Friday, July 22, 2011

A Defense of Homoeopathy

Extraordinary Medicine Indeed

What if one day medicines were widely available to everyone, that could help heal people faster, and without the severe effects we have come to expect from modern conventional medicine? Wouldn't that be wonderful?

Well, such medicines do exist. They're called homoeopathic medicine, from the field of homeopathy (alternative spelling)

From the website Extraordinary Medicine:

"Homeopathy is a 200-year-old system of medicine used successfully by tens of millions worldwide. It is part of the public health care systems of nations in Europe, South America and Asia. It has a laudable two-century clinical record. There are hundreds of high-quality basic science, pre-clinical and clinical studies showing it works. It is one of the fastest-growing forms of health care in Canada and around the world, and has recently become a regulated health profession in the Canadian province of Ontario. It is vastly safer than conventional medicine"

And here's a definition of homoeopathy: "A system of therapy based on the concept that disease can be treated with diluted drugs (in infinitesimal doses) thought capable of producing the same symptoms in healthy people as the disease itself"

Yet, recently CBC, BBC and the Guardian all ran stories purporting to prove that homoeopathy was a fraud foisted on a gullible public.

Hmm. Whom to believe?

The CBC Marketplace program had boffins in white coats who examined homoeopathic dilutions and declared they couldn't find any traces of the substances in the water. It also had a stage magician who swallowed a bottle of homoeopathic pills and said 'he didn't feel a thing'. Of course, they're bound by the Avogadro constant that once a substance is diluted so many times, no molecule can remain.

The BBC program had a horror story about a man who took a homoeopathic malaria vaccine instead of a conventional one, then came down with malaria when he went to Africa. Even though the homoeopath who prescribed it can be seen telling (via hidden camera) the patient it is about as effective as a conventional vaccine (around 60-70%) the program implied he would have been safe if he'd taken the regular vaccine, which is preposterous. Those vaccines are proven to be hit and miss, and have horrible side effects as well.

The Guardian, published an article written by a homoeopath, then followed it up with one from its "Bad Science" correspondent who claimed it was simply unproven, and then, to drive home its point, published another article that said meta analyses by the Lancet proved that its effect was attributable to a placebo effect. As someone who's seen many such meta analyses, I'll summarise it for you. They searched for articles in medical journals (but didn't conduct their own studies) then simply, tuned out what didn't fit their predetermined conclusion.

Here's one, also from the Lancet:

Lancet. 1997 Sep 20;350(9081):834-43.

Are the clinical effects of homeopathy placebo effects? A meta-analysis of placebo-controlled trials

"The results of our meta-analysis are not compatible with the hypothesis that the clinical effects of homeopathy are completely due to placebo. However, we found insufficient evidence from these studies that homeopathy is clearly efficacious for any single clinical condition. Further research on homeopathy is warranted provided it is rigorous and systematic"

Except, they ignore studies conducted by homeopaths, hmm. Except, they start with a pre-judgement, that since they can't understand the mechanism by which it works it remains unproven. The community of sceptics take it further and say it must therefore be fake.

Even Nobel Prize winner Luc Montagnier, the virologist who received the prize in medicine for his discovery of HIV, says "there is a phenomena, which must be investigated" and that "it is very promising". Yet he had to leave France to pursue his research into the electro magnetic properties of highly diluted substances in water (read homeopathic)

Regardless of the scepticism, as a physician and a healer I am only interested in results. If it works, that's all that matters. One last word on the so called "placebo effect". If scientists have been able to measure quantifiable differences in the macrophages of treated animals, for example, are you still going to call it placebo?

Full disclosure: I used to suffer from horrible allergies that developed into chronic bronchitis. Antibiotics didn't help. Homeopathy was the only thing that gave me relief. Then I had a reaction to chemicals that caused lung damage. I ended up having to take asthma medication which caused weight gain and high blood pressure. I was able to get off that with homeopathic that alleviated the asthma. Then I met a physician, Dr. Felix Ravikovich, M.D., who used injectable homeopathic to help me get completely rid of the allergies (He was later censured by the College of Physicians, even though hundreds of his patients testified on his behalf. His book The Plot Against Asthma and Allergy Patients is available on Amazon)

I have been medication free for 25 years now, and my lung function is normal. I have not had asthma or any allergic illnesses since then too, and I credit that to Homeopathy. Must have been some very powerful placebos, indeed!

And I have my own homeopathic formulations in my research on Mental Illness and the causes of Aging.

This is referred to in the sceptical community as anecdotal evidence, but their world view is somewhat biased, shall we say. I ascribe to the classical definition of science as a body of knowledge, based on verifiable evidence. And the evidence is there, in hundreds upon hundreds of databases. Please check the Extraordinary Medicine site above. Please check and

Beyond that, the rest is up to you.

What you do have in Homeopathic medicine, is success story upon success story. It is cheap, affordable and widely in use in countries that cannot afford expensive conventional medicines.

Cuba has suffered from recurrent epidemics of Leptospirosis, a bacterial infection, every hurricane season. Due to American embargo, it has had to develop its own, proprietary vaccines, but the cost is still very high.

From a Cuban study of a homeopathic trial:

"Here is the preliminary report by the authors of a Cuban Study that used homeopathy to prevent Leptospirosis in 2.5 million Cubans.

Homeoprophylaxis: Cuban Experiences on Leptospirosis

Dr. Concepción Campa, Dr. Luis E. Varela, Dr. Esperanza Gilling, MCs. Rolando Fernández, Tec. Bárbara Ordaz, Dr. Gustavo Bracho, Dr. Luis García, Dr. Jorge Menéndez, Lic. Natalia Marzoa, Dr. Rubén Martínez.

“The Finlay Institute is a centre dedicated to development and production of vaccines; we also bring our WHO qualified facilities for all homeopaths and homeopathic medicine. The Finlay Institute acts as supporting institution for research, production and development of high quality homeopathic products. However, according with the social objective addressing prevention of infectious diseases, we are focused on homeo- prophylaxis as strategy to attenuate the impact of preventable diseases on developing world, the ones that need it the most.

Thus, development and evaluation of nosodes, appears to be our main approach to fill up the breakthrough on current conventional strategies based on vaccination. Similarly with vaccination interventions, massive applications of prophylactic nosodes give rise to a greater impact on population health compared with individualized therapies. In addition, the easy administration and low economics resources needed, become this alternative really suitable and accessible for developing countries and almost the best for emergency situations comprising epidemic outbreaks and natural disasters.

The Cuban experiences of massively administrated nosodes supports it use as promising solution to confront epidemiological dangerous situations. On October November 2007, three provinces of the eastern region of Cuba were affected by strong rainfalls causing floods of big areas and several damages to sanitary and health systems. The risk of leptospirosis infection raised extremely dangerous levels with about 2 million of peoples exposed to potentially contaminated water.

Considering this situation, the Finlay Institute prepared a leptospira nosode 200 CH using 4 circulating strains and following international quality standards. A multidisciplinary team travelled to the affected regions to conduct the massive administration of the nosode.

Coordinated action with public health system infrastructures allowed the administration of a preventive treatment consisting in two doses (7- 9 days apart) of the nosode to about 2,4 million of people (4,8 million of doses). The coverage of the intervention rose up to 95% percent of total population of the three provinces at risk.

The epidemiology surveillance after the intervention showed a dramatic decrease of morbidity two weeks after and a reduction to (z)ero of mortality of hospitalized patient. The number of confirmed leptospirosis cases remains at low levels and below the expected levels according with the trends and rain regimens.

A reinforcing application was given after the hit of the hurricane IKE but using the nosode diluted up to 10 MC. Strict epidemiological surveillance is carried out on this provinces. Up to date result will be presented.

The results supported the design of new strategies for leptospirosis control. This experience could be extended to other diseases and other countries. The Finlay Institute is offering our facilities and specialists to spread this alternative to all regions needing emergent alternatives for epidemic control and prevention”

shows remarkable successes in treatment of Typhus, Cholera and Smallpox during the epidemics that swept across the world. During the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918 the mortality rate in over a thousand homeopathic hospitals in the US was around 1-2% but for those treated allopathically the mortality rate was 24%! Yet after the war all of those hospitals were closed down under pressure from the American Medical Association, which still, unfortunately, acts like a gang. Yet, as new pandemics emerge over the horizon, shouldn't we look again at what worked the last time?

How does Homeopathy work? I dunno for sure, physically that is. I do understand it's a facet of Energy Medicine which is my interest, but there you are. The work of Masaru Emoto, with his evocative photos of charged water (like the one here) shows how it might work. But the fact is, it works, and I urge you to try it. Caveat: it's an amazing system, one that many can use and try on their own, but if you have serious concerns, please consult with an experienced homoeopath.

But, in a world where more and more people are becoming ill and there is more and more need for healers, I choose to defend Homeopathy.


Louise Mclean Writer said...

Hi there,

Great post! Do also check out which has hundreds of articles on homeopathy.

Kind regards,

Louise Mclean
Homeopathy Heals

Louise Mclean Writer said...

Once again - great article which I may put up on Homeopathy Heals website. Check out this site as has hundreds of great articles on homeopathy

Best wishes,

Louise Mclean
Homeopathy Heals

Man From Atlan said...

Excellent site, Louise. I recommend it to readers interested in learning more about this fascinating science.