Northwestern University Fails to Comply With Its Policies and Procedures Which Protect Patients With Complex Regional Pain Syndrome
RESEARCH BY R. NORMAN HARDEN MD IS QUESTIONABLE AT BEST AND POTENTIALLY HARMFUL TO CRPS PATIENTS AT WORST
The derivation of Dr. Harden’s formula for diagnosing CRPS appears to be mathematically biased and based on questionable data from clinical investigators who were first told of the diagnosis before collecting the data. Therefore, there is an absence of the typical double-blind research protocol.
If accepted on face value this mathematical formulation could result in under diagnosis of CRPS and harm patients suffering from this horrible neurological disorder. A few patients with CRPS develop quadriplegia, even worse, pain in all extremities and the face. Some of these patients require nutrition by intravenous feedings in order to survive. Experts agree that the earlier the diagnosis followed by treatment, the better the outcome.
It is commendable to search for a simple mathematical formula to diagnosis CRPS, but when the data is questionable on a scientific basis there can be great harm to patients. We need to resist the temptation to oversimplify the diagnosis of this complex syndrome.
VIDEO RECORDING OF DR. HARDEN'S SWORN TESTIMONY
Norman Harden MD advocates using his mathematical formula as a standard for making the diagnosis of CRPS. In the video recording linked below he used his mathematical formula in court to bolster his claim that the patient in the litigation does not need treatment for CRPS.
Harden testified he sees patients only once a week, and makes himself available for hire in legal matters primarily as a defense expert to prove a patient does not suffer from CRPS. In this case he was paid $7,000.
The mathematical formula advanced by Harden makes his job as an expert for the defense much easier, to his personal and financial benefit -- and he does not need to meet the patient prior to testifying against the patient in court.
The irony to this story is that Harden is the Chair of Clinical Affairs for the #1 organization in the world that claims to be an advocate for patients with CRPS. This not-for-profit organization provides money to Harden to support his research.
As evident from Harden's sworn testimony, his diagnostic criteria for CRPS provides a convenient means for insurance companies to claim a patient does not have CRPS and deny authorization for treatment.
Harden stated falsely under oath (page 121) that he is "Board Certified". He is not Board Certified in any field of medicine. According to university policy, promotion from Instructor to Assistant Professor requires Board Certification.
If Harden was granted promotion to Associate Professor of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation based on false pretense, his ethics should be questioned. Northwestern University should be questioned for giving him recognition before the public for clinical competency that he does not deserve. Clinical competency is at issue in this complaint.
COMPLAINT FILED WITH NW UNIVERSITY