Dr Henry Mannings, who went through hell with the General Medical Council last year after facing groundless accusations from a vindictive consultant oncologist who objected to what the Star Throwers charity was telling his patients, recently sent me a price list from a well-known private clinic that specialises in treating cancer patients. What was shocking to us was not just the prices charged but that this clinic offered patients a service called 'live blood analysis'. Like Dr Mannings I am astounded that any reputable doctor would be offering this to patients, but it is offered and it's not cheap. So, for those who might be interested, just what is 'live blood analysis' (LBA) and is there any evidence that it is useful?
LBA, (which is sometimes called Hemaview, live cell analysis or nutritional blood analysis) is a procedure that involves taking a sample of blood, putting it on a slide and taking a look at it using a microscope. From this it is claimed that a skilled LBA practitioner can detect cancer, immune disorders, yeast and bacterial infections and a spread of other conditions. Patients will be told that the cells are not moving about in the correct way, or that they look abnormal or are showing signs of fermentation or infection and so on. Patients will be told that conventional blood tests cannot capture many of these issues because they do not look at live cells in motion. A lot of scientific sounding terminology will be used along the way, and of course the microscope is a scientific instrument so all of this must be based on fact, right? Wrong.
There is no scientific evidence for LBA. It is junk science - something dressed up to look like science but not based on any evidence or credible scientific theory.
Take the idea that LBA can detect cancer. It is possible to detect circulating cancer cells in the blood stream, but they are actually difficult to detect as they exist in such small numbers. There are special machines which can isolate these cells, and this is used clinically and there is lots of research in this area. But what you can't do is just grab a syringe full of blood, squirt it on to a glass slide and then magically detect these cells. Especially not when there are no cancers clinically detectable - some LBA practitioners claim to detect cancer years before it is even apparent.
So what is LBA good for? It's good for scaring people into paying for expensive immune-boosters, alkalinity treatments, vitamins and so on. This is a scam pure and simple. One of things that Scientologists do is offer a personality test. This claims to look at you and detect any underlying problems in your personal make-up. And guess what, nobody who takes one of these tests comes out normal. Everybody comes out of the test needing some form of psychological treatment, which coincidentally the 'Church' of Scientology can provide. This is the same thing, except that there's a microscope involved. After taking the test you will be told that there's an explanation for your fatigue, allergy, cancer, arthritis and whatever else it is that has driven you to take the test in the first place. And with this 'diagnosis' will come the recommended and expensive treatment...
So, if you see a clinic offering LBA then the first thing it should do is set off some alarm bells - because anyone willing to peddle this nonsense to desperate patients is severely lacking in morals.