Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Loyola University just held their big woo fest

You can read the news release here and the official web page here.

Judging from this news report it must have been an interesting time:

The mood was eerie: relaxed, calm, yet animated. Around 25 participants chatted, bobbing their heads along with their body language, discussing various published studies on acupuncture.It may not have seemed like anything out of the ordinary. Except they all had needles sticking out of the center of their heads.

They call it experiential learning.

The premise seems to be that no matter how implausible the woo if patients want it and believe in it, give it to ‘em with your good name and the credentials of your institution behind it. As one of the speakers explained:

Michelfelder asked the audience to keep an open mind during their day of discovery of different types of integrative medicine. Just because it is not well understood, physicians should not discount it, he said.“You may say to yourself, ‘It makes no sense to me, I’m not even going to recommend it to my patients because I don’t understand it,’” Michelfelder said. But as long as the patient believes it will work and the treatment is inexpensive, he said it’s worth a try.

This little exercise in Quackademic medicine was organized and driven by medical students and, sure enough, the AMSA was in on it.

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