My Review of Whitcomb's Book, on Amazon

I posted this review to Amazon today, 5/15/08. I guess it's dated 4/5 because that was the estimated date I should have received the order. I've posted ratings before but they don't seem to get published. I'm going to start keeping track of this publicly, here on my blog.

1.0 out of 5 stars Why does my review keep disappearing?, April 5, 2008
I bought this book (at the full and inflated price of $14.99) from Amazon and I deserve to have my review counted. What use is this whole review system if Amazon is going to let the authors pick and choose which reviews get printed and counted in the rating???

These days anybody can write a book and publish it themselves. That is how this book came to be. Dr. Whitcomb published it himself. The only review of this book included on or in the book is on the back cover, by "New York Times best-selling author" Ellen Tanner Marsh. Her "NYT best-selling author" status comes from two paperback romance novels in the 80's. She currently works for BookSurge (which is a "vanity press" (a relatively new service in the digital age, also called "books-on-demand" or "print-on-demand") now a subsidiary of, for amateur writers who want to see their manuscripts in print). Ms. Tanner is paid by BookSurge to write reviews of the books they publish; BookSurge is paid $399.00 by the author of the book being reviewed by Ms. Tanner. Ms. Tanner is said to be an especially prolific paid reviewer. And as far as I can tell that's the best qualification there is to recommend her as a reviewer of this book.

The lone reference in this book to anything or anyone medically authorized in any way (other than Whitcomb himself) is a short quote by a psychiatrist from a rural mental health clinic in Douglas County, CA. I have not verified the quote myself.

Paul Whitcomb's book is an essay of his opinions about FM (pages 1-37), and his theory of FM's spinal misalignment cause and its chiropractic treatment at his clinic (pages 37-95).

"The Whitcomb Technique", from page 37: "We do not claim to treat Fibromyalgia. We are moving on the premise that it is a condition of the cervical spine causing an uncontrolled firing of the nervous system. The aim of The Whitcomb Technique is simply to reduce the subluxation that causes the symptoms we know as "Fibromyalgia.""

There is a chapter called "Statistics." It describes a survey of fifteen patients, administered by Whitcomb's Center. The survey results are combined in a chart. The chart has three columns, the first is titled "Patient #" (from 1 to 15); the second and third columns have no title. Makes it a little hard to understand a very simple chart but I figured it out eventually. The survey consisted of 167 items, symptoms over various parts of the body, which the patient rated on a scale of 0 to 10, 0 being no pain and 10 being severe pain. The ratings were added together for a total score from each patient. The second column of the chart is the total score for each patient before the treatment began at Whitcomb's center. The third column is the total score for each patient at the end of treatment. The numbers are markedly lower in the third column than in the second.

That's the extent of any research to prove that Whitcomb's theory works. No follow up numbers at all. Just a bunch of testimonials which, according to people who have been through the treatment, are taken at the end of treatment and never again.

This book is bunk. The picture on the cover is nice, but you know what they say about judging a book by its cover...

Your Tags: fibromyalgia, fibro, dr paul whitcomb, fms-cfs, fms, dr whitcomb


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