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Simon Wessely and his statement, "Benefits can often make these patients worse" (1993)

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS Discussion' started by Dolphin, Jul 16, 2014.

  1. Dolphin

    Dolphin Senior Member

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    I don't think Simon Wessely is that close to insurance companies, unlike Peter White, Michael Sharpe, etc.

    But that doesn't mean he hasn't influenced whether people got disability payments or not.

    See for example this presentation from 1993 to the Disability Living Allowance Advisory Board in the UK (a State disability payment), which ends, "Benefits can often make patients worse".


    1993 talk summary to disability board.png
  2. Dolphin

    Dolphin Senior Member

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    WillowJ, Valentijn, Esther12 and 2 others like this.
  3. maryb

    maryb iherb code TAK122

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    Hahahaha - perhaps wiser........oh I could wet myself laughing...
    golden likes this.
  4. golden

    golden Senior Member

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    Sir Simon Wisely
    MeSci, maryb, zzz and 1 other person like this.
  5. Esther12

    Esther12 Senior Member

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    Certainly wealthier.

    Seemingly no more apologetic.
    MeSci, Sean, maryb and 1 other person like this.
  6. Gingergrrl

    Gingergrrl Senior Member

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    Sorry for this question but for those of us not in the UK, who is Simon Wessley (what is his title or position) and why is he so full of hate? What is wrong with this man?
  7. Esther12

    Esther12 Senior Member

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    I don't think he's full of hate at all. I think that the way he's treated patient's is despicable, but don't get any sense that it's motivated by his hatred of them.

    He's now President of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, but he started building his career with psychosocial CFS stuff, and has had a lot of influence over how patients in the UK are treated.
    Ritto and WillowJ like this.
  8. Gingergrrl

    Gingergrrl Senior Member

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    @Esther12 I didn't actually know who he was or how much power he has. He just sounded hateful to me from his comments.
    Clodomir likes this.
  9. Valentijn

    Valentijn Activity Level: 3

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    Where's his evidence that doctors perpetuate ME/CFS in patients? The psychobabblers never miss a chance to wave the "you make ME patients sick by investigating or treating them" flag, yet I have never seen a single study on the subject, much less one which even remotely supports that statement.

    The claim that belief in physical origins of symptoms leads to a bad prognosis has also since been disproven. Any retraction of that bullshit? Certainly not.

    And, of course, it has also been demonstrated by a group of Dutch psychobabblers that exercise, even when gently graded and accompanied by CBT, results in no physical improvement. Maybe he should clarify that bit too, while he's at it :rolleyes:

    Sir Simon Wessely has been proven wrong regarding pretty much every statement he's ever made about ME/CFS. I guess that's why he's moved on to GWS, since there's not quite so overwhelming an amount of information contradicting him there yet.
  10. chipmunk1

    chipmunk1 Senior Member

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    Psychobabble is a great way to advance one's medical career. You don't have a tangible product that you promote. You don't produce or create anything at all asides from random babbling.

    you can sound like an expert by making up complicated terms despite complete lack of knowledge on the subject, you never have to prove your ideas scientifically as they exist only in a metaphysical world - the mind. Everyone looks down on "mental" patients they can't protest or question you without looking like fools.
    Dolphin and WillowJ like this.
  11. WillowJ

    WillowJ Senior Member

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    Employed as a researcher, professor, department head, Vice Dean, etc. and clinician at the Department of Psychological Medicine, Institute of Psychiatry, King's College London (& some other clinics). Is a Foundation Senior Investigator of the National Institute for Health Research. Was knighted recently. Apparently newly president of the Royal College of Psychiatrists (this year). Has friends in the House of Lords.

    To hear him talk (I've heard recordings), sounds pleasant, funny, and charming. Exactly the sort of person one would invite to a Christmas party. It's not surprising his colleagues, the journals (e.g. BMJ, the Lancet) and some of the Lords think well of him (as they don't appear to actually read his studies).
  12. Firestormm

    Firestormm Guest

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    Was it 'his statement'. I mean to say it wasn't a quote from him was it? It was a summary of what he said written by someone else.

    I only mention really as I have seen it now on the internet as 'quote from Simon Wessely'.

    Of course he does endorse it by what he said yesterday on Twitter.

    Just thought I'd mention.

    Not saying I don't think it wholly unfounded - unless you are talking in the abstract world of psychiatry and 'behaviour' with no objective evidence to back it up...

    Totally the wrong thing to imply (or say) at a meeting with the DWP. No wonder we are where we are...
    Snow Leopard likes this.
  13. A.B.

    A.B. Senior Member

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    Working for insurance companies or other entities with financial interests in dismissing illnesses can make you say nonsense such as "benefits can make patients worse" and "doctors contribute to perpetuating the illness".

    His philosophy is all about disempowering patients. Keep them away from doctors, keep them away from support groups, dismantle their social networks, refuse financial assistence, blame them for everything.
    Last edited: Jul 17, 2014
  14. Antares in NYC

    Antares in NYC Senior Member

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    ...and don't forget: make patients do jumping jacks to "get over" their "psychosomatic obsession" with the "so-called" fatigue.
  15. Gingergrrl

    Gingergrrl Senior Member

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    @WillowJ Thanks for explaining who he is and I kept hearing about him on the board and was confused!
    WillowJ likes this.
  16. WillowJ

    WillowJ Senior Member

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    If you don't know what he's about, this is a good summary:
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2901228/
    Chronic fatigue syndrome: Harvey and Wessely's (bio)psychosocial model versus a bio(psychosocial) model based on inflammatory and oxidative and nitrosative stress pathways
    Valentijn likes this.
  17. Valentijn

    Valentijn Activity Level: 3

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    There's also a bunch of his more interesting quotes from research papers, text books, and published musings at http://forums.phoenixrising.me/index.php?threads/simon-wessely-quotes.21025/ . Including the ones in this thread from the National Archives, and a few others from the archives as well.
  18. Min

    Min Senior Member

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    Many of the patients he and his colleagues have condemned to decades of living hell are older...and more ill.
  19. Thomas

    Thomas

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    What a jackass.
  20. Gingergrrl

    Gingergrrl Senior Member

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    I started to read his quotes but had to stop as they were making me ill. I don't understand though why his opinion is given so much merit? Is it mostly financial and if the UK attributes ME/CFS to a psychological cause, they therefore no longer have to carry out a thorough medical investigation of symptoms (i.e. save money.)

    Also, he seems to contradict himself b/c in one quote he admits that ME/CFS can occur after "serious" infections like mono, hepatitis, and viral meningitis so who is he to decide whose infection was "serious" vs. "non-serious?" His quotes were crazy-making to read!

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