Before I address Dan's comments, let me sum up my views on this.
Now, let me try to address Dan's comments.
- I believe Chopsaver is a reasonable product to use for chapped lips.
- I also believe that all lips balms are equally effective at treating chapped lips (as do most physicians), and that there is little evidence to support claims that certain special ingredients help treat chapped lips.
- However, one may have preference for a particular lip balm because of the way it is formulated, how it feels, how easily it rubs off, how easy it is to play the trumpet with it on, etc.
- While I don't know Dan personally, I'm sure he's a good guy who's trying to sell a good product. However, I think there are certain medical and legal issues he doesn't understand.
Unique Properties of Chopsaver
Dan's statement of that Chopsaver contains "all natural, herbs that are known for their healing properties" is correct. But I don't think Dan's understands that the medical evidence is anecdotal at best. There is no legitamate proof that these ingredients will help treat chapped lips.Compensated Endorsers
Dan's statement that Chopsaver "is now recommended by dermatologists as a superior moisturizer" is also correct, as documented on his web site. But again, I don't think Dan understands that this is misleading, because it implies medical credability that just isn't there.
I should not have used the term "compensated", because it implied money was changing hands, which it is not. However, the physician-endorsers on his web site are still being compensated through what the medical community would call "secondary gain". Let me explain.Carefully Worded Testimonials
In the business world, it's natural to network with others in a "quid pro quo" fashion. You endorse my product, and I'll endorse yours. You send business my way, and I'll send business your way. This is fine in the business world.
But it unethical and often illegal for physicians to do this. This is why you don't see physicians personally endoring FDA-approved medications. The last physician who did this (Dr. Robert Jarvik) received a lot of flack for endorsing Lipitor, even though what he said was true. It's just not ethical for physicians to do this.
The physicians who are endoring Chopsaver are receiving compensation in the form of "secondary gain". For example, they are able to post their names, their pictures, the location of their medical practices, and links to their web sites. Because they are doing it for a lip balm, most medical boards would look the other way. Howiver, if they were doing this for an FDA-approved medication, they would likely get in trouble.
I don't know how to answer this. The statements are indeeded "carefully worded testimonials". They are carefull not to make any actual medical claims. They instead include statements about what they personally experienced. This is the foundation for advertising "herbal" and "natrual" medications. Dan, if you really don't know what I'm talking about here, you should find a lawyer with experience in this area to help you.Barry Eppley's statement
Let me give a non-medical example. On your site, someone claims that Chopsaver "...allowed me some really strong high C’s. And, it let me finish with no tired chops!"? He doesn't say it will do this for anyone else (ie, it was carefully worded to make no general claims), and he limited his comments to personal testimony. It's very easily could be untrue, but you can't proove it. IMHO, that makes it a "carefully worded testimony".
I have already stated that there is anecdotal evidence about certain ingredients in Chopsaver. But that's it. There is no legitamate medical proof that these ingredients work for chapped lips. This includes the article Dr. Eppley referred to (Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. 2007 Jul;120(1):271-274), which was about surgical wound healing after rhinoplasty, not the treatment of chapped lips.