Saturday, June 10, 2017

#1847: Edward Kondrot

We think Paul Kokoski is Canadian. Edward Kondrot is not only American, but – according to a 2014 press release – set to become “the first American to become certified in chromatotherapy” by 2016 after studying the technique in France. Issuing a press release about one’s intent to travel to France to study an obscure type of woo is somewhat unusual, but Kondrot is an unusual man. Apparently a one-time physician who renounced reason, evidence and accountability to endorse homeopathy, Kondrot is the founder of the Healing The Eye & Wellness Center in Florida, president of the Arizona Homeopathic and Integrative Medical Association, and the clinic director of Integrative Medicine of the American Medical College of Homeopathy.

Chromatotherapy appears to be a type of woo particularly popular in France. It is apparently a “therapeutic method using references wavelength units called ‘colors’,” and is more or less as New Agey and dolphin-teleport-to-the-fifth-rainbow-dimension as you’d suspect. Chromatotherapists shine various colors of light into the eyes of patients to improve health and cure all manner of diseases up to and including cancer. It ostensibly works because i) life can emit bioluminescence, ii) all life depends upon light, and iii) the eyes are the window to the soul. There are some steps missing in the justification, but chromatotherapists’ attempts to fill them in don’t really help much: “Health and well being are commonly thought of as a form or emanation of light – or ‘glow.’ Walt Whitman, for instance, defined health as a ‘radiance that cannot be described’ [though, strangely, the analysis didn’t land him the Nobel prize in Medicine]. ‘Glowing’ physical health is primarily a function of the power of our ‘inner sun’ and our glow seems to increase as our awareness expands. At full illumination, this radiance becomes visible to the naked eye, which is why great artists are often likened to ‘stars,’ [whee] and saints are traditionally depicted as being surrounded by brilliant halos, and described as ‘illumined.’” The account even turns offensive: “The human body is a biological light receptor, the eyes are transparent biological windows designed to receive and emit light, and all physiological functions are light dependent. This becomes evident when observing individuals deprived of sight. In 1856, Wimmer, an ophthalmologist at Munich’s Royal Institution for the Blind wrote, ‘The whole appearance of a blind person … bears the markings of … retarded growth … and … pallor … But this underdeveloped … state disappears … and the organism seems to grow younger when vision is restored …’.” 1856 medicine is truly vintage medicine, so it must be good.

But you get the gist? Ok, one more: “The transformative power of light is founded on a simple principle: life and light are the same energy, in two states of existence – form and formlessness. In its formed, or ‘frozen’ state, light energy composes all the matter in the universe - everything that we can see, touch, or measure. Yet, from a scientific perspective, this fundamental building block of what we call reality is invisible, formless and without attributes. It cannot be directly perceived or measured.” Evidence by word salad, in other words – and note the quaint reference to “scientific perspective”. We wonder what the difference between a certified chromatotherapist, like Kondrot, and an uncertified one amounts to beyond having studied in France and been given a slip of paper by chromatotherapy’s chief proponent, Christian Agrapart. To make sure, chromatotherapists also connect their ideas to chakras and acupuncture points. According to Agrapart, chromatotherpay can be used not only to cure various eye diseases but even autoimmune diseases. This is not correct.

It’s little surprise that someone like Kondrot would be attracted to this gibberish. He titles himself not only “homeopathic ophthalmologist,” but “the world’s leading Homeopathic Ophthalmologist,” which presumably means that no other homeopathic ophthalmologist achieves better homeopathic ophthalmology results than him, which is probably true. His website features e.g. an article claiming that intranasal lasers can reverse the symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s disease. It can’t. But Kondrot has anecdotes, and can offer you the treatment for as little as $449, $50 off the regular price.

According to Kondrot, the cause of eye disease isn’t aging, trauma, diabetes, hypertension, or such things. The cause is Big Pharma and “suppression” caused by modern medicines. According to Kondrot, if you use real medicines “[t]he disease is being treated with opposites and this causes the disease to be pushed deeper in the body,” which, of course, is antithetical to homeopathy’s religious tenet that like cures like. And to emphasize: the latter is a religious dogma. Kondrot himself pretty much admits it: “These homeopathic laws of healing have not changed unlike modern medicine which changes treatment methods every year.” In other words, sine science is a self-correcting enterprise, the recommendations of science-based medicine changes in light of the best available evidence. To Kondrot that’s a bad thing: Kondrot’s recommendations won’t change, regardless of evidence – which, of course, is the definition of “dogma”. And yes, there is a conspiracy. Wake up sheeple, reject Big Pharma therapies and shell out some 500 bucks to have Kondrot shine lights up your nose instead.

You can just as well replace "faith" with "pseudoscience".
Kondrot explicitly renounces the method in the left column. 

Of course, Kondrot doesn’t limit his quackery to homeopathy. He is also a member American Academy of Ozonotherapy, and at the IV World Oxygen and Ozone Congress in 2013 he gave a talk on “topics on ozone’s positive effect on Cancer, Heart disease, Obesity and metabolic disease, Chronic fatigue, Non healing ulcers, Disc pain, Infections, Ulcer stomach disease, Dentistry and more.” Quackery hardly gets more delusional than ozone therapy, except perhaps for – well – homeopathy, of course. On his website he also seels and endorses supplements, electrodes (to put on your head) and, of course, ozone gas to put up your rectum.

Recently – as has become popular with the worst of the worst of quacks, frauds and spineless opportunists – he has branched into stem cell therapy; his website says he is using “cord stem cells”, and trumpets the fact that “the FDA has approved Cord Stem Cells.” Well, yes – the FDA has approved one particular cord blood product, Hemacord, for use for conditions in which the body is not producing enough of one or more components of blood. Needless to say, this has little to do with Kondrot’s snakeoil. It is unclear what the stem cell products Kondrot pushes, BioBurst Fluid and BioBurst Rejuv, are supposed to be used for, but at least his company explicitly assumes that the products fall outside of the FDA regulations. So, Kondrot is deliberately misleading his customers. Big surprise. People like Kondrot tend to do that.

According to Dennis Courtney, who runs some of Kondrot’s Healing the Eye and Wellness Center practice, the treatments are perfectly safe: “We can’t harm you with stem cells. These cells are of such a level of age that they cannot differentiate to any harmful cells. They can’t become a cancer, for instance. That can’t be done with the kind of cells we use. We can only do good. We cannot harm.” Well, according to the FDA and research (but remember what Kondrot thinks of science), there are serious safety concerns with the use of cord blood (lots of “may be fatal” in that warning).

Diagnosis: Utterly deranged. Pseudoscience and New Age religious fundamentalism at its very worst – as opposed to most people who have achieved this level of New Age religious fanaticism, Kondrot is still able to form coherent sentences and operate rather slick-looking websites. Avoid at all costs.



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