>So far, Paul and I have seen 4 DAN doctors. All 4 are medical practitioners of varying backgrounds and specialties and they’ve all done different levels of Clinician’s Training with Defeat Autism Now!. And what we found is, every doctor have their own unique perspective, different sets of priorities, different treatment modalities and testing requirements. There is no better or worse, you choose a DAN doctor for your child based on certain criteria.
Qualification and DAN! certifications are not the most important criteria. I choose my doctor based on convenience, geographical location, testing methods, personal preferences for supplements, preferred testing labs and the doctor’s bedside manner. These are all important because you will have to build a close relationship based on trust and respect throughout this long journey.
Paul and I have consulted Dr Sundardas and Dr Erwin Kay in Singapore, Dr Rina Adeline in Indonesia and globe-trotting Dr Mark Westaway for Maya. We consulted Dr Erwin Kay and Dr Rina Adeline for my second daughter Yasmin.
Dr Sundardas is a Naturopath. We stayed with him for only 3 months because he did not address Maya’s gut issues, which I felt is a very important part of her treatment. He did not propose the IgG, Urine Organic Acids or Comprehensive Stool tests the entire time we saw him. His main area of concern with Maya is her heavy metals toxicity.
Dr Erwin Kay is our principle DAN practitioner, he is conservative in terms of testing and most importantly he really listens to our opinions. He orders his own test kits from ARI recommended labs and sells supplements from Kirkmans, Prothera and Klaire Labs. It is really convenient because I can do consult, testing and get supplements from him directly. He concentrates on Maya’s gut issues, nutritional supplementation and overall treatment.
I met Dr Mark Westaway at the DAN Conference in Atlanta in April 09. He is Australian, previously based in Brisbane. Then he worked in Breakspear Hospital in the UK. Recently he told us he will be based in the US because he was invited to do Autism research in Harvard. We never know where he’ll be next. So he may not be able to provide consultations for us very often. However, we still keep in touch via email. He only provides consultations, you will need to find supplements elsewhere. He will also give prescriptions when needed and you will need to purchase it from an Australian pharmacy. He doesn’t do testing either, he will just give you a list of tests he requires and his preferred labs but you have to contact those labs directly. His main area of focus with Maya includes biofilms and oxidative stress. He also stresses the importance of reducing EMFs (electro magnetic fields) around our children.
Dr Rina Adeline from Indonesia has been to the several DAN conference including the latest one. She has also done the advanced training with DAN. She requires her patients to do extensive tests, which you will have to do with an independent lab for blood draw. And you will need to find supplements from pharmacies and speciality shops. We have seen her only once however we plan on consulting with her occasionally every few months. Her main area of focus with Maya are viral infections and autoimmunity.
Maya has all the above issues (and more) and they all need to be addressed. It’s just a matter of professional interest and personal priorities which issues are to be addressed first and concentrated on. Some may find all these differing opinions confusing, however paul and I really appreciate each and every doctor we have met. We value 2nd opinions and each doctor gives us a fresh perspective as well as treatment options that may not have been available in another country.
On our next trip to Sydney, we plan on meeting one of the most respected biomedical doctor in Australia. Holistic and natural remedies are also very popular amongst Australians and we are curious how biomedical treatments there differ. We’ll keep you posted on what he has to say!