Beware of parasites that feed on your funds

‘Parasite zappers’ and other quack treatments should come with a health warning for both you and your wallet

 A ‘parasite zapper’, which claims to rid the body of parasites by allowing the nine-volt battery to pass a current through the patient’s body

A ‘parasite zapper’, which claims to rid the body of parasites by allowing the nine-volt battery to pass a current through the patient’s body

 

I’ve just finished reading a very interesting article by Prof Thomas Patterson of Texas State University. He lectures on a number of topics including immunology, molecular diagnostics and clinical laboratory management. He was invited to guest lecture on a clinical parasitology course and in researching the topic came across a device known as a “parasite zapper”.

This consists of two copper handles attached to a small black box containing a nine-volt battery. The patient holds the handles, the box is switched on and the body is ridded of parasites – or so it’s claimed. This is a little different from standard medical protocols in which an appropriate specimen is obtained, tested in the laboratory and the required treatment identified and administered.

The zapper is based on a device originally developed by zoologist and naturopath, Hulda Clark who claimed that all cancers are caused by the human intestinal parasite Fasciolopsis buski . Ridding the body of the parasite using her “ParaZapper” would cure the cancer. She invented another device called a Syncrometer, which allegedly scanned the body for parasites, viruses, bacteria and toxins.

Clark also claimed to be able to effectively treat a wide range of conditions from athlete’s foot to HIV infection and Aids. When legally challenged in the United States with regard to some of her practices she moved to Tijuana, Mexico where she continued to practise. She earned a vast amount of money and sold millions of copies of her various books. She died of multiple myeloma in 2009.

This reference to Clark and her work reminded me of an Irish practitioner with similar notions whom I first noted many years ago after his appearance on the Late Late Show . Ronnie Turner runs the Turner Clinic of Advanced Alternative Medicine in Stillorgan, Dublin along with his wife Dr Olga Milisavljevic.

Dr Milisavljevic is described as the clinic’s medical director, a cardiologist and paediatrician who trained in Russia. I have checked the medical register and can find no record of her being registered to practise as a doctor in Ireland.

They have developed a machine called a “bio-resonator”. Turner describes bio-resonance as a “unique development, aided by smart new technology, which has made the art of dowsing reliable and reproducible enough to be admitted into the arena of serious science”.

You can apply for a test, sending any one of the following: a lock of hair, a photograph, your signature, finger or palm print along with €70. You will be checked for infections, poisons, allergies, mental and emotional blockages and, of course, parasites. You will then be prescribed a treatment regime of homeopathic nosodes – vaccine-like preparations that contain no active substance.

Turner claims that this treatment will “knock out your chronic infections, support your organs and immune system” and eliminate poisons. No objective evidence is offered for efficacy and it is emphasised that his system is not a substitute for medical testing and you must also consult your doctor.


Sputnik anti-parasite capsule
The most interesting device on his website is apparently unavailable at present in the US or Europe. This is the sputnik anti-parasite capsule which, when swallowed, emits frequencies lethal to parasites. It should be collected in a sieve and is best put through the system three times! It can also be used as a suppository to increase sexual performance, can be inserted into the vagina to treat gynaecological problems, erosion of the cervix and candidiasis, and in the mouth to treat gum disease. A bargain at €65.

You can obtain a bio-resonator, along with training, for a cut price of €2,950. According to Turner you will turn a profit speedily, with some earning more than €100,000 per annum. “Even if you are a complete beginner, we can train you to operate this alternative practice system within three weeks,” he states.

Obviously, this kind of project is rife with ethical and health and safety issues. It suggests unproven and often ridiculous causes for serious conditions and touts equally nonsensical tests and treatments.

I wrote to Turner some years ago with a list of queries regarding his claims and practices, with no response. I also took his online intestinal parasite test a number of times varying the data. I obtained the same result and recommendations each time – two rounds of the sputnik capsule right away, then once a month for three months. I didn’t buy it!


Paul O’Donoghue is a clinical psychologist and founder member of the Irish Skeptics Society. contact@irishskeptics.org

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