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As Kel posted earlier about this topic I thought I would open it up. I am very mistrustful of medical treatment for physical ailments as I think they simply mask underlying problems... What is homeopathy and does it work? Is there a natural alternative? Is magnesium safe even though it is a natural element?
 

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An entire website is dedicated to exposing this: http://www.homeowatch.org/
quote:medical treatment for physical ailments as I think they simply mask underlying problems
Medical treatments do aim to treat the underlying problem. However, those that actually do depends on how far advanced our knowledge of the condition is. For bacterial infections, they almost always do. IBS is more complex, but that has changed in recent years.
quote: Is magnesium safe even though it is a natural element?
It is unless you consume large amounts.
 

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painter, i will answer your Q: homeopathy (google it, as well, for more details) is a treatment whereby a little bit of what would cause illness in a well person will cure the illness in question in someone sick. when i say a little bit, i mean extremely small amounts. minerals, metals, plants and so forth are all used. in both western and eastern europe the technique of homeopathy has been used for over a century and is dispensed by MDs only who besides their allopathic training are trained as well in homeopathy. both doctors' consults and the medecine itself are reimbursed by european health systems. i am giving you an oversimplified definition, please google to get more. millions of people are treated and cured by this method but in north america the allopathic drug lobby battles forever in washington over the issue of homeopathy. please pay no attention to Flux who is clearly out of control on this issue.
 

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Homeopathic medicine lost out in this country not because of the AMA or the drug lobby - there was no drug lobby when the last homeopathic medical school closed - but because medicine adopted the scientific method of controlled experimentation as a way of proof for it's treatments. There are many controlled studies and replications for all medical treatments now in use, but virtually no acceptable controlled studies for Homeopathic treatments.
 

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....the scientific method of controlled experimantation as a way of PROOF for it's treatments?? Then why do these "treatments" have side effects? Where kind of proof are you relating to? Acceptable by who....the FDA?? (Federal Drug Administraton )
 

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quote: because medicine adopted the scientific method of controlled experimentation as a way of proof for it's treatment
Obviously.
quote:Then why do these "treatments" have side effects?
Logic?
 

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quote: Homeopathic medicine lost out in this country not because of the AMA or the drug lobby - there was no drug lobby when the last homeopathic medical school closed - but because medicine adopted the scientific method of controlled experimentation as a way of proof for it's treatments. There are many controlled studies and replications for all medical treatments now in use, but virtually no acceptable controlled studies for Homeopathic treatments
horse manure.summaries of the three main studies http://www.trusthomeopathy.org/case/cas_met.html Kleijnen 1991British Medical Journal. 107 trials. Criteria-based meta-analysis.  77% are positive  The higher the scientific merit of the study, the more likely it is to show homoeopathy as superior to placebo. The evidence presented in this review would probably be sufficient for establishing homoeopathy as a regular treatment for certain conditions.Boissel 1996Report for European Commission. 15 trials. Very strict inclusion criteria. Meta-analysis; data synthesis by combining the significance levels (p-values) for the primary outcomes from each trial.  Combined p value for the 15 trials was highly significant p=0.0002.  ' There is evidence that homeopathic medicine is more effective than placebo' .  Little evidence of publication bias.  Further high quality studies are needed.Linde 1997Lancet. 89 trials. Meta-analysis; data synthesis by combining the odds ratios.  Combined odds ratio 2.45 (95% CI 2.05, 2.93) in favour of homeopathy.  Odds ratio for 26 best quality studies was 1.66.  No evidence of significant publication bias.  The results are not compatible with the hypothesis that the clinical effects of homeopathy are completely due to placebo.
 

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J. Kleijnen, P. Knipschild, G. ter Riet, Clinical Trials of Homeopathy British Medical Journal, February 9, 1991, 302:316-323. This is the most widely cited meta-analysis of clinical research prior to 1991. This meta-analysis reviewed 107 studies of homeopathic medicines, 81 of which (or 77%) showed positive effect. Of the best 22 studies, 15 showed efficacy. The researchers concluded: "The evidence presented in this review would probably be sufficient for establishing homeopathy as a regular treatment for certain indications." Further, "The amount of positive evidence even among the best studies came as a surprise to us."
 

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Homeopathy Proves Effective In Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Study Contrary to the overwhelming belief of the mainstream medical establishment, results from a recent series of trials suggest that homeopathy is more effective than an inactive pill (placebo) in treating certain ills. Researchers studied 51 patients with perennial hay fever. Twenty-four of the study subjects received daily homeopathy and 27 received a daily placebo treatment during the 4-week study period.  The study was performed to the highest standards of scientific research, being double-blinded, randomized, and placebo-controlled. All of the subjects kept a diary in which they recorded twice daily their nasal air flow measurements and symptoms such as sneezing, runny nose, and eye and chest symptoms. Patients who received homeopathy had a 28% improvement in their nasal air flow whereas those in the placebo group had only a 3% improvement. In comments to Reuters Health, study author Dr. David Reilly of the Glasgow Homoeopathic Hospital states "There are two ways of interpreting the fact that four trials in a row have produced positive results," Either homeopathy works, in which case "we need to explore the clinical potential and the scientific challenges, (or) homeopathy does not work (and) the clinical trial is proving an unreliable tool capable of worrying false positive results."In an accompanying editorial, Tim Lancaster of the Oxford Institute of Health Sciences and Andrew Vickers of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City, acknowledge that the methods employed by Dr. Reilly and his colleagues "were rigorous and it is unlikely that their results arose from methodological bias." They also admit that if this study can be confirmed by a larger trial it could really change the thinking of mainstream medicine towards homeopathy.British Medical Journal August 19, 2000;321:471-476.
 

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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.f...t_uids=15105967 Inflamm Res. 2004 Apr;53(5):181-8. Epub 2004 Apr 21. Related Articles, Links Histamine dilutions modulate basophil activation.Belon P, Cumps J, Ennis M, Mannaioni PF, Roberfroid M, Sainte-Laudy J, Wiegant FA.Boiron, 20 rue de la Liberation, 69110, Sainte-Foy-Les-Lyon, France.Background:In order to demonstrate that high dilutions of histamine are able to inhibit basophil activation in a reproducible fashion, several techniques were used in different research laboratories. Objective:The aim of the study was to investigate the action of histamine dilutions on basophil activation. Methods:Basophil activation was assessed by alcian blue staining, measurement of histamine release and CD63 expression. Study 1 used a blinded multi-centre approach in 4 centres. Study 2, related to the confirmation of the multi-centre study by flow cytometry, was performed independently in 3 laboratories. Study 3 examined the histamine release (one laboratory) and the activity of H(2) receptor antagonists and structural analogues (two laboratories). Results:High dilutions of histamine (10(-30)-10(-38) M) influence the activation of human basophils measured by alcian blue staining. The degree of inhibition depends on the initial level of anti-IgE induced stimulation, with the greatest inhibitory effects seen at lower levels of stimulation. This multicentre study was confirmed in the three laboratories by using flow cytometry and in one laboratory by histamine release. Inhibition of CD63 expression by histamine high dilutions was reversed by cimetidine (effect observed in two laboratories) and not by ranitidine (one laboratory). Histidine tested in parallel with histamine showed no activity on this model. Conclusions:In 3 different types of experiment, it has been shown that high dilutions of histamine may indeed exert an effect on basophil activity. This activity observed by staining basophils with alcian blue was confirmed by flow cytometry. Inhibition by histamine was reversed by anti-H2 and was not observed with histidine these results being in favour of the specificity of this effect We are however unable to explain our findings and are reporting them to encourage others to investigate this phenomenon.PMID: 15105967 [PubMed - in process]
 

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http://www.biomedcentral.com/1472-6882/3/7 Ameliorating effect of microdoses of a potentized homeopathic drug, Arsenicum Album, on arsenic-induced toxicity in miceArsenic in groundwater and its accumulation in plants and animals have assumed a menacing proportion in a large part of West Bengal, India and adjoining areas of Bangladesh. Because of the tremendous magnitude of the problem, there seems to be no way to tackle the problem overnight. Efforts to provide arsenic free water to the millions of people living in these dreaded zones are being made, but are awfully inadequate. In our quest for finding out an easy, safe and affordable means to combat this problem, a homeopathic drug, Arsenicum Album-30, appears to yield promising results in mice. The relative efficacies of two micro doses of this drug, namely, Arsenicum Album-30 and Arsenicum Album-200, in combating arsenic toxicity have been determined in the present study on the basis of some accepted biochemical protocols.MethodsMice were divided into different sets of control (both positive and negative) and treated series (As-intoxicated, As-intoxicated plus drug-fed). Alanine amino transferase (ALT) and aspartate amino transferase (AST) activities and reduced glutathione (GSH) level in liver and blood were analyzed in the different series of mice at six different fixation intervals.ResultsBoth Arsenicum Album-30 and Arsenicum Album-200 ameliorated arsenic-induced toxicity to a considerable extent as compared to various controls.ConclusionsThe results lend further support to our earlier views that microdoses of potentized Arsenicum Album are capable of combating arsenic intoxication in mice, and thus are strong candidates for possible use in human subjects in arsenic contaminated areas under medical supervision.
 

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http://www.newscientist.com/news/news.jsp?id=ns99991532 Bizarre chemical discovery gives homeopathic hint 19:00 07 November 01It is a chance discovery so unexpected it defies belief and threatens to reignite debate about whether there is a scientific basis for thinking homeopathic medicines really work.A team in South Korea has discovered a whole new dimension to just about the simplest chemical reaction in the book - what happens when you dissolve a substance in water and then add more water. Conventional wisdom says that the dissolved molecules simply spread further and further apart as a solution is diluted. But two chemists have found that some do the opposite: they clump together, first as clusters of molecules, then as bigger aggregates of those clusters. Far from drifting apart from their neighbours, they got closer together.The discovery has stunned chemists, and could provide the first scientific insight into how some homeopathic remedies work. Homeopaths repeatedly dilute medications, believing that the higher the dilution, the more potent the remedy becomes.
 

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German chemist Kurt Geckeler and his colleague Shashadhar Samal stumbled on the effect while investigating fullerenes at their lab in the Kwangju Institute of Science and Technology in South Korea. They found that the football-shaped buckyball molecules kept forming untidy aggregates in solution, and Geckler asked Samal to look for ways to control how these clumps formed. What he discovered was a phenomenon new to chemistry. "When he diluted the solution, the size of the fullerene particles increased," says Geckeler. "It was completely counterintuitive," he says. Further work showed it was no fluke. To make the otherwise insoluble buckyball dissolve in water, the chemists had mixed it with a circular sugar-like molecule called a cyclodextrin. When they did the same experiments with just cyclodextrin molecules, they found they behaved the same way. So did the organic molecule sodium guanosine monophosphate, DNA and plain old sodium chloride.--Fred Pearce of University College London, who tried to repeat Benveniste's experiments, agrees. But it could offer some clues as to why other less dilute homeopathic remedies work, he says. Large clusters and aggregates might interact more easily with biological tissue.Chemist Jan Enberts of the University of Groningen in the Netherlands is more cautious. "It's still a totally open question," he says. "To say the phenomenon has biological significance is pure speculation." But he has no doubt Samal and Geckeler have discovered something new. "It's surprising and worrying," he says.The two chemists were at pains to double-check their astonishing results. Initially they had used the scattering of a laser to reveal the size and distribution of the dissolved particles. To check, they used a scanning electron microscope to photograph films of the solutions spread over slides. This, too, showed that dissolved substances cluster together as dilution increased. --"It doesn't prove homeopathy, but it's congruent with what we think and is very encouraging," says Peter Fisher, director of medical research at the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital.
 

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Partial extract from The Guardian 15.03.01"A consortium of four independent research laboratories in France, Italy, Belgium, and Holland, led by Professor M Roberfroid at Belgium's Catholic University of Louvain in Brussels, used a refinement of Benveniste's original experiment that examined another aspect of basophil activation. The team knew that activation of basophil degranulation by aIgE leads to powerful mediators being released, including large amounts of histamine, which sets up a negative feedback cycle that curbs its own release. So the experiment the pan-European team planned involved comparing inhibition of basophil aIgE-induced degranulation with "ghost" dilutions of histamine against control solutions of pure water. In order to make sure no bias was introduced into the experiment by the scientists from the four laboratories involved, they were all "blinded" to the contents of their test solutions. In other words, they did not know whether the solutions they were adding to the basophil-aIgE reaction contained ghost amounts of histamine or just pure water. But that's not all. The ghost histamine solutions and the controls were prepared in three different laboratories that had nothing further to do with the trial. The whole experiment was coordinated by an independent researcher who coded all the solutions and collated the data, but was not involved in any of the testing or analysis of the data from the experiment. Not much room, therefore, for fraud or wishful thinking. So the results when they came were a complete surprise. Three of the four labs involved in the trial reported a statistically significant inhibition of the basophil degranulation reaction by the ghost histamine solutions compared with the controls. The fourth lab gave a result that was almost significant, so the total result over all four labs was positive for the ghost histamine solutions. [...]"Despite my reservations against the science of homoeopathy," says Ennis, "the results compel me to suspend my disbelief and to start searching for a rational explanation for our findings." " http://www.guardian.co.uk/Archive/A...,4152521,00.htm
 

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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.f...3&dopt=Abstract Homeopathic vs conventional treatment of vertigo: a randomized double-blind controlled clinical study.Weiser M, Strosser W, Klein P.OBJECTIVE: To compare the efficacy and safety of a homeopathic remedy (Vertigoheel, Heel Inc, Albuquerque, NM) vs betahistine hydrochloride (active control) in the treatment of patients with vertigo of various origins in a confirmative equivalence trial. DESIGN: Randomized (1:1) double-blind controlled clinical trial. SETTING: Fifteen study centers (general practice) in Germany between November 1995 and November 1996. SUBJECTS: A total of 119 patients with vertigo of various origins CONCLUSIONS: Concerning the main efficacy variable, therapeutic equivalence between the homeopathic remedy and betahistine could be shown with statistical significance (confirmative analysis). Both remedies reduced the frequency, duration, and intensity of vertigo attacks during a 6-week treatment period. Also, vertigo-specific complaints were significantly reduced in both treatment groups.
 
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