Monday, February 9, 2009

Artrosilium / Intramed / Windsor duff products laugh at the ASA once more.

*sigh*

It was almost an inevitability.

Unproven medicine seller Intramed Ltd (sometimes registered in Switzerland, sometimes in Guernsey sometimes Colchester, UK) has, yet again, been pulled up by the Advertising Standards Authority for making silly claims about its untested, proof-free, 'natural' arthritis reliever and indeed reverser.

Artrosilium-associated quackery has been one of the biggest draws to this site from Google, so there is no shortage of people looking for it - I've blogged it a few times before.

Of course, if you're selling evidence-free quack medicines, there is no need to limit it to one ailment - the most recent piece of marketing nonsense to come from Intramed insisted that Artrosilium was also taken for:
Pains, inflammations, skin problems, burns, sunburns, sinus, nasal congestion, prostate, rashes, canker sores, restore your nails' youthful appearance and to stop hair loss.

Tosh.

Once again (and for the 5th time in 12 months) Intramed were slapped by the ASA. Intramed said they wouldn't do it again, honest guv.

Seeing as I'm in the mood for writing complaining letters, (and given the ASA can't actually *do* anything about Intramed) I've decided to complain to the Guernsey Authorities and see what happens - possibly not much, but there's something in my head saying that this is not 'right' - a company should not be allowed to continually flout the advertising guidelines regarding a 'medicinal' product, with the sole purpose of giving lots of arthrites false hope and making lots of money at their expense.

I'll keep you posted, but I'll wager ten shiny new pence that this won't be the last time the ASA and Intramed will discuss their adverts in 2009.

UPDATE: They lasted 2 days before yet another ASA ruling against them. Now someone owes me 10p.

BPSDB

18 comments:

  1. Well done Dr* T. I agree that the ASA is as toothless as...well...OfQuack, but every little helps.

    Even if it does no more than give you a brief smile, complaining about quacks to the ASA is very easy. I've had a run of about 10 in the last few weeks - from an ayurveda clinic, a colonic irrigation clinic, a couple of psychics, an anti-limescale product and a few others. All you need is some common sense and a few minutes to fill their online form in.

    So far, two are going to an adjudication and the results will be published on their website. I'll also put them on my website at www.thinkhumanism.com. I also intend to write a brief guide on how to complain for anyone who wants to take up this exciting pastime!

    ReplyDelete
  2. In the Netherlands they stopped (temporarily, I am sure) after a TV exposure. But the introduced Flexilium GC+ Joint Cream (www.flexilium.co.uk/index.php?pas=NHWW16). They also sell Vision Clear www.clear-vision.co.uk)
    Marie P. Prins
    Oost-Souburg
    Netherlands

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  3. I've just received mail shot regards to IntraMed, from St Lukes House, London Road, Copford. CO6 1BJ.
    tel. 08712 240733. Not happy receiving items like this when you seriously suffring. can you do to stop this bogus people.
    Regards
    D.T.

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  4. Hi D.T.,

    Can you forward me the email?

    thinkingisdangerousblog AT googlemail DOT com

    Thanks

    T

    ReplyDelete
  5. Anonymous said...
    I've just received mail shot regards to IntraMed, from St Lukes House, London Road, Copford. CO6 1BJ.
    tel. 08712 240733. Not happy receiving items like this when you seriously suffring. can you do to stop this bogus people.
    Regards
    D.T.

    Dr* T said...
    Hi D.T.,

    Can you forward me the email?

    thinkingisdangerousblog AT googlemail DOT com

    Thanks

    I would like to point out that D.T. did say 'Mail shot', not email.
    I too have received the same mail shot twice, (last time - this mornimg).
    I completely agree with D.T. - it is junk mail that SHOULD be stopped, how to stop it is another question.

    J.R.

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  6. Indeed - my mistake. Nonetheless I have receivedthe full mail, scanned in, which I sent off to the ASA with this result:

    INTRAMED LTD/ ARTROSILIUM

    Thank you for contacting the Advertising Standards Authority.

    As you are aware, we’ve previously advised against this type of advertising and we’ve received a few other complaints this week alerting us to the fact that the mailing is still being distributed. We’re concerned to see that the advertisers are continue to use this ad, and we’ve therefore passed the case to our Compliance team, which will follow it up.

    The team doesn’t report to complainants or publish the result of its investigations but rest assured they will tackle the problem. There can be serious consequences for advertisers who don’t comply. Depending on the kind of advertising:

    · publishers can refuse to run their ads;

    · commercial benefits (such as Royal Mail bulk mailing discounts) can be removed;

    · the advertiser can be referred to the Office of Fair Trading for misleading ads;


    I’d like to thank you for taking the trouble to raise your concerns with us, and for bring this matter to our attention.


    I'll keep pushing.

    ReplyDelete
  7. After waiting 6 weeks for a delivery of "Brain and Boost " formula, and being assured last week that it has been dispatched from Guersey that very day (Dec. 1st ) i rang this morning to be told it had been dispatched from SINGAPORE on the 23rd of November!!
    I have asked for a refund, and i wont wait with bated breath!!!
    J.B.Elwell (aged 74 )

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  8. Re Artrosilium.

    I despise quackery and follow Ben Goldacre's column in the Guardian assiduously. I therefore applaud this website and furthermore agree that the company that sells Artrosilium makes wild claims. Another of their products, a 'pen' that gives a small shot of electricity (or static or whatever)turned out to be utterly useless, and they have various other products that I wouldn't touch with a vaulter's pole.

    However..... My partner, who suffers from arthritis and a range of pains associated with lymphodaemia, was given the free sample by a friend who said it was brilliant. It works for my partner and she has since given some to a friend of hers who has now felt able to cancel a shoulder-joint replacement operation because of it.

    Why should this be? I haven't a clue. But Artrosilium is not particularly cheap so if anyone can tell me how it works and how to replicate it with ordinary household products I would be very grateful!

    Seriously though, daft though this company may be, do not be blinded to the fact that Artrosilium gel works wonderfully for at least some people - and I can assure you the reason is not all in the mind.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Jerry

    There are many well-understood reasons why some AltMed treatments appear to work. This is an excellent article about it: Psychology and 'Alternative Medicine' Social and Judgmental Biases That Make Inert Treatments Seem to Work.

    It can only be that after all these reasons have been investigated and eliminated that you can ascribe the improvement to the treatment itself.

    ReplyDelete
  10. My 85 year old mother bought some Artrosilium, and like Jerry, she has found it very beneficial. I totally agree that a rigorous testing process needs to be carried out to verify the claims

    As a Chemist, I find this product and the marketing techniques worrying because there is no real control/oversight for its use.

    It contains chemicals and vegetable extracts that may have been tested to some level for safety or side effectcs etc - depending on whether the product is sold as pharmaceutical, cosmetic or other, it will have to meet very different standards. these can be to a very high standard for approved pharmaceutical products, or much lower standards for other categories of products.

    Also, many people wishing to use this product are quite likely to be using other medication, so my advice to everyone would be to take the product to your GP and ask whether there could be any adverse reaction with any other medication that is being used
    This advice applies not just to this product, but to any medication that can be obtaioned through unregulated channels

    Cheers

    M

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  11. Artrosilium has worked for me. I used to play the piano to a very high standard but had not played for 20 years or so. I now have a piano and have been using Artrosilium on stiff and sore fingers. Am delighted that my finger flexibility is returning and hand pain gradually reducing. Having said that, the product has not worked on my arthritic knees. "Horses for courses" I think - you can only try it and see if it works in your individual case.

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  12. I was sent a free sample of Artrosilium a long time ago. I used it on an arthritic finger joint and shortly afterwards, especially during the winter, had no pain at all. I recently had surgery on a toe and it is constantly very painful. I remembered I had a little of the Artosilium left and for two days have been using it on my toe. Amazingly, the pain has gone and the toe is less swollen. It does work!

    ReplyDelete
  13. My husband and I have been using the gel for several weeks now. I have noticed a difference in my arthritic hands, the redness and pain is much reduced. My husband uses it on his feet and says he is not sure about it, but he is no compaining of the agony he was in before using it.
    As others have said, it may depend on the individual and the problem they have.
    Anyhthing to relieve the pain and stiffness is worth a try.

    ReplyDelete
  14. i have used artrosilium on my knee,which became very inflamed.i ended up having keyhole surgery which proved i had synovitis,could artrisilium had been cause of inflmamation?

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  15. I have just found a debit on my Visa card from Intramed Epping UK for which I have no recollection of purchase or invoice . Has anyone else received debits on their credit cards from these people when they have not ordered goods or services.

    Larry Zenden

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  16. Having tried the free sample of Artrosilium, I purchased 3 months supply ,which was on offer,! I discussed its' componants over the phone As I am on Warfarin, & was told it was all herbal.Needless to say my bloods went up the spout , if I'de have cut myself ,I wouldn't of stopped bleeding.Which from a follow up call I recieved ,I found out that the cream contains meadow sweet , which is a form of ASPRIN that thins the blood ,I was told I would recieve a call afew days later from management, & recieve my money back as this was very serious, HA , not that serious to them !!!! I'me still waiting a week later . Do you reckon I'll hear!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  17. My mum has used this gel now for two years and swears by it, in fact she asked me to find where she could get some more which is how come I am on this website looking for where to buy it from. Whether or not you think it is all in the mind if the user finds a lot of felief from it then surely it is doing good and that person is not taking up a doctors time ytrying to find some releif from their ailment

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  18. Why not ask the company why they won't sell it in UK? I have nothing against the product, except that it should have studies to show it works (it doesn't have) and it should be made to the standards we in the UK expect of such products (they avoid this legislation).

    Why won't the company do that? Why do you think?

    T

    ReplyDelete

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