Psychiatry's "Chemical Imbalance" Fraud: Who Killed Rebecca Riley?

Baughman Jr., Fred A.
July 2008
Ethical Human Psychology & Psychiatry;Summer2008, Vol. 10 Issue 2, p96
Academic Journal
All physicians attend medical school and learn of (a) all things physically normal; anatomy, physiology, and chemistry, (b) all things physically abnormal; pathology, disease, and (c) how to tell the difference. Diagnosis is the first obligation of every physician to every patient, and must precede treatment. Diagnosis first asks, "Is there a physical abnormality (physical abnormality = disorder = disease), yes or no?" Patients with no abnormality (no physical abnormality = no disorder = no disease = normal) are referred to as having "no evidence or disease" (NED) or "no organic disease" (NOD). Their problems may be psychological or psychiatric, but they are not medical or surgical. In patients found to have an abnormality, diagnosis now asks, "Which disease?" Psychiatrists are the only physicians who do not perform physical diagnosis. The absence of disease is determined for them by other physicians, usually referring physicians. In 1948 the previously conjoint specialty of neuropsychiatry was divided into neurology--responsible for the diagnosis and treatment or physical/organic disease of the nervous system--and psychiatry--responsible for the treatment of emotional and psychological problems, none of them due to organic diseases. Nor did psychiatry object to this scientific division of labor at the time. However, in the 1950s, with the advent of psychotropic drugs, psychiatry, increasingly in league with the pharmaceutical industry, began referring to psychological diagnoses as disorders/diseases/chemical imbalances of the brain, albeit with no proof or science. In a congressional hearing in 1970, psychiatrists and federal officials, including the Food and Drug Administration and the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, represented hyperkinetic disorder (HKD) to be a disorder/disease of the brain leading to the appropriation of millions of dollars for research, diagnosis and treatment into the drug treatment of school children said to have the new disease HKD. HKD became ADD, then ADHD, a disorder/disease/chemical imbalance always in need of a "chemical balancer"--a pill. Without proof of an abnormality/disorder/disease, the ADHD epidemic grew from 150,000 in 1970 to 6 million to 7 million today, the most common childhood diagnosis in the United States, a multi-billion dollar industry, and a model for all 374 DSM--IV psychological/psychiatric diagnoses--none of them actual diseases. As such, psychiatry is not a legitimate branch of medicine deserving scientific-fiscal parity; rather, collectively, it is the greatest health care fraud in history. Every time a so-called chemical imbalance is diagnosed, a patient's right to informed consent has been abrogated. Every time a medically normal person is treated with a psychotropic chemical balancer--a pill--their first and only abnormality is the iatrogenic intoxication: poisoning.


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