Dr Skinner was a Virologist who was brought into the world of thyroid gland problems unexpectedly. After the thyroid gland blood tests were brought in and diagnosis by TSH alone people were complaining of different symptoms which puzzled the medical profession and Dr Skinner was asked to see these patients in case there was a viral cause for the conditions. Excerpt of letter to newspaper:-
I write as a medical practitioner who has focused on the problems of hypothyroidism for some fifteen years. I was interested to read your small paragraph on a patient who had been essentially undiagnosed for five to six years. I write to indicate that this is the least of it and in my experience this is one of the most serious shortfalls in modern medical practice.
I have come across literally thousands of patients who remain undiagnosed or do not receive an adequate level of thyroid replacement based on thyroid chemistry which has never been validated and is predicated on a ‘range’ of values (known as a 95% reference interval) notwithstanding the patient’s earnest solicitations that they do not feel well as would appear to be the case in the patient in your little piece
This is the link:-
The GMC then proceeded to take action against Dr Skinner several times, obviously as the Endocrinology did not like Dr S's disapproval of the modern treatment but he would not give in. Maybe even have caused his demise. Another excerpt:-
November 25th 2011
I am delighted to inform you that at the recent GMC hearing the panel decided to lift my conditions of registration and I am free to practice without restriction. As a gesture of good faith I will to continue to see new patients who have been referred from a medical practitioner registered within Europe.
I very much hope that the termination of my conditions will encourage a more flexible strategy among Endocrinologists and Family Practitioners on the diagnosis of hypothyroidism. As you know I have been trying for some 15 years to establish a formal clinical trial to investigate the pivotality of thyroid chemistry in the diagnosis and manangement of this condition; and secondly a formal trial to compare the relevant efficacy of the synthetic hormone preparations and the dessicated extract preparation.
As the dust settles - or fails to settle as it so seems - I thought it worth advising that a new issue has arisen with respect to complaints from Family Practitioners on my work. I would add that none of the Practitioners have made contact with me prior to firing off a complaint to the General Medical Council.
The average number of complaints from Family Practitioners over a decade has been 1.5 per year. Thus if complaints are random events, then the probability of receiving four complaints at two weekly intervals is P <0.0001 or in other words less than one in 10,000 chance if complaints were randomly distributed which is the point. This suggests that some other factor has motivated this plague of complaints
It never rains but it pours. I returned from Europe today to learn that I have been summoned to an Interim Orders Procedure at the General Medical Council at 9.30am on Wednesday 22nd February 2012 at the GMC Offices at St james's Buildings, 79 Oxford Street, Manchester, M1 6 FQ.
This IOP has arisen following five complaints to the GMC from Family Practitioners in the recent past. This would not be the place to debate these complaints but suffice to say that I do not believe that I have placed any patient in harm from my ministrations.
I don't know how the World Thyroid Register will continue without Dr Skinner but other organisations had joinedtoo. (Would it appear to be a witchhunt against Dr S).
At one of his hearings there were 2,500 letters from people made well by Dr Skinner and which the GMC had bound in nice red ledgers.