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Homeopathy:Proven Medicine or a Placebo (part 2)

Posted by Sanjib Sarkar on Fri, Jun 27, 2008 @ 05:10 PM

Tags: homeopathic remedies, Homeopathy Trials, Homeopathy, homeopathic medicine

In part 1 of our series, we found that when looking at the best trials, Homeopathy performed better than a placebo on a 2 to 1 scale. However, all these trials were before 1991. We are now going to look at more modern trials.

The most recent homeopathic trials include a trial done by A Swiss-UK review of 110 trials found no convincing evidence the treatment worked any better than a placebo.
However, there seems to be many problems with this type of trial.

We are going to examine the better done trials since 1991. We will not examine all of them but look at a fair amount of promising and not so promising evidence of properly conducted homeopathic trials.

Homeopathy Trials and Information Below:

Trials when comparing Homeopathy to A Placebo

A randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial of 242 participants aged 18 to 55 years. Trial compared an oral homeopathic treatment to placebo in asthmatic people allergic to house dust. Authors found the homeopathic treatment "no better than placebo." They noted "some differences between the homeopathic immunotherapy and placebo for which we have no explanation." This was actually an attempt to replicate a successful homeopathic trial with allergies and asthma. No one could explain why the replication was not successful. This trial was much larger than the intial trial that proved successful.

Randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial of 126 children; 116 completed the study. Individualized homeopathic treatments improved digestive problems in children with acute childhood diarrhea. Results are consistent with findings of a previous study.

Randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial of 519 people; 400 completed the study. Homeopathic remedies, including arnica, are not effective for muscle soreness following long-distance running.

Meta-analysis of six controlled clinical trials. Controlled clinical trials indicate that homeopathic remedies appear to work better than a placebo in studies of rheumatic syndromes, but there are too few studies to draw definitive conclusions, and efficacy results are mixed.

The most promising remedy for Homeopathy according to our research is Oscillococcinum. There were several large trials showing positive results for Oscillococcinum in shortening the duration of the flu. Oscillococcinum shows that is has no effect on prevent the flu.

Other successful trials on a smaller scale include perennial allergic rhinitis. The trials showed increased nasal flow as compared to the placebo. This was the fourth replication of this trial. It is noted the trial size was quite small.

In conclusion, more research needs to be done but some Homeopathic remedies are showing promising results in large double blinded placebo studies. Larger studies after 1991 showed approximately a 1 to 1 ratio of successful and unsucessful homeopathic trials. Better quality studies before 1991 showed approximately a 2 to 1 ratio. A couple of the trials have been reproduced in several studies. Oscillococcinum was the only study that we found was reproduced several times by different researches.

 

References

Vickers and Smith, 2002 Review of Oscillococcinum on flu symptoms

Lewith et al., 2002 Asthmatic People Allergic To House Dust

Jacobs et al., 2000 Acute Childhood Diarrhea

Vickers et al., 1998 Muscle Soreness

Jonas et al., 2000 Studies Of Rheumatic Syndromes

Papp et al, 1998 Oscillococcinum Onset of Flu Like Symtoms

Taylor et al., 2000 Perennial Allergic Rhinitis

 

Poison Ivy Treatment and Remedies

Posted by Sanjib Sarkar on Thu, Jun 19, 2008 @ 05:16 PM

Tags: Poison Ivy Pills, Poison Ivy Remedies, Poison Ivy Lotion

Poison Ivy is a seasonal type rash. Most people contract poison ivy by touching the poison ivy, poison sumac or other similar plant species.

Poison Ivy is found in every state in the US except Alaska, California, Colorado, Idaho, Hawaii, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, Oregon, Washington, North Dakota, Montana, Utah, New Mexico, Neveda and Wyoming.

Posion Oak is found only in the following states which are California, Neveda, Oregon and Washington.

Poison Sumac also has a wide distribution. It is found in Texas, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Louisiana, Kentucky, Tennessee and the rest of the eastern US states.

 


The best way to identify Poison Ivy is to look for the maple leaf. The best way to identify Poison Oak is look for shiny red or green leafs. The plant looks pretty similar to Poison Ivy. Poison Sumac are the easiest plants to identify because they have reddish or grayish tip consisting of 7 to 13 stems.

Poison Ivy is not contagious. The way to get Poison Ivy, Poison Oak, or Poison Sumac is to touch the plants. Some people are immune to Poison Ivy but many people are not. Also, people that are immune to Poison Ivy may not be immune a year from now.

If you accidently touched a poison ivy plant, wash your hands with soap and water immediately. If a rash starts to develop, use Poison Ivy Lotion on the rash. The lotion will help stop the itch and prevent infection. Poison Ivy Pills should also be taken at a general interval to get rid of the rash. Pills should be taken every hour or two during the initial start of the rash. As the rash subsides decrease the usage to every 3 or 4 hours. As the rash starts to go away you can decrease the dosage even more.

Poison Ivy pills can also be taken before you get poison ivy. The pills help to give you a little more immunity if you do touch poison ivy. The rash may be milder if these pills are taken.


 

 

 

Top 10 Sun Block Tips

Posted by Sanjib Sarkar on Sun, Jun 15, 2008 @ 04:56 AM

Tags: sunblock, spf, natural sun block

1) Use Sun block with a SPF of 30 or higher. SPF 30 provides protection for most of the day. For example if you get sun burn in 10 minutes, SPF 30 will protect you for 300 minutes. If you use SP 15, you will be protected from the sun for 150 minutes.

2) Make sure to use a broad spectrum sunblock. Broad spectrum sun blocks protect both UVA and UVB rays. UVA rays are present even when there is no sun and can lead to skin cancers. UVB rays are present when there is sun light out. People tan with UVB and UVB causes sun burn and also cancer if the skin in not protected.

3) Be sure to reapply sun block early and often. Water breaks down sun block even if the product is water proof. The sun will also break down your sun block over time. Reapply sun block at least once every hour if you are out in a pool. Be sure to use your sun screen daily.

4) Be sure to apply sun block even if you are just resting in the shade away from sun light. This is because UVA rays are present even when there is no direct sun light.

5) Be sure to avoid sun block that contain oxybenzone, a toxic sunscreen that soaks into the skin which might be a contributing factor to skin cancer. Instead look for sunscreen that contains Zinc Oxide or Titanium oxide.

6) Buy new sun screen every year. Most sun screen do not protect as well after 12 months because the ingredients start to lose the amount of sun protection that they can give.

7) Take a break at Midday. Midday or peak sun is also a good time to get out of the sun and take a break indoors. The sun is strongest at this point. The sun is strongest between 12:00PM and 3:00PM.

8) Wear UV sunglasses to protect your eyes, hat to protect your scalp and tight shirt to protect your body from the sun.

9) Take special care when going to the beach. Sun block may need to be reapplied more frequently since the sand and the water reflect the sun creating a stronger UVB ray. Higher altitudes also gives the sun more intensity.

10) Be sure to drink plenty of water. This keeps your skin hydrated and improves the protection of your sun block.

To view a list of the top 10 sunblocks click this link.

 

Homeopathic Doughnut Sprinkles May Help Weight Loss

Posted by Sanjib Sarkar on Fri, Jun 13, 2008 @ 07:31 PM

Tags: Homeopathic, Homeopathic Diet

Winston-Salem, North Carolina - Nutritionists at Krispy Kreme Doughnuts have found some remarkable results with Homeopathy. Eating the top of homeopathic doughnut sprinkles may help you lose weight. This effect is similar to like equals like. The sprinkles are diluted to create a potent sprinkle. People that need to lose more weight would need a more diluted sprinkle. Apparently, eating only a few sprinkles from the top of a doughnut triggers a natural reaction in the body that leads to 'ketosis' (or the same effect that can be seen in low-carbohydrate diets).

"This is a very exciting breakthrough!" exclaimed Lead Nutritionist Augustus Christian Friedrich Samuel Hahnemann-Gloop.

Krispy Kreme representatives never realized the true power of Homeopathy. Wall Street was excited by the news. Krispy Kreme saw a big rise in their stock price for the first time in many months. The company also began an advertising campaign marketing its new concept with t-shirts that read: "Similia Similibus Curentur" in some foreign language means "Likes Are Cured By Likes".

Meanwhile, dozens of gastric bypass specialists are outraged and have threatened to sue Krispy Kreme.

The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

Reference from http://www.thespoof.com/news/spoof.cfm?headline=s2i19997

Homeopathy:Proven Medicine or a Placebo

Posted by Sanjib Sarkar on Wed, Jun 04, 2008 @ 01:45 AM

Tags: homeopathic remedies, Homeopathy Trials, Homeopathy, Homeopathic Studies

Samuel Hahnemann, a German physician disenchanted with these methods, began to develop a theory based on three principles: the law of similars, the minimum dose, and the single remedy.

The word homeopathy is derived from the Greek words for like (homoios) and suffering (pathos). With the law of similars, Hahnemann theorized that if a large amount of a substance causes certain symptoms in a healthy person, smaller amounts of the same substance can treat those symptoms in someone who is ill. The basis of his theory took shape after a strong dose of the malaria treatment quinine caused his healthy body to develop symptoms similar to ones caused by the disease. He continued to test his theory on himself as well as family and friends with different herbs, minerals and other substances. He called these experiments "provings."

But, as might be expected, the intensity of the symptoms caused by the original proving was harrowing. So Hahnemann began decreasing the doses to see how little of a substance could still produce signs of healing.

With the minimum dose, or law of infinitesimals, Hahnemann believed that a substance's strength and effectiveness increased the more it was diluted. Minuscule doses were prepared by repeatedly diluting the active ingredient by factors of 10. A "6X" preparation (the X is the Roman numeral for 10) is a 1-to-10 dilution repeated six times, leaving the active ingredient as one part per million. Essential to the process of increasing potency while decreasing the actual amount of the active ingredient is vigorous shaking after each dilution.

Some homeopathic remedies are so dilute, no molecules of the healing substance remain. Even with sophisticated technology now available, analytical chemists may find it difficult or impossible to identify any active ingredient. But the homeopathic belief is that the substance has left its imprint or a spirit-like essence that stimulates the body to heal itself.

Critics of homeopathy point out that no way such a dilute medicine could work. People are feeling better because of the placebo effect. Critics also say the research in homeopathy is very unimpressive. Proponents of homeopathy point out to numerous trials that have been successful.

Recent homeopathic trials include a trial done by A Swiss-UK review of 110 trials found no convincing evidence the treatment worked any better than a placebo.
However, there seems to be many problems with this type of trial.

The University of Limberg investigators, who are all epidemiologists, conducted an exhaustive search of the published medical literature to find evidence of homeopathy's efficacy regardless of implausibility. They found an astonishing 107 controlled studies. Many of them compared a homeopathic remedy with a placebo. While some studies were well designed, the investigators found that the methods used in the majority left much to be desired. But their findings were favorable enough toward homeopathy to suggest further evaluation: "Of the better studies, 15 trials showed positive results whereas in seven trials no positive effect could be detected (in one trial only homeopathic treatments were compared with each other)."

They used strict criteria for the selection of the best trials. Highest marks went to the studies with these characteristics: a large number of participants, double blinding (neither physicians nor participants know who is receiving the homeopathic remedy), a placebo that was described as indistinguished from the homeopathic remedy, and random assignment of participants to a treatment group.

All in all, the University of Limberg investigators found that number of published studies to be impressive. "The amount of positive evidence even among the best studies came as a surprise to us." But they acknowledged that many questions remain. Chief among them is a plausible explanation for how homeopathic remedies work.

The article that quoted the homeopathic studies is a 1991 article. All homeopathic trials examined were before 1991. In part 2 of Homepathy: Proven Medicine or A Placebo we will look at more recent trials and guage those results.

References

http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m0815/is_n143_v16/ai_10684564/pg_1


Homeopathic Remedies: Single versus Combination Remedies

Posted by Sanjib Sarkar on Sun, Jun 01, 2008 @ 02:43 AM

Tags: homeopathic remedies, homeopathic combination remedies, homeopathic single remedies

Here at Hmedicine.com, we get this question quite a bit. We are going to answer this question in detail now.

Homeopathic single remedies are generally prescribed by homeopathic doctors or physicians. Homeopathic single remedies look to treat the whole person and not just the symptoms. The single remedies are prescribed for chronic conditions but maybe used for any other health conditions. People may also self prescribe homeopathic medicines for non serious conditions such as pain, cramps and other conditions. However, this does take some time and research to figure out what homeopathic single remedy do I need. Also, what potency should be required. You may need a homeopath doctor help to figure all of this out.

This is where homeopathic combination remedies come into play. Homeopathic combination remedies such as Hylands Calms Forte put typical homeopathic single remedies and lower potencies into the homeopathic medicine. Calms Forte contains several homeopathic single remedies that are used for sleeping disorders. The homeopathic combination remedies also has a low potency dosage ranging from 3X-30C. The homeopathic combination remedies take the guess work out for the homeopathic customer. The main problem with homeopathic combination remedies is that they are not individualized like single remedies. A person with a sleeping disorder may need a homeopathic medicine that Calms Forte does not contatin. They may also need a higher or lower potency than what Calms Forte has.

Most people in the homeopathy field agree that homeopathic single remedies work better than homeopathic combination remedies. However, combination remedies make a good choice for a novice user in homeopathy that has a mild condition and has no time to figure out what single homeopathic remedies that they need.