Kimball Atwood

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Kimball Chase Atwood IV, M.D.
Kimball Atwood.JPG
Kimball Atwood at CSICon 2012 in Nashville, TN.
Occupation Anesthegiologist, assistant clinical professor
Known for criticism of naturopathy, skepticism
Medical career
Institutions Newton-Wellesley Hospital, Naturowatch, Scientific Review of Alternative Medicine, Tufts University School of Medicine

Kimball Chase Atwood IV, M.D. is an American doctor and medical scientist from Newton, MA, who is currently an assistant clinical professor at Tufts University School of Medicine, as well as an anesthesiologist at Newton-Wellesley Hospital, where he has worked since 1993. He is an active skeptic and is associate editor of the journal Scientific Review of Alternative Medicine, as well as the co-editor (along with Stephen Barrett) of Naturowatch, one of Quackwatch's affiliated sites.[1][2][3] Atwood is an outspoken critic of naturopathy,[4] with a paper he published on the topic in 2004[5] which was understandably unpopular with naturopaths.[6] He has also written a report for the Massachusetts Special Commission on Complementary and Alternative Medical Practitioners arguing that naturopaths should not be licensed to practice in Massachusetts.[3]

Life and work[edit]


Atwood completed both his internship and residency at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. He is board certified in both anesthesiology and internal medicine.[7]

Chelation therapy criticism[edit]

In 2008, Atwood told the Associated Press that the Trial to Assess Chelation Therapy, which had been approved in 2002, "should never have been approved."[8] In 2009, Atwood was one of the authors of a journal article that called for the termination of an ongoing clinical trial of chelation therapy, on the grounds that it was "unethical, dangerous, pointless, and wasteful".[9][10] The piece attracted both criticism and support in published exchanges which followed.[11][12]

When the trial results were presented at an American Heart Association meeting in 2012 Atwood described its output as "equivocal as predicted" and reasserted his view that the trial had been unethical.[13]


  1. ^ " home page". 2013-11-14. Retrieved 2013-12-21. 
  2. ^ "Editors: Kimball C. Atwood IV, MD". Science-Based Medicine. Retrieved 2013-12-21. 
  3. ^ a b "ISM Fellows: Kimball C. Atwood, IV, MD, Founding Fellow, Board of Directors". Institute for Science in Medicine website. 2010. Retrieved 2013-12-21. 
  4. ^ Atwood, Kimball C., IV (2001-12-30). "Why naturopaths should not be licensed". Quackwatch. Retrieved 2013-10-09. 
  5. ^ Atwood, Kimball C., IV (2003). "Naturopathy: A critical appraisal". Medscape General Medicine. 5 (4): 39. PMID 14745386. (Registration required (help)). 
  6. ^ Atwood, Kimball C., IV (2004). "Naturopathy, pseudoscience, and medicine: Myths and fallacies vs truth". Medscape General Medicine. 6 (1): 33. PMC 1140750Freely accessible. PMID 15208545. 
  7. ^ "Kimball C. Atwood, M.D." CareFinder Plus. Newton-Wellesley Hospital. Retrieved 2013-12-21. 
  8. ^ "Government Investigating Heart Disease Study". Fox News Channel. 26 September 2008. Retrieved 11 February 2014. 
  9. ^ Atwood, Kimball C., IV; Woeckner, Elizabeth; Baratz, Robert S.; Sampson, Wallace I. (2008). "Why the NIH Trial to Assess Chelation Therapy (TACT) should be abandoned". Medscape Journal of Medicine. 10 (5): 115. PMC 2438277Freely accessible. PMID 18596934. 
  10. ^ Callaway, Ewen (2012). "Chelation-therapy heart trial draws fire". News. Nature. 491 (7424): 313–5. doi:10.1038/491313a. PMID 23151555. 
  11. ^ Clay, Beth (2009). "Study of chelation therapy should not be abandoned" (PDF). Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons. 14 (2): 51–7. 
  12. ^ Hall, Harriet (2009-06-23). "Tactless about TACT: Critiques without substance should be abandoned". Science-Based Medicine. Retrieved 2013-10-09. 
  13. ^ Atwood, Kimball (2012-11-04). "The Trial to Assess Chelation Therapy: Equivocal as predicted". Science-Based Medicine. Retrieved 2013-10-09.