Do you know where does the term Quack Doctor comes from? As it turns out, that’s quite an interesting story. In the 1800s doctors used arsenic and mercury to treat just about everything you can think of. The quicksilver doctors (as they were called) quickly became quick doctors, and in a southern accent, that sounded rather a lot like quack doctors!
The title was apt because their poisonous treatments caused neurological problems like Bell’s palsy. Abraham Lincoln famously threw fits because of the mercury that the quicksilver doctors prescribed him. Nonetheless, they just kept on dispensing neurotoxic “remedies” and assumed that the side effects they caused were just unrelated new diseases.
All mainstream treatments have negative side-effects, but the reality is that drugs just have effects. For example, when The Upjohn Company (now Pfizer) discovered that their drug Minoxidil caused hair to grow back in some balding patients, they simply switched the marketed effect for the side effect, and Hey Presto! Away they went selling a new drug for balding which just so happened to lower blood pressure!
Sadly, most of the effects of drugs are not so benign as unintended hair growth. Many are dangerous, and even cause harm or death. Not necessarily right away, but often slowly, over the course years. There was a time when the official policy was you do not treat side effects of a drug with another drug. Instead, you lower the dose, or take the patient off the drug completely. But that all changed, and now the policy is you can treat a patient with a drug that causes severe side effects so long as there is another treatment for the side effects. Makes sense, right? Well, at least from a financial perspective. This single change in policy turned Medical Doctors into the new Quack Doctors.
Another term for a negative side-effect is a disease. If you have a headache and you take non-steroidal anti-inflammatories (NSAIDS), like ibuprofen, then get a bleeding ulcer as an aggravated side effect, you just gave yourself another disease. If you have fluid retention due to heart failure and you take a diuretic drug that vacuums out the potassium and other electrolytes from your body, triggering arrhythmias; all we can say is that the diuretics you were prescribed just caused a new disease. If you get one too many CT scans and later develop cancer, no one will be able to trace it back to the excess medical radiation you received – but they gave you a disease. You will not be compensated, and even if you were – it wouldn’t bring your health back. And here’s the worst thing. Far from being punished for harming you, the medical industry actually gets more money for treating your side-diseases.
Download my free eBook 7 Pharma Myths Debunked at https://7pharmamyths.com/ where you can also make a voluntary contribution to fund the completion of my forthcoming full-length book Big Pharma – None Dare Call It Quackery.
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