New Research at AJWRB

by Lee Elder 103 Replies latest watchtower medical

  • sparrowdown

    JD the WT Lawyer is in da house! Your handlers must be so proud.

  • John Davis
    John Davis

    TD you use examples such as Hodgkin's Lymphoma and AML as your examples as to why the number offered by Lee Elder is low and that it is probably higher.

    While yes both disease progression would require a blood transfusion in order to treat and possibly cure. The ratio of people with these two diseases is extremely low. For AML it is 0.5 percent of the population and for Hodgkins, it is only 204,000 people in the US with that disease for a population of 300 Million people. So yes if you add these people in that would increase the number of preventable deaths but you cannot use that to correlate the numbers that Lee Elder is attempting to bring out.

    So yes if you add these people in that would increase the number of preventable deaths but you cannot use that to correlate the numbers that Lee Elder is attempting to bring out. it is a sensationalized number. It could be very high but no one knows what the actual number or no reputable journal would present a paper like this in their publication because there are too many factors not included in order to come to an educated estimate.

    Lee Elder: You stated that you had presented this at a conference, but you didn't state what conference it was? was there any push back on what was presented?

  • John Davis
    John Davis

    Lee Elder:

    You stated:

    Bear in mind, you are reviewing the work of one of the best experts in this entire field. An author who has been published more times in peer reviewed medical journals than anyone else on this matter. Dr. Muramoto has produced a very, very conservative estimate which is precisely why we use it. It completely ignores all deaths related to the three primary causes of morbidity in JW's related to the blood issue.

    What are his credentials? What can be read on BMJ is 2 articles from the journal on medical ethics. What other papers has he written and what subjects did he write on? What is he board certified in? Is the doctor a Hematologist, Cardiologist, Thoracic Surgeon, a Hospitalist?

  • Lee Elder
    Lee Elder

    To Never a JW: No one is disfellowshipped over blood anymore. The WT changed their policy in 2000/2001 in this regard. My guess is that you are looking at an older elder's book. The policy as currently administered includes a recognition that an individual makes it known by his choice to use blood (that is any blood product not currently approved for use) that he is no longer one of JWs, hence disassociation. Same thing that we have with respects to one who joins the military or sends in a letter to the congregation ending his or her participation. You are correct that the elders can make a determination that the person is repentant. That is going to depend on the individuals involved. There are some elders that don't feel its possible to repent from this sin, and probably others like myself who would not have a problem in giving the person a pass.

  • Lee Elder
    Lee Elder

    Dr. Muramoto, M.D. is a retired board certified neurologist and medical ethicist, as well as a member of the volunteer faculty at the Center for Ethics in Health Care, Oregon Health and Science University. Dr. Muramoto, Marvin Shilmer, AJWRB and myself have never claimed that these numbers are anything more than an estimate. Your statement that they are "sensationalized" is patently false. Quite to the contrary - they are conservative. If one were to factor in morbidity in 3rd world/developing countries where a significant percentage of Jehovah's Witnesses are found, these numbers would be much, much higher. Same thing applies to trauma, childbirth and chronic diseases of the blood. The numbers related to childbirth alone are simply staggering, and we will be drawing attention to that in the near future. It is time for the world to cut away the camouflage that is created by Watchtower's organizational structure/compartmentalization and see it for the death cult it truly is.

  • John Davis
    John Davis

    Well, I have expressed how I think your methodology is flawed. You take a number that is mostly caused by a certain number of conditions and correlate that with the entire JW population to come up with a number. If all JWs were exclusively having those conditions then yes your methodology would be correct but since they are not then it is flawed.

    Again I think you are doing something noble for trying to come up with a number but there is a number of factors that you have to put into your evaluation to come up with an educated estimate.

    Edit: Also as you state it doesn't include third world countries. That would have it's own complications even if all JWs took blood, such as the acquisition, storage and administration of the blood. Even a simple thing as administering a vaccine is complicated in third world countries let alone the storage and administration of blood which is much more complicated. Such as blood having a very specific best used by, has to be stored in very specific and complex situations, the testing of the blood for both pathogens and type for proper administration and the need for qualified professionals to actually administer it.

  • TD


    TD you use examples such as Hodgkin's Lymphoma and AML as your examples....The ratio of people with these two diseases is extremely low.

    I actually gave examples of each of the three main categories (i.e. Pathology, Trauma/Emergency Surgey & Child Birth Complications ) where JW patients are most likely to experience an adverse outcome. Examples by their very nature are simply illustrative of the categories they represent.

    If you are an active JW, or otherwise still sympathetic to the doctrine, (And it's starting to sound like you are..) the most likely scenario where you would be faced with a tough decision would probably be an auto accident.

  • John Davis
    John Davis

    I don't believe that the doctrine is correct, I think that no one should have a say over our own bodies. And I think you can make an argument on the merits of the morality of the issue.

    But when you start to make estimates as to how many people die from a certain belief system then you have to make those estimates that can stand up to scrutiny and the method that you employed to come to that estimate. And I don't think that these estimates met that standard.

    Certainly, other people think that but I honestly don't there are so many different issues that have come up with this estimate that makes me question the methodology behind the estimate.

    I have not even brought up that one of the estimates is based on a single 18-year-old study and the second is based on a 6-year-old study. No references were made to any other study.

  • Ruby456

    TD I had already read all that before commenting here. I am most interested in Muramoto's take and I agree with him and this is the reason I am taking issue with Lee Elder. Other than that I don't need convincing re how many deaths may be occurring through refusal of blood transfusion.

  • Ruby456

    lee elder

    Hello Ruby 456. The calculation you bring up (150 deaths per year) is not mine. Its from Dr. Muramoto, M.D. It refers to deaths during the year 2001, and just in the U.S. where "bloodless medicine" is performed at a advanced level. There were approximately 6 millions JWs worldwide at that time. 150 x 6 = 900 worldwide deaths in 2001, and these are just deaths related to elective surgery without blood. They do not include deaths from trauma, blood disorders or childbirth. Actual numbers are certainly higher. The numbers have been presented at a major medical conference, and carefully reviewed by capable researchers working with AJWRB. They will stand up to scrutiny. lee elder

    another thing is that you are extrapolating across the world when the whole world does not function according to American ethics and in many countries (france, Belgium and Italy and wherever else their ethics hold sway, for example) physicians hold to different interpretations of the JW position on blood.

    check out this great article from 2014

    after saying how unaccommodating the ethical situation is in North America, where the patients rights are sacrosanct even when he/she is unconscious, this is what it states regarding the countries mentioned above - bolding mine in article below. The article also provides examples where physicians have gone against jw patient wishes when they have become unconscious even if the patient has stated his refusal of blood just before going unconscious minutes before or carries a blood card and courts have upheld the physicians actions in doing so.

    The third scenario involves an attempt at mediation and is based on the premise that the refusal of treatment, including a transfusion or the administration of blood-derived products, is legitimate. However, if the patient becomes unconscious and his or her physical integrity is in serious and immediate danger the physician could be obliged to intervene without thereby incurring either civil or criminal liability, thanks to the discriminating circumstances of a state of necessity.

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