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Briefing - June, '01

Dr. Connolly’s Book Discovered [revised 12/2001]

Last month, in my response to Amira P’s The Mysterious Dr. Connolly, I said the old 800# for purchasing the doctor’s book took me to a Lexus Dealership.  I based this on a recorded message that I didn’t quite understand for whatever reason.  Amira wrote back saying she tried the number and, indeed, it connected her to Luxis International.  Luxis International was the stated distributor of Connolly’s book as far back as April, 2000, when Sheryl H. first brought the book to our attention in Eating Right in Kansas.

Of course, I was shamed into trying this again.  This time I reached a human who confirmed I reached the provider of Dr. Connolly’s book, Psoriasis Can Be Cured.  I bought a copy ($19.95 + expedited shipping for $4.50, total $24.45 ... not bad for a cure). [See below for current ordering information. -Ed 12/01]

The author of Psoriasis Can Be Cured is Robert E. Connolly, D.C. — Doctor of Chiropractic.  They told me at Luxis International that Dr. Connolly has retired.  Psoriasis Can Be Cured is 52 pages, 8.5x11”, comb-bound, copyrighted in 1981, revised and re-copyrighted in 1990.  Here is the Table of Contents:

I Psoriasis — A Physical and Psychological Traumatic Disease
II The Usual Present Day Medical Treatment
III The New Discovery
IV Actual Case Histories
V Why the Treatment Works
VI Bioenergetics — the Breakthrough in Psoriasis
VII The Testing Procedure
VIII The Self-Treatment Program
IX What to Expect From the Program
X Epilogue

In a nutshell, Dr. Connolly’s diagnostic and treatment approach to P is based on the assertion that it is caused by liver dysfunction and high levels of toxic substances introduced through diet and built-up through insufficient excretion of normal metabolic waste.  Assessing this is based on one or two acupressure tests, which can be performed by the flaker and a friend following instructions in the book.  These tests are, in turn, based on the neurological assertion that major nerve trunks from the spinal chord split into three branches that serve the skin, an organ and a muscle group.  Indications of dysfunction in one of these (the organ) can be detected through tests on another (the muscle group). 

Assuming either test indicates liver dysfunction — and Connolly all but promises this will be the case for psoriatics — the treatment has three components:  a strict diet (including the complete exclusion of pork), an herbal dietary supplement regimen, and a simple twice-daily acupressure exercise that takes only 20 seconds each.

In addition to 5 pages of case histories in the text itself, after the Epilogue, 11 letters testifying on behalf of the cure are reproduced.

Here is the closing paragraph of Dr. Connolly’s book:

You must have patience.  Remember, we are getting a natural healing, not an artificial, temporary improvement.  This usually takes longer.  Some people respond fast, others are slow, and most fall in between.  We have had some patients clear in one month, while others have taken up to six months or a year.  Remember, you did not get this condition overnight, and you are not going to get rid of it overnight.  Do have patience and stick with it.  You can have the same results these people did.

Before I tell you my reaction to the book, here’s the email and physical address and phone number to the distributor:

Old (disregard): Featherspring / Luxis International Corporation
712 North 34th St.
Seattle WA 98103
Toll Free 1-800-628-4693  

NEW NEW NEW NEW

Connolly Publications
P.O. Box 367537
Bonita Spring FL 34136-7537

http://www.psoriasiscured.com

*****

To begin, as I read Psoriasis Can Be Cured, I was attuned to the fact that Dr. Connolly was apparently selling nothing more than information.  For me, the surest red flag that a publication (free or not) is a scam is a promotion within it for the purchase of something else.  Connolly’s presentation, on the contrary, is impressive in its matter-of-fact purpose:  I discovered this works ... here’s why and how ... here’s how to try it yourself. 

Next I wondered, Why had I not heard of this?  Well, in fact, I had heard of pieces of this from many sources and spread throughout the 1990s.  The acupressure assessment and treatment sounds very similar to my acupuncture experiences in 1994 (see the excerpt from Flake: Confessions of a Psoriatic reproduced here).  Theories about metabolic waste and toxicity relating to liver dysfunction abound — my most recent exposure, before Psoriasis Can Be Cured, was Sang Whang’s book, Reverse Aging (JSP Publishing, Copyright 1990, ISBN 0-9662363-1-9).  And, of course, the warning that “natural healing” takes an unpredictable amount of time to work seems to be a usual accompaniment to alternative therapies.

Without having read J. Pagano’s book, Healing Psoriasis: The Natural Alternative, I am guessing there are more than a casual few similarities between Connolly’s “cure” and Pagano’s “natural alternative.” 

I was further impressed with Connolly’s work because the chapter titled “The Usual Present Day Medical Treatment” is a well-summarized treatment of the most common therapies for psoriasis (anthralin, methotrexate, steroids, Goeckerman regimen and PUVA).  Some well-known therapies aren’t mentioned (cyclosporine, tegison/soriatane...), but Connolly did not mean for this chapter to be all-encompassing and there’s just enough to convince me the writer is not ignorant of medical establishment practices.  (Also, we must bear in mind that the "book" was penned in 1979 or 1980 and its last noted revision was in 1990.)  Connolly closes this chapter with an essentially correct assessment that all of these therapies are directed at the symptoms rather than the cause of psoriasis and are therefore “doomed for eventual failure.”  While such language will irritate dermatologists, regrettably Connolly is right.

I don’t think Robert Connolly wrote this book to fool anybody.  I don’t know how much money has been raised selling copies of this at $19.95, but I rather doubt it’s been a substantial contribution to Connolly’s retirement.  Furthermore, the severe diet Connolly proposes in great detail will make contemporary dietitians (at least the one’s I’ve met) livid.  Statements like this, “There is no law that says you cannot have a steak for breakfast or eggs for supper,” go against the grain of current thinking.  Also:  “[M]any people are afraid of eggs because of all the cholesterol publicity.  Eggs are one of the best protein foods we have and, besides, the yolk of the egg contains lecithin which counteracts the contained cholesterol.  Also, there is a great controversy over whether cholesterol is really involved in production of arteriosclerosis.”  I can’t help but wonder if this wasn’t a part of the 1990 revision to the original 1980 text.  Today, the American Heart Association might not agree.

I don’t want to write much more about Connolly’s “cure.”  I have the same reaction to it I have to most diet-related P-treatment proposals — in short, they call for a very undesirable approach to combating my P.  Why undesirable?  Other approaches meet my needs for the time being.  This reaction is by no means a condemnation.  I believe the testimonials in Psoriasis Can Be Cured, but I doubt a high percentage of us could find our way to “curing” our P through this approach.  The diet is too restrictive.  One must plan one’s dining almost reclusively to adhere to the diet.  Obviously, some would find this easier than others.  It would be tremendously difficult for me. (I mentioned the total exclusion of pork because that has been raised in previous correspondence.  In fact, the exclusion of pork is only a small part of Connolly’s dietary restrictions.  To learn more I must refer you to the book.)

Would I recommend this approach?  If someone is debilitated physically or emotionally because of severe P ... if someone either cannot afford or has exhausted the repertoire of traditional treatments ... if fear or physiology rule out the potent and dangerous systemics ... if these situations exist, I would not hesitate to recommend Dr. Connolly’s treatment — or, I should say, recommend that it be considered.

My study of Psoriasis Can Be Cured made me revisit the issue of psoriasis as a disease.  Usually I bristle when someone affirms a “cure” for psoriasis.  We tend to define cure as eradication of the cause of disease.  (Right now the medical establishment seems to be focusing on a genetic answer for curing P.)  Connolly uses the term to mean elimination of the cause through a learned and continuous behavior (a certain diet).  His claim is that if you adhere to the diet you will remain clear.  Any return of lesions suggests a new build-up of metabolic wastes and toxic products triggering liver dysfunction.  This must be counteracted by a return to the complete therapeutic regimen (diet plus supplements and acupressure).

If we did not think of psoriasis as a “disease,” but as a “condition,” it would be easier to accept the concept of “cure” as behavior modification rather than eradicating a cause through drugs or surgery.  One formal dictionary definition of “cure” is a successful remedial return to health.  Surely if Connolly’s three-part therapy causes P lesions to disappear and remain away through vigilant behavior, his claiming a “cure” is not totally inappropriate.

But I am equally aware of the counterargument.   Why doesn’t everybody have to follow this plan to remain lesion free?  Why is it some people who eat all the “bad” things don’t get psoriasis?  It is because they don’t have the condition or the disease.  So there remains something about “having psoriasis” that we wish we could eradicate.

For better or for worse, I and people like me are conditioned to favor health care that fixes things fast and, hopefully, permanently.  The ingestion, injection or application of pills, potions and unguents are about as much behavior modification as we’ll reliably undertake.  Much more than this requires replacing habits and that’s not something we like to do or are very good at.  (In fact, we’re prone to resort to pills, potions or unguents to help us change habits!)

For $19.95, Dr. Connolly’s little book, Psoriasis Can Be Cured, has given me much to think about.  I’m glad it’s in my possession now.  I’m glad I read it.  I’m sure I will refer to it again.  Will I do it?  Probably not.  -Ed

*****

PsorHeads Lowered After Catastrophic Disk Crash

I received notice on June 7th that the server hosting PsorHeads crashed and a fatal amount of data for this "by us/for us" forum-chat-and-survey web site has been lost.  

As many of you know, PsorHeads had been the only non-FlakeHQ link imbedded in the contents bar at the top of these pages.  I was excited about the creation of PsorHeads by Ed Reiss and it's continuation, later by Ed Anderson.  I have been continuously warmed by the heartfelt leadership of the forums by Aase Marit, Dave W., Ed Anderson and Ed Reiss, Jerry J., Kim M., Lady Andy, Linda M., Marc Hirsch, Noah P. and Wil W.  On several occasions I reposted FlakeHQ mail on PsorHeads and people always responded with more insights and inspiration than I could provide.  I am going to miss that opportunity.

For the time being the site remains at www.psorheads.com without the forums.  I am told it may become an informational site or it may go dark.  If you were a PsorHeads user, please join me in thanking Ed Reiss and Ed Anderson for their months of devotion to our cause.  -Ed

*****

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