Daniel Amen

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Daniel Amen
DAmen.png
BornDaniel Gregory Amen
NationalityUSA
Alma materSouthern California College
Oral Roberts University School of Medicine (M.D., 1982) [1]
Occupationpsychiatrist, author, lecturer, professor
Known forAmen's Classification
Website
amenclinics.com
 
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Daniel Amen
DAmen.png
BornDaniel Gregory Amen
NationalityUSA
Alma materSouthern California College
Oral Roberts University School of Medicine (M.D., 1982) [1]
Occupationpsychiatrist, author, lecturer, professor
Known forAmen's Classification
Website
amenclinics.com

Daniel G. Amen is a self-help guru, psychiatrist, medical director of the Amen Clinics, and a bestselling author.[2][3][4] His use of brain SPECT scans for psychiatric and neurological diagnosis of patients is controversial.[3]

Career[edit]

Amen received his undergraduate degree from Southern California College in 1978 and his doctorate from Oral Roberts University School of Medicine in 1982.[1] He is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association.[3] Amen is the CEO and medical director of the Amen Clinics.[3] He is the author or co-author of over 30 books and peer reviewed articles.[3][5]

Amen has been described as "the most controversial psychiatrist in America [who] may also be the most commercially successful".[6]

Criticism[edit]

In 2005, Quackwatch.org released a paper written by physician Dr. Harriet Hall which questioned the effectiveness of the SPECT scans and criticized Amen for not declaring them as experimental.[7] In a response to criticism, Amen's attorney has described his work as follows:

"The Amen Clinics tracks treatment response among its patients. 85% of our patients report a high degree of satisfaction with our services. We are not a typical psychiatric clinic. We typically see patients who have failed 3 or 4 other mental health professionals, and who have an average of 3.5 psychiatric disorders using standard DSM diagnostic measures. No one keeps response rates on such a complex diagnostic group, yet our results are very encouraging." [8]

In a further comment by Dr. Harriet Hall,

"This is an admission that there is no evidence. High satisfaction rates are not relevant to the question of efficacy. I don't doubt that Dr. Amen helps many of the people who consult him. The key question, however, is whether or not SPECT scanning is justifiable for most of them."[8]

In 2012, The Washington Post Magazine ran a cover story expose entitled Daniel Amen is the most popular psychiatrist in America. To most researchers and scientists, that’s a very bad thing. The Post detailed Amen's lack of acceptance among the scientific community and his monetary conflict of interest.[3]

His techniques have been compared to the 19th century pseudoscience of phrenology, which associated the shape of the skull with personality traits.[3][9]

Charity work[edit]

Amen is also one of the developers of Saddleback Church’s Daniel Plan, a 52 week program to get churches healthy, physically, emotionally and spiritually.[10][11]

Amen has presented several PBS network specials on his work used by many PBS stations to raise funds.[12]

Bibliography[edit]

Amen is the author or co-author of over 30 books, including:

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Medical Board of California license record for Daniel Gregory Amen"
  2. ^ Eliza Shapiro (December 14, 2012). "Can Daniel Amen Read Your Mind?". The Daily Beast. Retrieved October 9, 2013. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g Neely Tucker (August 9, 2012). "Daniel Amen is the most popular psychiatrist in America. To most researchers and scientists, that’s a very bad thing.". Washington Post Magazine. Retrieved October 20, 2012. 
  4. ^ Butcher, James (2008). "Neuropolitics gone mad". The Lancet Neurology 7 (4): 295. doi:10.1016/S1474-4422(08)70056-5. 
  5. ^ "Elevated BMI is associated with decreased blood flow in the prefrontal cortex using SPECT imaging in healthy adults". National Center for Biotechnology Information. Retrieved September 25, 2013. 
  6. ^ Bhattacharya, Sanjiv (6 February 2013). "Dr Daniel Amen interview: the shrink who believes technology will replace the couch". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 13 October 2013. 
  7. ^ Hall, Harriet (2005, rev. 2007). "A Skeptical View of SPECT Scans and Dr. Daniel Amen". Quackwatch. Retrieved August 7, 2009 
  8. ^ a b "Dr. Daniel Amen's Response to Criticism on Quackwatch". Quackwatch.com. 2007-11-12. Retrieved 2013-06-02. 
  9. ^ Hall, Harriet (8 April 2008). "SPECT Scans at the Amen Clinic – A New Phrenology?". Science-Based Medicine. Retrieved 3 October 2013. 
  10. ^ Madison Park (January 24, 2012). "Rick Warren and church tackle obesity". CNN. Retrieved October 20, 2012. 
  11. ^ Joe Piaza (March 27, 2012). "Church spreads the gospel of healthy eating". Fox News. Retrieved October 20, 2012. 
  12. ^ "Dr Daniel Amem PBS specials". Pbs.org. 2011-02-25. Retrieved 2013-10-02. 

External links[edit]