Scandal in Northern Ireland
Dr Vernon Coleman MB ChB DSc FRSA
Many thanks to the reader who sent me a letter from someone called Elaine Way CBE, who is Chief Executive of Western Health and Social Care Trust in Londonderry, Northern Ireland.
My reader had written to the Trust, quoting my book on Alzheimer’s disease – and the way that thousands of patients are being misdiagnosed with untreatable Alzheimer’s when they are suffering from treatable Idiopathic Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus.
Ms Way consulted the Trust’s three ‘Memory Service Clinicians’ (Dr Gillian Mullan, Consultant Clinical Psychologist for Older People, Dr Stephen Todd, Consultant Geriatrician and Dr Tuoyo Awani, Consultant Old Age Psychiatrist.)
According to Ms Way, these three told her that ‘There is no definitive cure for idiopathic normal pressure hydrocephalus’.
They apparently also told her that they were unaware of any recent scientific literature that reports misdiagnosis rates for Alzheimer’s disease to the degree I reported in my book.
When I read their letter I was several hundred miles away from Northern Ireland but I wouldn’t mind betting that they heard my scream of anguish.
Did these three experts really claim that there is no definitive cure for idiopathic normal pressure hydrocephalus?
If they did say this then they are a disgrace and should be horsewhipped.
Idiopathic normal pressure hydrocephalus is the one major cause of dementia which can be cured – by a simple shunt operation. The operation is very effective.
I am appalled that three people who are supposed to be experts should not know this. The scientific evidence is listed in the three page selection of scientific references in my book entitled Misdiagnosed (And Could be Cured).
My book also contains scientific evidence showing that between 5% and 10% of all individuals diagnosed as suffering from Alzheimer’s Disease have been misdiagnosed and are suffering from idiopathic normal pressure hydrocephalus.
I suggest that patients who are living in Northern Ireland might like to write to Ms Way at the Western Health and Social Care Trust and ask her and her little chums to do a little research.
No, actually, that’s not good enough.
Whoever is in charge of managing the Western Health and Social Care Trust should sack the whole bloody lot of them.
Copyright Vernon Coleman 2017
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