doctors, who agreed
    with him; but for scientific justification his premiere
    witness was Linus Pauling. When questioned
    Dr Herbet’s lawyer cross examined, Linus Pauling,
    he tried to discredit him, by asking Dr Pauling
    if he was an MD. Dr. Pauling answered no. He did
    not go on to talk about himself he just answered no.
    The lawyer for Doctor Levine, though did ask Linus
    Pauling if he had ever won a Nobel Prize. He answered
    yes. The attorney asked and what did you win the
    Nobel Prize for. And Linus Pauling said that he actually
    won two Nobel Prizes, one for the discovery of the
    ionic bond in chemistry, and the other was the Nobel
    Peace Prize for his making it well known about the negative
    effects of testing atom bombs both on atmosphere
    and our health. Linus Pauling also discovered the
    alpha helix which is the structure of the gene. Many
    say he would have discovered the gene had he been
    allowed to leave the country, as his son took all his
    information to the Cavendish laboratory in London
    and it was Watson and Crick, of the Cavendish laboratory, who were the first to
    see everything that Linus Pauling had done and they
    discovered the gene. Watson and Crick had access
    to the information, I believe photographic evidence that had
    been done in Europe was concerning the shape of the gene. Linus Pauling was initially unable to see the
    research done in Europe, as his passport had been
    revoked on the grounds that he was anti-american,
    because of his stand on nuclear testing. Wikipedia
    says this did not matter because he eventually saw
    the photograph when the government allowed him
    to travel to Sweden to accept the prize. Wikipedia
    does mention that Linus Pauling only briefly saw
    the photograph and that was only at the end or
    last moment as Watson and Crick had been digesting
    the information for several months before they
    came to their conclusions. 20 Greatest Minds of All Time, by Jim Glenn (Crescent Books, 1996). Linus Pauling is listed along with Archimedes, Gregor Mendel, William Harvey, Charles Darwin, and Rend Descartes. Watson and Crick are not listed and
    Victor Herbert and Stephen Barrett are not listed.
    But Victor Herbert’s attack on Linus Pauling was
    that he was not an MD, but he certainly could not
    argue that he was unscientific as he is considered
    one of the greatest scientists of all time. Needless
    to say the lawsuit was dismissed. Warren Levin
    not Dr Herbert and NCAHF lost.
    Now we have
    Dr Barrett attacking Linus Pauling.

    http://www.quackwatch.com/01QuackeryRelatedTopics/pauling.html

    I do not have time
    to answer all the charges, but Linus Pauling stated
    that large doses of vitamin C would cure a cold.
    Dr Barrett sights numerous examples of studies
    that show no effect of Vitamin C on curing the common
    cold. These studies do exist but Doctor Barrett leaves
    out many facts. First Linus Pauling said that one
    has to take at least 1000mg every hour for at least
    two or three days. Not one study that Dr Barrett sights
    used such a procedure. Secondly, Dr Pauling’s protocol
    initially worked wonders for me and other people.
    But I remember two friends who told me it did not
    work. Upon investigation they admited they only took
    a gram every three or four hours not every hour. Most
    people do not have the discipline to follow such
    a procedure. Finally, so many people noticed a positive
    effect that millions world wide started taking Linus
    Pauling’s advice. According to the scientifically verified
    theory of evolution, a virus mutation will occur and
    with so many people around the world taking vitamin
    C, the cold virus might become more resistent in time.
    This certainly has been the case with all the anti-biotics. As to Stephen Barretts other attacks against
    Linus Pauling such as Cancer and Vitamin C,
    I cannot go into great detail as cancer is infinitely
    more complicated than the discovery of the gene
    or the common cold virus. Let me say though, that
    the Pharmacutecil Industry has no interest,
    in Vitamin C curing cancer. There certainly
    is incentive as vitamin C is readily available
    and cheap. So when a study
    says Vitamin C has no effect we see that study is usually funded by the Pharmacutecil Industry. Personally, I believe
    that cancer is a general term and there are over
    200 different diseases that come under the general
    heading of cancer. So I do not believe that just
    Vitamin C only will cure all of them and neither
    did Linus Pauling. As an example of how the
    Pharmacutecil Industy and the FDA have misled
    the public, is the FDA minimum daily requirement
    of vitamins. Vitamin C for example is 100mg
    per day, that is the FDA statute. (do not attack
    me if it is 80 or 120mgs, I am illustrating an
    example). Linus Pauling showed that, yes
    one starts excreting the VItamin after 100mg
    but only one percent of the Vitamin. Complete
    excretion of the Vitamin, occurs only after
    1000mg, so that 600 mg is absorbed and 400
    excreted in the first 1000mg and anything after
    that is completely excreted. Furthermore,
    an hour or two later one can take another
    1000mg and again absorb 600mg. And if
    one is sick, one can absorb up to 5000mg per
    hour. So I have no respect for Dr Stephen
    Barrett, and the NCAHF. They are not scientific
    and they are not in search of the truth. I do not
    believe Linus Pauling had all the answers
    but he practiced what he preached, he lived
    to be nintey four, and he certainly was scientific,
    and he was certainly in search of the truth.

    Doctor’s Data is a reputable laboratory, that
    is the one most Doctor’s and scientists
    use when testing for heavy metals. Warren
    Levin used Doctor’s Data and Andrew Cutler
    who has written an extensive book on heavy
    metal toxicity
    uses Doctor’s Data.
    http://www.noamalgam.com/hairtestbook.html
    http://home.earthlink.net/~moriam/HOW_TO_hair_test.html#get_hair_test
    http://www.internetwks.com/pauling/quack.html

    I myself as very sick for twelve
    years. Initially the lab results from Doctor’s
    Data showed no heavy metal toxicity. It
    was only after I read somewhere that one needs to
    do at least three IVs to be sure that I went back
    to Dr Warren Levine, the first two times
    Dr Levine told me I did not have heavy metal
    poisoning and he did not tell me to do it
    a third time. Upon the third IV the heavy
    metal mercury had been loosened up enough
    from the first two IVs
    that it now came out in my urine and I had
    industrial toxicity. Heavy metal poisoning
    was not the only cause of my illness, but
    I am running out of time. If anyone wants
    to know how I cured myseld of CIFIDS
    which for me was a combination of heavy
    metal poisoning, LYME disease, h-pylori
    overgrowth, cultural alienation do to the
    Viet Nam war, a dsyfunctional family do
    to a divorce, and the alienation of the corporate
    world; You can contact me at wcwooten@earthlink.net.

    The following is brief description of my initial
    experience with my mental and physical health
    breaking down – today I am physically fit and in
    good health to the best of my knowledge, and
    at present, I am 64 years old, I got sick
    when I was around fifty and the center of
    disease control statistics said that no one
    with my condition and age would ever get
    better:

    I went to over thirty doctors and over and above my insurance
    I spent $200,000 (that is out of pocket for treatments not covered by
    insurance). Each doctor would look at me, and they would see how thin
    and gaunt I was and they would assume I had AIDS, but
    the tests always came back negative. Initially I had fevers and chills
    and rashes would break out all over my body. I always felt tired and
    drained but I could not sleep. When the doctors could not find a virus
    or bacteria, or an incipient tumor or cancer under the microscope,
    I was told it was meat, it was milk, it was sugar, I was overrun
    with yeast and it was killing me. Each day I meticuluously detailed
    in a notebook a list of the foods I would seek out and eat. An avocado,
    an orange, a bag of spinach, but it had to be a new food, something
    I had not eaten in a week. Rotating your diet. it was called; at first
    food was my savior, but then I became obsessed with food, and it turned
    on me, turned to nausea, and acidity, and eventually
    I could not eat anything, Even a tiny berry, any small morsel ingested would feel
    like I had a knife in my stomach. Slowly I lost more and
    more weight, 50 lbs in all, I was so thin,
    I looked like I barely had any skin on my bones;
    so much so that I would joke that people would mistaken me for a skeleton
    and try to hang me up in the closet. The doctors wanted to put me in the
    hospital and feed me intravenously, but even though I was told I might
    die, I knew it would not banish the devil that lived in my stomach,
    so I refused. Psychiatrists also wanted
    to hospitalize me and give me Paxil or Thorazine, they said that would
    calm me down and clear my mind, but I knew it was a mask, I knew that what
    ever was driving me insane would still be there inside me.
    I wanted to sleep to get
    out of the mysery and the pain but the fear of my illness prevented me from closing my eyes. So eventually
    I would venture out into the air, but even the slighest polution would effect my
    senses and it would look like it was snowing;
    I knew it was not snowing, as the time might be the middle of the summer,
    but what was the answer, was I mad. Yes, I sometimes thought I was mad, particularly
    as I was confronted
    with madness in many forms. As I walked outside, whether it was night or day,
    when people would approach. their faces would become distorted as if monstrous,
    as if they knew a hideous secret about me, that I did not know. Then if I continued
    walking there would be my obssession, a longing, an imaginary smell that
    would lead me into a gorcery store, but the out gases from the packaged products
    would seem to fall like a vapor and seep
    beneath my skin and I would feel eerily ill. I finally I would feel repelled
    and I would retreat home. My only moments of clarity were when I was
    in my completely empty apartment next to a high powered air filter breathing in
    perfectly pure air or so I thought as later I was told it had to be properly
    ionized. If I had any stress a new, fresh rash would break out, sometimes there
    would be sores and I often would get bladder infections
    so severe I would have to urinate every 15 minutes; just one more
    thing to push me over the edge into psychosis. I remember lying on
    the barren floor, franticly dialing phone number after phone number; was there
    any doctor who could help, how about an angel, a saint, a healer;
    endless possibilities screamed and echoed. but The only
    answer was silence. Perhaps if I read about my illness, I thought,
    but after reading, but after a page or two, a grayness, a pale gray fog
    would cross through my mind. So then, I sought solace in music, but loud music
    seemed to reverberate like stones against the inner sides of my skull.
    Even the recommended spiritual, healing music would haunt me, and mockingly
    remind me I was ill. Nor could I escape into the television,
    as any flashing light would twist and turn into a tornado of dark thoughts;
    as if the final confirmation of madness. Yes there were moments of hope,
    there were moments when I was infused wih the feeling of daylight, and the
    bright sun rising on the horizon, but then I would
    fall back into a hole, a black hole of depression where it seemed like
    everything had been ripped out of my mind and only darkness remained.

  5. Well said William Wooten (long comment above). The article at the top is rather sad. Check out the Bolen Report for what is really happening in the suing of Barrett & Co. Basically the “quackbusters” are having their pips squeaked out as I write this.

  6. Barrett is and always has been a fraud. He has lost every legal action whether respondent or complainant. His next loss will be Doctors Data…..

  7. It’s good to know such people as Dr? Barrett are chasing quack diagnoses of mercury poisoning. He should get onto two really big offenders, namely the uk NHS, and the MIND institute in California. The former has proposed firstly a pseudoscience urine mercury test and following my objections a pseudoscience blood mercury test instead. Then they referred my non-dental symptoms to ONLY a DENTAL advisory panel (who have relevant expertise in what exactly?). Meanwhile Saint Irva Hertz-Picciotto et al of the MIND institute have published a highly famous study of blood merc levels in autistics (CHARGE study), which in its outrageously calculated mis-presentation has to be one of the most serious scientific frauds of the century. Go for it Dr Barrett…. (woof).

  8. Who are you and do you have any idea what it is like to suffer after being told ‘nothing is wrong with you’ by close minded medics?! Do you have any empathy or scientific open mindedness which may be the very difference to someone living well and someone living miserably? I have just read your profile and realise you have nothing to do with patients and their quality of wellness at all so your opinion is null and void really.

  9. Melissa, I think you’ll find that all or most of these “quackbusters”/ “sceptics” live under a delusion that genuine science = that which the profit-corporatised “scientific” establishment claims to be genuine (and vice versa). Sadly it’s a delusion that has proven incurable and meanwhile we just have to carry on exposing the wacko conclusions it leads to. Cheers.

  10. Robin, calling skeptics delusional incurables is an easy way to try and win an argument without arguing.

    Your point only works if current medical knowledge knows everything… which it doesn’t. What happens to the group of ill people who fall outside current medical knowledge?

    Why wouldn’t they start looking outside at other possibilities if the current medical opinions on them were ‘I don’t know?’ or ‘there is nothing wrong here that i can tell.’

    The hair elements test from doctors data is a good example of this. I know its not 100% accurate, but it does give usable information that can be verified through other tests.

    I would love a completely verifiable test for the body burden of mercury but if i look to current medical science, well, they just don’t have a test. It doesn’t exist. A blood test for mercury is of no use.

    So either i offer up an organ for biopsy or i use the information from people like doctors data as a guide.

  11. Hi Skageet, your reply is clearly confused, from too much haste in reading. I was not writing about sceptics but about “sceptics” in quotes, in other words, the pseudo-sceptics such as Barrett and the (pseudo-)”Quackbusters”.

    You end by saying “A blood test for mercury is of no use.” but I’d already made exactly that point in more detail in my pre-previous comment.

    “Robin, calling skeptics delusional incurables…”

    I wasn’t in the business of “calling” anyone anything. I was merely setting out my understanding of the situation. And you haven’t shown there to be any fault in that understanding.

    “… is an easy way to try and win an argument without arguing.”

    But I wasn’t trying to “win an argument”. See line above.

    “Your point only works…”

    What point working? See line above again.

    “Your point only works if current medical knowledge knows everything… which it doesn’t. What happens to the group of ill people who fall outside current medical knowledge?”

    I fail to see any sound basis there and anyway, So what? Most things are outside of the “knowledge” of corporate establishment med because it’s a load of Lysenkoised pseudoscience.

    “Why wouldn’t they start looking outside at other possibilities if the current medical opinions on them were ‘I don’t know?’ or ‘there is nothing wrong here that i can tell.’”

    The med establishment are not interested in reducing illness, only in increasing profits and defending professional industries such as drugs/vax prescribing and disposing of mercury waste in people’s mouths. The last thing they want is to actually admit the discovery of new cures and thus reduce their customer base of ill people!

  12. to all the comments defending doctor’s data, i’m pretty sure science would’ve figured out and not hide these things. regarding heavy metals and mercury, i’m sure there have been autopsies done on organ tissues to see if heavy metal toxicity is truly a concern. i don’t see any alternative medicine doctors using their profits to fund any studies proving they are right.

  13. “i’m sure there have been autopsies done on organ tissues to see if heavy metal toxicity is truly a concern.”

    There have been such studies and they have found so. Just the mercury-defending “experts” pretend all that evidence doesn’t exist. For instance the SCEHIHR report fails to mention it anywhere in its 74 pages.

  14. Sorry that should have been SCENIHR report (on amalgam).

  15. Apparently something is a fraud and/or quack if you don’t understand it. While it is likely true many people do not know how to intrepet the hair tests, probably even many ‘alternative medicine doctors’, and they then go on to recommend idiotic things like chelation therapy, it is a useful test. For a long time I did not bother with the hair test due to claims like yours above, but figured I might as well see what it said once I had been doing blood tests for several years. If you actually get a hair test done after an exhaustive blood test you will see that it does match up fairly well, at least for the dietary minerals. It also takes understanding that you can’t supplement individual items in isolation since there often are blocks in pathways that cause one item to temporarily be higher than it otherwise should be.

    Of course I haven’t had anyone tell me what is going on, I’ve read thousands of pages of studies, biochemistry and medical books over the past several years while ordering the tests directly myself. I have lifelong experience with incompetent doctors and didn’t have any reason to expect ‘alternative medicine doctors’ to be any better.

    I suppose you also happen to be a dyed in the wool Republican as well, since you clearly don’t have the ability to think for yourself.

  16. One other thing to mention is as opposed to many people who get hair tests done mine came back with very low total toxic levels, but I have also been taking vitamins/minerals based on blood test results for several years.

  17. Good look Doctor’s Data. The analytics from DD are a good source of information. Stephen Barret arguments are very silly. Most practitioners (including many naturophats) simply don’t know how to interpret it, other really don’t want to know how to interpret it. The mercury toxicity from vaccines and dental amalgams are a real epidemic fact. Many pharmaceuticals and psichiatrists like Barret ignores or hides it. Look for Linus Pauling, Alfred Stock, Jaro Pleva, Andy Cutler and many others real scientifics. In this subject, Barrett is a pseudo-skeptic.

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