Facts, not Fantasy

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Monday, May 09, 2011

A Photon in the Darkness: Anti-viral nonsense

One of the most awful things to watch is a distraught parent get taken advantage of because they don't have a good grounding in actual science.  Now we heard about that scumbag of an individual calling himself a doctor in Maryland, so I thought it would be appropriate to pass along more information about the sort of scams these people pull on parents.

Anti-viral nonsense

There are some “alt-med” treatments for autism that are like the zombies in B-grade horror movies. You think they’re dead, but as soon as you turn your back, they’re up and shambling around, searching for…..well, they’re usually looking for money, so they don’t fit the zombie analogy that well.

Chelation, secretin and HBOT have all been shown to be no more than profit centers for “alternative” practitioners, but my contacts in the “biomed” world tell me that they are still being prescribed (and inflicted) on autistic children. Apparently, it’s going to take more than decapitation or a stake through the heart to put these undead therapies in the ground for good.
Which brings me to the undead therapy that has - I would have thought - the best reason to be dead, buried and resting in peace: acyclovir/valacyclovir.

For the past few years, I had been living in blissful ignorance of the ongoing use of acyclovir and valacyclovir in the “treatment” of autism. Sure, they were “hot stuff” a few years ago, back when some misguided practitioners were using them to treat “chronic measles infection”. But I thought that people had wised up and realised that these anti-viral drugs have absolutely no effect on measles and - in plain fact - can’t have any effect on the measles virus.

Fast forward to a few months ago, when a worn-out mom asked me if I thought that acyclovir would be as effective as valacyclovir for the treatment of chronic measles.

My initial thought was that they would be equally ineffective, but I managed to keep that thought from being voiced. Instead I asked, “Are you sure that your doctor is using valacyclovir for measles?” The answer was chilling - the undead zombie of “valacyclovir for chronic measles” had risen from its restless grave.

Before I go any further, it might be useful to explain what acyclovir and valacyclovir are, how they work and what their side-effects are.

I also recommend that you visit What's The Harm.   Tim Farley does a great job in showing that not being grounded in reality and good science can result in a lot of misery.

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