When denialists do harm

Antivaxxer Mark Geier has license revoked in Maryland
[Via Bad Astronomy]

I do so love to report these wins for reality, as rare as they are: the very vocal antivax advocate Mark Geier has had his medical license revoked in Maryland. Why?

The Maryland State Board of Physicians reviewed nine cases of autistic children seen by Geier, of which he treated seven. Of those nine, the Board found he misdiagnosed six of them. He (mis)diagnosed them with “precocious puberty”, a medical condition where kids have extremely early onset of puberty. Why would he do such a thing? Well, this condition can be treated with Lupron, a drug which lowers testosterone (it’s used to chemically castrate adult men). Geier happens to think Lupron can also help autism — despite there being no evidence at all that’s the case — which makes his diagnosis very suspect. It implies strongly that he used the precocious puberty diagnosis as an excuse to prescribe the drug.

[More]

What sort of lifelong effect will taking Lupron have on these kids? This is the sort of human experimentation that should result in jail time, in my opinion. MIsdiagnosing patients so that he can give them an expensive drug – $5000-$6000 a month.

Of course, he is licensed to practice medicine in 10 other states. What a country!

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