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April 7, 1993

Clinical Ecology-Reply

Author Affiliations

Council on Scientific Affairs American Medical Association Chicago, Ill

JAMA. 1993;269(13):1635. doi:10.1001/jama.1993.03500130048019

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In Reply.  —The American Medical Association Council on Scientific Affairs agrees with Dr McLellan that many patients with symptoms and a medical history suggestive of a multiple chemical sensitivity (MCS)—related syndrome are not helped by traditional medicine. We dispute his assertion that the clinical ecology report is insensitive to the suffering of patients with CFS, SBS, or any other MCS-related illnesses. The large body of anecdotal evidence supporting the validity of various hypotheses as the cause of MCS-related syndromes, or the value of suggested therapies, is impressive. However, the history of medicine is filled with numerous examples in which anecdotal evidence was widely accepted as proof of hypotheses for the cause of disease or as support for the value of therapies for a specific disease; when it became possible to carry out controlled studies, the validity of these hypotheses or therapies could not be demonstrated.The Council on Scientific Affairs

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