Invisible Illness Awareness Week 2016: Our Voices Need to Be Heard
Never heard of Invisible Illness Awareness Week? You're not alone. Jody Smith sheds a little light to make it more visible
Discuss the article on the Forums.

Daily Telegraph: ME isn't 'all in the mind' but it's still a mystery

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS News' started by Firestormm, Nov 26, 2012.

  1. Firestormm


    Cornwall England
    Honestly, I don't think many (including me) would recognise what neuroscience related to! Haven't read Esther's comment yet, but historically didn't neurology get born from psychiatry? So I suppose if that were true I'd be guilty of reversing evolution :) I do think psychiatry has a major PR problem. But if you are a patient in need I'm not sure you care all that much really who sees you so long as they get you better.

    You see this promise from the Neurologists to step up to the plate from last year? If anything, it is they who need to do more in my view:’-needs

    That report is available. I have it here somewhere....
  2. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

    Logan, Queensland, Australia
    Psychology is very very old as a discipline, though it was born from philosophy. Philosophy was about the mind.

    Psychosomatic medicine though was subtantially born from neurology. When they could not find an obvious neurological defect, and after hypnosis was found to be able to mimic a number of neurological issues, the idea that unexplained neurologicla deficits must be mental was born. It had no objective evidence then, no biomarker, and it still doesn't.

    I am unclear of the link between neurology and psychology in general. I have yet to investigate this.

    As it says in my signature, they claim that if there is no objective marker then it means it must be mental with the impication that this makes neurological or other explanations untennable. Where then is the objective marker for any psychogenic illness? Oh, right, there isn't one. Ergo all psychogenic explanations are untennable. Any other position is hypocrisy unless they are properly treating psychogenic illness as unproved and dubious hypotheses.

    Yet there must be biomarkers. They cannot make a rational claim to its being all mental and there are no physical mediators. So many of these "psychogenic" illnesses have multitudes of biochemical and structural abnormalities. These have to be caused by physical mediators. There is no other option except magic. So if they want to claim its the "mind" without mechanism, they are claiming magic. The mind is a process in the brain (though some will dispute this) - if they want to be taken seriously they have to find biomarkers and trace them back to the brain and rule out other causes. Even then it will only show the symptoms have a neurological origin, but it would be a start.

    Failure to do so is to practice magic. Homeopathy works on one of the principles of magic, and possibly the two main ones - the laws of contagion and similarity. Its widely criticized for this. Yet some homeopathic therapies work, or appear to work. I put this down to a conflict between the magical theory of homeopathy and its pragmatic use. Similarly some cases of psychogenic illness might benefit from treatment ... but the theory is right up there with evil spirits, demonic possession and curses from witches.

    We see this all the time in biomedical ME and CFS research. Some theory leads to some treatment. Some get better. So there is a tendency by some to presume (rather than hope or investigate, though some do these too) that the theory is right. I have debunked at least three theories of ME over the years, though I wont discuss them publically because it was between me and the person proposing the theory, though I have commented on at least one of these theories elsewhere as it was germane to the topic.

    That doesn't include quite a few of my own models which I have debunked or others have pointed out were wrong when the scientific base grew. The important thing is not to irrationally believe a model has to be right, though proposing models without over-committing to them is a good step in improving understanding.

    Bye, Alex
    Merry, PhoenixDown and justy like this.
  3. justinreilly

    justinreilly Senior Member

    NYC (& RI)
    I don't think this is a good article. It makes it seem that the various pathologies that have already been proven are just possibilities that people are now looking into and that it's all a mystery whether its mainl. A physical or psychological disorder (though it does say its not All in the head).

    Very annoyed with Dr. Shepard for saying brain and spinal cord inflammation "has never been found." That's just not true. For example in Komaroff's landmark 1992 paper. This certainly isn't the first time he's said something ridiculous, false and harmful to ME patients.

See more popular forum discussions.

Share This Page