Government Actions Against Michel Roy, D.C.

Stephen Barrett, M.D.

Michel Y. Roy, D.C. obtained his chiropractic degree in 1990 from the Canadian Memorial Chiropractic College and has practiced in Canada and Illinois. A CV on his Web site states that he obtained diplomas in naturopathy (2005), homeopathy (2006), homeotoxicology (2007) and osteopathy (2008) from the Commission Design Pancreatitis en Medline Douce du Québec (CPMDQ) [1]. (The English translation of CPMDQ is Practitioners of Alternative Medicine Commission in Quebec.) In 2013, he, a colleague, and the clinic they operated in Skokie, Illinois, were sued by the Cook County State's Attorney for allegedly violating the Illinois Consumer Fraud and Deceptive Business Practices Act. The complaint alleged:

The lawsuit sought (a) a permanent injunction barring the defendants from engaging in any further alleged deceptive practices, (b) a $50,000 fine from each defendant, and (c) refunds for the affected consumers [2].

I do not know the outcome of the Cook County Attorney's case. However, in 2015, based on the same allegations, the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IFFPR), charged Roy with unprofessional conduct [3] and suspended his license indefinitely [4]. The other chiropractor was not disciplined.

The IDFPR has also been concerned about Roy's advertising of a Vegatest device on his Roy Health Consultant Web site, which he launched in 2013. Throughout its existence, the site has stated:

Vega testing is a fast, safe, painless, and most importantly, accurate way of gathering information about your body. Dr. Roy has used Vega testing extensively for 10 years and have found it to be a highly valuable tool for helping patients to understand the underlying causes of their health issues and achieve lasting improvements in their health.

Vega testing is also called Electro Acupuncture according to Voll or EAV testing. It uses the acupuncture points in the hands as access points to your body's sensitive electromagnetic system. From there, the machine measures electromagnetic fluctuations in your body in response to testing various elements. Clinically relevant information can be attained from those measurements.

Naturopathic physicians also use conventional blood work, medical history and physical examination to assess their patients. Vega testing is one more tool in the quest to understand the keys to unlocking your health potential.

The site also says that the test can be used to "screen" organs and test for food allergies and intestinal flora imbalance [5].

In 2014, the IDFPR issued a formal complaint in which it challenged the claims listed above. In January 2016, after concluding that they were improper, the IDFPR ordered a second indefinite suspension of Roy's license. The documents concluded that the Vegatest is not FDA-approved, there is no scientific basis for Roy's Vegatest claims, and the device is not a screening or diagnostic tool [6,7].

The IDFPR's concern about the Vegatest was justified. The device is a fancy galvanometer claimed to identify problems by interpreting skin responses to a low-level electric current. The device emits a tiny direct electric current that flows through a wire from the device to a brass cylinder covered by moist gauze, which the patient holds in one hand. A second wire is connected from the device to a probe, which the operator touches to "acupuncture points" on the patient's other hand or a foot. This completes a low-voltage circuit and the device registers the flow of current. The information is then relayed to a gauge or computer screen that provides a numerical readout on a scale of 0  to 100.  

According to Voll's theory: readings from 45 to 55 are normal ("balanced"); readings above 55 indicate inflammation of the organ "associated" with the "meridian" being tested; and readings below 45 suggest "organ stagnation and degeneration." However, if the moisture of the skin remains constant—as it usually does—the only thing that influences the size of the number is how hard the probe is pressed against the patient's skin.

Galvanic skin resistance has no proven or logical relationship to the diagnosis or treatment of any disease [8]. No galvanic skin response device can be legally marketed in the United States for diagnostic or treatment purposes. The FDA has banned importation of EAV devices into the United States and warned or prosecuted a few marketers. State and foreign regulatory agencies have also taken a few actions [9]. However, no systematic effort has been made to drive them from the marketplace.

In 2008, when Roy practiced in Canada, the Disciplinary Committee of the Quebec Order of Chiropractors found him guilty of 13 counts of misconduct related to advising patients to undergo unnecessary treatment for which he collected fees in advance. The Committee reprimanded him and assessed fines totaling CN$14,000 plus costs of more than CN$20,000 [10]. In 2009, when he applied for a chiropractic license in Illinois, the IDFPR agreed to issue a license together with a reprimand based on the Canadian action [11]. Roy is still registered to practice in Canada.

Despite all of the above events, Roy's Web site is still promoting Vegatest services to patients in Illinois. A video on the site even states that he is a "homeopathic and functional medical professional" who "specializes in finding the root causes of your health problems" and that his Vegacheck (another device) "provides detailed information about disorders that classical examinations like the x-ray, ultrasound, CAT scans, and other lab tests can't register." [12]

References

  1. Experience and credentials. Dr. Michel Roy. Roy Health Consultant Web site, accessed June 2, 2016.
  2. State's Attorney Alvarez names suburban chiropractors in lawsuit. Cook County State's Attorney press release, June 12, 2013.
  3. Complaint. Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Conduct v Michael Yvon Roy, D.C. Case No. 2-13-10177. Filed June 12, 2015.
  4. Order of default. Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Conduct v Michael Yvon Roy, D.C. Case No. 2-13-10177. Filed November 4, 2015.
  5. Vega Test. Roy Health Consultant. Accessed June 2, 2016.
  6. Complaint. Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Conduct v. Michael Yvon Roy, D.C. Case No. 2013-05598. Filed Dec 22, 2014.
  7. Order. Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Conduct v Michael Yvon Roy, D.C. Case No. 2013-05598. Filed Jan 12, 2016.
  8. Barrett S. Quack "electrodiagnostic" devices. Quackwatch, July 12, 2012.
  9. Barrett S. Regulatory actions related to EAV devices. Quackwatch, May 26, 2016.
  10. Disciplinary Committee. Decision on sanction, No. 08-03-00211. Quebec Order of Chiropractors, Aug 20, 2008.
  11. Consent order. In re: the application of Michael Y. Roy, D.C. Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Conduct. Case No. 2009-10528, Dec 4, 2009.
  12. Roy Health Consultant Vega Test Commercial. Published on YouTube, July 7, 2014.

This article was posted on June 3, 2016.

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