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Sarah8793

Reading Dr. Green's Book And Feeling Angry

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I just started reading Celiac Disease, A Hidden Epidemic, by Dr. Peter Green. I was expecting to get an enlightened approach to diagnosing celiac disease, but so far he writes that the biopsy is the "gold standard," and that noone should commit to a lifetime of eating gluten free without having a positive biopsy. :o He reccomends going on a gluten challenge if you have been gluten free. I do realize that this is what almost all GI's believe, however I thought that someone who is regarded as a leader in the field of celiac disease wouldn't have such a rigid definition of diagnosing celiac. IMHO, the biopsy is on its way out the door. Reading this is just making me feel unvalidated. I am not willing to do a gluten challenge, mainly because my symptoms seem more on the neurological side. Also, I have hypoglycemia which I believe is directly related to gluten damage and I fear that a gluten challenge could send me closer to diabetes. If you have read all of this, thank you. I will stop venting now.

Sarah

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I don't know how a doctor could make a blanket statement like no one should go gluten-free without a positive biopsy, especially since we know that biopsies can prove celiac but cannot rule it out. Or what about people like me who figured out wheat made me sick, so stopped eating it for three years? I did a six week challenge, but could not eat gluten every day because it was making me so sick!!! So, I ended up with a negative biopsy. Does this mean he thinks I should just be sick all the time? This makes no sense. If it can show up in your skin as a symptom for diagnosis (dh) or in your intestine, how can they say there is no other place it can show up? Also, you don't just wake up one morning with a damaged intestine! There have to be stages.

Just joining your vent. Thanks, I'll avoid the book.

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Actually, it IS an excellent book. But there are a few points Dr. Greene makes that I've had to ignore, as unfortunately, the good man isn't perfect and has some old-fashioned, outdated opinions. The one you mentioned is one of them, which made me angry as well.

But he has some very insightful information, too, so don't stop reading because of him being wrong on the gluten challenge and biopsy. Just acknowledge his error there and move on.

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Actually, it IS an excellent book. But there are a few points Dr. Greene makes that I've had to ignore, as unfortunately, the good man isn't perfect and has some old-fashioned, outdated opinions. The one you mentioned is one of them, which made me angry as well.

But he has some very insightful information, too, so don't stop reading because of him being wrong on the gluten challenge and biopsy. Just acknowledge his error there and move on.

Since you mentioned looking for a good book, I can't help but recommend Michael Pollan's "The Omnivore's Dilemma" which I'm in the middle of right now. Just a an unflinching look at what has happened in this country with our "disconnect" from nature in terms of the "food" we grow and everything else! It is, at times, painful to read, even though I've been aware of these things, his research is painstaking. Anyone interested in eating well and supporting a return to "whole foods" ought to read it. Very illuminating and thought-provoking! Celiac or not!

lisa

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Guest nini

While Dr. Green is considred a leader in Celiac research, he is still first and foremost a medical Dr. and most medical Dr.s are predisposed to taking stances that are rigid and unflinching and outdated and even plain wrong.

I avoided his book on general principal because it was written by a medical Dr., being that my career is in the "alternative health care" field I am admittedly prejudiced against the medical community (my disclaimer!)

A renowned celiac expert that I have had the opportunity to speak with personally, said that when a patient comes to her office and has already had good results on the diet, she NEVER has them do a gluten challenge. Sure the MEDICAL gold standard is still considered to be the biopsy, it is true it is on it's way out because finally they are starting to recognize that the biopsy is only positive in the final stages of Celiac, by that time it is potentially life threatening. So, for all you that have a positive biopsy, be thankful it was caught when it was. For those of you that don't have a positive biopsy, but still had positive bloodwork or positive dietary response, keep in mind that if you continued to eat gluten eventually you would have a positive biopsy and by that point you'd probably (but not always) be really visibly ill.

Once the medical community as a whole truly recognizes that by relying on the biopsy they are missing a huge percentage of cases of people who would get better off of gluten and who would potentially be saved years of ill health if they simply advised trying the diet. (but this won't happen. It's a pipe dream. They don't make any profit off of a diet.

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I kind of feel a need to defend MDs here. I work in a research lab that's connected to a hospital and I frequently go to training conferences and listen to the little baby docs learning their trade.

I think they have somewhat conflicted training. I believe every single resident that I have heard or talked to truly wants every person to be well. Unfortunately what they are taught is that we need chemicals to be well.

To believe that what we eat is hurting us is difficult for even those of us that have experienced it. How many posts have you seen where the postee is asking about cheating? Or maybe this isn't so because the test was negative? Or I have only a mild case so I can eat a little gluten?

If people who suffer from it take time to understand, how much more difficult must it be for a physician who is 1. Taught that this is extremely rare

2. Taught that medicine can fix almost anything.

3. Has some inkling of how difficult it could be to not eat wheat.

Has anyone here personally encountered an MD who, once they understood the severity of the symptoms, denied the possibility of Celiac to other patients? I'm sure there will always be a few who will never believe that Celiac is a viable diagnosis, but I also believe that each one of us who educates a physician in recognizing the symptoms, helps every other Celiac that that physician encounters.

I also don't think that MDs make any money off of prescriptions. If you want to attack someone, take on the Pharmas who keep pushing more meds on us.

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I wish I had read these posts before I posted my very first today. I just ordered Green's book today too. I'm glad that I'm not alone with my frustration with the medical profession. I'm frustrated already and I haven't even approached the demi-gods on the subject of celiac's as of yet. I'm sorry, I know there are good people out there who fall under the heading of medical professional but I'm becoming more and more convinced that they are the unwitting participants in a system that is becoming outrageously inept, ineffective and downright dangerous due to a diversity of greed beginning first and foremost with the pharmaceutical industry.

From what I can see, the only tool a doctor graduates with is a prescription pad. Remember that old adage "When all you've got is a hammer, the whole world looks like a nail"?

Why on earth would they discontinue the opportunity to charge the "big bucks" involved with a biopsy procedure? Think of the variety of charges that would come out of that procedure. I don't even get copies of my medical charges from my HMO any more (need to save paper?). I'm sure I'd be shocked. I just paid a $25.00 co-pay (and that's just my part of the charge who knows what the insurance company will be paying) to my "attending" physician yesterday for her to write a referral slip to a dermatologist. She didn't even lift the bandage I'd put on my infected cyst! She spent exactly three seconds with me (I counted!). Nice work if you can get it...

moonmaiden

For more on my rants - see my post - "Is there a point in getting a Diagnosis? (So far, I've been my best doctor)

"Let Food be your Medicine....Let Medicine be you Food" - Hippocrates (Father of Medicine)

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Does this mean he thinks I should just be sick all the time? This makes no sense. If it can show up in your skin as a symptom for diagnosis (dh) or in your intestine, how can they say there is no other place it can show up? Also, you don't just wake up one morning with a damaged intestine! There have to be stages.

Just joining your vent. Thanks, I'll avoid the book.

Yes, there definitely must be stages. And that is what frustrates me about the position of M.D.s on the biopsy. And there is research being done right now that indicates some people don't ever have digestive damage. I am almost half way through the book. I agree with Ursula that there is a lot of good information elsewhere in the book. So it is worth looking at if you can get past his ideas on the biopsy.

Sarah

Actually, it IS an excellent book. But there are a few points Dr. Greene makes that I've had to ignore, as unfortunately, the good man isn't perfect and has some old-fashioned, outdated opinions. The one you mentioned is one of them, which made me angry as well.

But he has some very insightful information, too, so don't stop reading because of him being wrong on the gluten challenge and biopsy. Just acknowledge his error there and move on.

Ursula,

I agree. From what I can tell flipping through the book there is valuable info. I will finish reading it and will post comments. If I think of him as an average GI, then it is easy to look pass his outdated opinion. But he is Director of the Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University. So then I think, if he isn't on the cutting edge, why not?? I am probably just giving M.D.s way too much credit here and am therefore expecting too much. Up until 3 months ago, I had always been relatively healthy and didn't have a reason to question M.D.s. Now it seems that when you have a serious problem, you have to make yourself well and be a detective or suffer and take a lifetime of prescription . Oh well, here I go again :rolleyes: Thank you for pointing out that the book is still valuable because I didn't intend to make the book seem bad. :)

Sarah

Since you mentioned looking for a good book, I can't help but recommend Michael Pollan's "The Omnivore's Dilemma" which I'm in the middle of right now. Just a an unflinching look at what has happened in this country with our "disconnect" from nature in terms of the "food" we grow and everything else! It is, at times, painful to read, even though I've been aware of these things, his research is painstaking. Anyone interested in eating well and supporting a return to "whole foods" ought to read it. Very illuminating and thought-provoking! Celiac or not!

lisa

Thanks for the book recommendation. I am planning on reading this next. I love books that challenge my thinking. :)

So, for all you that have a positive biopsy, be thankful it was caught when it was. For those of you that don't have a positive biopsy, but still had positive work or positive dietary response, keep in mind that if you continued to eat gluten eventually you would have a positive biopsy and by that point you'd probably (but not always) be really visibly ill.

Once the medical community as a whole truly recognizes that by relying on the biopsy they are missing a huge percentage of cases of people who would get better off of gluten and who would potentially be saved years of ill health if they simply advised trying the diet. (but this won't happen. It's a pipe dream. They don't make any profit off of a diet.

Well Said!! The concept that a biopsy shows damage that has been accumulating over time and that the disease was present before this should not be rocket science. I am guessing (don't know) that Dr. Green, who has celiac disease, may have been one of those that as soon as he had symptoms and was biopsied, got a positive biopsy. I would think that suffering for a long time with multiple negative biopsies would give him a different perspective. Thanks for your post.

Sarah

If people who suffer from it take time to understand, how much more difficult must it be for a physician who is 1. Taught that this is extremely rare

2. Taught that medicine can fix almost anything.

3. Has some inkling of how difficult it could be to not eat wheat.

Has anyone here personally encountered an MD who, once they understood the severity of the symptoms, denied the possibility of Celiac to other patients? I'm sure there will always be a few who will never believe that Celiac is a viable diagnosis, but I also believe that each one of us who educates a physician in recognizing the symptoms, helps every other Celiac that that physician encounters.

I also don't think that MDs make any money off of prescriptions. If you want to attack someone, take on the Pharmas who keep pushing more meds on us.

I agree with points 1, 2, and 3 if they are concerning a regular M.D. or a G.I. who doesn't specialize in Celiac disease. However, I would differ on those points concerning a doctor who has made himself an expert on celiac disease and also suffers from it himself.

I could never prove that M.D.s make money off of prescriptions myself. But there have been investigative shows like 60 minutes etc. that talk about this. I have always been under the impression that they get secret bonuses for it that are hard to prove. For example, not money, but say free use of a condo in Tahiti. B) If I am wrong, sorry, this is just what I have heard.

Why on earth would they discontinue the opportunity to charge the "big bucks" involved with a biopsy procedure? Think of the variety of charges that would come out of that procedure. I don't even get copies of my medical charges from my HMO any more (need to save paper?). I'm sure I'd be shocked. I just paid a $25.00 co-pay (and that's just my part of the charge who knows what the insurance company will be paying) to my "attending" physician yesterday for her to write a referral slip to a dermatologist. She didn't even lift the bandage I'd put on my infected cyst! She spent exactly three seconds with me (I counted!). Nice work if you can get it...

moonmaiden

I agree that there is too much money involved. I haven't got to the point yet where I think it is only for the money. But I do think they get in a rut of doing the same procedures over and over and not taking time to research. It is like once they leave medical school, their learning stops. And whatever was being taught at that time is what they continue to practice from then on.

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Bummer about the comments about biopsy. :( I just had the library hold the book for me yesterday. Hopefully there's something in there new to learn. :)

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One thing that doesn't help is that, unless you try living on the diet for a year, you don't realize how doable it is. So doctors don't want to put someone on it without a strong strong need, because they think it's SOOOOOOOOOOOO hard.

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One thing that doesn't help is that, unless you try living on the diet for a year, you don't realize how doable it is. So doctors don't want to put someone on it without a strong strong need, because they think it's SOOOOOOOOOOOO hard.

Yes, people react to the concept of gluten-free as a punishment. I'm beginning to see that it isn't so terrible. I do wish though that I didn't have to avoid BOTH gluten and dairy. One by itself would be great. Haven't figured out how to replace pizza.

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I could never prove that M.D.s make money off of prescriptions myself. But there have been investigative shows like 60 minutes etc. that talk about this. I have always been under the impression that they get secret bonuses for it that are hard to prove. For example, not money, but say free use of a condo in Tahiti. If I am wrong, sorry, this is just what I have heard.

I think most of those shows happened several years ago and although undoubtedly docs still receive gifts from drug reps, I think it's much harder to justify. Where I am, they recently decided not even to allow the drug reps to provide lunch for the conferences. And they have ethics conferences where they discuss whether or not your free coffee cup with VYTORIN written on it really might have an influence on choosing which drug to prescribe.

These are, of course, the up-and-coming MDs, but at least the educational system is trying to introduce the idea of avoiding free stuff in order to avoid bias.

And yes, it would be nice if Dr Green knew better, but he still had the training that requires visible proof.

Just keep teaching them.

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I think most of those shows happened several years ago and although undoubtedly docs still receive gifts from reps, I think it's much harder to justify. Where I am, they recently decided not even to allow the reps to provide lunch for the conferences. And they have ethics conferences where they discuss whether or not your free coffee cup with VYTORIN written on it really might have an influence on choosing which to prescribe.

These are, of course, the up-and-coming MDs, but at least the educational system is trying to introduce the idea of avoiding free stuff in order to avoid bias.

And yes, it would be nice if Dr Green knew better, but he still had the training that requires visible proof.

Just keep teaching them.

Well this is good to hear. Atleast there is some light being shined on this problem. Thanks for sharing this.

Sarah

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My husband is a medical doctor and he was at the National Institute of Health last year for some lectures, and some specialist in celiac disease said that the biopsy was no longer the "gold standard" of diagnosing celiac, and the blood test should be just as good. I realize there may be a need to do the biopsy, but I have to say that I think some of it is a money making thing too. For me I had the blood work and it was borderline positive celiac and my son has it. I knew wheat made me sick and didn't want to return to eating it so the doctor could be happy. My son didn't have a biopsy either, but there was no question wheat made him sick. Even his peds. GI could tell he had gained weight and was thriving once taken off wheat.

I had my aunt that is a nurse tell me the same thing about me needing the biopsy, just today. I have been gluten free for 15 months and I KNOW what makes me sick. I don't care who doesn't believe me. I am completely content being healthy without proving anything to anyone else. As long as I am convinced, then that is what matters. There are people here that have had the biopsy and their families and friends still don't get it.

I have not read Dr. Green's book, but I have learned more on this website and had more support here then anywhere. I could never have followed through with a gluten challenge. I have three kids to take care of and couldn't afford to be sick for six extra months to have a biopsy done.

Monica

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Great, another thread bashing MDs. So of course I have to reply.

The worst thing any patient can do is to try to diagnose themselves, because 99% of the time they will get it wrong. They just don't have the knowledge to do that. That's why MDs go to school for 10 years, with 8 hour lectures every day, and than 8 hours of studying afterwards. That amount of time (10 years) is required for the process to integrate all the knowledge from the various disciplines of medicine.

When patients try to diagnose themselves sometimes they'll truly believe that they have a disease because many of the symptoms fit perfectly, but what they don't realize is that there are literally a 100 other diseases with the exact same or simillar symptoms. So I don't think MDs are useless at all, unlike what some people claim on this board. If you want proof, than look at the rise in life expactancy over the last 50-100 years. All of that is due to good old medical science. For example if you had diabetes 50 years ago you'd die in weeks, now you can live an almost normal life. So who says medicine is useless?

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I am also currently reading Dr. Greene's book. I ordered it the day that I was diagnosed with Celiac because even though I had found a TON of information on here about the diet and gluten, I wanted to know more about the actual disease, its consequences, etc. This book is doing a very good job of teaching me just what exactly this disease is that I've been diagnosed with and what I might have to expect or watch out for in the future. I have to admit that I was one of the lucky ones who was diagnosed after only a few visits to my doctor. I do believe that some doctors think that they are too important to bother with a person's health issues, or feel that they don't need to explain every little thing to their patients. I wish that I could share my gastroenterologist with all of you because he is great and very easy to deal with. Anyways, that's just my opinion and I am glad that I purchased this book. It was worth it to me.

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I didn't say doctors were useless! Did you even read my post. No one was bashing doctors. My husband is a doctor and believe me, he studies ALL the time!

Eating gluten free isn't going to harm a person.

Celiac disease is still being misdiagnosed all the time!

My pediatrician told me that he had patients that the blood work was false-positive and that they had the biopsy and it was negative. So these kids haven't even been offered the gluten free diet. Instead they go around for years being misdiagnosed and having diarhea and failure to thrive. I think it is great that Dr. Green has written a book about celiac disease and that he has a great interest. I haven't read the book, but I don't think they benefit people by telling them they should do a gluten challenge, so they can have a biopsy. I think the patient should make their own choice reguarding this issue. Some people can't follow the diet without a firm diagnoses, but there are people on this board that only had the bloodwork, because their GI doctor's told them they didn't need a biopsy.

Monica

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Great, another thread bashing MDs. So of course I have to reply.

Of course another "I am god" thread so I have to reply.

The worst thing any patient can do is to try to diagnose themselves, because 99% of the time they will get it wrong.

Do you have proof .. 99% seems pretty steep and every time I have even been to a doctor and known what the problem is I have been right. Lets see when I broke my ankle is 3 places and ripped the ligaments I got told by the first Dr. it was a sprain and he didn't bother to x-ray, even if I told him I knew it was broken ot the ligaments snapped because I heard it happen... second Dr same thing ... third time lucky I get the consultant working casualty and it takes him 2 minutes to diagnose and then order x-ray's for confirmation but by this time I have been hobbling on it for 6 weeks and damaged it so it will never repair... so we are at 66% error here for doctors. I don't bruise .. I tell the dr this and they just look knowingly yet its true..

I think I am far more qualified than a Dr to say "it would hurt more if it was broken" as I have probably broken far more bones than most dr's. (my old GP when I was 18 was an exception but then I used to train with him for kickboxing)

That's why MDs go to school for 10 years, with 8 hour lectures every day, and than 8 hours of studying afterwards. That amount of time (10 years) is required for the process to integrate all the knowledge from the various disciplines of medicine.

Nope most Dr's have science backgrounds pre-med school and it takes 10 years to get the scientist out of them. Dr's are not scientists, they are just mechanics, they need to realise this. However most mechanics are sent back to training every few years as the cars they work on change, injection systems and engine management computers etc. but Dr's have no requirement to even be current with medical research.

When patients try to diagnose themselves sometimes they'll truly believe that they have a disease because many of the symptoms fit perfectly, but what they don't realize is that there are literally a 100 other diseases with the exact same or simillar symptoms.

It appears doctors are no different. Most of the people here most have gone through several MD's and specialists before being diagnosed. 10 years ago I was seeing a specialist GI with my GERD and related symptoms .(stomach/intestinal cramps., diarrhea). it is now established that over 50% of celeiacs experience GERD and at the time I mentioned this I was told it was absolutely not related.

Well guess what .. the same GI had probably seen 20 or so other celaics with GERD and told them its unrelated. When I mentioned the excessive amount of gas he told me it was just in my head... GERD doesn't make excess gas... and of course h. pylori was yet to be discovered so having GERD was just a symptom of not taking enough of the wonder drug ranitidine .. take 3 of these everyday for life and have a sandwich was the response after the gastric biopsy.

The point is WHY were thousands of GI's seeing tens or hundreds of thousands of patients with stomach/intestinal cramps., diarrhea AND GERD unable to actually link the two? I once had a car (UK Ford escort 1.3L) and it kept busting into flames ... I saw a mechanic but had no money at a service station and he just told me to remove the cranckshaft emmision filter and stick a coat hanger or used welding rod I could find in his forecourt (he couldn't give me one but casually diguarded one for me to use) ...

Why .. because he had seen other cars of the samne model with the same problems .... but Dr's seem uniquely unable to master this art. If its not in the service manual it doesn't exist.

So I don't think MDs are useless at all, unlike what some people claim on this board. If you want proof, than look at the rise in life expactancy over the last 50-100 years. All of that is due to good old medical science. For example if you had diabetes 50 years ago you'd die in weeks, now you can live an almost normal life. So who says medicine is useless?

What have GP's or GI's got to do with this?

The treatment of diabetes is thanks to science, not doctors. Doctors are not scientists, the last scientist doctor (excepting Warren and Mitchel and one or two notable exceptions) was Lister.

The term medical science is an oxymoron, medical science is stuck back in the 19C* in the same position as physcis was when Kelvin decreed all that was left was to calcualte the last 6 significant figures.

When Dr's do act as scientists they are ridiculed and the drug companies stump up the cash to pay MD's to ridicule them. Right now Hadjivassiliou is in the same position as Warren and Mitchel were ...

*Can you fix an MRI? you see Dr's have no clue yet any research physicist regardless of field and speciality could fix an MRI or other instrumentation from first principles. (I have first hand experience of this from timesharing an MRI with a hospital) You are using tools you don't even understand the physcis of and using microbiological science you can't understand. If you can't fix a relatively simple machine or understand a relatively simple machine like an MRI then what makes you think you know every cellular process of the human body?

That is OK, if like Newton you can say you need to stand on the shoulders of giants but first you need to get down off the pedestal which makes you think you are master of heaven and earth and realise you are just technicians.

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Guest nini
Nope most Dr's have science backgrounds pre-med school and it takes 10 years to get the scientist out of them. Dr's are not scientists, they are just mechanics, they need to realise this. However most mechanics are sent back to training every few years as the cars they work on change, injection systems and engine management computers etc. but Dr's have no requirement to even be current with medical research.

well said GFP, as a MASSAGE THERAPIST I am required to take continuing education every two years to keep current...

I will say that my last Dr.s office (before the Dr. and his PA left) was great, they actually took the time to read up on Celiac and learn more about it, they also started to dx MORE patients all because of little ol me... they had referred me to a GI when they couldn't figure out what was wrong and when the GI correctly dx'ed celiac and they saw me getting better, they couldn't deny it... so... I guess there is hope, BUT as I said, they also ended up leaving the practice and now I am left with having to find a new primary care doctor. Not a challange that I look forward to right now.

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When I mentioned the excessive amount of gas he told me it was just in my head... GERD doesn't make excess gas... and of course h. pylori was yet to be discovered so having GERD was just a symptom of not taking enough of the wonder drug ranitidine .. take 3 of these everyday for life and have a sandwich was the response after the gastric biopsy.

Last summer when I was becoming casein intolerant and didn't know it yet, I was in horrible stomach pain. I thought maybe I had an ulcer. My GI checked me for H. Pylori, negative. He did an upper GI series to check for ulcer. It was negative. He said all that he could see was that the lining of my stomach was really red and looked irritated but couldn't find anything else. So from this he told me I have "Unexplained ;) Dyspepsia," :blink::huh: and that I might need to take acid uptake inhibitors (nexium) indefinitely. I asked him if I would have to take them for the rest of my life, and he said possibly. :angry:

Then on a recommendation from my mother (definitely not an M.D.) I kept a food journal and low and behold discovered milk was my only problem. I went off dairy for 2 weeks, then off nexium and woala, all better! By the way, for any of you who are on acid uptake inhibitors, you need to know that if you try to go off them your symptoms actually get worse for a few weeks before they get better. It doesn't mean you need to stay on them if you have found what the original problem is. Soooo, my question is why didn't my G.I. when he obviousy couldn't figure out what was wrong with me, suggest keeping a food journal. It is a SIMPLE inexpensive tool. Shouldn't this be a tool that a GI uses? NO, he just left me to be a prisoner of a drug. And what about the risks and side effects of taking acid uptake inhibitors for the rest of my life?? I am not a doctor basher either. There are some doctors that are excellent, but my G.I. was by far not the only doctor who had misdiagnosed me or prescribed unecessary drugs. The truth is that if people didn't work at diagnosing themselves when their doctors fail them, they could end up in a life threatening situation.

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After reading this thread I looked for further information on Dr.Green and came up with this interview on NPR with him.

I don't know that I will buy his book after hearing him. I found his emphasis on a simple blood test giving an accurate diagnosis of Celiac misleading.

My mother has had digestion issues for over thirty years, she now has diverticulosis, arthritis, fibromyalgia, extremely low blood pressure, osteoporosis, seriously high levels of bad cholesterol and other problems but she has been told that she does not have Celiac and so she continues to consume a diet with gluten in it.

Do I trust Doctors? No. Do I think there are good Doctors? Yes.

A friend, who is a Doctor, says that it has become less rewarding for Doctors in the past few years. Patients, apparently, are challenging their Doctor's opinions and occasionally patients even yell at them. I saw an interesting television program about the medical model, as we know it, being modelled on the triage zones set up during the Napoleonic Wars. Certainly I grew up thinking of Doctors as absolute authorities and I think the generation prior to me still believes that but, being one of the boomers that has made a practice of challenging authority, I don't.

I would like to find a Doctor that I could have a collaborative relationship with, the project being my health and well being not the profits of Big Pharma. My current Doctor, I discovered recently, didn't find it necessary to tell me that my bad cholesterol was high last June because it wasn't high enough for me to need medication. :angry: After all, why suggest to a patient that she look at her diet when if you wait a while you can prescribe drugs. Funny, that day in the hallway was a salesman from a drug company and I overheard part of their conversation, I was not impressed. This is the same Doctor who prescribed a medication that stops absorption of Vitamin B which leads to brain damage. I am looking for another doctor but I don't have much confidence that I will find one.

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Personally, I'm just glad that there are doctors out there like Dr. Green that are researching celiac disease. At least he doesn't say it's rare, and medical opinions don't change overnight. Things are turning around in the celiac disease field, but we aren't there yet. If it weren't for Dr. Green, my doctor wouldn't know to take 8 random biopsies and that dietary response is a diagnositic tool. I was impressed when both my dr and his pa said that "even if the biopsies aren't positive, you could still have damage further down that the scopes miss. Either way, gluten obviously makes you sick...."

There are good doctors, bad doctors, indifferent doctors, doctors that think they are gods...it's an industry just like anything else, and there are good ones and bad ones. You get honest mechanics and crook mechanics, unfortunately, medicine isn't any different.

I don't take a doctor's word as gospel, and I don't always take their advice. The give opinions and advice, but you know your body best, the doctor looks at it but he doesn't live in it, and that's the rub. If I had listened to all my doctors, I'd be on a steroid inhaler everyday, when I don't even have athsma problems when I'm not sick.

That interview was also from 2 years ago, more research has come out since then, so I'd take it with a grain of salt :)

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I'm not saying the Drs. are all in for the money... I am saying they are for the most part "unwitting" participants. They cannot veer from the established "standard of practice" (no matter how many studies dispute it, or how ignorant it is) because when they sit in that witness box they'd better be able to say that their approach in any given procedure is aligned with the current "standard of practice" for that procedure/treatment. They also must provide evidence of this "standard" approach to their malpractice insurers if they want to stay in business.

Guess who establishes the standards of practice (indirectly but powerfully)? Guess who funds our medical schools? Guess who funds the so-called drug trials? Guess who are the biggest profit-making corporations in U.S. history? Guess who's also in bed with the FDA? The pharmaceutical companies, of course! This is an industry that is absolutely fraught with conflicts of interest - incredibly so. Guess who's interest is served? They are in control of the medical "market" and they are the ones calling the shots and it all adds up to their rather unprecedented bottom line. Even physicians are beginning to rail against the inordinate power that they weild.

My belief is that the doctors' hands are pretty much "tied". We bought into the miracle of pharmaceuticals with the herald of antibiotics (I'm only against their over/stupid use - they save lives), we also put doctors on a pedestal for the "miracles" that they performed - after that, we pretty much bought anything they were selling. This has compounded to incredible heights since the 1940's now they will invent diseases if they have to (and it must be called a "disease" for funding purposes) to sell more drugs. God forbid it's considered a "symptom" of a more global problem in the body that's not being addressed.

We (the medical consumers) are really the biggest problem here - you can't watch ten minutes of t.v. without seeing pharmaceutical ads directed right at us. This is because the doctors are finally trying to sever this unholy alliance and kicking these salesmen (with their incentives and freebies) out of their offices - so they have to peddle directly to us... "Just ask you doctor"... They know where the market for the latest drug is...

We all work for money - I have no problem with that. Just don't kid yourself that the medical industry is any different. It may contain some very nice, very smart, very compassionate people who are blessed with an impulse to help their fellow man, but it's a bottom line industry just like any other except that it's way bigger, more complex and more (wrongly) exalted than most. That impulse just doesn't have a chance... moon

Can't wait to read "The Ominvore's Dilemma"...

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