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He said there was mould in it

A “blood analyst” who claims to cure cancer.

It was a devastating diagnosis. In less than 10 minutes, the Harley Street specialist had taken a pinprick of Wendy Roberts’s blood, examined it under a powerful microscope and concluded that she probably had cancer.

Miss Roberts, 40, was distraught: she had been feeling unwell and Errol Denton’s apparently expert opinion confirmed her worst fears.

“He told me my blood was dirty; he said it was toxic and said there was mould in it. He said I have markers for diabetes and he had only ever seen blood like mine in a cancer patient,” Miss Roberts said.

So she staggered outside and freaked out, because she thought he was legit.

Last week, Denton was fined £9,000 and ordered to pay £10,000 in costs over “twisted” and “immoral” claims he makes on the Internet that he can cure cancer. Last year, he was found guilty of breaching Advertising Standards Agency rules over similarly misleading claims.

But he’s still practicing, because he falls between the definitions or something.

The authorities appear powerless to prevent him, underlining the problem of how to control largely unregulated practitioners working on the fringes of the health industry.

Denton specialises in “live blood analysis”, the practice of taking a drop of blood, putting it under a powerful microscope and then examining it for alleged defects. He describes the process as “the ultimate preventative medicine tool available today”.

On one of his websites, Livebloodtest.com, he states: “The object of live blood analysis is not merely to have your blood analyzed; it is to acquire the opportunity to prevent disease through the adoption of correct nutritional habits − removing excess acidity and toxins in order to restore your blood to a healthy condition.”

He describes himself as a certified nutritional microscopist and qualified iridologist − the practice of studying patients’ eyes.

Certified by whom, qualified under what criteria? There are acupuncturists in my neighborhood whose signs over the shop claim they are “certified”…so we can tell that means nothing.

A plaque outside the Grade I-listed premises in Harley Street shows Denton’s name followed by a series of letters. It states: “Errol Denton BMC, CNM, Dip LSI, MSHN.” Dr Archie Prentice, president of the Royal College of Pathologists, said last week that he did not recognise any of Denton’s qualifications.

Just what I thought. A name followed by some letters. Whoopdeedoo.

Wendy Roberts? Nothing. She’s fine.

Comments

  1. Pierce R. Butler says

    Those neighborhood needle-pushers may well be certified – with a few minutes of conversation, you could probably point to a few who are, at minimum, certifiable…

    Denton also claims to be a Certified Nurse Midwife?

  2. cuervocuero says

    Ok, my cold meds are definitely in play. I *swear* I read the alphabet soup Denton is claiming after his name and ‘Errol Denton BMC, CNM, Dip LSI, MSHN’ was read as ‘Errol Denton, BUM CAM Dip SHIT MAN’. I had a nanosecond of thinking it was an opinion on his complementary alternative medicine qualifications but rereading disappointed me greatly.

  3. Blanche Quizno says

    Oh, wait – *I* know how this goes!!

    “Dr”: “You have cancer.”

    Patient/Mark: “REALLY???”

    “Dr”: “Yes. But if you buy and consume these expensive “drugs” which you can only get from me, you’ll be cured!”

    Patient/Mark shells out for capsules filled with cornstarch, takes them as directed, and reports back to “Dr” who then pronounces her “cured.”

    Tidy little scam, that.

  4. Sastra says

    My friend was diagnosed with all sorts of problems and deficiencies through “live blood cell analysis.” When I tried to tell her that this wasn’t a scientific method of diagnosis she disagreed because the results had been projected onto a screen and she had seen the problems the naturopath was pointing out with her own eyes. That’s science. But of course she knows nothing about reading such samples, or the many pitfalls. Since she’s an RN, you’d think she’d be more cautious.

    Another strange thing is that she seemed to prefer having numerous health problems to the idea of having made a mistake. No hint at all that this might be a relief or comfort. So I’m glad Miss Roberts in the article not only found out she didn’t have cancer, but didn’t subsequently insist that she must have a special kind of cancer, one only found through live blood analysis.

  5. Your Name's not Bruce? says

    I work in a camera store. We also sell microscopes. I got rather uneasy about a sale I was making when the person for whom I was demonstrating a microscope made a pronouncement of the presence of some disease or other in the prepared slide of human blood that we were using to test the instrument (which had an LCD screen so that specimens were viewable by several people at once). The specimen in question had only been visible for seconds before this “diagnosis” was made in a very offhanded yet matter of fact way. I wish I could now remember the specific malady he claimed to be able to see. I figured there was no way that anyone could have determined that result that quickly with that microscope. It was a good microscope, but certainly not a medical research grade one.I don’t think he was a doctor at all. My QUACK alarm was ringing very loudly in my head. He said he was going to use the microscope for blood analysis. He didn’t buy the microscope on that visit, but I think his wife ended up buying it a few weeks later. Reading this story makes me wish I’d kept his business card (which advertised his connection with a pyramid scheme “health supplement” business). I just hope he doesn’t kill anybody….

  6. Blanche Quizno says

    What strikes me as most odd about this is that a visual examination can’t tell you *anything* about blood chemistry! What of hormone levels, blood Ph, and all the rest of the analyses that are done on actual blood tests?

  7. A. Noyd says

    Blanche Quizno (#7)

    What strikes me as most odd about this is that a visual examination can’t tell you *anything* about blood chemistry!

    Not quite. There are non-pseudoscientific ways to visually analyze blood which can tell you things about the chemistry. This page has a rather technical description of peripheral blood smear analysis. But notice how the authors list limitations, talk about when mechanical analyzers would provide superior results, recommend more specific types of evaluation to confirm suspected problems and conditions, and cite several screens worth of academic references. Just a wee difference in tenor compared to this “live blood analysis” quackery. Interesting, huh?

  8. latsot says

    My sister is a certified acupuncturist. She’s got a certificate to prove it. It has a bit that says the people who issued the certificate are allowed to certify people because they say so. They self-certify.

    She earned that certificate, though. She went on a 2 day course, paid for (I think) by the NHS. Then after the 2 days came back and started practicing acupuncture to NHS patients when she was supposed to be giving them physiotherapy.

    We don’t talk often.

  9. Omar Puhleez says

    I have a pet duck. Name of Dorothy.
    After reading Ophelia’s threadstarter, I asked Dorothy what assessment she would make of any given practitioner of “live blood analysis”.
    Guess how she replied.

  10. anne mariehovgaard says

    Sastra @5:

    Since she’s an RN, you’d think she’d be more cautious.

    Not really; a lot of nurses are into CAM. When somebody tells you that they have a friend/relative who practices somethingopathy and they’re a health professional so it must be real medicine, it’s usually a nurse.

  11. karmacat says

    In med school, students would put on skits at the end of the year. One woman made fun of pathology and how all the slides looked alike. Pathologists have to go through 3-4 years of training. I was listening to 2 nurse practitioners who I really respect talking seriously about reiki. It is disheartening that smart, competent people fall for this kind of woo.

  12. caseloweraz says

    I too can claim to cure cancer. I learned how from Lord Monckton.

    And furthermore I can call spirits from the vasty deep.

    – caseloweraz, FHRO, BNC, TNC, HP-8640B

  13. Omar Puhleez says

    From reading through the comments above, two thoughts occur to me.
    1. the invention of schemes to separate the gullible from their money are as old as money itself;
    2. for at least some of the time, those vending, marketing and otherwise flogging the schemes must believe in them quite sincerely.
    And because each entrepreneur has to be selling a fresh and novel and somehow different scheme, they grow in number like the proverbial hydra’s heads. So a series of vortices, whirlpools or even cyclones can form. However, only rarely in history does this process involve large numbers of people and significant fractions of whole populations around any one con. In the typical Ponzi scheme, not everyone can be involved, and at the end of it, someone has to be left holding the bag.
    Likewise each of the quackeries: ‘live blood analysis’, scientology, aromatherapy and so on and whatever, can only ever capture a small part of the population. Quacks and preachers are forever poaching on each others’ domains.

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