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[escepticos] Sobre Odontología Magufa

    Pues bueno que según parece algo hay también sobre el tema.

Saludos escépticos desde Bilbao.-((:.¬v))))
Artículos extraídos de la Revista electrónica el Ciberescéptico.


La cirugía psíquica es un tipo de no cirugía ejecutada por un médico no
médico. El terapeuta psíquico finge hacer una incisión deslizando un dedo a
lo largo del cuerpo del paciente, penetrando aparentemente a través de la
piel sin usar ningún instrumento quirúrgico. Pretende enterrar su mano en
las entrañas del paciente y extraerle "tumores". Utilizando trucos, el
médico psíquico vierte sangre animal sobre el paciente desde un globo
escondido en su mano mientras aparta hígados y corazones de pollo. Después
el paciente va a casa a morir, si en realidad estaba muriendo, o a seguir
viviendo si no tenía nada serio desde un principio.

La cirugía psíquica es un gran negocio en todo el mundo, pero especialmente
en Filipinas y Brasil.

También existe la odontología psíquica para aquellos que prefieren cirugías
dentales sin anestesia o trepanaciones dentales realizadas por curanderos
por fe.


Psychic Dentistry

By George Nava True II

In the field of dentistry, no other subject raises as much skepticism than
the spiritistas - faith healers who claim they can pull out teeth with their
bare hands without the benefit of anesthesia.

Testimonials about these "wonder workers" abound. In the United States,
psychic dentist Willard Fuller has supposedly healed more than 40,000 people
since he began practicing in 1960. Those who flock to his healing ministry
claim his magic touch can fill cavities, make bad teeth whole again, and
even produce a new set of teeth in some elderly patients.

"Fuller?s method is a simple one. He gently strikes the cheeks of those in
need and says, ?In the name of Jesus, be thou whole.? Witnesses who claim to
have peered into a mouth to watch the formation of a filling describe it as
a small bright spot that expands to fill the whole cavity. One 66-year-old
woman, who originally hoped only for a better fit for her dentures, said
that within three weeks of Fuller?s healing she had cut a new set of 32
mature, fully formed teeth," according to the editors of Time-Life Books in
Powers of Healing.

Many dental faith healers also practice in the Philippines. Dr. Walfrido
Cruz, former floor leader of the Philippine Dental Association?s (PDA) House
of Delegates who has observed many healers in Tarlac, said these quacks get
the publicity they need by making house calls.

"Illegal practitioners visit several homes in various barangays
(communities) offering their services. Sometimes they are accompanied by
barangay officials who advertise these quacks. One fake healer whom we
arrested in Paniqui displayed all the teeth he got at the public market,"
Cruz said

Not Interested

In Cebu, psychic surgeon Emilio Laporga claims he has extracted a lot of
teeth from different patients during his healing sessions. One psychic
researcher and author of several books on the occult said Laporga pulled out
his wisdom tooth without any pain at all.. He even advised local dentists to
learn Laporga?s technique..

But none of the PDA members appear to be interested and for a very good
reason. Psychic dentistry has never been demonstrated under controlled
laboratory conditions and most practitioners are simply sleight-of-hand
artists who can?t produce a shred of proof of their alleged powers.

Other Quacks

Self-styled psychics, however, are not the only persons the PDA is concerned
about. The caretaker of the nation?s dental health which has 94 chapters and
19 affiliates nationwide is also worried about other illegal practitioners
as well. These include artisans, dental technicians, undergraduates, those
who have flunked the board exams, and those whose licenses have been
suspended or revoked yet still practice dentistry to this day.

A dentist, according to the Philippine Dental Act (RA 4419), is any person
who "performs any operation or part of an operation upon the human mouth,
jaws, teeth, and surrounding tissues; prescribes drugs or medicines for the
treatment of oral diseases and lesions; or corrects malpositions of the
teeth." Those who do so without the necessary qualifications are quacks are
many of them operate in the country.

"We have received complaints about nurses or undergraduates who pull teeth
even though that?s not pafrt of their job. Other offenders are dental
hygienists who can only clean teeth but sometimes work as dentists. No
doubt, the profession is plagued with problems," revealed Dr. Ricardo T.
Lope, former speaker of the PDA House of Delegates and chairman of the Legal
Affairs Committee. None, however, is more deceptive than psychic dentistry.

A Doctor?s Observations

One of the earliest to expose this money-making racket was Dr. William A.
Nolen, an award-winning Minnesota surgeon who visited the Philippines in
1973 to personally experience psychic surgery. Unlike other observers who
were easily deceived by local healers, Nolen?s training as a physician and
his knowledge of anatomy helped him see through the charade these charlatans
were putting on.

Among the healers Nolen visited was Placido Palitayan who was later arrested
in Oregon in February 1989 for the fraudulent practice of psychic surgery.
Nolen submitted to Palitayan?s fake operation when the latter boasted that
he had pulled out many teeth in Baguio City. When Nolen asked him to remove
a bad tooth that was giving him a lot of trouble, Palitayan failed to
perform his miracle in front of the respected surgeon.

"Placido, facing me, pushed against my cheek, over the tooth, with the index
finger of his right hand. Then he put his left index finger into my mouth
and pushed that against the tooth, so that he had the tooth squeezed between
his index fingers. I could feel him pushing back and forth but the tooth
remained solidly fixed in my mandible," Nolen wrote in Healing: A Doctor?s
Search for A Miracle.

It?s easy to understand why Palitayan failed. Permanent teeth are firmly
anchored to bony sockets in the mouth by means of two or three roots which
are covered with cementum, a hard bonelike tissue. That makes it impossible
for anyone to remove them without the use of forceps. And even with the
latter, dentists admit it?s a hard task.

Impossible Feat

"It?s hard to pull teeth with your bare hands, especially in the case of
normal teeth," said Dr. Hermogenes P. Villarel, former PDA president and one
of the founders of the Oral Implantology Center of the Philippines, Inc. "In
one stage of tooth development called hypercementosis or ankylosis, teeth
are wrapped in a cementlike substance and attached to bone. In this
condition, it?s difficult to loosen, much more remove them."

"No one can extract teeth with his bare hands. It?s a tough job even for
dentists. To loosen teeth, we sometimes use a chisel or surgical bar
connected to a high-speed drill to separate them from bone. I can?t imagine
how quacks can do the same with no instruments whatsoever," Lope added.

The only exception to the rule are those suffering from periodontal disease.
In periodontitis or pyorrhea, for instance, the gums are so irritated by
bacteria that deep pockets of pus form between teeth, causing them to loosen
and eventually fall out. Because this condition is usually painless, it?s
often ignored until it?s too late.

"If the patient has pyorrhea and his teeth are loose enough, you can pull
them with your bare hands. There?s nothing to it," Villareal said. Since the
people who visit psychic dentists are usually not examined beforehand, most
of them probably have pyorrhea or loose teeth to begin with. That makes it
easier for the healer to do his job.

Hidden Instruments

Some healers use small screwdrivers to remove teeth. These are carefully
hidden from patients who are instructed to close their eyes during the
session. As Cruz revealed:

"On many occasions, dental faith healers use unsterilized instruments which
could lead to infections. Many die from tetanus that way. Once I had a
patient who was suffering from severe bleeding. When I examined him, three
of his molars were missing, including fragments of bone where they were
attached. Obviously, the patient had visited a psychic dentist who removed
these with crude instruments. From the looks of it, the quack did his dirty
work by inserting the srewdriver in the spaces between the teeth and
applying the necessary leverage to pull them out."

Although teeth may be removed that way, some may break, leaving the roots
behind. Such sloppy work is not necessarily visible to the patient who is
oblivious to the psychic?s goings-on.

"In ankylosis where teeth are wrapped in bone, we use a chisel to extract
teeth. But sometimes only the crown, the visible portion of the teeth, is
removed - not the roots. A patient who goes to a psychic dentist may think
his or her entire tooth was removed. True enough, nothing?s visible when you
peer into the person?s mouth. But the x-ray machine never lies and clearly
shows the broken portion of the tooth which is still embedded in the gums. I
?ve seen many people like this. If that broken portion isn?t removed, this
could lead to infection, pus formation or the development of cysts," Lope

Ashamed to Feel Pain

If psychics are such poor dentists, why don?t their patients feel any pain?
Or are the latter too shy or embarrassed to admit it? Cruz said having your
teeth pulled can be a painful experience, more so without anesthesia. But
patients are often preconditioned by psychics not to feel pain. If they did,
it would mean they lacked faith in the powers of the "Holy Spirit". Knowing
they would be ridiculed for lacking faith, suggestible patients are often
forced to completely ignore sensations of pain.

"Most will bear the pain rather than expose themselves as poor disciples of
Christ," Cruz said.

Lope believes some form of hypnosis or autosuggestion may also be involved.
Practiced properly, this may help reduce a person?s anxiety and temporarily
relieve whatever pain the patient has. Since the human mind is highly
suggestible, he said most people will readily respond to suggestions made by

"One dental faith healer in Pasay City whom I closely observed pulled out
teeth with forceps just like a dentist. Although I could hear lot of
cracking sounds, none of his patients complained about pain. When I asked
him about his secret, he said, ?Just recite one Our Father.? I tried this on
my patients and it sometimes works, but the anesthesia is always ready -
just in case," Lope said.

Still, the danger of infection from the use of unsterilized instruments is
always present even with the placebo effect. After all, psychic dentists are
not trained to remove teeth. What?s more, no follow-up has ever been made on
their patients. No one knows how they fared after the healing session. This
deadly aspect of psychic dentistry was emphasized by magician James Randi in
The Faith Healers. Speaking about Fuller, he wrote:

"Fuller wanders about his audience, poking a dental mirror into mouth after
mouth, swishing it in a glass of something or other between pokings. Such a
procedure is certainly not sufficient to sterilize the instrument, and he
has the potential of spreading diseases from one infected person to all
those he touches. Especially when we are so concerned with the transmission
of the AIDS virus, Fuller?s practices appear to be exceedingly dangerous."

Easy Escape

If the problem of dental faith healing is rampant and a threat to public
health, why aren?t these quacks stopped? Lope said several have been hailed
to court and jailed by PDA chapters in the past. But the main problem lies
in the system. Under the Philippine Dental Act of 1965, the most these
charlatans can expect is a P 3,000 fine which makes it easy for them to post
bail and practice their profession elsewhere.

Another stumbling block is the reluctance of victims to share their sad
experiences and take the necessary legal actions against these quacks. Most
of afraid of being harassed by the fake dentist?s goons or friends in high

Hopefully, all that may change as the PDA beefs up its anti-quackery program
in the future. For now, however, skepticism and common sense remain our best
defense against these charlatans.