DAN! Protocol For Dummies

20 Mar

Whenever anyone else hears the word ‘DAN!’ with that little exclamation mark do they go ‘DAN! – DAN! – DAN – DAN!’ to the opening four bars of the theme to ‘Dragnet’? No? Ah well, just me then.

Ken Aitken is a psychologist. He’s also a DAN! Doctor. One doesn’t need to be an actual Doctor to be a DAN! Doctor apparently:

As for choosing a DAN!, it just depends on what type of treatment you are looking for. DAN!’s that are MDs or DOs are typically going to be much more into testing and genetics and lots of expensive and invasive stuff. This, of course, is a gross generalization and isn’t necessarily true of all DAN! MDs, but rather something to be cautious of. A DAN! who is a homeopath or naturopath is typically going to do things more naturally and less invasive. Again, it’s a generalization. There are chiropractors, allergists and other types of doctors that are DAN!s as well, so it is really the type of doctor and treatment that best suits your needs. Many people go with a MD or DO because they can get insurance coverage for some of the services.

Homeopaths and Naturopaths doing things ‘naturally’. Heh. Does this lack of training in medical matters prevent them from performing things like chelation (source as above)?

…which is why we went with a homeopath/naturopath…….We decided to get the mercury out because I knew that Seth had had way too much put into him and it wasn’t coming out at all (he’s a non-excretor).

Homeopaths and Naturopaths doing chelation. Cool.

I talked to one yesterday (a DAN doctor mind you) and how he got qualifications to be one is beyond me. He told me has a couple of autistic patients and knows of the chelation process. If this is all that is required to be a DAN doctor then I don’t see a distinct advantage to them either.

Source.

Is your mind boggling yet? Here’s the reply to this commenter (source as above):

I think that being on the DAN list (in the past) meant something like that the person had attended some DAN training– or something rather general like this. Someone (in some post, somewhere) who went to the recent DAN conference wrote about that there is/was some discussion afoot to try to improve on this and make the
info on doctors more useful (or more detailed….or something??)

This doesn’t sound like a recipie for disaster at all. Was Roy Kerry a DAN! Doctor? I don’t know.

I came across some priceless websites pushing the DAN! protocol. They had numerous things in common, chiefly the disclaimer – all variations on the theme of:

this is not medical advice

Which is odd because from that point on, they mostly plough into what can only be thought of as _advice_ about what _medication_ an autistic child should take. There’s a fairly representative sample of what a dutiful DAN! Doc should do on the website of Miriam Jang MD. First, the usual copout from responsibility:

At this point, I would like to point out that this is not medical advice, even though I am a Medical Doctor. Rather, this is a wish for your child or your loved one(s) to have the advantage of what took us eight years to discover. Please take this as a medical disclaimer. All suggestions here should be done at your own risk.

‘Own risk’. Right. Or actually – wrong. She means the risk of the child receiving the treatment. Thats whos health will suffer when if it all goes wrong.

Dr Jang decides to lead off with some impressive science:

In both Chinese medicine and Ayurvedic medicine, the sages believed that there were only two ways to health: one was to correct deficiencies; the other was to get rid of toxicities.

Ayurvedic? What the hell?

This ancient art of healing has been practiced continuously for over 5,000 years. The principles of many natural healing systems now familiar in the West, such as Homeopathy and Polarity Therapy, have their roots in Ayurveda. Ayurvedic practices restore the balance and harmony of the individual, resulting in self-healing, good health and longevity.

So, DAN! Doctors are homeopaths and naturopaths who practice er, Polarity Therapy. Polarity Therapy? What the hell?

Polarity Therapy is a comprehensive health system involving energy-based bodywork, diet, exercise and self-awareness. It works with the Human Energy Field, electromagnetic patterns expressed in mental, emotional and physical experience.

Riiiight. OK. Back to er, Doctor (?) Jang. Basically, there’s a load of stuff with no cites – such as:

An important finding is that about 85 percent of Autistic kids are high in Copper and low in Zinc. Furthermore, these kids are very low in an important protein call Metallothionein, or MT Protein.

Hmm. Searching PubMed for ‘Metallothionein autism’ reveals two results. One is an inaccessible review and one is a free PDF published in the confidence inspiringly named ‘Alternative Medecine Review’. A Google search for the same reveals the predicted circus of quackery.

Except….another one of the mercury/autism darlings, Vijendra K. Singh has a paper that states:

serum level of MT did not significantly differ between normal and autistic children. Furthermore, autistic children harboured normal levels of anti-MT, including antibodies to isoform MT-I (anti-MT-I) and MT-II (anti-MT-II), without any significant difference between normal and autistic children.

A dilema, no? (You can read more on this paper here.)

Dr Jang continues with:

I will include a list of supplements that Marky is taking. There are many protocols, with many rationales. When we write down the dosages, please take into consideration that Marky is 11 years old and weighs 75 pounds. Please adjust your dosages according to your child’s weight.

Marky is her son. But isn’t it amazing how a DAN! Doctor is assuming parents know *how* to adjust medications for weight – and is happy to trust them to do so without medical supervision or even consultation!

Towards the end of her piece she says:

Please remember that, if you introduce your child to a new supplement, it is not unusual for the child to experience some adverse effects for a short while…When this happens, it does not necessarily mean that you should discontinue the supplement, unless the adverse effects are dangerous, or persistent….If there are adverse effects, stay at this dose until the adverse effects are gone, then proceed to a slightly higher dose, etc.

So there may be adverse effects but don’t stop unless the adverse effects are dangerous, instead stay on the same dose until the adverse effects are gone. I can’t imagine any Doctor thinking this is good advice. Interestingly, the following appeared from Dr Jang as part of an email newsletter:

I would like to start with some very serious news: we do have to be careful of Vitamin A toxicity with our sweet kids. There is a child with reported Vitamin A toxicity that was so severe that the child had to be hospitalized for 12 days.

Her patient? I wonder. Maybe the practitioner (whomever s/he was) read her advice to ‘stay on the same dose until the adverse effects are gone’.

Dr Jang tells us in relation to supplements that:

We noticed a difference in Marky in less than a week.

And yet later on she says:

In addition, you may not see the beneficial effects of these supplements for a period of time.

Something of a glaring contradiction. Which is true?

Anyway, having expounded all this good advice, Dr Jang closes with:

So, be curious and be persistent. Take good care of yourselves so that you can endure this arduous journey called “Autism”!

Yes, be curious – try everything that takes your fancy. Be persistent – whats a little Vitamin A poisoning between friends? And above all take good care of _yourselves_ so that _you_ can endure this journey…..except, its not _you_ who’s undergoing all these treatments is it? Its your child.

Dr Jang is also a big clay bath fancier (clay baths cure autism? Who knew?)

“…I have put a huge number of patients on these clay baths and the levels of heavy metals – mercury, lead, arsenic, aluminum, and cadmium have come down dramatically…I have been monitoring the levels of metals using all three methods (TD DMPS, oral DMSA and clay baths)and the clay baths are way faster in the removal of metals”.

Hoooo boy! Rashid’s going to be plenty pissed with her. Better than TD DMPS? Surely not! Why not use both? Smother your child with TD DMPS and then wash that stuff off in a nice clay bath? At least your child will have a nice happy splash in a bath.

So, Ken Aitken – welcome to your new role as a Dan! Doctor. I feel sure you can uphold the strong scientific standards your colleagues demonstrate.

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125 Responses to “DAN! Protocol For Dummies”

  1. Sue M. March 26, 2006 at 23:26 #

    Oh my gosh, did Kathleen Seidel really just have correspondence with Richard Deth where she linked to Prometheus, Autism Diva, Not Mercury and Bartholomew Cubbins for back-up? Isn’t that similar to me corresponding to Bill Gates about Microsoft while linking to Fred Flintstone for support. Good one. It shows Deth’s character that he actually carried out a discussion with her.

    Sue M.

  2. Sue M. March 26, 2006 at 23:38 #

    Forgot to post the link:

    http://neurodiversity.com/weblog/article/93/an-exchange-of-views

    Fiddle on…

    Sue M.

  3. Dave Seidel March 27, 2006 at 00:41 #

    Sue, did you notice that Deth contacted her? He’s the one who initiated the conversation in the first place by calling our home. I don’t think he quite realized what he was getting into. It would have been much simpler for him to disclose his status as an expert witness in the first place.

    I wouldn’t expect any calls from Bill Gates, Sue.

  4. Sue M. March 27, 2006 at 01:26 #

    Dave wrote:

    “Sue, did you notice that Deth contacted her? He’s the one who initiated the conversation in the first place by calling our home”.

    - Yes, I noticed he contacted her after she moaned about him somewhere else. It makes no difference.

    Dave wrote:

    “I don’t think he quite realized what he was getting into”.

    -You can say that again.

    Fiddle away.

    Sue M.

  5. clone3g March 27, 2006 at 02:18 #

    Hi Sue,
    Since you seem to have a problem with Kathleen, her blog, and the other blogs mentioned, why don’t you direct some of that awesome mother’s intuition toward something resembling intelligent criticism.

    Maybe leave a comment on the Neurodiversity blog or one of the others you’ve tried to compare with Fred Flintstone. Have you read anything that is false or erroneous? Speak up. You can do that right?

    A fiddle, another name for a violin, can be quite grating in the hands of a talentless hack. If Kathleen is ‘fiddling’ she’d give the devil a run for his money.

  6. Bartholomew Cubbins March 27, 2006 at 04:30 #

    “…she linked to Prometheus, Autism Diva, Not Mercury and Bartholomew Cubbins for back-up?

    She did link to me but I saw that as an aside. If anything, it shows that she’s well-read and that she cares about the analysis of technical articles. Some of us (using the editorial we) like to spam pubmed titles and abstracts, while others appreciate hearing how someone else interprets the paper.

    The real question is whether Deth called up Paul Offit for challenging his work in a journal? Although I neither have nor want the phone records, I’ll bet that the only response was when he responded in kind and wrote a rebuttal to the criticism in the same journal.

    Kathleen was singled out and treated differently. Why? Because Deth didn’t think about the ramifications (getting blogged on) of what he was doing and likely thought she’d stutter all over herself and hide after he called her house and then stated that he’d drive up to her. Sue – I wouldn’t think of doing that to you. It’s lame. It’s pathetic. And now it’s posted for all of us to see.

    I can only imagine that the Deth Ego Meter just took a huge hit and the Deth Remorse Meter is pinging off the scale. But then, there’s a difference between being worried about looking like a fool and being sorry.

  7. Sue M. March 27, 2006 at 15:13 #

    Bartholomew wrote:

    “Sue – I wouldn’t think of doing that to you. It’s lame. It’s pathetic. And now it’s posted for all of us to see”.

    - What is lame? The fact that he offered to drive up to her house to show her the “science” that he personally is talking about? It seems like an honest attempt to actually teach Kathleen something. Possibly, with the hope that she actually cared enough about what he had to say. Apparently, Kathleen is too busy fiddling to give a crap about Deth’s work. Which is it? Do you want Deth’s opinion/science or don’t you? Instead of Deth’s science, she wants to post about what Autism Diva, Bart and No Mercury have to say. I’m sorry, lame….

    http://www.answers.com/topic/fiddle-while-rome-burns?method=22

    p.s. if she is worried about stalking, she could offer to drive into Boston to meet with him instead. Simple enough.

  8. Kev March 27, 2006 at 15:46 #

    _”Do you want Deth’s opinion/science or don’t you?”_

    Science yes, opinion no. He doesn’t need to go anywhere for that. He just needs to do good science.

    _”Instead of Deth’s science, she wants to post about what Autism Diva, Bart and No Mercury have to say. I’m sorry, lame….”_

    Weird. You used to take me to task because I hadn’t read EoH cover to cover. When I said that I’d read the science instead you sneered at me.

    Careful Sue, your double standards are exposed yet again – maybe you could have a good fiddle to keep yourself occupied and hope no one notices? ;o)

  9. Sue M. March 27, 2006 at 15:56 #

    Kev wrote:

    “I’d read the science instead you sneered at me”.

    -No, I sneered at you because you talked about/blogged about EoH without even reading it. Lame. If you want to offer negative opinions about a book, Read it first. Interesting that you said that you read the science… aren’t you just now getting to the reasons why the Danish studies are bogus. Had you read EoH you may have been able to figure that out about a year ago. Simple.

    Sue M.

  10. Kev March 27, 2006 at 16:08 #

    Damn Sue, you’re memry seems to be suffering along with your standards ;o)

    _”No, I sneered at you because you talked about/blogged about EoH without even reading it. Lame. If you want to offer negative opinions about a book, Read it first.”_

    No Sue, I blogged about the lack of science in EoH, how the author is not impartial even though he claims he is and how little he understands the science. The book itself is a rather fetching red colour I rather like. And once again, you can assume that if I mention a particular section/area of the book then I’ve read that section.

    _”Interesting that you said that you read the science… aren’t you just now getting to the reasons why the Danish studies are bogus.”_

    Er, no. Where did you get that from?

    And I wouldn’t call them bogus. Certainly they’re not as bogus as ‘autism: a novel form of mercury poisoning’ or ‘Hornig’s mouse study. But you haven’t read them them have you Sue? You read the Dick and Jane version in EoH and shuddered deliciously at Kirby’s breathless prose describing how the autistic mice chewed through each others skulls!!!! Right?

    _”Had you read EoH you may have been able to figure that out about a year ago. Simple.”_

    I read Blaxill – Kirby merely regurgitates that.

  11. Sue M. March 27, 2006 at 17:54 #

    Kev wrote:

    “Science yes, opinion no”.

    -So, I can assume that you think that Kathleen’s links to Autism Diva, Prometheus and Bart’s “opinions” was rather silly, too? How come you didn’t mention that earlier?

    Sue M.

  12. Kev March 27, 2006 at 18:13 #

    No – they’re all scientists or students of science. Their posts tackling the science are perfectly valid. However, none of them to the best of my knowledge are benefitting from offering their opinions – other than for the good of humanity.

  13. Bartholomew Cubbins March 27, 2006 at 18:49 #

    Sue, I challenge you to see past your hatred of Kathleen and really analyze what you just wrote about Deth’s actions:
    – What is lame? The fact that he offered to drive up to her house to show her the “science” that he personally is talking about? It seems like an honest attempt to actually teach Kathleen something.

    Change Deth’s name to some other researcher and my statement still holds. His offer is a carefully worded threat meant to intimidate. He was obviously pissed and he let her know it. He could have responded with a letter to the editor. He could have responded with an email. But he chose to call her at home and then emailed her about driving up to speak with her.

    Sue, the dots are there. You want to draw some meandering path between them then go for it, but the straight line between these dots is pretty plain to see and it’s something that he shouldn’t have done and I’ll bet big money he’s wishing that he hadn’t done it.

    Kev, “none of them to the best of my knowledge are benefitting from offering their opinions

    certainly not financially (insert sad face), but I’m open to donations of sugarless gum (not already chewed), pistachios, and good beer.

  14. Sue M. March 27, 2006 at 18:52 #

    Kev wrote:

    “No – they’re all scientists or students of science”.

    -If that is the case, Kev, then they should be thrilled that Deth has offered to teach Kathleen something. They should be offering her questions to ask him. They should be offering to pay Deth’s gas to drive up to her house. If its about the science… they should be willing to listen to the SCIENCE from the SCIENTIST speaking about it. What’s the problem? Clearly, its not about the science.

    Sue M.

  15. Sue M. March 27, 2006 at 19:24 #

    Bart wrote:

    “His offer is a carefully worded threat meant to intimidate”.

    -Really? I didn’t see it like that at all. There was nothing threating or intimidating about his e-mails, in my opinion. Being an intelligent person, however, I realize that sometimes perception is everything. So, in order to understand better, it would be great if Kathleen could go on record as to whether or not she felt intimidated by Deth.

    Sue M.

  16. Bartholomew Cubbins March 27, 2006 at 20:43 #

    Being an intelligent person, however, I realize that sometimes perception is everything. So, in order to understand better, it would be great if Kathleen could go on record as to whether or not she felt intimidated by Deth.

    Jesus H Christ, this conversation is numbingly stupid. I’ve watched and participated for about 9 months on this blog where a few individuals practise doublespeak and play tail-catching games, but this version of electron and ATP expenditure is tiresome.

    Sue – your comments aren’t thought-provoking. Nothing is being learned here except the extent to which some will go in order to obscure issues, spread hatred, and waste time.

    There are better ways to idly spend time imo. I’m off to find my old rubik’s cube.

  17. Ms Clark March 27, 2006 at 21:02 #

    We can just see Paul Offit offering to drive over to Sue’s house and explain why she’s wrong using the best science out there. Or maybe, Dr. Bauman could offer to drive over and explain that autism today is the same as it always has been in nature, she’s been seeing autistic kids for years. They could tell Sue to forget DAN! and to start being rational for a change. They could tell her that she’s making a mistake by being totally antivax.

    And if they called Sue out of the blue and offered to drive over to “fix” her attitude, to teach her something, she’d say….

    Deth was being a jerk. I sincerely doubt that he would have driven to her house to give her advice on how to treat her child medically. What whould he do? Bring his little black bag? He’s not an MD! Anyway, the only thing that matters is what his bosses think about his offer. He’s in a subculture where this is NOT done. Or rather he used to be in that subculture, now he’s in the BIZARRE world of autism biomed and DAN! delusions, signalling the end of his career as a legitimate scientist, one would think. Oh, yeah, he hasn’t been funded by anyone but SAFEMINDS for a few years now… as I understand it.

  18. Ms Clark March 27, 2006 at 21:40 #

    Clarification: Sue M. would probably not admit that Deth was being a jerk. I should have made that clearer.

    also what I meant was:

    “Deth was being a jerk. I sincerely doubt that he would have driven to *Kathleen’s* house to give her advice on how to treat her child medically…”

  19. David N. Andrews BA-status, PgCertSpEd (pending) March 27, 2006 at 22:19 #

    JBJr again:

    *quote* It seems to me that you’re the ones who should be embarrassed by Andrew’s comments. I just used the Neurodiverse writing technique of quote snatching that I learned from your wife to publicize his perverse nature. *endquote*

    *My* perverse nature? *He’s* the one who brought the whole issue of my nether regions into the arena… and now when he gets called on his actions, he gets all defensive!

    What a guy?! No wonder his son won’t bother with him. I’m glad he isn’t my dad. Maybe he brings the lad’s nether regions too much into conversation for the lad to cope with, I don’t know… we can see that *anything*’s possible with Besty!

    The man’s a fucking crank and he needs to be placed in a facility. Not because he is very likely (on the basis of what he’s been doing regarding my “bits”) a repressed and ego-dystonic homosexual…

    JBJr, this bit’s to you….

    (be what you like John…. even be what you *don’t* like!)… but don’t blame me for this stuff when you were the one who brought the whole issue of my genitals into the public eye. This obsession you have with them… *that*’s the thing I find creepy about you and all that stuff. You’re a filthy piece of crap, and that’s what makes me most sick about you.

  20. Sue M. March 27, 2006 at 23:30 #

    Ms. Clark wrote:

    “And if they called Sue out of the blue and offered to drive over to “fix” her attitude, to teach her something, she’d say…”.

    - Here is what Dr. Deth wrote in regards to driving up to Peterborough:

    “I don’t know if you are at all open to understanding the scientific information that indicates a link between mercury exposure and autism. If you are, it would my personal pleasure to drive up to Peterborough and fill you in”.

    -If she is interested in understanding the scientific information that he has, he would like to come up to show it to her. What’s the issue?

    Ms. Clark wrote:

    “I sincerely doubt that he would have driven to her house to give her advice on how to treat her child medically”.

    -Yes, I sincerely doubt that too. He never said that’s why he would be driving up there, Camille. Can’t you read? He wants to show her the scientific information linking mercury and autism. Go back and re-read…

    Let’s just say this. If Kathleen or Dave want to be on record as to whether she was intimidated or felt threatened by Deth than they can do so. Otherwise, I have to believe that this is not the case. She had ample opportunity in the e-mails which she posted to blast him for his inappropriate behaviour in his e-mails or phone call. She did not. Therefore, as far as I’m concerned she was in no way, shape or form intimidated by his behaviour… unless I hear otherwise. Apparently, she is more interested in fiddling.

    Sue M.

  21. Jonathan Semetko March 28, 2006 at 02:12 #

    Sue, just for fun, can you name the historical reference for “fiddling while Rome burned”?

  22. Jonathan Semetko March 28, 2006 at 02:18 #

    I mean, if one is going to repeat a delightfully glib comment ad nasaum, then one should at least treat us to the famous historical event, that it makes reference to.

  23. clone3g March 28, 2006 at 03:46 #

    I just burned a copy of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons using Nero Burning ROM. Does that count?

  24. Dad Of Cameron March 28, 2006 at 05:34 #

    Sue M. said, “If its about the science… they should be willing to listen to the SCIENCE from the SCIENTIST speaking about it. What’s the problem? Clearly, its not about the science.”

    Sue I communicated with a ‘Scientist’ (on the top of the same list as Dr. Deth). I had plenty of questions, and this scientist also took the time to answer all of my scientific questions. He also offered to meet me in person, which was unnecessary in the context of our discussion, but also not threating since another parent brought me into the conversation in the first place. We had an extensive discussion.

    Here’s a very small sample of what I was treated to for science from the ‘scientist’. I have tons more “from the horse’s mouth” so to speak.

    He was specifically asked about mercury toxicity.

    “The average person in my generation lost 4-7 IQ points due to lead poisoning”.

    Totally irrelevant. This researcher is not hypothesizing lead poisoning.

    “I would turn the question around and say that it is unethical for the FDA to have exposed children to the exceptionally high level in vaccines, without ever having conducted proper animal tests on the safety of thimerosal. DMSA has undergone extensive human testing. We are being far safer than the FDA was.”

    Does this sound “scientific” to you, or like the fallacious two wrongs make a right emotional argument?

    “We believe it is plausible and worthy of investigation since many parents are currently using this treatment.”

    Have you heard of the bandwagon fallacy?

    Here’s what I got from the MD on the project:

    “You may know that a number of respected conventional doctors did controlled studies on Secretin for autism, not because they thought it worked, but because so many people were using it.”

    Sound like more bandwagon?

    “One small correction of fact, I was already on board when ASU’s IRB nixed the study. I would not take this as a sign of some inherent flaw in in the study.”

    I’m assuming you understand the role of the IRB and what their rejection potentially means.

    The scientist and doctor I spoke with just don’t have a lot of ‘science’ to offer.

  25. clone3g March 30, 2006 at 19:01 #

    Ms. Clark Said:

    “So what happens to these mice when you put the same relative amount into them when they are alive? Are there have any deliterious effects?”
    “I doubt it.”

    David H (while still posting as Killer Jabs) said:
    Whew, that’s great news. For a minute there, I was actually worried that thimerosal could be dangerous. I’m so relieved now to hear that you officially “doubt it.”

    I agree with Ms. Clark. I not only doubt it I’m fairly certain of it.

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