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Homeopathy. 2010 Oct;99(4):231-42.Extreme homeopathic dilutions retain starting materials: A nanoparticulate perspective.
Chikramane PS, Suresh AK, Bellare JR, Kane SG. Department of Chemical Engineering, Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, Adi Shankaracharya Marg, Powai, Mumbai, Maharashtra, India.
Homeopathy. 2010 Oct;99(4):229-30. Abstract Homeopathy is controversial because medicines in high potencies such as 30c and 200c involve huge dilution factors (10⁶⁰ and 10⁴⁰⁰ respectively) which are many orders of magnitude greater than Avogadro's number, so that theoretically there should be no measurable remnants of the starting materials. No hypothesis which predicts the retention of properties of starting materials has been proposed nor has any physical entity been shown to exist in these high potency medicines. Using market samples of metal-derived medicines from reputable manufacturers, we have demonstrated for the first time by Transmission Electron Microscopy (TEM), electron diffraction and chemical analysis by Inductively Coupled Plasma-Atomic Emission Spectroscopy (ICP-AES), the presence of physical entities in these extreme dilutions, in the form of nanoparticles of the starting metals and their aggregates.
Copyright © 2010 The Faculty of Homeopathy. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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RESEARCH ARTICLE #homeopathy Individualized Homeopathic Treatment and Fluoxetine for Moderate to Severe Depression in Peri- and Postmenopausal Women (HOMDEP-MENOP Study): A Randomized, Double-Dummy, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial Emma del Carmen Macías-Cortés1,2*, Lidia Llanes-González3, Leopoldo Aguilar-Faisal1, Juan Asbun-Bojalil1 1 División de Estudios de Posgrado, Escuela Superior de Medicina, Instituto Politécnico Nacional, Distrito Federal, México, 2 Consulta Externa de Homeopatía, Hospital Juárez de México, Secretaría de Salud, Distrito Federal, México, 3 Unidad de Salud Mental, Hospital Juárez de México, Secretaría de Salud, Distrito Federal, México * firstname.lastname@example.org Abstract Background Perimenopausal period refers to the interval when women's menstrual cycles become irreg- ular and is characterized by an increased risk of depression. Use of homeopathy to treat de- pression is widespread but there is a lack of clinical trials about its efficacy in depression in peri- and postmenopausal women. The aim of this study was to assess efficacy and safety of individualized homeopathic treatment versus placebo and fluoxetine versus placebo in peri- and postmenopausal women with moderate to severe depression. Methods/Design A randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, double-dummy, superiority, three-arm trial with a 6 week follow-up study was conducted. The study was performed in a public research hospital in Mexico City in the outpatient service of homeopathy. One hundred thirty-three peri- and postmenopausal women diagnosed with major depression according to DSM-IV (moderate to severe intensity) were included. The outcomes were: change in the mean total score among groups on the 17-item Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression, Beck Depres- sion Inventory and Greene Scale, after 6 weeks of treatment, response and remission rates, and safety. Efficacy data were analyzed in the intention-to-treat population (ANOVA with Bonferroni post-hoc test). PLOS ONE | DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0118440 March 13, 2015 1/24 OPENACCESS Citation: Macías-Cortés EdC, Llanes-González L, Aguilar-Faisal L, Asbun-Bojalil J (2015) Individualized Homeopathic Treatment and Fluoxetine for Moderate to Severe Depression in Peri- and Postmenopausal Women (HOMDEP-MENOP Study): A Randomized, Double-Dummy, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial. PLoS ONE 10(3): e0118440. doi:10.1371/ journal.pone.0118440 Academic Editor: Yiru Fang, Shanghai Mental Health Center, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine, CHINA Received: September 18, 2014 Accepted: January 13, 2015 Published: March 13, 2015 Copyright: © 2015 Macías-Cortés et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License , which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. Data Availability Statement: Data are available upon request to the Research and Ethics Committee of National Homeopathic Hospital, Mexico City [Dr. Gustavo Aguilar-Velázquez ( email@example.com
Results After a 6-week treatment, homeopathic group was more effective than placebo by 5 points in Hamilton Scale. Response rate was 54.5% and remission rate, 15.9%. There was a sig- nificant difference among groups in response rate definition only, but not in remission rate. Fluoxetine-placebo difference was 3.2 points. No differences were observed among groups in the Beck Depression Inventory. Homeopathic group was superior to placebo in Greene Climacteric Scale (8.6 points). Fluoxetine was not different from placebo in Greene Climac- teric Scale. Conclusion Homeopathy and fluoxetine are effective and safe antidepressants for climacteric women. Homeopathy and fluoxetine were significantly different from placebo in response definition only. Homeopathy, but not fluoxetine, improves menopausal symptoms scored by Greene Climacteric Scale. Trial Registration ClinicalTrials.gov NCT01635218 Protocol Publication http://www.trialsjournal.com/content/14/1/105 . https://www.hri-research.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/Mac%C3%ADas-Cort%C3%A9s-2015-Depression-menopause.pdf
Congratulations, Homeopathy! Homeopathy is now officially a regulated health profession in Ontario under the Homeopathy Act, April 1, 2015!
A rigorous and focused systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of individualised homeopathic treatment has not previously been undertaken. We tested the hypothesis that the outcome of an individualised homeopathic treatment approach using homeopathic medicines is distinguishable from that of placebos.
The review’s methods, including literature search strategy, data extraction, assessment of risk of bias and statistical analysis, were strictly protocol-based. Judgment in seven assessment domains enabled a trial’s risk of bias to be designated as low, unclear or high. A trial was judged to comprise ‘reliable evidence’ if its risk of bias was low or was unclear in one specified domain. ‘Effect size’ was reported as odds ratio (OR), with arithmetic transformation for continuous data carried out as required; OR > 1 signified an effect favouring homeopathy.
Thirty-two eligible RCTs studied 24 different medical conditions in total. Twelve trials were classed ‘uncertain risk of bias’, three of which displayed relatively minor uncertainty and were designated reliable evidence; 20 trials were classed ‘high risk of bias’. Twenty-two trials had extractable data and were subjected to meta-analysis; OR = 1.53 (95% confidence interval (CI) 1.22 to 1.91). For the three trials with reliable evidence, sensitivity analysis revealed OR = 1.98 (95% CI 1.16 to 3.38).
Medicines prescribed in individualised homeopathy may have small, specific treatment effects. Findings are consistent with sub-group data available in a previous ‘global’ systematic review. The low or unclear overall quality of the evidence prompts caution in interpreting the findings. New high-quality RCT research is necessary to enable more decisive interpretation.
Individualised homeopathy; Meta-analysis; Randomised controlled trials; Systematic review
What should I expect in a homeopathic consultation?
The choice of homeopathic medicine is based on the patient’s specific symptoms and not the disease itself. Because of this, in the first consultation the homeopath will seek a complete and accurate picture of the health status and symptoms of the patient.
The homeopath will ask you about your condition, physical, physiological, mental and emotional. He or she will ask you to describe what factors improve and what factors worsen the symptoms, how you react to heat and cold, different weather, different body positions, etc. He or she will ask you about your food preferences and aversions, how you sleep, your lifestyle and habits, your personality, your medical history and your family’s medical history, etc. The first homeopathic consultation can easily last two hours. Subsequent ones last a shorter time, often half an hour, and usually happen about once a month.
About 70-80% of patients taking homeopathic treatment for chronic disease report improvement, and in at least one study they prefer it over conventional treatment, according to a collection of studies written up by our friends down under, Homeopathy Plus. Possibly you are aware of the six-year Bristol Homeopathic Hospital study, which showed that out of 6,544 patients with chronic disease, sometimes of many years' duration, 70.7 per cent reported positive health changes.
But there's more.
A study on several alternative health modalities in Northern Ireland shows homeopathy narrowly edging out acupuncture with 79 per cent of patients reporting positive outcomes.
A study carried out at a health clinic in Dorset, England shows 84 per cent of patients reported improvement, and 81 per cent attribute their improvement to homeopathy.
A German study found that most parents with cancer-stricken kids who had them treated homeopathically rated their satisfaction rate as "very high" and would recommend homeopathy to other parents.
A large-scale Swiss study comparing patient satisfaction with homeopathic treatment to conventional medicine for chronic disease showed homeopathy scoring significantly better, with greater improvement and fewer side effects.
Finally, a 103-centre study in Switzerland and Germany followed 3,079 patients over eight years, and found:
* On average, disease severity decreased dramatically and improvements were sustained * Three in ten patients stopped treatment because of major improvement * Mental and physical quality of life scores increased substantially * Biggest and fastest improvements happened for children and the patients who started out the most sick.
Conditions treated ran the gamut, covering both physical and emotional afflictions.
Those who wonder why homeopathy continues to grow in popularity worldwide despite a mechanism of action that defies common "wisdom" and a well-funded and highly-motivated opposition should take note of these studies.
Read the original article, which has more details and full citations, here.
“Homeopathy is just a placebo effect”
It is frequently argued that homeopathic medicines are ‘just sugar pills’ that don’t contain any active ingredients, so any benefits patients report are due purely to the placebo effect i.e. people believe the pills are going to help and this belief alone triggers a healing response.
With any medical treatment there is likely to be some degree of ‘placebo effect’ and in this respect homeopathy is no different, but the theory that homeopathy’s effects are only a placebo response is not supported by the scientific evidence.
If homeopathy is really just a placebo effect, how does one explain:
- The existence of positive high quality placebo-controlled trials? These trials are designed specifically to separate out the placebo effect from the real clinical effect of the treatment being tested.
- Homeopathic medicines having effects in laboratory experiments? Effects have been seen on white blood cells, frogs and wheat plants to name just a few examples.
- The fact that homeopathy works in animals? A rigorous research study found that homeopathy can prevent E. coli diarrhoea in piglets1 – a big problem in commercial farmingMore
Find out more about similar statements:
Influence of pediatric vaccines on social behavior in the rhesus monkey
Pediatric vaccines have been considered controversial due to potential negative effects on development, particularly impaired social interaction and communication, hyperactivity, and repetitive stereotyped behaviors that are characteristic of autism spectrum disorder (ASD). Some reports suggest that exposure to ethyl mercury (EtHg), in the form of thimerosal, in pediatric vaccines may play a causative role in such negative effects. Male infant rhesus macaques (n = 79) were assigned at birth to one of six study groups (12–16 subjects/group) as follows: (1) the pediatric vaccination schedule from the 1990s including thimerosal-containing vaccines (TCVs), (2) the same 1990s schedule but accelerated to accommodate the developmental trajectory of the infant rhesus macaque, (3) TCVs only (saline placebo for Mumps–Measles–Rubella [MMR]), (4) MMR only (other injections replaced with saline placebo), (5) the expanded vaccine regimen from 2008 (where fewer vaccines contained thimerosal), or (6) a control group following the 1990s schedule with all vaccines replaced with saline placebo. Subjects began socializing at approximately 25 days of age and were socialized 5 days per week in a 4-monkey peer group. Social behavior data, collected between 15 and 18 months of age using a computer system capturing a variety of social and non-social behaviors, were included in this analysis. Data were analyzed using repeated measure ANOVAs with Dunnett's test post-hoc procedures following significant experimental group or group × age interactions. No significant differences in non-social or social behavior were found when comparing the animals in the vaccine groups to controls. The data do not provide any evidence of abnormal social behavior in rhesus macaques exposed to low-dose thimerosal and should provide reassurance that TCVs do not contribute to the negative effects associated with ASD. Support from the Johnson Family, the Ted Lindsay Foundation, and SafeMinds is gratefully acknowledged.
Copyright © 2014 Published by Elsevier Inc.
“Scientists say homeopathy is impossible”
Not all scientists believe homeopathy is impossible. Prof Luc Montagnier, who won a Nobel prize in 2008 for his role in discovering HIV, says homeopaths are right to use these high dilutions.
In an interview for Science magazine, when asked, “Do you think there’s something to homeopathy…?” he replied, “…What I can say now is that the high dilutions are right. High dilutions of something are not nothing. They are water structures which mimic the original molecules.”1
Science is a constantly evolving field and what the scientific establishment declares to be ‘impossible’ in one era, is often proved to be ‘fact’ in another.
To take just one famous example of medical U-turns, in 1982, when Dr Barry Marshall and Dr Robin Warren first put forward their theory that bacterial infection was an underlying cause of stomach ulclers, their idea was ridiculed.2
Scientists said it was impossible for bacteria to survive the acidic environment in the stomach, let alone thrive there, but years later Marshall and Warren were vindicated when it was finally accepted that they were right – Helicobacter pylori infection is indeed the commonest cause of stomach ulcers.
In 2005 they were awarded the Nobel prize for Physiology. In the Nobel citation the doctors were praised for their “tenacity, and willingness to challenge prevailing dogmas”.
While scientists continue to investigate how homeopathic medicines have a biological effect, perhaps we should be more cautious about using the word ‘impossible’ when it comes to medical science.
Homeopathy: meta-analyses of pooled clinical data.
In the first decade of the evidence-based era, which began in the mid-1990s, meta-analyses were used to scrutinize homeopathy for evidence of beneficial effects in medical conditions. In this review, meta-analyses including pooled data from placebo-controlled clinical trials of homeopathy and the aftermath in the form of debate articles were analyzed. In 1997 Klaus Linde and co-workers identified 89 clinical trials that showed an overall odds ratio of 2.45 in favor of homeopathy over placebo. There was a trend toward smaller benefit from studies of the highest quality, but the 10 trials with the highest Jadad score still showed homeopathy had a statistically significant effect. These results challenged academics to perform alternative analyses that, to demonstrate the lack of effect, relied on extensive exclusion of studies, often to the degree that conclusions were based on only 5-10% of the material, or on virtual data. The ultimate argument against homeopathy is the 'funnel plot' published by Aijing Shang's research group in 2005. However, the funnel plot is flawed when applied to a mixture of diseases, because studies with expected strong treatments effects are, for ethical reasons, powered lower than studies with expected weak or unclear treatment effects. To conclude that homeopathy lacks clinical effect, more than 90% of the available clinical trials had to be disregarded. Alternatively, flawed statistical methods had to be applied. Future meta-analyses should focus on the use of homeopathy in specific diseases or groups of diseases instead of pooling data from all clinical trials.
© 2013 S. Karger GmbH, Freiburg.
- [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
Homeopathy Safe Medicine Searching for safe medicine. Exposing dangerous drugs and vaccines. Sunday, 28 December 2014 Use Homeopathy and stay healthy for a long time! People who use Homeopathy to keep themselves healthy, and help them recover from illness, stay healthy over the long-term. This has been the experience of many people who rely on this highly effective, and completely safe, medical therapy for over 200 years.
Now, what so many of us have believed and experienced for so long, to our benefit, has been reinforced by academic research. And Homeopathy has been found to have a long-lasting benefit.
The question the researchers asked was "How healthy are chronically ill patients after 8 years of homeopathic treatment?" and they set up a long-term observational study to discover the answer. A total of 3,709 patients were studied, and their perceived change in both complaint severity, and quality of life was analysed. The conclusion was simple, concise and extremely clear.
"Patients who seek homeopathic treatment are likely to improve considerably" and "these effects persist for as long as 8 years".
To read more about this research, see these links:
Claudia M Witt, Rainer Lüdtke, Nils Mengler, and Stefan N Willich http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2630323/ and http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1298309/
So if you suffer from an illness, especially if it is a long-term illness, and despite ongoing conventional medical treatment; or if you just want to stay healthy, you no longer have to believe the 'there is no evidence' school of thought, so loved by our mainstream media!
There is plenty of evidence that Homeopathy works, safely and effectively.
And the main evidence comes from people who use it!
Additive homeopathy in cancer patients: Retrospective survival data from a homeopathic outpatient unit at the Medical University of Vienna.Gaertner K1, Müllner M2, Friehs H2, Schuster E3, Marosi C2, Muchitsch I4, Frass M5, Kaye AD6. Author information Abstract BACKGROUND:
Current literature suggests a positive influence of additive classical homeopathy on global health and well-being in cancer patients. Besides encouraging case reports, there is little if any research on long-term survival of patients who obtain homeopathic care during cancer treatment. DESIGN:
Data from cancer patients who had undergone homeopathic treatment complementary to conventional anti-cancer treatment at the Outpatient Unit for Homeopathy in Malignant Diseases, Medical University Vienna, Department of Medicine I, Vienna, Austria, were collected, described and a retrospective subgroup-analysis with regard to survival time was performed. Patient inclusion criteria were at least three homeopathic consultations, fatal prognosis of disease, quantitative and qualitative description of patient characteristics, and survival time. RESULTS:
In four years, a total of 538 patients were recorded to have visited the Outpatient Unit Homeopathy in Malignant Diseases, Medical University Vienna, Department of Medicine I, Vienna, Austria. 62.8% of them were women, and nearly 20% had breast cancer. From the 53.7% (n=287) who had undergone at least three homeopathic consultations within four years, 18.7% (n=54) fulfilled inclusion criteria for survival analysis. The surveyed neoplasms were glioblastoma, lung, cholangiocellular and pancreatic carcinomas, metastasized sarcoma, and renal cell carcinoma. Median overall survival was compared to expert expectations of survival outcomes by specific cancer type and was prolonged across observed cancer entities (p<0.001). CONCLUSION:
Extended survival time in this sample of cancer patients with fatal prognosis but additive homeopathic treatment is interesting. However, findings are based on a small sample, and with only limited data available about patient and treatment characteristics. The relationship between homeopathic treatment and survival time requires prospective investigation in larger samples possibly using matched-pair control analysis or randomized trials.
Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved. KEYWORDS:
Cancer; Cholangiocellular cancer; Glioblastoma; Homeopathy; Lung; Metastasized sarcoma; Pancreatic carcinomas; Renal cell carcinoma
Parents of children with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) face daily challenges and questions concerning how to best cope with, manage, and help their kids. Moms and dads who are not satisfied with a purely conventional medicine approach, typically because of questionable safety and effectiveness of medications, often turn to other options. Should parents consider homeopathy for ADHD? Some practitioners and researchers vote yes, and they point to the success they have witnessed in their practice and their studies. Many others, however, are not convinced about the value of homeopathy in general nor its use for this neurodevelopmental condition in particular.
Recently I interviewed Beth Landau-Halpern, a Toronto-based, classically trained homeopath who uses a wide range of natural approaches to treat ADHD, including nutritional medicine, relaxation techniques, and natural supplements along with homeopathy. Many but not all of her patients are already taking medications. Her natural therapies can both complement and enhance a child’s treatment program.
Homeopathy and ADHD: Two Studies
Landau-Halpern talked about her involvement in two studies of homeopathy and ADHD as well as about her experiences with her treatment approach overall. The two studies—one pilot study already completed and a new study currently underway that was initiated based on the findings of the first—involved evaluation of the impact of homeopathic remedies on children with ADHD.
The particulars of the first study were explained to me by one of Landau-Halpern’s colleagues, David Brulé, a research associate at the University of Toronto and owner of Riverdale Homeopathic Clinic.A total of 35 children were enrolled in the study, which involved an initial consultation with one of two homeopaths and then nine follow-up consultations.
Eighty percent of the participants completed all 10 consultations over an average of 12.1 months. During that time, a mean of three homeopathic remedies were prescribed for the children from a selection of more than three dozen options. The two found to be the most effective were phosphorus and tuberculinum. Parents were questioned about their child’s diet, but while Brulé said “diet works” for kids with ADHD, this factor was not emphasized in the study.
Overall the findings were positive: 63 percent achieved significant improvement in behavioral symptoms, and the benefits were generally observed at the seventh to eighth consultation. All of this good news prompted the researchers to plan another, larger study, which is now underway.
Based on her observations of participants in this study, Landau-Halpern explained that “most of the clients responded well to the homeopathic remedies, although it sometimes took a few months to find the most beneficial remedy.” This caveat was especially true, she said, among kids who were taking medication since “many of their ‘symptoms’ were masked” by the drugs. Overall, she believed the children’s behavioral symptoms were the most affected by the remedies, “those that the stimulant drugs don’t really affect in any case.”
What about the effect of diet and natural supplements on these patients who were taking homeopathic remedies? Landau-Halpern pointed out that many of the parents were finding it difficult to deal with the challenges of ADHD, so she did not normally introduce dietary suggestions. At the same time, she emphasized that “an optimized diet is obviously important” as are supplements, although she did not stress them in the study.
The new study, which currently is recruiting participants, will follow 180 children with ADHD. Unlike the earlier study, parents will be asked if they are using therapeutic dietary changes. (Download the announcement for recruitment into the new study.)
In her private practice, Landau-Halpern often recommends supplements for children with ADHD, especially omega-3 fatty acids. In addition she suggests B vitamins, iron, magnesium, vitamin D, zinc, and multivitamins, depending on the individual child. She also addresses diet.
When looking at the diet of a child who has ADHD, Landau-Halpern pointed out that while every child responds to preservatives, artificial colors, and artificial flavors differently, “in general, they have absolutely no place in any child’s diet—ADHD or not.” She also emphasized that eliminating these substances “can bring about huge improvements in all sorts of pathological behaviors and physical symptoms.”
In fact, cutting out foods that contain preservatives and artificial additives is the first advice she offers parents of kids with ADHD. Why? Because it works. “For some children, simply removing foods that impair their neurological function can make an enormous difference,” and that includes refined, processed foods containing artificial ingredients and preservatives as well as those to which children have a hypersensitivity.
A review in Current Psychiatry Reports that evaluated evidence for dietary and nutritional treatments, as well as homeopathy, for ADHD noted that “Controlled studies support the elimination of artificial food dyes to reduce ADHD symptoms, and that multivitamin/mineral supplements and especially essential fatty acids are suggested. Evidence for the effectiveness of homeopathy for ADHD, however, was reported to be minimal.
Read more about kids and artificial colors
That could be changing, however, as researchers continue to conduct more comprehensive studies. Therefore, for parents of children with ADHD, alternative and complementary options such as homeopathy and nutritional medicine, including the elimination of artificial dyes and flavors and preservatives, should be considered and discussed with the appropriate healthcare professionals.