Jeanne and I have come under attack for sharing Per Otte’s protocol—which has been available in the public domain for years—on this blog. We’ve also been criticized for spotlighting Eye Acupuncturist Mats Sexton and his desire to share his knowledge to help people around the world gain affordable, local access to treatment that could possibly save their eyesight.
Like many of you who follow this blog, Jeanne and I have benefited from specialized eye acupuncture and are grateful to all of the acupuncturists out there who have sought out training and specialized education to help those of us suffering from RP, MD and other devastating blinding eye diseases to hold onto our eyesight.
But the lengths to which a few acupuncturists have gone to block or greatly control the access other acupuncturists have to this treatment protocol is, in our view, unethical and unconscionable and goes completely against the holistic healing philosophy of Traditional Chinese Medicine.
Here’s our response to those who are angry with us for sharing information and for our ongoing commitment to do everything we can to make this treatment affordable and accessible for anyone, anywhere in the world, who wants to give it a try.
- Mats Sexton did not disclose Per Otte’s acupuncture protocol. Per Otte disclosed his protocol in an abandoned patent application (click here to access) that has been in the public domain for years. This isn’t the first time that a blog has featured it. It was spotlighted on a blog post as far back as 2010. I’m disappointed with myself for not digging deeper sooner—especially given that my husband is a patent attorney. I get two or three emails a week from people all over the world who are desperate for local, affordable treatment options in hopes that they will continue to be able to see.
- We are NOT Money Trees. We are mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters who are fighting hard to hold onto our eyesight so that we can watch our children grow up, see our spouses grow old, continue to support our families, do the work we love and maintain our independence. We are not independently wealthy and cannot afford to spend thousands of dollars every few months and take off four to six weeks from work each year for the rest of our lives to fly across the country or half way around the world in hopes of accessing a treatment that can help us save or maintain our eyesight.
- Affordable, widespread training is critical. This should be taught in every acupuncture school in the world. It’s simply not true that acupuncturists aren’t interested in learning this protocol and helping patients save their eyesight—despite the argument I’ve heard repeatedly for a couple of years now. Thanks to the increasing awareness about the possible benefits of acupuncture, numerous patients and skilled acupuncturists have been clamoring to access the needling points and necessary training and have been consistently shut down. We are thrilled that more skilled acupuncturists like Mats Sexton are stepping forward to share their knowledge with others—without concern about creating competition for themselves by helping millions of people around the world access a treatment that might benefit them.
Of all the criticisms and ridiculousness I’ve heard since THIS BLOG POST appeared, this one I received Sunday from a long-time eye acupuncturist stands out: “Many people are so attached to their conditions that you could put a cure right in front of them and they’d refuse it. It’s not up to you to have every blind person treated with acupuncture.”
In the three years since starting this dedicated quest to save my eyesight, I’ve connected with thousands of people suffering from RP and other blinding eye diseases and every one of them is fighting hard to save, maintain and help their sight. To suggest that we are attached to our failing sight or that we would prefer to lose it is downright cruel and there is absolutely no place for that brand of negativity. The last thing Jeanne and I want is to mandate that every “blind” person be treated with acupuncture. We’re working to ensure that an affordable, accessible treatment option be made available to those who are doing everything in their power to rescue their sight and want to give acupuncture a try. We will continue this battle so that everyone struggling from a blinding eye disease has a way to hold onto his or her precious sight. And we invite like-minded acupuncturists and naturopaths to join our fight.
One final thought: We’ve spent a lot of time on this blog promoting the merits of acupuncture. But that is only one component of traditional Chinese Medicine and naturopathy. Diet, exercise, lifestyle and emotional health are ALL key to maintaining our eyesight and overall good health.
As many of you know, I’ve spent the past few months undergoing chemotherapy for breast cancer and am now teaming with a wonderful naturopath in Seattle to focus on building my immune system and nourishing my body – physical, mind and spirit. Over the next few months, this blog will focus on diet, lifestyle, nutrition, exercise and mental health—with an emphasis on personal empowerment and all we can be doing ourselves to promote our eye health and overall health. Jeanne and I invite any naturopath or acupuncturist interested in providing patient education in this area to do a guest post on this blog.
Here’s to our eye health—and to all of those practitioners out there whose first priority is their patients, not their pocketbooks.