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Monday, 8 August 2016

Science and Homeopathy. Yet more evidence!

The task of proving that homeopathy is an effective, and well as a safe form of medicine, continues at a pace. The 'Initiative to Promote Research in Homeopathy' is just one of the organisations that is encouraging important research, and coming up with interesting and positive results. Their latest newsletter provides commentary and links to peer-reviewed studies, published during April to June 2016. It contains 15 separate pieces of work (which I have outlined at the bottom of the page).

As a homeopath I read these studies with interest, but little enlightenment about how they will assist in healing. Homeopathy does not need these studies to inform us about the healing process. This is already well known, and practiced for over 220 years by homeopaths throughout the world.

As a patient (although I am rarely this, thanks to homeopathy), these studies do not help me at all. My only interest is to get better, to find a medical therapy that works effectively in overcoming the illness or disease, and helps me to regain health.

Yet for scientists, who want to understand the hitherto unknown working process of homeopathy, they are important, and they demonstrate (i) that there is something about the homeopathic process, and high dilutions, that needs to be understood, and (ii) that gradually this is being worked out.

For homeopathy denialists, medical fundamentalists, (call them what you will)  they represent a problem, another set of research that proves, if nothing else, that there is something about homeopathy that requires explanation, that it is no longer sufficient to state that 'homeopathy cannot work', that 'homeopathy is placebo'. They will, of course, continue to deny that 'there is no evidence' because they are no scientists (as they claim), they are apologists for the failing conventional medical system, and pharmaceutical drugs, for which there is (they claim) plenty of evidence!

How annoying for them! But we can all await their denials, and their abusive comments, on Twitter! I personally look forward to ignoring them, again!

However, for anyone with an open mind, here are the research studies referred listed by the Initiative to Promote Research in Homeopathy. Internet links to each study can be found on their website.

Basic Research
Arnica montana effects on gene expression in a human macrophage cell line. Evaluation by quantitative Real-Time PCR. Homeopathy 2016;105(2): 131-47.

Impact of homeopathic remedies on the expression of lineage differentiation genes: an in vitro approach using embryonic stem cells. Homeopathy 2016; 105(2): 148-59. 

Establishing the interfacial nano-structure and elemental composition of homeopathic medicines based on inorganic salts: a scientific approach. Homeopathy 2016; 105(2): 160-72.

Polycrystalline structures formed in evaporating droplets as a parameter to test the action of Zincum metallicum 30c in a wheat seed model. Homeopathy 2016; 105(2): 173-79.

Highly diluted medication reduces tissue parasitism and inflammation in mice infected by Trypanosoma cruzi. Homeopathy 2015;105(2):186-93.

Raman spectroscopy reveals variation in free OH groups and hydrogen bond strength in ultrahigh dilutions. Int J High Dilution Res. 2016; 15(2): 2-9. 

Effects of Additional Agitation Process on the Spectrophotometric Profiles of Homeopathic High Dilutions. Int J High Dilution Res. 2016; 15(2):10-21. 

Clinical Research
A comparative consecutive case series of 20 children with a diagnosis of ADHD receiving homeopathic treatment, compared with 10 children receiving usual care. Homeopathy 2016; 105(2): 194-201. 

Hay fever & homeopathy: a case series evaluation. Homeopathy 2016; 105(2): 202-08. 

Homeopathic medical practice for anxiety and depression in primary care: the EPI3 cohort study. BMC Complement Altern Med. 2016 May 4;16(1):125. 

Perioperative Arnica montana for Reduction of Ecchymosis in Rhinoplasty Surgery. Ann Plast Surg. 2016 May;76(5):477-82. 

Individualized Homeopathy: A Consideration of Its Relationship to Psychotherapy. J Altern Complement Med. 2016 Jun 10. 

Adverse effects of homeopathy, what do we know? A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Complement Ther Med. 2016 Jun; 26: 146-63. 

What do homeopathic doctors think of vaccines? An international online survey. 
Homeopathy 2016; 15(2): 180-85. 

Attitudes, Knowledge, Use, and Recommendation of Complementary and Alternative Medicine by Health Professionals in Western Mexico. Explore (NY). 2016 May-Jun;12(3):180-7.