Thanks Jermofoot . . .
i’m not sure how to best dive in here.
well . . .here goes.
For one - you’re right. Do not confuse homeopathy with “natural remedies”. And keep in mind that the thing that tends to separate the “natural producst” from “pharmaceuticals” is that while many pharmaceuticals are natural, they ALL are subject to many trials demonstrating efficacy and elucidating side effects. Furthermore their pharmacokinetics/pharmacodynamics are well known. So-called “natural products” - while invariably “natural” do not have the studies to back them up, nor is there much in terms of side-effect, pharmacokinetic or pharmacodynamic literature available.
Homeopathy is the idea that “like treats like”. If you have a disorder/symptom complex, than the theory is that something that causes this - if given in an immeasurably tiny dose (like by diluting it by 10 nine times) should cure this. The question is - how do you know that it is the substance that is curing it, and not some impurity in the glassware (kind of a joke really).
We had a homeopath come to give a lecture to our class. She basically mocked herself (non-intentionally, of course). She said stuff like:
“homeopathic cures are the safest and most efficatious treatments available”
“i nearly killed one of my children and gave another one asthma with homeopathic remedies”
“we all know that the adenovirus causes adenocarcinoma” (this is utter nonsense. If this were true, many of us with a common cold would die of cancer).
Having said that, there have been some trials out there:
Linde K, Clausius N, Ramirez G, et al. Are the clinical effects of homeopathy placebo effects? A meta-analysis of placebo-controlled trials. Lancet 1997;350:834-43.
Meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials
Other (homeopathic practitioners)
The authors performed a systematic review of randomized trials. They found 186 trials of which 119 met the authors inclusion criteria. From these, 89 provided enough data to perform meta-analysis. Studies were rated for quality. Subjects receiving homeopathy were twice as likely to benefit compared to placebo (OR 2.45, CI 2.05-2.93). If only high quality studies are used (n=26), the benefit was less (OR 1.66, CI 1.33-2.08).