We came to you a few years ago with a very, very sick little girl whom her other doctors, including a team of specialists, had basically given up on. No one knew what was wrong; no one had any answers as to why she was only getting worse despite a myriad of treatments and medications. We have no doubt that over time she would have continued to worsen, and we shudder to think what may have happened in the end.
However, those fears and days of worry and uncertainty have been all but forgotten because of you and your amazing team. Your approach to truly wholistic and integrative care have changed (and possibly saved) our daughter’s life. You were able to help her when no one else could; you gave us answers when there were none. We can never thank you enough for all you have done for us, and we continue to refer others to you time and time again because we have seen with our own eyes what a difference you have made for us.
You are truly a blessing to all who know you and those you treat.
All our love,
(name used with permission)
I hope you have been well. I know it has been several years since we have last spoken. I wanted to give you a quick update about our son, who is now 20 years old.
After chelating by IV for what feels like forever, his lead levels finally normalized. We still chelate about once a month to keep things in check.
He is a miracle. This young man who potty trained at age 5 and whom I thought would never be conversational is now doing so wonderfully. He attends a local college and is a resident student in his junior year with a science major. He made Deans List last semester and has a 3.15 overall GPA. He received a merit scholarship, too. He is taking classes that I would surely fail, including organic chemistry. Other than extended time on tests, he has almost no accommodations. He is on the Ultimate Frisbee team, and he drives his teammates to competitions in neighboring states.
In high school, he was captain of the bowling team for 2 years, having bowled three 300 games. Most importantly, he is happy. Though he has never really had “friends,” he has a ton of acquaintances who are always glad to see him, and that’s good enough for him. We pray that he will be able to get a job and live reasonably independently after graduation.
Thank you for all the care you have given him through the years. It has been truly appreciated.
I wish you all the best.
Mariena Gribble and Family
I just wanted to write a little note to thank you so much for being such an amazing doctor! After struggling with many health issues of my own, I was forced to take my health into my own hands. Along the way, I learned a lot, but it was not always an easy task. When I became pregnant with Seraphina, I wanted so badly to find her a doctor that wasn’t so mainstream, and who believed in alternative methods. Well, you have well exceeded all of my hopes and expectations! I value and trust your opinions so much, and I truly feel so lucky and blessed to have found you for her, and for me!
I just thought you should know that my family and I appreciate you so very much!!!!
All the best,
Mariena Gribble and family
(name used with permission)
Leigh Ann Parent
Dear Dr. David and your wonderful staff,
I am many years late with this letter. My son William was a patient of yours around 2004? When you first met us William was delayed, non-verbal, zero eye-contact. Honestly, I didn’t know my son- he did not react or interact with anyone, not even me, his mom. He was severely withdrawn and only made noise when he desperately wanted his way……which was always OCD related, or so it seemed. We couldn’t leave a waiting room until all of the blocks were touched or lined up or sorted or put away…whatever the order was for the day.
I don’t think we were under your care for that long, but we did everything you suggested, including educating ourselves and looking for other people making progress in our town (Ocala). We drove hours every week to secure pure local foods. We prayed and we worked and we studied and we learned and we applied your principles to our lives……for years.
And we succeeded! Today William is 10 1/2 yrs old and thriving! He is the most loving, emotional and caring boy I ever did meet! He’s smart and intuitive. He cares about others- He is the boy holding the door, helping to load the groceries or starting a conversation with strangers!
Today people of all ages are drawn to him-like they just want to be near him. OCD gone! Sometimes, I find myself tuning him out!!! And then I remember, say a prayer, and thank God!
Now, It’s time to thank you Dr. David.
Leigh Ann Parent
(names used with permission)
The Washington Family
On Tuesday, May 29, 2012, Santana had a follow up with his neurologist. I am so thrilled and excited to share with you the feedback and experience from the neurologist appointment. I just could not wait to see you next month in July to share with you, so this is the reason for this email. Our first visit with the neurologist was January 2011. Since then, Santana was seen again by the neurologist on December 2011, and we began treatment with you on January 2012. In December 2011, neurologist mentioned that we should start ABA, but in our most recent visit May 2012, he mentioned that Santana did not need ABA therapy anymore. His words were “he is doing great” “he is doing excellent”. He also mentioned that he only wished his grandson, who has the same problem as Santana would be making the progress that Santana is making.
The Neurologist also mentioned that we do not see this kind of progress in the autism world. He also mentioned that an average doctor would at this point miss Santana’s diagnoses because he is “very, very, high functioning PDD”. He mentioned that his eye contact is so much better. His echolalia has decreased since December 2011, and suspects for the echolalia to continue to decrease as to where it is not even heard anymore. He says that once his speech becomes more conversational, no one will ever be able to tell that he had a speech problem. I know we still have a lot more to do to help Santana fully recover, but I just could not wait to thank you for the progress that he has made. Thank you so much!
The Washington Family
(names used with permission)
Rob & Lisa Breakiron
Hi Wholistic Pediatrics,
Just wanted to share some good info to you and Dr. David about Noah. He is in 3rd grade now and just got his first big boy report card from Independent Day School (A, B, C, D, or F grade reports). Noah got straight A’s and is doing awesome. We are amazed at how far he has come since getting the lead out of his little body. We have never forgotten those days and the great people that helped him. This story could of had such a different ending if we had not found you. You changed all of our lives for the better. Thank you all!
With sincerest gratitude,
Rob & Lisa Breakiron
(names used with permission)
Dear Dr Berger,
It’s been 2 yrs since we all began our journey recovering my amazing Grandson Brady. Thank-you so much for everything you have done for Brady. Although thank-you seems like such a small word to describe all I feel. With your help you gave him back all that was stolen from him. I have had the pleasure of meeting you once, when Sam and Joe first began bringing Brady to you. A guy after my own heart, (BROOKLYN where I was also born and my favorite past-time THE YANKEES). Sam has also told me you are going to help them bring another child into the world that hopefully will not have to go through all that Brady has in his short life, so again, thank-you.Because of you, Brady is a Healthy Happy little boy that has the whole world in front of him to explore. I still am not sure whether God put you in Tampa or my kids in Tampa to cross paths but whichever way that happened I and all of us will be forever grateful.
With much admiration,
Helene Barowski (Brady Barowski’s Grandma)
Names used with permission
Hi Dr. Berger,
I just received a welcome note for signing on to get your newsletter. I am very excited to receive these. I just wanted to let you know that I am Olivia and Bella ‘s grandma. We met at Livi’s first appointment in January. I cannot tell you how much we appreciate your help in Livi’s recovery. The changes are amazing! I just spent last week in Tampa with them and she was still dealing with the regression from the new medication for yeast. It was very difficult , but by the end of the week (which was her second week on the new medicine) everything calmed down and good things began to appear. I don’t even want to think what Livi’s life would be like without you. This has been the most devastating event in our lives. Angie is holding on by sheer strength and determination. We all thank God everyday for having you in our lives.
With utmost respect, gratitude and admiration,
Hi Dr. David!
I wanted to send you a note to tell you that I finally put Sierra and Savanna on a gluten free/casein diet and they are doing amazing. You always suggested this diet and I resisted it. I was afraid that it would be too hard and could not believe it would really be the answer for us. Our lives have been turned around for the better. Savanna tested highly gluten intolerant on her celiac panel and now that she’s been gluten free since September, she can’t eat anything even produced in a facility that produces wheat without getting sick. We have a new neurologist who is on board with everything you started with her. She has started growing, she has more energy, is not as impulsive, no more bowel problems, the list goes on and on of things that have improved.
Sierra is gluten free too and although her tests were negative for gluten intolerance or allergy, her skin issues have cleared up, her behavior is better and she is doing really well in school. Our new local doctor is supporting all the supplements you started us on so we continue with all that treatment as well.
I wanted to thank you for all you do for us and all your patients. You got us on the right track and I wish I had had the courage to try GF/CF much earlier as you suggested!
The Vega Family
Dear Dr. David and staff at Wholistic Pediatrics,
We are so grateful for the care you have provided our son and want other families to know about it so that they may also be helped. As you may recall, our son Joshua has had quite a medical history for a child of 5. Eczema, chronic ear infections, repeat antibiotics, tubes in the ears twice, breathing treatments for wheezing, and severe allergies with hives (food, chemical). At age 4, he was also diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD). This helped to explain some odd behaviors (i.e., pulling his sleeves and pant legs all the way up, not wanting soap suds on his body, pulling away from hugs and kisses, aggression, lack of focus, decreased processing of auditory information, marked hyperactivity, and problems with motor & visual tracking skills). We sought care at your practice for his chronic hives, not realizing that the SPD, developmental issues, and allergies were all caused by the same biochemical disturbances and toxicity inside his body. We soon learned his problems were not simply “behavioral,” they were physiological.
We started biomedical interventions with you, Feb 4, 2008. We began to immerse ourselves in every piece of literature we could find to further educate ourselves about biomedical treatment. We found it to be critical to keep a diary of changes we observed (positive and negative) in response to the various treatments employed. This has contributed to very efficient care and much greater understanding of the direct impact of each intervention on our child. Organization has been essential!! Over time biomedical interventions for Joshua have included: eradication of yeast systemically and from the gut, casein/gluten/soy-free diet, low phenol diet, low salycilate diet (Feingold), various supplements including vitamins, minerals, amino acids, fatty acids, digestive enzymes, methyl B12, and detoxification strategies. We saw remarkable improvement as each new intervention was introduced. Within 6 months, our son was functioning normally in terms of sensory processing, behavior, focus, motor & visual tracking skills. He was no longer experiencing hives on a daily basis, his allergies well-controlled through diet and close monitoring of all products (i.e., detergents, shampoo, toothpaste, etc).
Previous attempts at soccer, baseball, and karate were full of anxiety and complete disasters. Joshua would be off on his own spinning in circles, throwing himself on the ground, making odd noises, and unable to focus. Inside, he knew he was failing and was fearful of the constant reminders to “focus Joshua!” He began to complain of a stomach ache when attending. These activities had to be discontinued in lieu of occupational therapy and daily home activities to foster his development. Joshua required special accommodations in pre-school and his teacher was very concerned about his academic future. There was talk of transitioning him out of the private parochial school he was in to obtain better accommodations for him elsewhere once he transitioned to Kindergarten. This was heartbreaking.
Following 6 months of biomedical intervention Joshua was able to get back into karate and earn his yellow belt within 3 weeks and has continued to blossom. He now attends Kindergarten in the same private school in a classroom of 30 children. He is a happy, well-adjusted almost-6 year old. He enjoys having friends over to play and for sleepovers. He is indistinguishable from his peers socially, behaviorally, and academically,… with the exception of being the second child in the class (and the only boy) to pass the 105 site word test and attain a reading level. The class is required to learn 11 site words. According to his teacher, he is well-behaved and extremely bright. He LOVES school. A year ago this would not have been possible.
At this time, January 2009, Joshua continues to receive nutritional and detoxification supporting treatment with you. We hope to conquer to food and chemical allergies by removing the toxins from the body that continue to affect his immune function. We are thankful for the skill and dedication of you and your team. Without you and the other Defeat Autism Now! Practitioners we would have no hope of saving our children’s futures.
With deepest gratitude,
The Vega Family
(name used with permission)
Dear Dr Berger,
We are now 1 month into the B-12,and we are amazed at the progress.
As I look at the diagnosis list for autism, at the beginning of this process of biomedical intervention, Christopher fit 6 of 7 of the criteria total of the three categories, now I am happy to say he only fits 1(speech and language).
Since using threelac and MB-12 shots, we have seen the following:
1. Christopher seeks interaction at the park with peers and talks with them. He’s a leader. I would say everyone follows him. He says “come on guys let’s play and slide” (the old Christopher would sit under the slide and watch children play but never get involved)
2. Obsessive Compulsions have completely disappeared, He still likes his marvel comic men but plays with all his other toys.
3. He tries new food. For anyone who has never experienced their child going to bed hungry for months because he was unwilling to try anything new and began to have a problem with the foods he did like, this was heart wrenching. Now he tries almost everything I put in front of him. Two nights ago I made chicken vegetable soup, He sat right down and began to eat it. He has never eaten soup his whole life. Last night he ate scrambled eggs (I literally cried at the table because he didn’t even bat an eyelash as he stuffed his mouth and said “mmm this is good!”
4. Chistopher can now sit at an activity for periods of 15 min for therapy when just a few weeks ago he would only sit 15 seconds or less. The therapist even said this is not the same child I saw last week even….what have you changed? (MB-12)
5. I have never, and I mean never, been able to read a book to Christopher. He used to take the book from me and throw it spit on me and throw a fit even if I attempted to read to him. I succumbed to buckling him into his car seat and reading from the drivers side, still with kicking and screaming. I have always read to my children always this was hard for me to understand. GREAT NEWS!! Not only did I complete one full book 2 days ago but I completed 3 for a total of 20 min. And now he allows me to read to him.
6. Upon starting the diet of eliminating the positive test results for food intolerance, speech came immediately, All of the interventions we have tried have been safe and easy, with the exception of the diet, because my child wouldn’t eat. The last 5 months are worth every tear and laugh and joy we have felt as each day he progresses. He now talks to all of us and is quite funny. My youngest daughter was getting dressed and left her door open and Christopher walks by and said “ooh I see your butt!” Sorry if that sounded gross, but I had to share that one. He’s quick with his comments and funny as heck. He laughs at the cartoons being silly, like he gets it now where before he would just watch it with no response other than to repeat what he heard. He is no longer repeating, and full of laughter as he watches.
Thank you Doctor Berger and Staff for allowing me to get my whole child back!! All of you are precious and are a Gift from GOD!
I look forward to talking with you soon!
Lewis Singer, D.C.
My wife and I continue to be impressed by you, your knowledge, and your awesome bedside manner. Although my question about Benjamin’s wrist was by no means an emergency, you nonetheless called me back rather quickly with your answer. You are a class act! You actually inspire me to be a better physician as well.
Ben turns three this May so I am sure a visit to you is soon in order the next time you come down to sunny, South Florida. I really hope that the people of Tampa know what a gem they have in you. See you soon.
Lewis Singer, D.C.
Christina and Family
Dear Dr David,
We just wanted to give you and update as to our experience with our Vitaeris mHBOT unit.
Michael was almost 3 ½ years old when we started hyperbaric therapy in August 06′ . He did 2 dives per day x 1 hour duration. After dive 22 Michael said “Mama” he has since gained over 75 words and now we are working on stringing them together. He also has an unusual interest in spelling. He can communicate by spelling words out now, like “Aquarium”, “Upstairs”,”Rain” (when it is rainning outside),”Lightning McQueen” (for Cars disney movie).
Combined with GFCF diet for close to 2 yrs, along with detoxification, supplements and MB12 injections. The biggest gain we saw for us was HBOT.
Thank you Dr. Berger and staff for all your help and patience with our family. As we all know, this is a very difficult diagnosis and if it wasnt for your office, I dont know we’re would be.
All our Best
Christina and family
I wanted to take a minute to thank you.
Our last few days have been nothing short of amazing. We have been using the low dose Naltrexone that you prescribed for two weeks now, and our daughter is talking, a lot! She has come to me 3 times in the last week to say “I oop”, and she had poop! She is also putting 3 words together, saying “big girl school” while looking at her picture story I made on the PC of her school she started this week. Today, when she saw the school bus pulled up for her, she specifically said “big girl school”. She is making so many connections now, and it is just amazing. She is playing with, and “talking” to her doll, pretend playing with fisher price little people and their cars (even saying “oom” for vroom), saying “Hi” again, and saying all her colors. She is still having meltdowns, but this is a therapy issue. What we have seen transform in our lost little girl is absolutely amazing.
She doesn’t even turn 3 until December! I am so thankful we sought your guidance. Between early detection, and biomedical intervention, she has a chance, and we are so very grateful for that. When she was originally diagnosed, the doctor suggested my husband and I find a good babysitter, and try to make time for ourselves, because it was only going to get worse, and to let him know when we needed to start medication for problem behavior.
If it weren’t for you, and other DAN doctors, we would have never known otherwise, as our daughter’s other doctors have recommended nothing. Thank you for being the doctor that you are, and that, in spite of the politics surrounding your area of medicine, you are committed to curing these children.
We now have a couple doctors looking into finding out why and how this happened to our daughter, but you are the only one who has known how to fix it.
Again, thank you. You truly have made a difference in my daughter’s life.
I do not have a child that is a patient of yours but I receive your emails. I assist families with resources that have children with disabilities in Manatee County. I am very impressed with your commitment to your patients! The information you share is always very interesting and helpful. There needs to be more doctors that will go the extra mile for their patients as you regularly demonstrate!
Thank you very much and please keep up the great work!
The Beck Family
Dear Families of Special Needs Children:
Our son Joshua Beck was born 11/23/02. We noticed he was a little speech delayed around 8 months old and we subsequently started weekly speech therapy, with improvements noted. He was a very happy, normal little boy. He pointed at objects when we went for walks. He knew his parents and said “mommy” and “daddy”.
We always gave vaccinations on schedule with Joshua. When Josh was 1 year old and due for 4 vaccinations, he had an upper respiratory infection and was taking Augmentin. The doctor at the time said it was still okay to give all four vaccines to Josh even though he was on antibiotics because he didn’t have a fever that day.
The next 3 months we started seeing some strange things and noticing him being more distant, but within 6 months major changes that could no longer be excused or denied. We remember initially after the vaccinations, he was irritable and crying a lot and not happy and starting to lose some eye contact.
As time passed we noticed Josh was acting ‘differently’. He no longer smiled or seemed happy. He began making funny bodily movements, shaking his hands, rocking side to side on his feet, and spinning. He became increasingly difficult to please. We could no longer take him out of the house as he would have huge fits everywhere we went. At about 18 months old, we didn’t know Josh anymore. He became someone who didn’t care if we were in the room. He completely stopped communicating with us. In addition we noticed he’d lost all of the words he’d acquired. He refused to acknowledge we were even speaking to him. He lost interest in any activity other than videos on TV. He would pull us to his video and scream until we put on the right one. We’d considered the possibility that Josh had Autism, however we believed that if he were autistic he would NEVER look at us and sometimes he did look at us. We also told ourselves that if he had Autism, he wouldn’t be able to pull us around the house, after all we thought this was communication. Despite our feeling about Autism, we called the ‘Center for Autism and Related Disabilities’. They politely suggested we have him evaluated. His evaluation showed he was on the Autistic Spectrum. We also met with a Neurologist in Tampa who told us, “Joshua is moderately to severely Autistic”, and wrote up a formal diagnosis of Autism. When I asked the doctor what exactly this meant, he felt based on what he’d seen that our son would never be in a ‘normal’ class and may never talk or communicate normally. He also told us our only hope would be psychotropic medication and lots of speech/OT/behavior therapy.
My husband Paul and I refused to believe there was not much we could do. We knew he was not born like this and we had video to prove this. We went through everything in his life. When we went through his pediatric records, we noticed the four vaccinations that were given in the one day while Josh was sick and on antibiotics. We had heard about the controversial issues surrounding vaccinations. We’d even been warned by some friends to be careful with vaccinations. We thought the people that said this to us were a little ‘nuts’ and we disregarded their warnings. We believed the American Academy of Pediatrics knew better and we trusted them. We also trusted our doctors, and if our doctor thought something was safe than it had to be.
We found ourselves in unknown territory. As any loving parents would do, we began a long journey of research. We learned about the Defeat Autism Now! approach and the Gluten/Casein/Soy Free diet. We implemented the diet in Oct. 04. Josh responded rapidly to the diet. After two days he was more aware and began calling ‘mommy’ or ‘daddy’ when he woke in his crib instead of just lying awake and saying nothing. This was real progress and we were encouraged. We researched DefeatAutism Now! doctors in our area and found Dr. David Berger. There were other doctors closer to us but we liked what we’d heard about ‘Dr David’, as he likes to be called. His approach is more conservative in my opinion. Most of the time, he will not give your child a supplement/prescription unless he is sure via lab work that your child will benefit from this treatment. He is also not the kind of doctor to use your child as a guinea pig by experimenting with new supplements/therapies as some Defeat Autism Now! doctors have a reputation of doing.
We have been under the care of Dr. David since December 04. Our treatment plan for Josh has included MB12 injections, detoxification, Transdermal Glutathione, IV secretin, and many supplements to meet all of Josh’s biomedical needs. We also had the good fortune of early intervention through the Part C or Early Steps program. With an official diagnosis, a family can get a good amount of ‘services’ for their child. During the same time as the Defeat Autism Now! philosophy and biomedical intervention, Joshua also received speech, behavioral, and occupational therapies. I feel it important to note some of our most recognizable gains were seen even before we started these other therapies. Joshua cognitive skills have grown by leaps and bounds. He is now three years old and two months and shows little to no signs of Autism. He is happy, well adjusted, transitions easily, and extremely social, expressive, and verbal. We are still doing detoxification/supplementation but have stopped the non-biomedical therapies and Josh continues to do fantastic. We are confident over the next year that he will lose any ‘delayed’ label.
The Beck Family
Paul, Lisa, Jordan, and Josh
Addendum: DrDavid, I just took Josh to see a developmental pediatrician. She will be doing the ADOS on Josh, but today she just spoke with him and observed him, she said he couldn’t be more normal!!! Thanks to your help. I truly believe without your help, he wouldn’t be where he is now. He never shuts up, is curious about everything and is now so easy to handle. He transitions easily and also handles it appropriately when he doesn’t get his way. He is no longer fixating on anything and now holding a conversation pretty well! He is truly our miracle child and a big success story for you!! An example of how normal he is, he asked me for candy and when I said no, he said, “well, I’m going to talk to daddy about this”.
S.C and L.C.
Dear Dr. Berger,
We can’t think of you without remembering the sound of joy that returned to our son almost immediately after one of your earliest interventions. It was the sweetest sound I have ever heard and we have you to thank for it. We have had several wows and steady improvements throughout his course of care.
Because of your truly holistic and biomedical approach we have a happy little boy who is becoming healthier everyday.
S.C and L.C.
Please tell Dr. David “thanks” for his recommendations when Jonathan was not feeling well. I gave him the cranberry powder along with Vit C and ginger and he was fine with no fever after a couple of days. Also, he is up to 15 words now in the two weeks since he has been taking the fish oil. Pretty amazing.