Dr. Teitlebaum--Left A Bad Taste In My Mouth

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Mikie, Dec 22, 2002.

  1. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    I just went to Dr. Teitlebaum's website and saw where he was having a weekend workshop in my hometown, Boulder, CO. As I looked further, I realized it was for health care practitioners only. What really turned me off was where he said, "We will teach you how to make $300,000 - $400,000 working 30 hours a week...It went on to say they could spend as much time as they wanted with their patients without the hassle of insurance companies. My guess is that they are being told to demand the money up front, as many of these specialists in FMS/CFS are now doing.

    I understand that docs need to make money like everyone else and that they spend a lot of time and money getting to be docs, but this advertisement is one of the least professional things I have come across in a long time. As a person sick with both CFS and FMS, it made me feel as though this doc sees us as a commodity from which to profit. I will never buy one of his books nor believe that his main focus is the health of his patients again.

    I would hope that the majority of docs do not feel this way. I know so many of them are struggling financially because of managed care and the rising costs of providing care to their patients.

    Love, Mikie
  2. nancyneptune

    nancyneptune New Member

    to post that on his website! Does he think only doctors go there? I'll bet he just lost himself $300,000 in new and current patients doing that. I hope he's satisfied. N
  3. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    I thought she should know about this as she lists Dr. Teitlebaum's website as a resource in her book, "Living Well With Autoimmune Disease."

    My Dad was a doc and I know he would be apalled at this.

    Love, Mikie
  4. DeeMerrk

    DeeMerrk New Member

    I have had a huge library of books on the subject,(can't believe I had not gotten Dr. Devin's book, had known about her a long time and have read many exerpts, but have finally gotten it.) Many I have chucked in the waste pile, including Teitlebaum's. That was a complete waste of money and time. It does not surprise me to see he is doing this.

  5. klutzo

    klutzo New Member

    Gee, Mel, don't be so shy, step right up and say what you think for once! :)

    I could make excuses for Dr. T on the grounds that malpractice ins. alone is costing docs more than $100K per year, at least in my state (Fla), but there is no excuse for demanding payment up front and not dealing with insurance companies. Sure, they suck, but this way the docs treatments are for the wealthy only. We already have a health care system that gives more to the wealthy and making the disparity greater is immoral, IMO.

    I never bought his books, and he is one of the few whose books I don't have, because from what I saw in reviews, etc., he has just borrowed other's programs and put them all together in one big program where different things are tried, one after the other until something works. Heck, I can do that at home.

    I was just saying to my spouse last night that it seems like sociopathy is now an acceptable moral code in this country....if I am right, then our society is doomed and some day kids will read about "the decline and fall of the American empire" in history classes.

    I think it is sweet that you want to trust these folks, Mikie, and I wish I were more like you. I am way to cynical for my own good...it's not healthy. For example, when I see a new research study, the very first thing I think of is "who paid for it?". In answering that question, I have found very few studies I feel I can trust,as there is almost always a conflict of interest. What a sad waste of time and energy for all of us.

  6. Annette2

    Annette2 New Member

    It seems to me the doctors who promote themselves - write all of these books and appear on TV - I wonder if they REALLY CARE about patients, or if they just want to cash in on a good thing. I'd rather go to a real doctor who sees patients in his/her office and doesn't get that type of nationwide recognition. My Family Doctor and Rheumy work in their offices and hospitals, see patients most of the day and work hard for them. I don't need to see the fancy doc and put money in their pockets. I used to work for a wonderful Infectious Disease doctor in Cleveland. He worked very hard on his research and also saw patients. He was a wonderful person and was always "behind the scenes". I wouldn't buy this guy's book if I was desperate!!!!

  7. teach6

    teach6 New Member

    Mel, I loved your post! Obviously we have more in common than I previously thought. Actually I think the only thing I really disagree with you on is exercise, but that is because I have CFS and even standing wears me out. I do a bit of walking, but not for exercise. I try to do gentle stretching on a daily basis though. And I love my ART trained chiro!

    I have thought the same about Teitlebaum. His plan for healing you is to have you buy his own supplements, and if you want help from his site it is outrageously expensive. I'll stick to my own docs who are informed and make an effort to keep up to date on the most recent developments in the tratment of my health issues.

    Besides, my docs have wonderful senses of humor and it's so nice to come out smiling rather than frustrated, as I used to do. I have just finished an almost complete makeover of my health care team and I really like who I have now!

  8. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    I know Dr. Cheney charges $600 an hour and it costs about $6,000 for the initial workup and some follow up with him. I also know that for years he spent all his time trying to treat patients and be a full-time advocate with the NIH and CDC at the same time. He just about went broke, so I feel he has a right to try to make a living now. He also suffered from those in the medical arena who tried to discredit him because he believed that CFIDS is a real illness. Also, Cheney works with insurance.

    It was just the callous, totally money-oriented commercial wording in Teitlebaum's ad which upset me. I guess I am naive, and I do feel docs have a right to a living, but this was way over the top. Talk about your snake oil salesmen!

    Mel, the Bush family has been deeply involved in the pharaceutical industry as well as oil for ages. Colin Powell, Dick Cheney, and other top Bush cronies are in the pharmaceutical conflict of interest pocket too. They were reportedly stockholders and board members of the company which tried to discredit Dr. Nicolson's work on mycoplasmas because that company didn't want their work on mycoplasmas known. This has been documented on several of the sites which deal with the Gulf War Illness and mycoplasmas' roles in illnesses.

    Bush recently cut funding to the United Nations Population Fund ($34 million). The reniged funds were for contraception and sex education, maternal health care and AIDS education. It would have helped to prevent an estimated 2 million unwanted pegnancies, 800,000 abortions, and 4,700 maternal deaths. For a man who opposes abortion, one would think he would be happy to prevent them with family planning in the poorest parts of the world.

    This president and his administration are doing all kinds of things that the average person never hears about because he keeps the focus on his sabre rattling. Adding the inability to sue the pharmaceutical company for complications arising out of the smallpox vaccinations at the last minute by a lame duck puppet of the administration is just another example of these tricks. The Bush administration is involved with this company too. Memory fails me though, is it Eli Lily? I think so. I saw an item on this on CNN and they showed all the conflict of interests involved in this.

    In a capitalist society, it is all about the bottom line, but we shouldn't lose our humanity in the process. I am very afraid of what this administration is capable of, more so than most of the ones we have had. This president seems to feel he knows what is best for everyone and is willing to do whatever it takes, regardless of the consequences. I think society will not look back fondly at this administration. This is not partisan politics here. I'm neither a Rep. nor a Dem. Politics, regardless of party, is a dirty business.

    Love, Mikie
  9. Madelyn

    Madelyn New Member

    but I couldn't let that one go without comment. The money goes to underdeveloped countries to PROMOTE abortion, not prevent it, which is one of the reasons Bush went against it. In some nations with far less free choice than we enjoy, abortion isn't a matter of a woman's choice, it's coerced.

    I'd only like to say that I wish political commentaries were discouraged here!

    [This Message was Edited on 12/22/2002]
  10. Teddifromindy

    Teddifromindy New Member

    I am new to the list and disagree with Mikie about our president. But shouldn't this list be apolitical and be about getting well? Teddi
  11. lisjhn

    lisjhn New Member

    Boy, don't know what to think about that one. Funny because I had just gotten out his book that I purchased a few years ago.

    I was appalled when I first read about how doctors can make loads of money off of us, but then, I went to the site and read it. It still kind of makes me mad, I think it could have been worded a bit differently.

    But, think about it, why else would doctors go to these seminars? I can think of 3 things....they want to learn more about these DD's, they actually want to try to help the patient, and yes, they want to earn more money. Who wouldn't?

    At least they are taking an interest. I guess it's better than the docs who refuse to treat us, or who have no clue as to what they are doing and just throw meds at us, or the ones who think it's all in our heads. As long as we can get more people to learn about these DD's and the more we can spread the word, the better.

    But, yeah, I didn't like the sales pitch either.

    Just my thoughts, ~LISA
  12. teach6

    teach6 New Member

    You are leaving yourself wide open with that last comment. It's mighty tempting, but I'll try and hold my tongue!

  13. karen2002

    karen2002 New Member

    I went to the site, to read about this conference. There are a list of benefits from the conference---
    If one were to read just what you quoted it does sound pretty horrendous.
    That statement, in context---and with the other benefits mentioned is not so malevolent.
    Drs. overhead from paperwork and personel dealing with insurance companies is high, not to mention a pain in the butt. Throw malpractice insurance into the equation, plus all other overhead, and expenses are very high in this business. After all, it is a business, and must be run as such. Bills must be paid. Thus a marketing strategy for advertising the workshop. You might be surprised to read marketing strategies from this website. Why IS the message board REALLY here? Because this is a business...it caters to us, we are held closer to this site, due to the board. That's reality.
    The closing sentence, of the monetary benefit from getting rid of insurance companies, was this "You can finally be the healer and teacher that you meant to be, taking care of patients — not insurance administrators!"
    Many times through out the workshop description I see concern of those with these DD's mentioned. In all fairness I have copied the excerpt so that people can read it in its entirety before making a decision based off one line.

    Learn how to be an expert in treating Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, ME, & MPS - Using a Proven, Integrated Treatment Approach!

    Dr. Jacob Teitelbaum M.D., author of the best-selling book "From Fatigued to Fantastic" and Senior Author of the recently published Landmark Study "Effective Treatment 0f Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia — A Randomized Double-blind Placebo-controlled Study" will Be Having 2 Day Weekend Workshops for Health Care Practitioners. By the end of the first 2 days you'll be able to effectively evaluate and treat these patients using either an Integrative Medicine approach or an all natural approach with no prescriptions.
    These syndromes cripple an estimated 6 to 12 million Americans and many more people worldwide. In Teitelbaum's double-blind study (see the abstract on the other side of this page) 91 percent of patients in the active group improved with an average 90 percent increase in quality of life (P. < .0001 vs. placebo).

    The April, 2002 issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Pain Management notes:

    "Teitelbaum's study is highly successful and makes Fibromyalgia a very treatable disorder. The study by Dr. Teitelbaum et al. and years of clinical experience makes this approach an excellent and powerfully effective part of the standard of practice for treatment of people who suffer from FMS and MPS - both of which are common and devastating syndromes."

    What Are the Benefits of Doing This Workshop?
    1. Both prescribing and non-prescribing health care practitioners will learn to be experts in recognizing, evaluating the causes of, and effectively treating fatigue, chronic pain, disordered sleep, hormonal disorders and cognitive dysfunction. CFS/Fibromyalgia can resolve if one treats the infections (e.g. yeast, parasites, etc.), disordered sleep, hormonal (including thyroid, adrenal, ovarian/testicular, etc.), and nutritional deficiencies in an integrated manner. Attendance is limited to allow for an excellent learning experience.

    2. There is an enormous demand for practitioners who know how to effectively treat these syndromes. Over 75,000 people a year visit our web site (www.endfatigue.com) looking for help. Conference attendees will be highlighted on our web site referral list at no charge.

    3. Our treatment approach requires no expensive equipment - simply your ears, mind, and heart.

    4. Learn how to develop a simple, yet highly successful practice. Be free from involvement with insurance company and practice management hassles. We will teach you how to make $300,000-$400,000 /year working 30 hours a week and spending as much time with each patient as feels best. You can finally be the healer and teacher that you meant to be, taking care of patients &#8212; not insurance administrators!

    5. Our program has been proven to be highly effective in a recently published "gold standard" placebo-controlled RCT (see other side of page) and has been accepted as "an excellent part of standard of practice" by the journal of the major pain society of the U.S. (see above). These also supply you with legal support for the treatments.

    If you will look at number 3 above---I think you can see some sincerity here---amid other places. Sure it's a business---sure people profit from our illnesses, and everyone else that has an illness. I think sometimes we become a bit too cynical, overly sensitive, and distrusting, though.
    How many above that posted---ready to burn all his books--read the advertisement, I wonder, or simply on someones word were ready to condemn this Drs. work. I am not trying to put anyone down, here--I too, find myself becoming cynical. I have one of his books, "From Fatigued to Fantastic". There is good information--just like in any book covering these illnesses. We take what we can from them, to assist in our treatment, and disregard the rest. There is no "Bible for CFS/FMS", and won't be until the day that a definative cause and cure is found. I think Tietelbaum has some sound approaches, and the harm I see in this thread is that many of the therapies in the book, do help, in this disorder; and someone who is new to all this, or even those who are "old-timers", may be dissuaded from trying some of his therapies mentioned, or reading something that may educate them, regarding these disorders. There is plenty of info on RX's that help, as well as supplements, and herbs. Most come into this disorder being the over achievers who have run themselves into the ground. They need information on the above, it is one of relatively few books....for us. Reading any and all things we can get our hands on---is how we make good decisions for our individual care. Remember before we claim a treatment is no good, that we all react and benefit differently from different treatments. My treatment has a lot of similarities to Tietelbaum's protocol, and I am not bedridden anymore. I think we all need to be more careful, we do not want someone not to receive a treatment that might improve their condition.

    [This Message was Edited on 12/22/2002]
  14. Bambi

    Bambi New Member

    Call it what you want, I am not a
    mathemetician...but the number of hours he says they can work for the
    money they will make sure sounds to
    ME like someone is going to be paying
    up the bucket and that's US. He can
    wrap it in Christmas paper and put a
    big red bow on it but it still has
    something rotten inside.
  15. CelticLadee

    CelticLadee New Member

    I am new here and was more than a little overwhelmed by this message trail until I read Karen2002. Phew. Thank you Karen2002. I feel you have a very rational way of looking at this whole thing. I am not a fan of Tietelbaum but I checked his book out from the library when I became aware that I have CFIDS. His writings helped me to get some perspective on this dd and believe me I appreciate any help I can get as it is very limited in our society. I don't think he should be burned at the stake for encouraging doctors with financial reward while they work to help people like us. I know my 2 cents isn't worth much & I say this with love: The political statements here make me very uncomfortable. I didn't think this board was used for political statements. Hope you all find peace in your hearts. This can't be good for anyone here. Newbie
  16. dlizard

    dlizard New Member

    I think what we are seeing is THE END! of insurance as we know it... now, don't think I agree with payment up front cause I'm sick and broke like the rest of you guys,,, but insurnace doesn't work!!!! I'd rather give my cobra payment of 400 bucks a month to some doctor that would help me instead of trying to be protected from let's say a heart attack.... My insurnace doesn't cover much of anything so the 400 is in addition to EVERYTHING I do..... so maybe the idea itself is good .... I personally live close to dr lapp and dr cheney but don't feel like spending 5 grand in addition..... I can't do it and few people can.... just let em shoot their own foot for a change...
    Don't EVER**** fool yourself..... medicine is about MONEY totally.... NOT YOU or ME or anyone else for that fact..... I worked in it for 22 years and my feelings are totally valid and most people in the industry will gladly tell you the same ole thing.... my insurance plan by the way did NOT even have a rheumatologist on it when I needed one!! you think they care about me???? nope... just know it. It is truely allllllll about money$$$$$$$$$$
  17. dove1

    dove1 New Member

    I am recently diagnosed and Teitelbaum is the first book I read which gave me a tremendous amount of hope. My doctor is using his protocol and I am improving slowly. I have spoken to many who have been helped by his protocol and I am happy he is educating other practicioners to treat suffering patients effectively.
    We live in America and people are interested in wealth. We can't get around that fact. I don't mind if money is a motivating factor for doctors to develop specialties in this field. There also will be a percentage of doctors that will accept insurance and be well educated in his and other CFIDS/treatment protocols as a result of his education efforts. I am a little surprised at the the negativity displayed toward a Dr. that has helped many. An opinion is one thing, a complete "discrediting" is another.
    If there is one thing I have learned quickly with this illness is that what helps one patient may not help another and we must be careful not to discourage what may be helpful (and create hopefulness) in another who is desperately trying to recover.
  18. pam_d

    pam_d New Member

    I agree with, Mikie, it's not so much what's said, it's the WAY it's worded....like an infomercial! Turns me off, too.....


  19. Mikie

    Mikie Moderator

    First, I agree that the politics should be kept out of our board, so I will try to restrain myself...except to say that outlawing anything does not make it go away; it just makes it go to the unsafe backstreets. Prevention is so much more cost effective and humane. BTW, the rumor that the United Nations Fund was destined for asian countries where forced abortions are practiced is false.

    Second, I am NOT against docs making money. With the current situation with insurance, it is very difficult for docs to make it and spend more than 10-15 minutes with each patient. What I think Teitlebaum is teaching docs is that there is a HUGE demand for docs with at least a modicum of knowledge about our illnesses. This means that they can start charging outrageous fees (how else can someone make $300,000-$400,000 and work 30 hours a week while spending as much time as they want with their patients?) and not be bothered with insurance forms. Only the most wealthy who can pay cash will benefit from these specialists in the future if every doc who is knowledgeable adopts this philosophy. If this is the message Teitlebaum is spreading through his seminars, how long will it be before all these docs start seeing the almighty dollar sign.

    I'm glad some of y'all did go to his website to read the entire message and decide for yourselves. Regardless of his telling docs he will teach them how to be able to just treat patients like they were meant to, who do you think will be the recipients of that treatment--only those with the money to afford it.

    I know that everything in this country revolvs around profit, but I believe deep in my heart that there are some docs out there who really care for their patients; however, if they cannot continue to pay their huge overhead, they will not be able to continue their work. Here in my home state of Florida, we are losing docs to early retirement because of the huge cost of malpractice insurance. My pain specialist had a sign in his waiting room that he carried no malpractice insurance.

    I, too, read the entire message in Teitlebaum's ad and I found that regardless of what else he had to say, the real message lies in the $$$$$$$$$$$$$.

    Mel, Sweetie, I know you were kidding about being naive. This old broad's been around the block at least a couple of times :)

    Love, Mikie
  20. sofy

    sofy New Member

    While I agree with Karen that the system Dr. must practice medicine in is burdensom the main focus of a Dr. still has to be "to heal".I cant help but remember when the polio vaccine was developed Dr. S refused to make money off it because to do so would be immoral. Medicine has to practiced within the confines of the existing system and to encourage your fellow practicioners to leave the system so that they can practice medicine the way they want and not have to be bothered with the expense and bother of insurance collection has an immoral tinge to it. Are they simply going to ignore those in need who would cause them the extra expense and bother? Mind you I am sure he is making a hefty per head fee for the seminar. I was in a self employed business for 10 years and certainly could have made much more money (at least twice) than I did but did not want to live my life that way. I enjoyed being able to give 45 min to someone who had difficulty paying for 30 min of my time and never letting them feel like I was giving them charity. How we live our lives says much about who we are and I am afraid I dont like what Dr. T is saying about himself. Will he really get that much more joy from his toys than helping someone probono for an hr a week. If so what kind of a healing soul does he have and how can he see with it so impaired.
    Now I do apologize for letting myself indulge and go on and on
    [This Message was Edited on 12/23/2002]