This month I would like to review the newly translated 2nd
English edition of Dosch's Manual of Neural Therapy according to Huneke.
This is a long awaited book as the only previous neural therapy textbook
available in English was the 1984 edition that has been out of print for many
years. I am sure many other English
speakers besides myself have been wondering what progress has been made since
then - in Germany,
the birthplace of neural therapy.
In particular I was wondering whether the North American
contributions of Dietrich Klinghardt and Louisa Williams, i.e. their invention of autonomic response testing
would be included in the "bible" of neural therapy. Sadly they are not, but an explanation is not
hard to imagine when one considers how textbooks are made. Textbooks are enormously difficult and
time-consuming to write, edit and publish.
The information in most textbooks is usually five years out of date by
the time the book reaches the reader. So this most recent (1995) edition really
describes the state of neural therapy in Germany in about the year 1990,
i.e. it is already close to 20 years old.
This disappointment aside, it is still an important
book. The general outline and most of
the writing of the previous edition has been left intact. This is as it should
be, as the original translation was a magnificent book. The late Peter Dosch was not only a master
clinician, but also a very fine writer. In addition, the English of translator
Arthur Lindsay was (and is) a delight to read.
Most of the changes in the text have been insertions of new scientific knowledge
and (in the techniques section), information on safety issues. For example the section on "Theories of Pain
and the Effects of Anesthesia" has several new paragraphs on axoplasmic
transport and the function of polypeptides such as substance P - old stuff in
2007, but nevertheless helpful for clinicians to understand the phenomena of
neurogenic inflammation. Some of Pischinger's
major contributions to the physiology of the extracellular space as it pertains
to neural therapy are also included.
Some small subsections have been expanded and/or rewritten,
e.g. injection techniques of some of the arteries, joints and nerves and the
section on segmental therapy. There has
also been some minor reorganization of material in certain places. For example the shoulder joint section of the
"Encyclopedia" has been extensively rewritten.
A disappointment for me was the "Failures of Neural Therapy" section, which has been left unchanged.
Although nutritional deficiency is briefly mentioned as a limiting factor of
neural therapy's success, in my opinion, malnutrition and neurotoxicity is now
epidemic in modern industrialized society and cannot be ignored by anyone
practicing neural therapy. This is
especially true in the practices of more progressive physicians who attract
difficult cases, most of which are complicated by biochemical and/or
However the author does provide a couple of interesting
little sections on autohemotherapy and
ozone-oxygen therapy, to be used when neural therapy fails. More of this
sort of thing would be a valuable addition to the book.
Thieme publishers have reduced the size of this edition from
500 to 400 pages by decreasing the size of the print and eliminating or
shortening some non-text sections. The
beautiful portraits of the Huneke brothers are gone - a sad mistake in my
opinion. This is a personal book by
someone who obviously admired and loved these courageous medical pioneers.
The extensive "Selected bibliography" and "Bibliography of
Publications in English" has been replaced by a small section of "Further Reading". Interestingly, some of these recommended
papers and books have been published in the last few years, i.e. are more
recent than the text itself. Although
this remedies the datedness of some of the material to a certain extent, it
does not excuse the complete lack of footnotes, endnotes or bibliography.
New illustrations have been added and many of the dark old
photographs have been replaced with photographs or diagrams from Matthias
Dosch's Atlas of Neural Therapy. These photographs look more professionally
produced, but I quarrel with the hand and syringe positions in some of the
This book is a must
for any physician practicing neural therapy. However for those who already own a copy of
the first edition, because the substantive changes are minor this second
English edition might be considered an optional purchase.
Two months until my introductory
neural therapy course in Chicago
on September 14th and 15th! But only one month to make hotel
reservations, so you might consider making your move now. Hotel rooms are hard to come by in September,
and the cut-off date at the Radisson Hotel is August 15th. For more information check http://www.rfkidd.com/booksite/introcourseread.html
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