A Chicago father of a 7 year old boy with autism has filed a lawsuit against a Naperville doctor for causing harm to his child through "dangerous and unnecessary experimental treatments." The lawsuit also names a doctor from Florida that is part of the same medical movement to treat autism through alternative treatment options. This group has been mentioned in the media for its use of questionable medical treatments.
The Chicago Tribune has recently run an investigative series that examines risky and unproven treatments for medical aliments based on questionable science. One of the articles from the series has featured this family and their story.
The lawsuit has been filed against Dr. Anjum Usman of Naperville and Dr. Daniel Rossignol of Melbourne, Florida. These two doctors are prominent physicians in the Defeat Autism Now movement. This group promotes many of the alternative treatments that the Tribune has called into question. The two physicians have been keynote speakers at autism conferences and they have also trained other physicians in their approach to treating autism.
According to the Chicago medical malpractice lawyer representing the boy, the doctors prescribed "medically unnecessary and unjustified" chelation treatments, which are designed to force the body to excrete toxic metals. The lawsuit alleges that the boy did not suffer from heavy metal poisoning and these treatments carry a risk of kidney failure.
The lawsuit also alleges that Dr. Rossignol prescribed these treatments over the phone and that he had never seen the child in person. The lawsuit contends that the tests performed by Doctor' Data medical testing laboratory in St. Charles used an "improper method" of testing and that the results indicating that the boy had elevated levels of lead, aluminum, tin, and mercury were highly questionable. Both doctors named in the suit have issued statements that they can not comment on pending litigation.