GMC Sanction Triggers Public Debate

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Dr. Waney Squier

Last week’s decision by the General Medical Council (GMC) to remove pediatric neuropathologist Waney Squier from the medical register has triggered ongoing media coverage in the UK, including a number of voices speaking in her defense.

The GMC’s sanction followed a declaration earlier in the month by a tribunal that Dr. Squier was guilty of unprofessional conduct. Now she will no longer be allowed to practice or to testify as an expert witness.

Days after the tribunal announced its findings, human rights attorney Clive Stafford Smith published an opinion piece in The Guardian that likened the move to the papal inquisition of Galileo in 1615, a thought echoed a week later in the same forum, in a  letter to the editor signed by 25 medical and legal professionals in response to the GMC’s decision to strike her from the register.

Then The Guardian published a defense of the GMC process by Chief Executive Niall Dickson, who said critics had missed the point:

[T]he GMC is not and has no intention of being the arbiter of scientific opinion – the allegations we brought against Dr Squier did not rest on the validity of her scientific theory but upon her competence and conduct in presenting her evidence to the courts.

That same page contains more letters on both sides, including one by Susan Goldsmith, writer and co-producer of the film about shaking theory, The Syndrome. In another letter today, Clive Stafford Smith says that the charges were, in fact, about her opinion, not her behavior, and argues:

If we are right, then the people who mislead the court (albeit perhaps unintentionally) are those who purvey an unproven theory as fact.

Protecting Innocent Families (PIF), a non-profit that speaks on  behalf of wrongfully accused families, submitted a letter to the GMC in support of Dr. Squier, including an angle that I had not taken the time to address in my post about the decision earlier in the month:

The declaration also scolds Dr. Squier unfairly for her citations of the medical research. In one example, she cited the early biomechanical research of Dr. Anne-Christine Duhaime and colleagues (“The shaken baby syndrome: A clinical, pathological, and biomechanical study,” Journal of Neurosurgery 1987 66:409–415) to support her observation that shaking without impact has not been shown to generate sufficient forces to cause brain injury. The panel wrote that Dr. Squier had “completely misinterpreted what Duhaime had actually said,” a conclusion that baffles us. The Duhaime paper was a landmark in the field, because it was the first attempt to test shaking theory scientifically, and the results surprised even the authors, who wrote:

“It was concluded that severe head injuries commonly diagnosed as shaking injuries require impact to occur and that shaking alone in an otherwise normal baby is unlikely to cause the shaken baby syndrome.”

WindowLogoPIF also released their letter to the press, which led to some confusion, as one resulting story opened with the miscue that the PIF petition is in support of Dr. Squier: “Campaign group defends ‘dishonest’ doctor struck off medical register for ‘shaken baby’ evidence.” Christina England at Health Impact News also quoted generously, and more accurately, from the PIF materials in her treatment, “Shaken baby syndrome expert and world renowned pathologist banned from practicing medicine.” PIF has published the full text of its letter on its web site.

Both the BBC treatment of the decision against Dr. Squier and the coverage in New Scientist presented both sides of the debate, although some articles reported the GMC’s position without mentioning her supporters.

March 29 update: Columnist James Le Fanu at The Telegraph has posted an insightful item criticizing the GMC.

If you are not familiar with the debate surrounding shaken baby syndrome, please see the home page of this blog and web site.

copyright 2016 Sue Luttner

5 Comments

Filed under abusive head trauma, AHT, SBS, shaken baby, shaken baby syndrome, Uncategorized

5 responses to “GMC Sanction Triggers Public Debate

  1. Pingback: Innocent Families Stand With Dr. Waney Squier | Protecting Innocent Families

  2. irelandssecretcourts

    “[T]he GMC is not and has no intention of being the arbiter of scientific opinion – the allegations we brought against Dr Squier did not rest on the validity of her scientific theory but upon her competence and conduct in presenting her evidence to the courts.”

    1/ Would Dr Squier or any expert need to testify if the science of SBS was settled? It dishonours the field of Medicine to have 2 physicians who have examined the same patient or same evidence, that each have diametrically opposing views in court. Does water boil at 100*C at atmospheric pressure?

    2/ Would the London Metropolitan Police need to try to discredit experts who raise questions about SBS if the science of SBS was settled?

    3/ Would the UK Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) be allowed to publish misinformation and bad advice to Crown prosecutors if the science of SBS was settled? CPS had to rebrand SBS to NAHI due to losing so many cases and so many miscarriages of justice they are responsible for. Sally Clark case was only one of many and the Jayden Wray case also one of many. Interestingly Dr Scheimberg lost the case for CPS and later cameunder General Medical Council (GMC) scrutiny.

    It is clear to most that SBS experts are being targeted, proving it in a court of law might be difficult, but not impossible. I would suspect that Dr Squier will appeal the GMC decision and will easily be reinstated. I find it strange that Prof Sir Roy Meadows, the infamous quack that invented Munchausen Syndrome by Proxy (MSbP) was reinstated despite hundreds of miscarriages of justice he caused with his flawed and unproven theory (that still exists today). I often wonder if Meadows and his quack friend David Southall were targeted again by the GMC or the MET? Probably not since they testified for CPS. They probably did more damage to the MET than anyone but both were reinstated on appeal. I don’t like taking leaps of faith, but I’m sure if someone had the proper resources to investigate fully, it would be clear that the CPS & MET are targeting scientists who don’t subscribe to the dogma. This is Perverting the Course of Justice.

    What we are being handed here, at least in the UK, is a golden opportunity to settle the science of SBS. It would seem as a start, we should petition the Royal College of Paediatricians and the Royal College of Pathologists, to settle the science of SBS. I have said for a long time that SBS needs to be put on trial. My approach is that “Believers” of SBS are killing babies by giving out incorrect information which has no scientific grounding. We know of documented cases where babies were seen at hospitals after short falls and the parents dismissed. When the babies died, the caregivers, at least the ones who could be proven to have been alone with the baby for longer than 30 seconds, or those who admitted to resuscitative shaking, were tried and convicted of a “crime” that has been proven not to exist. There are documented cases of babies being misdiagnosed and left untreated who had fallen. SBS also prevents serious study into SIDS, which I believe Dr Norman Gutkelch had in mind when he wrote the original paper.

    Even if they don’t want to settle the SBS debate, at the very least they should be screaming from rooftops that babies should never be placed on couches or beds where they could fall, this should include non-mobile infants also. There needs to be new guidelines to all physicians that if a baby sustains a fall, that biomechanical studies have proven that the infant has been subjected to a short fall, that careful monitoring needs to be put in place and not wait, as we have seen, the baby suffer an ALTE days later.

    I am also of the opinion that the science will not be settled by scientists but by judges and laymen such as myself who comprise juries. The hit TV show “MythBusters” could have ended the SBS Industry overnight. I tried to interest them in doing a show but got no response. Unfortunately MythBusters has ended. I have since tried the TV show “Adam Ruins Everything” but no luck so far. Maybe someone could contact them and offer help setting up a show?

    I always remember what Dr Squier said to me; The Science must be defended”. I believe it falls upon US to defend Science and there couldn’t be a better time. I am also cognisant of the fact that the witch hunters of Salem, MA were otherwise good, God fearing people whose belief in the Devil equalled their faith in God. We need to rescue Medicine and Science from the Religion of Science where Evidence is replaced by Faith and Belief and restore it to where experts and scientists are not afraid to ask questions or peer-review theories rather than allowing blind dogma to take hold, otherwise we will see many more Inquisitions taking place. Go out there and “Defend the Science” at every opportunity.

  3. Michael D Innis

    Michael D Innis FRCPA; FRCPath Retired Haematologist
    Princess Alexandra Hospital Brisbane Australia
    E-mail micinnis@bigpond.com

    Address
    1 White Dove Court
    Wurtulla Queensland
    Australia

    Phone
    07 5493 2826

    Date 26th March 2016

    Medical Delusion – Shaken Baby Syndrome

    Key Words
    Shaken Baby Syndrome, Liver Dysfunction, Hyperglycaemia, Fractures

    Introduction
    Fiona Godlee, Editor of the BMJ, has concluded that: “The profession must take the lead to protect patients and maintain public trust”, so to maintain public trust let us start with the Shaken Baby Syndrome -a medical scandal in need of correction.

    The basis of the Shaken Baby Syndrome allegation is the presence of subdural haematomas, swelling of the brain with ischaemic changes and haemorrhagic contusions in the cortex of the right and left superior frontal gyri of the brain. The brain and spinal cord of the child are said to generally show evidence of old and recent injury.

    This condition in which the carers of the child can offer no explanation for fractures, bruises, retinal and cerebral haemorrhages with ischaemic encephalopathy was given the name “Shaken Baby Syndrome” as vigorous shaking was thought to be the most likely explanation of the lesions.

    In a recent case [1] the child in question showed an elevation of the level of Glucose in the blood and the presence of Glucose in the urine indicating a deficiency of circulating Insulin.

    Insulin. secreted by the β cells of the Pancreas, is required for the transport of both Glucose and Vitamin C from the Blood into the cells [2] and a lack of it thereby causes a functional impairment of the cells involved in the Coagulation and Skeletal Systems with spontaneous bleeding and fractures an inevitable consequence.

    In this case it was most probably an autoimmune response to antigenic stimulation which destroyed the β cells of the Pancreas and hence Insulin deficiency.

    Until the Medical Profession realizes that the Shaken Baby Syndrome is a metabolic disorder unrelated to violence there is a danger of falsely accusing innocent people.
    Here the authenticity of the diagnosis “Shaken Baby Syndrome” is investigated by examining the consequences of Liver damage causing an alteration of the coagulation process.

    The term “Shaken Baby Syndrome” was initially used by a Neurosurgeon to explain intracranial haemorrhages in children. (Letters. BMJ Vol 310 17th June 1995).

    His opinion spread among doctors who ignored the pathophysiology of haemostasis and ontogenesis involved in the process.

    The blood coagulation proteins Factors II, VII, IX and X and the bone forming proteins osteocalcin and matrix Gla protein, to be functionally active and prevent spontaneous bleeding and spontaneous fractures, must be carboxylated by the Vitamin K dependent enzyme γ glutamyl carboxylase(3) a process which takes place in the Liver. Either Liver dysfunction or Vitamin K deficiency will result in spontaneous bleeding and fractures (4) misinterpreted as the Shaken Baby Syndrome.

    Main-stream Medical opinion has imbibed the Shaken Baby concept whole-heartedly causing considerable distress and anxiety in the general population while the true explanation, antigen induced autoimmune reaction, is ignored.
    Case Report.
    A man was convicted for the murder of a child and sentenced to life imprisonment on the evidence of doctors who alleged she was shaken to death. The basis of this allegation was the presence of a subdural haematoma, swelling of the brain with ischaemic changes and haemorrhagic contusions in the cortex of the right and left superior frontal gyri of the brain. The brain and spinal cord showed evidence of old and recent injury which were attributed to “Non-accidental Injury” caused by her being “vigorously shaken”.
    The condition in which the carers of the child could offer no explanation for fractures, bruises, retinal and cerebral haemorrhages with ischaemic encephalopathy was given the diagnosis “Shaken Baby Syndrome” in 1971 by the neurosurgeon who could offer no other explanation for the lesions.

    The child had a disorder of the coagulation system as shown by a raised INR of 1.3(NR <1.2) an APTT of 39.6. (NR <39.0) which would explain the brain and other haemorrhages but the evidence was ignored by the doctors alleging murder.

    Their preoccupation with the Shaken Baby Syndrome hypothesis also ignored the elevation of the level of Glucose in the blood and the presence of Glucose in the urine of the child. Both these features are manifestations of an autoimmune response to antigenic stimulation which destroyed the β cells of the Pancreas resulting in a reduction of Insulin and hence the transport of glucose and Vitamin C into the cell. In this case it was most probably the vaccines given to the infant a few days prior to her falling ill which initiated the process. A simple skin “scratch test” may help to identify individuals sensitive to a particular vaccine and may help to avoid similar disasters.

    Until the Medical Profession realizes that the Shaken Baby Syndrome is a slanderous, ignorant, fabricated diagnosis without a shred of scientific evidence they are going to continue to falsely accuse and destroy the lives of innocent people

    The child had an elevated Blood Glucose and also Glucose in her Urine features which confirm Insulin deficiency initiated the onset of Tissue Scurvy [2].

    The biologically plausible mechanism that would potentially directly link an event occurring toward the end of May 2012 and the child’s presentation with severe (indeed fatal) encephalopathic illness at the end of July is the MMR vaccine administered on 25th May 2012 Tissue Scurvy can be induced by vaccines and causes the signs and symptoms found in this child..
    The infant had Biochemical as well as Anatomical lesions. The Biochemical lesions of Hyperglycaemia, Glycosuria, Coagulation Abnormality (INR 1,3, APTT 39.6) all suggest an Autoimmune Disorder [2]
    The Hospital Records and Pathology Report show a severe coagulopathy:
    1. INR (International Normalized Ratio) 1.3 (Normal Range 2 – 4.5)
    2. APTT (Accelerated Partial Thromboplastin Time) 39.6 sec (Normal 27-35 sec)

    These results indicate that a Coagulopathy is present due to the reduction in the Clotting factors XII, XI, IX, and VIII and spontaneous bleeding is inevitable. It also indicates that the Liver is damaged because these factors are formed in the Liver.

    Conclusion
    A man has been found guilty of murder on the evidence of doctors misinterpreting the Haematological evidence which clearly indicated a Coagulopathy caused the death of the child.

    Acknowledgements:
    I wish to thank Mr Darryl Elliot and his mother Ms Liz Peel for providing me with all the details of the prosecution and for permission to publish my findings.

    Prior to migrating to Australia I was one of the Pathologists working for the Coroner in The West Riding of Yorkshire UK.
    I declare that I have not made any statement that I know to be untrue.

    Michael D Innis FRCPA; FRCPath

    References
    Nottingham Post 22/08/2013. Baby murder trial update: She was thought to have been "vigorously shaken”
    Cunningham JJ The glucose/insulin system and vitamin C: implications in insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus. J Am Coll Nutr. 1998 Apr;17(2):105-8.
    Vermeer C. Knapen MHJ, Schurgers LJ Vitamin K and metabolic bone disease. J Clin Path 1998;51;424-426.
    Innis MD. Vitamin K Deficiency Disease. J Ortho Mol Med 2008:23;15-20
    Guthkelch N Letters. BMJ Vol 310 17th June 1995
    Innis MD Autoimmunity and Non-Accidental Injury in Children, Clinical Medicine Research. Vol. 2, No. 3, 2013, pp. 40-44. doi: 10.11648/j.cmr.20130203.15
    Innis M D. Autoimmune Tissue Scurvy Misdiagnosed as Child Abuse, Clinical Medicine Research. Vol. 2, No. 6, 2013, pp. 154-157. doi:

  4. Jeffrey S. Brown, Esq.

    https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2016/04/12/changes-opinion-baby-death-but-prosecution-will-continue/7eUuWi4b38xDPiMNtnFIFL/story.html

    Jeffrey S. Brown, Esq. Fierst, Kane & Bloomberg LLP 64 Gothic Street, Suite 4 Northampton, MA 01060-3042 Direct Line: (413) 341-5466 Tel: (413) 584-8067 Fax: (413) 585-0787 http://www.fierstkane.com

  5. Pingback: Dr. Waney Squier Reinstated | On Shaken Baby

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