MD, PhD, FMedSci, FSB, FRCP, FRCPEd

I reported previously on this blog that the Australian National Health and Medical Research Council (NH&MRC) has made the most thorough and independent assessment of homeopathy in the history of this form of alternative therapy. The report published at the time was preliminary, and further evidence from parties that were critical of it needed to be taken into account.

Today (11/3/2015), the NH&MRC has released its final report on homeopathy. In essence, it concluded that there is no scientific basis for homeopathy and no quality evidence of its efficacy.

The report is similar in its conclusions to the UK Government Science and Technology 2010 Report on Homeopathy.

The summary of the report sates the following:

Homeopathy should not be used to treat health conditions that are chronic, serious, or could become serious. People who choose homeopathy may put their health at risk if they reject or delay treatments for which there is good evidence for safety and effectiveness. People who are considering whether to use homeopathy should first get advice from a registered health practitioner. Those who use homeopathy should tell their health practitioner and should keep taking any prescribed treatments.

Professor Warwick Anderson, CEO of the Council, commented: “All medical treatments and interventions should be underpinned by reliable evidence. NH&MRC’s review shows that there is no good quality evidence to support the claim that homeopathy works better than a placebo.”
The report confirms what many scientific and public health experts have maintained since about 200 years, that not only does homeopathy not work, if it did, chemistry, physics and physiology could not.

“In short, the continued promotion of homeopathy would represent a commercial scam preying on the gullible,” said Professor John Dwyer AO, President of Friends of Science in Medicine (FSM), a non-industry aligned advocacy group for quality evidence in health. “Worse still, as a placebo therapy, harm may occur when it replaces effective therapies, as those given homeopathic treatments may wrongly think that they and their children are protected from serious infections,” he added.

The report emphasises that ‘People who choose homeopathy may put their health at risk, if they reject or delay treatments for which there is good evidence for safety and effectiveness’.

“With so many pressures on the Australian health dollar the Government must stop subsidising unproven alternative therapies such as homeopathy through student loans for homeopathy and similar courses,” said Professor Rob Morrison OAM, Co-Vice President of FSM, “The government should also not subsidise health funds offering cover for pseudoscientific electives of this kind,” said Professor Morrison. “The government should at least mandate that health funds offer a cheaper option that does not include ‘belief based’ therapies,” he said.

“It is completely unprofessional and unethical now for pharmacies to sell homeopathic products,” said Emeritus Professor Alastair MacLennan AO, Co-Vice President of FSM, “These products should now be removed from pharmacies and retail outlets”.

187 Responses to The final verdict on homeopathy: it’s a placebo

  • I can’t help but think of all the suffering this may help to prevent.

    Let’s hope the Australian government will do the honourable and courageous thing and get this junk out of the way, once and for all.

    And let’s hope other countries will then follow suit.

  • “The government should at least mandate that health funds offer a cheaper option that does not include ‘belief based’ therapies.”
    Quite so.
    The fact that governments in so many countries fund training in and practice of belief systems as if they have some value in healthcare is objectionable to those who do not share those beliefs.
    This ammounts to imposition of faiths and runs contrary to modern liberal democratic society.
    Courses in metaphysics and philosophy obviously cover faith, but that is not the same as promoting it.
    BMA policy for the UK is that homeopathic remedies should not be funded by the public purse unless and until NICE reports.
    With this Australian report, we can relieve NICE (and Prince Charles) of this responsibility.
    The test now will be to see to what extent the media make the public aware of these findings.
    To homeopaths I say this: “Get over it and move on.”
    Just as Greeks no longer spend the nights in Temples of Aesklapios with snakes crawling over them.
    The gods (which inspired Hahnemann) have had their day.
    End of.

  • “End of.”

    If only.
    In Europe homeopathy still have good day. I can’t help but cringe, being french, homeopathy is covered by social insurance. SO we paid for people using homeopathy to treat imaginary disease or worse : we pay for letting them take an imaginary remedie + a real medical remedie… Double the pain ! A now there is people that don’t understand why homeopathy is a waste.

  • One for Tredinnick… but he’ll pay no heed.

  • The pharmacists love them though. It seems from this article that they are happy to sell them as placebos. Strangely enough they are not labelled as such in their shops. “The Power of the mind is very powerful” so quoth the president of the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia: http://www.australiandoctor.com.au/news/latest-news/pharmacists-reluctant-to-give-up-homeopathic-produ?t=635617931564552986

  • I can’t help but laugh at your/others’ closed mindedness. Firstly, let me just tell you that I have a background in medicine and research and public health (so you don’t think I am a dumb layperson). I have gone on and on about evidence since I can remember. I still respect high quality ‘evidence’. 100 years ago, when we didn’t have our precious evidence on oh so many great things in the world, and knew not that smoking caused cancer, a doctor would probably not advice a smoker to stop because ‘there was NO evidence’. If a chain smoker then asked, doctor, do you think my lung problem is due to my smoking…the doctor would probably laugh and dismiss him…of course it’s not proven-there is NO evidence. But then methods were found, tests evolved, gold standards of ‘clinical trials’ were found and ‘evidence’ changed the world. Now, let’s demand that we have found it all. But do we really know HOW to find evidence PERFECTLY yet? We can’t even detect cancer cells until there are at least 3 million cells in the body and we because we don’t have evidence for cancer, we are calling that guy with 1 million cancer cells, disease free. Why? Of course, there is ‘no evidence’. Seriously, CAN WE demand something is NOT there or something DOES NOT work, because we have no ‘evidence’? Evidence on hypotheses is not only evolving every year, but hopefully we are learning new methods to learn ways of gathering evidence over time. Perhaps the methods of gathering evidence we use now are NOT perfect (hmm…did you think about that?). Perhaps we can start to actually understand how something works when we have more perfect test methods and assays. And is ‘epidemiological evidence’ 100% accurate? If you say yes, you will make me laugh again. And if you say no, then what YOU claim is ‘bullshit’ (just as the guardian wrote in relation to you and homeopathy). NEVER ever say something does not work JUST because you don’t have evidence. (And you being so knowledgeable should know this). Modern science is only a few hundred years old. It needs 1000s and not 100s of years to evolve and be ‘accurate’. HOW do you know 100 years from now we won’t perfect a test method/machine which detects and analyses HOW home0pathy works. How do you know homepaths are not going to laugh in your face 100s of years from now? Coming back to homeopathy: Home0pathy is a true PERSONALISED medicine. It doesn’t work like allopathics and can not be assessed in the way allopathics are assessd. I should imagine it will be EXTREMELY difficult to conduct accurately a clinical trial on more that a handful of patients (needing treatment by one doctor keeping the environment including diet the same for all patients). If with homeopathy, it’s difficult to conduct a proper trial on a large sample size, where is the evidence going to come from? So before dismissing something that you hardly understand, try to have the realisation that human capacity in science is negligible compared to what is needed to understand complex mechanisms of health and disease. (Exactly how many chemicals-homepathic- would you need to stimulate the body to help the immune system to fight the disease? Do you know? Do you know the pathway? Do you have the technology? Not really- you dont even know how many molecules are needed for biological path-way activation) Try to have an open mind if you think you even work in science. Let me leave you with a story (I have many if you want to hear): I am/was also a patient. When the world’s medicines based on great evidence could not cure me, I turned to homeopathy from my own aunt who is a homeopath since 1969 (no commercial interest as I didn’t pay her). And the ‘evidence’ for my swift recovery was so immediate that I returned to my surgeon for record keeping. (He was my 2nd one-top of career- after the 1st failed; and from Cambridge.) 3 days after he had declared that my state was so bad that he would not ‘touch me with a 10 feet pole’ (third biopsy) and that I was facing a minimum of 3 years, he was shocked to see me return with ‘evidence’ of huge improvement after only 3 days of homeopathy .He admitted that it was impossible for this to be ‘spontaneous’ [He was seeing me for almost a year]. He said he would ‘record this remarkable improvement due to homeopathy’. Finally after following me up on homepathy for 6 months, he decided to include this information in a paper on my rare disease and had already presented my case in an international conference with 4 slides on my homeopathic treatment. (I am now disease free while my internet forum mates who I had turned to for emotional support, are busy chopping off their breasts or suffering on with handfuls of antibiotics or steroids with side effects.) And this was a surgeon who thought homeopathy was ‘bullshit’.

    • Oh dear.

      You may well have a background in medicine, research and public health (and I certainly don’t think you are a ‘dumb layperson’), but you are certainly lacking in critical thinking skills.

      • Like what? Judging by that personal comment, I’m sure you have more critical thinking than me. So I’d like to hear some in relation to the topic. And I’m sure your background is more relevant than mine to make that comment. Those who blindly believe in what is presented to them are far from having anything near ‘critical thinking’. lol

    • You seem to be confusing “absence of evidence” with “evidence of absence”. You are correct that 100 years ago there was no evidence that smoking caused cancer. But that was because we hadn’t looked for it

      We now have a large amount of evidence that the differences reported by people who take homeopathic remedies are not due to the pills. We have not found a single condition for which there is quality evidence that homeopathic remedies have a effect.

      “It doesn’t work like allopathics and can not be assessed in the way allopathics are assessd. I should imagine it will be EXTREMELY difficult to conduct accurately a clinical trial on more that a handful of patients (needing treatment by one doctor keeping the environment including diet the same for all patients). ”
      You imagine incorrectly. It would be very simple. A homeopath or group of homeopaths sees patients under whatever conditions they define as “usual practice”, They make their diagnoses and write their prescriptions. The patient takes the prescription to the pharmacy. In the pharmacy, for each homeopathic remedy, there are two bottles, A and B. The pharmacist randomises the patients to group A or group B and dispenses the pills accordingly.

      After whatever time period the homeopath decides is appropriate, the patient is assessed by whatever method the homeopath thinks is the best possible measure of response to treatment – questionnaire about symptoms, physical measurement – whatever. It’s up to the homeopaths to choose the measurement; I wouldn’t want to interfere with the process. Every patient will have been allocated their holistic “PERSONALISED” prescription in a process which doesn’t interfere with patient/therapist interaction.

      We then break blind and see if Group A did better or worse or the same as Group B. One of the sets of bottles contained homeopathic remedies, as supplied by the homeopaths recommended supplier. The other contained dummy sugar pills which looked and tasted identical. If homeopathic remedies have any effect, the active group will perform differently yto the dummy group (if homeopaths are competent, it’ll be better. It would be interesting if the active group did worse – that would say “Homeopathy works, but you don’t know how to do it right!”).

      Wouldn’t be expensive, either. Any homeopathic institute should be able to run it for minimum cost and surely they’d have the confidence to do it and produce the Nobel-prize winning evidence that homeopathy works and that all of analytical chemistry is wrong (that’s the Medicine AND Chemistry Nobel prize fields up for grabs, possibly with Economics too).

      And yet they don’t. Why ever do you think that is?

      • Don’t you guys have better things to do than argue on the internet?? Busy for a few hours and now 10s of lengthy replies! So will waste my time too and humour you just today. You said: “now have a large amount of evidence that the differences reported by people who take homeopathic remedies are not due to the pills.” If you read my post carefully, I would not have to explain. My post was about what we call ‘evidence’.

        Yesterday there were bold guidelines about saturated fatty acids in relation to heart disease: don’t eat Sat fats, they will increased your risk of heart disease (based on that people have stopped eating butter, full fat dairies etc – but alas CVD has not decreased!oops). This great guideline was Based on the great scientific EVIDENCE. Sadly it seems the govt and health people have been wrongly advising us all this time!- all based on rubbish evidence. Well, now there is firstly ‘evidence’ that those guidelines were/are based on ‘insufficient’ evidence; and moreover there is current strong evidence from meta-analyses, other systematic reviews (from various world wide reliable groups) as well as current studies (with huge sample sizes)(e.g EPIC-CVD/data soon to be published) that the guidelines telling us that all saturated fatty acids increase risk of CVD is ‘bullshit’. So on other words ‘evidence’ changes with evolving knowledge (whether better studies, more results, or more accurate tests).

        Now, you have painfully tried to describe clinical trials which I have worked in and know exactly how they are done. Firstly you can’t have reliable/robust information from clinical trials with a small sample size and most homeopathy trials are not of adequate (sample) size. If you know statistics, you would know that for an effect to be statistically significant and for there to be strong evidence, there needs to be proper/robust epidemiological studies/trials e.g. with huge sample sizes. For example the studies (e.g. meta analysis) that overturned fatty acid guidelines recently have more than half a million sample/participant size (and each study pooled is selected ONLY when robust enough). If fatty acid trials were done say on small number of participants, due to many statistical errors, the results could have been null (no association like the majority of homeopathy trials) or association deviated to the wrong side (e.g. due to confounding).

        And by the term personalised medicine (as currently used), I meant that each individual will need different and adjustable dosing and even different medicine for the same disease, mainly because homeopathy work on the body (immune system I believe) to fight the disease rather than the disease itself. Much like a vaccine (where attenuated virus e.g. are given to produce immunity against the same live virus). Very different to allopathic med which relieve symptoms and/or kill pathogens etc. (Not every homeopath can manage the personalised treatment so efficiently as it’s not as simple as popping in the same pills at regular intervals for the same disease- exemplified in my own case when a white bearded 40 years experienced homeopath could do nothing at all for my incurable disease in contrast to my aunt, obviously who knows what she is doing). Anyhow, my main point is being lost in your translations and in your anti homeopathy colleagues who would rather swallow what is being said to them (media/silly reviews/inadequate studies). And I can’t be bothered wasting my time trying to convince biased people.

        • I can only conclude that you have read none of the clinical trials of individualised homeopathy. They consistently find no effect. Perhaps you should doebd some time reading instead of expelling more verbal diarrhoea on this site.

          You also overlook the fact that, regardless of the subtle methods that homeopaths claim to use, the effects that they claim are not subtle. Homeopathy supposedly ‘cures’ (strong word) all diseases in a reliable and consistent fashion. That would be an enormously strong signal that would show up easily in trials. It does not. You are wrong.

          If homeopathy must, by definition, be individualised are the over-the-counter homeopathic products fraudulent even trough your own blinkered view of the world?

        • Autocorrect fail;

          I can only conclude that you have read none of the clinical trials of individualised homeopathy. They consistently find no effect. Perhaps you should SPENd some time reading instead of expelling more verbal diarrhoea on this site.

        • Much like a vaccine…

          Nope, nothing like a vaccine.

          A vaccine contains specific antigens to the disease-causing entity, which primes the immune system to react to an infection.

          The principle of homoeopathy is that disease can be treated, not by an attenuated form of its cause, but by something that causes symptoms similar to those suffered by the patient. The remedy will not be made from the causative entitiy, and so will not carry the antigens needed for the immune response.

          Before you lecture people about homoeopathy and vaccines, you should probably find out a little about how vaccines work, what homoeopathy claims, and the difference between homoeopathy and isopathy.

        • OK, I have some time so let’s pick apart some more nonsense.

          Well, now there is firstly ‘evidence’ that those guidelines were/are based on ‘insufficient’ evidence; and moreover there is current strong evidence from meta-analyses, other systematic reviews (from various world wide reliable groups) as well as current studies (with huge sample sizes)(e.g EPIC-CVD/data soon to be published) that the guidelines telling us that all saturated fatty acids increase risk of CVD is ‘bullshit’. So on other words ‘evidence’ changes with evolving knowledge (whether better studies, more results, or more accurate tests).
          Now, you have painfully tried to describe clinical trials which I have worked in and know exactly how they are done. Firstly you can’t have reliable/robust information from clinical trials with a small sample size and most homeopathy trials are not of adequate (sample) size. If you know statistics, you would know that for an effect to be statistically significant and for there to be strong evidence, there needs to be proper/robust epidemiological studies/trials e.g. with huge sample sizes. For example the studies (e.g. meta analysis) that overturned fatty acid guidelines recently have more than half a million sample/participant size (and each study pooled is selected ONLY when robust enough). If fatty acid trials were done say on small number of participants, due to many statistical errors, the results could have been null (no association like the majority of homeopathy trials) or association deviated to the wrong side (e.g. due to confounding).

          You completely confuse several different things.

          Observational studies never provide conclusive proof of anything precisely because they have no controls.

          But there are circumstances where the question is important and we cannot conceivably manage a controlled study. Looking for infrequent events from lifestyle factors is one such. So, we obtain data from large populations and try to control for known confounders to look for a small signal. If different lines of evidence converge then it is likely the hypothesis is valid. But we may still have overlooked an unidentified confounder that would render spurious an apparently positive result.

          Homeopathy is not like this. Homeopaths claim dramatic reliable biological effects that are so powerful that they show up in daily routine clinical practice. The claimed effects are not infrequent. The claimed effects are also often on a continuously measurable scale which opens up whole avenues of statistical methods that are closed to investigators where each patient represents a single binary end-point (alive/dead) and the methods devolve to counting patients rather than measuring continuous variables. Methods for examining continuous variables can manage with much smaller numbers of patients to find effects. In small studies we do indeed suffer from the problem of unidentified confounders creating false positives, but this flaw tends only to add (false) weight to the claimed evidence in favour of homeopathy not against it, which is why we ask for reasonably sized studies to avoid false positives. However, there is not the same issue with false negatives. Homeopaths do not claim a tiny effect that only shows up on average across millions of people. They take money every day from individual people by claiming they can affect that individual with great reliability. Only a small study, if properly performed, is necessary to show such a strong effect. The overwhelmingly negative trial literature is, as Pat Harkin has said, not absence of evidence it is evidence of absence.

          Homeopathy is a dud. Get a proper job.

        • S. Chaudhary gave the classic example of the “butter” as a culprit and today there are papers saying butter is even a preventive diet.
          It is a pity that with so many real life health challenges and no answers by scientists yet, the “Allopathic” doctors are trying to close the doors on areas. The entire argument is to disprove that Homeopathy is a DUD. Where are the studies and papers trying to understand how homeopathy works, what is the concept based on, how it is successful practised by a few homeopaths and not by other homeopaths ? Where is the study establishing the relationship between the medicine and the homeopath?
          Doctors had also refuted claims from Ayurveda, Yoga and such. But silently trying to understand and include them as their prescriptions. What could be the reason for all this but just ego – Their way of science is superior.
          Sorry folks, with all due respect – the Doctors today just consider the success they have. As for failures, they never ponder. And when somebody treats the case they have rejected, they feel offended. Show one doctor or scientist who took such an instance to further their study and knowledge ?
          Where is the remedy for “Staph” or the Super Bug ? Oh ! lets leave it to the pharmas to work out a stronger antibiotic and the doctors to prescribe.
          In India even today, antibiotics are prescribed and used rampantly. So is the indian medical science different ?

          • Suresh said:

            S. Chaudhary gave the classic example of the “butter” as a culprit and today there are papers saying butter is even a preventive diet.

            Preventative of what?

            It is a pity that with so many real life health challenges and no answers by scientists

            Yes, there is much we don’t know. As Dara O’Briain said: “If science knew everything, it’d stop”.

            yet, the “Allopathic” doctors are trying to close the doors on areas.

            Which area and why?

            The entire argument is to disprove that Homeopathy is a DUD.

            We know homeopathy is a dud because it’s been tested and when you take the best, most robust, most independent, least biased of those tests, they show homeopathy has no specific effects over placebo.

            Where are the studies and papers trying to understand how homeopathy works, what is the concept based on, how it is successful practised by a few homeopaths and not by other homeopaths ?

            First, show that homeopathy works…

            That’s like asking whether the diversity in pixies at the bottom of my garden matches the diversity in the human population.

            Where is the study establishing the relationship between the medicine and the homeopath?

            We already know that: the patient encounter with a homeopathy induces some non-specific placebo effects, many of which are harmful.

            Doctors had also refuted claims from Ayurveda, Yoga and such. But silently trying to understand and include them as their prescriptions. What could be the reason for all this but just ego

            First, provide evidence…

            Their way of science is superior.

            Glad you agree.

            Sorry folks, with all due respect – the Doctors today just consider the success they have. As for failures, they never ponder. And when somebody treats the case they have rejected, they feel offended. Show one doctor or scientist who took such an instance to further their study and knowledge ?
            Where is the remedy for “Staph” or the Super Bug ? Oh ! lets leave it to the pharmas to work out a stronger antibiotic and the doctors to prescribe.
            In India even today, antibiotics are prescribed and used rampantly. So is the indian medical science different ?

            Sorry. I’ve just lost the will to answer your remaining nonsense.

          • Alan

            I thought that was an excellent effort on your part, but like you my brain finally melted with that last incoherent and ignorant paragraph.

            I suspect its author has only the haziest notion of what a bacterium is.

          • Thanks, Simon. It’s a typical example of the sloppy and, frankly, incoherent thinking I find all too often.

          • @Suresh

            Where is the remedy for “Staph” or the Super Bug ? Oh ! lets leave it to the pharmas to work out a stronger antibiotic and the doctors to prescribe.

             
            As a microbiologist I am always annoyed by descriptions of antibiotics as ‘strong’, ‘stronger’ or ‘strongest’. Please will someone explain how this property is measured? If an antibiotic inhibits the growth of a microbe that’s infecting a patient, it’s done its job. Sure, you can quantify minimal inhibitory concentrations and suggest that antibiotic A is more potent than B against a particular isolate, but does that translate to its effect in the patient, where pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic properties become of greatest importance, and antibiotic B may easily turn out to be more effective in the patient than antibiotic A.
             
            Drug company salesmen often bang on about how the effects of their particular antibiotic is bactericidal rather than bacteristatic, yet even this difference, measurable in a test tube, seldom shows up in a treated patient.
             
            And another thing… although, sadly, one sees claims of the efficacy of homeopathy and other snakeoil therapies against infectious diseases, by and large I get the impression that quacktitioners play down their witchcraft in these indications, probably because proven infections are among the most clear-cut examples to serve as test beds for snakeoil efficacy. Any fan of homeopathy here want to take on a prosepctive, randomized, double-blind trial of homeopathy vs. antibiotic for Gram-negative septicaemia? How many years are you willing to spend in jail for murder?

    • Home0pathy is a true PERSONALISED medicine. It doesn’t work like allopathics and can not be assessed in the way allopathics are assessd.

      Interesting. So what is your opinion of people who sell homoepathics in shops and online, with no or very minimal interaction with the customer? Do you think you can accurately prescribe via an online questionnaire-like consultation?

      • Please read the last para of my reply above to Pat. My answer to your question is, I personally don’t think you can accurately prescribe homeopathy online or over counter, because it didn’t work for me. I think there are some useless homeopaths out there who give homeopathy a bad name. And that can be one reason why some studies are unsuccessful. In homeopathy you can’t afford to have a doctor who doesn’t know what they are doing (as in mainstream medicine of course). I wasted 100s of pounds on a homeopath whose treatment did nothing for me. But then as I said true homeopathy which works isn’t as easy as mainstream medicine.

        If a patient has a chest infection I give some specific antibiotics which kill the pathogen and it’s usually done and dusted (nevertheless with side effects most of which is not even evident but weakens the immune system surely). A true homeopathy will give tiny amounts of medicine and will have to adjust dosing as per reaction of the person. It’s like giving an antigen that the body responds to. If the medication is too much in quantity, the disease process may get worse and thus the dosing needs to be adjusted to suit the tolerance of the person. We don’t know the exact mechanisms today, but one day we will have the technology and knowledge to understand it. Until then, dismiss nothing. If something didn’t work, it would be extinct by now (evolution theory?). But homeopathy is far from becoming extinct and running hundreds of years.

        • If a patient has a chest infection I give some specific antibiotics which kill the pathogen and it’s usually done and dusted

          Please don’t stop doing this, but it does display the usual moral cowardice of homeopaths who know they can resort to real medicine for real diseases.

          Hard-core homeopaths don’t do this. Their patients follow the natural history of their disease and if it is a serious disease they will die.
          I’ll let you read the story of Penrlope Dingle in your own time.

        • Homeopathy is not extinct because (a) it’s harmless in and of itself, and (b) it comes bundled with a belief system which allows proponents to be blind to its failures. This includes, for instance, the false concept of “allopathy” which allows believers to hold a view that, like homeopathy, conventional medicine has made no progress in 200 years. And the notion that “provings” on healthy people do anything at all to establish efficacy on the afflicted. And the very notion that actual, useful knowledge of *anything* arises from practices deeply rooted in belief (both current and historical) and wishful thinking, while completely disregarding quality of methodology and actual evidence.
          It’s quite clear that homeopaths don’t really care to know if homeopathy actually works, in the same way that Ken Ham clearly doesn’t care to know the actual age of the Earth. They just believe. There are many, many obvious things homeopaths could and would be doing if they did care – such as what Pat Harkin has described. And you never hear of any of these things happening. For instance, as far as I know, there has never been a “proving” with a negative outcome. Have you actually thought about what that means? Given the wide range of substances which have been “proved”, it makes a very clear statement about the validity of the “proving” process. But I’m not too hopeful that any homeopath will be able to see that.

        • A few antibiotics kill pathogens. Most are bacteriostatic — they inhibit growth of new microbial cells. Do you really have a medical background?

        • @S Chowdhury

          A true homeopathy will give tiny amounts of medicine and will have to adjust dosing as per reaction of the person. It’s like giving an antigen that the body responds to.

          I thought you and your buddy Amin had gone to great lengths writing up proof that the workings of homeopathy were mediated by some kind of electromagnetic forces but did not need rely on “tiny amounts of medicine”, admitting the fact that there are none left in the classical remedies? Are you back to denying the Avogadro constant?

          • Strike that.
            It was a fellow named Chakraborty together with Amin who were jumping through loops trying to concoct an explanation that homeopathy relied on eectromagnetic forces . Similar name and my middle aged mind playing tricks on me. My bad.

    • Oh, the ‘keep an open mind’ fallacy – suggests a religious adherence to what you practice. That you endorse pseudoscience despite a scientific background is worrying.

      I’m afraid your analogy of causal evidence for disease is flawed. Homeopaths/homeopathy adherents claim curative evidence for disease – and time and again it is exposed.

      How does epidemiology apply to homeopathy, when, as you claim homeopathy is ‘PERSONALISED’.? And by the way, homeopathy is not a system of ‘medicine’ – it can’t be, because its ‘remedies’ contain no medical agent.

      (‘Allopathics’ is a nonsense term.)

      Are you solely of the RCT-rejecting homeopathy bent; or do you happily flag up trials when they are deemed positive?
      Why is always a resort of homeopathy zealots that those who criticise and challenge it are, by default, ignorant?

      Your personal testimonial has absolutely no relevance or value.

      • Read my reply to Pat for answers to most of your questions. Your claim that you are certain that homeopathy ‘contains no medical agents’. How do you know that? How do you know 50 years from now, we can have an instrument/method which does just that (and when logic goes beyond Avogadros number). When people could not see beyond a cell under the microscope, they made closed minded comments like yours. Guess what, since then we found molecules, atoms, electrons and way much more. If a more forward thinking person laughed at the guy with the microscope then, not only the guy with the microscope, but the majority of the gullible people of the world would have laughed at him agreeing that there is nothing beyond a cell. Such narrow mentality will get us nowhere. Science is still in it’s infancy. Wake up.

        • when logic goes beyond Avogadros number). When people could not see beyond a cell under the microscope, they made closed minded comments like yours. Guess what, since then we found molecules, atoms, electrons and way much more.

          Did you miss the part of your course when Avogadro’s number was explained?

        • ‘Don’t you guys have better things to do than argue on the internet??’… ‘And I can’t be bothered wasting my time trying to convince biased people.’
          Then why are you here?

          Your repeated use of ‘allopathic’ indicates your cult-like reverence for Hahnemann. How do I know homeopathic ‘remedies’ contain no active ingredient? Mathematics and chemistry are pretty useful here. But if you are postulating that they contain something currently undetectable (unlike vaccines, to which you erringly compare) then you make things very pseudoscientifically complicated for yourself and your current claim that such ‘remedies’ work – for which you present no evidence now, despite your carping on about the need for it.

          But you never answered whether it is you who claims to have ‘… cured many difficult rather almost incurable diseases with the use of 50 millesimal, i.e. LM potency’? Is
          this you? Or this? If not you, then I cannot ask whether you have published the scientific evidence (yes, that important thing you mention repeatedly) that justifies ‘LM potency [treatment] of patients suffering from incurable diseases like AIDS, Brain tumor, Cancer, Rheumatism, Glaucoma, Psoriasis, Multiple Sclerosis, Irritable Bowl Syndromes and Different Mental Problems and so.’ And I cannot ask whether you are fool or fraud.

          • From your first link comes this essential and slightly worrying instruction;

            Send the cheque or bank draft to Dr. Choudhury and intimate him through email.

          • Is it established that “our” S Chowdhury is the on-line S Chowdhury?

          • No. And the spelling is different, though that may not matter.

          • Oh, it’s in the second linked page as well;

            Send the cheque or bank draft to Dr. Choudhury and intimate him through email.

            Stylish. Not.

          • Aye. And, if it is his site, makes his statement above:

            ‘I personally don’t think you can accurately prescribe homeopathy online…’

            hypocritical. But… huge country, massive population, many in poverty without access to proper medical care, a proportion of which are ripe for exploitation by elements among the large number of homeopaths in India… among which may be several named ‘S. Chowdhury/Choudhury’ (the spelling differs on those same pages on that site). So, it probably isn’t him. But then I would be interested in whether he endorses the claims made on that (and other such) site(s) – as his statements here would seem to suggest – or whether he rejects them. And on what basis?

    • We can’t even detect cancer cells until there are at least 3 million cells in the body
      Which form of which cancer does this apply to? Does this apply to all types of diagnostic method in all cancers?
      “Modern science is only a few hundred years old. It needs 1000s and not 100s of years to evolve and be ‘accurate’.”
      How do you know this?
      Homeopathy is a true PERSONALISED medicine. It doesn’t work like allopathics and can not be assessed in the way allopathics are assessd.
      (Yawn) Oh yes it can; there are perfectly good approaches to proving whether or not ‘holistic’ treatments achieve anything — you’ll find at least two among comments elsewhere on this site. This old chestnut is truly the least impressive argument.
      Exactly how many chemicals-homepathic- would you need to stimulate the body to help the immune system to fight the disease?
      One: water. That’s all it is, for heaven’s sake.
      When the world’s medicines based on great evidence could not cure me, I turned to homeopathy from my own aunt who is a homeopath since 1969 (no commercial interest as I didn’t pay her). And the ‘evidence’ for my swift recovery was so immediate that I returned to my surgeon for record keeping. (He was my 2nd one-top of career- after the 1st failed; and from Cambridge.)
      Argument from personal experience, a.k.a. anecdote, plus the post hoc fallacy, followed by argument from authority.
      There are 7 billion people on the planet. If you have any kind of feel for what a huge number that is, you’ll surely comprehend how it is that so many people have strong, unshakeable experiences (mainly religious but a lot involving disease resolution), particularly given the inherent unreliability of the human brain to interpret experiences by self deception.

      • Your remarks have been answered in my other replies.

        One specific thing in your post is about anecdotal evidence. I’ll just ask something: if you used a treatment and it didn’t work, would you use it again, recommend it or advocate for it? What would happen to the treatment if most people did not benefit from it? Would it still be there after 100s of years?

        Do you know why inspite of the ‘lack of epidemiological evidence’ that scientists so desire, and in spite of people like you underestimating and insulting homeopathy, why millions of people continue to use it and believe in it (for the past 200 years)? No not because it gives them ‘placebo effect’ (placebos btw logically cannot cure diseases-monitored by tests- though they can reduce pain) but because it cures them. The millions of anecdotal evidence (case reports) that it has worked for millions of people world wide, are a fact and these are supporting evidence for homeopathy. Not everything needs to be proven epidemiologically to be credited as a ‘fact’. Because, sorry to say but (given the right doctor and dosing) homeopathy works and that’s why it is here to stay, no matter who says what! You can waste your breath but as long as homeopathy works, we will all use it.

        • if you used a treatment and it didn’t work, would you use it again, recommend it or advocate for it?
          Possibly not. But few medical therapies are 100% successful. If that treatment had been shown by dispassionate, rigourous scientific study to work in, say, 80% of patients, I’d write off my own failure as one of the 20%.
           
          What would happen to the treatment if most people did not benefit from it? Would it still be there after 100s of years?
          I’d rewrite that sentence with the words “…some people did not benefit from it.” To judge from the many screwball ideas that persist in all walks of life, it doesn’t necessarily require a huge number of people to keep the ideas going for many years. Hundreds of years is nothing compared with the thousands of years large numbers of people have believed in gods and other superstitions.
           
          Your remarks have been answered in my other replies.
          I have searched your posts carefully and cannot find any answer to the following questions.
           
          From where does your statement that “We can’t even detect cancer cells until there are at least 3 million cells in the body” come? To which forms of which cancers does this apply? Does it apply to all diagnostic approaches for all forms of cancer?
           
          What is your evidence that it takes thousands of years, not hundreds of years, for science to evolve and be ‘accurate’? Why not hundreds of thousands of years, or even more? Why not a few hundred years? Why not just a few years when it comes to devising, say methods for accurately drawing a right angle?
           
          You emphasize your medical background but your comments suggest medical ignorance (that’s a word with a specific meaning; it is not meant pejoratively or ad hominem). You certainly seem wont to pull definitive remarks out of thin air.

        • I’ll just ask something: if you used a treatment and it didn’t work, would you use it again, recommend it or advocate for it? What would happen to the treatment if most people did not benefit from it? Would it still be there after 100s of years?

          If you asked as Aztec at the height of their civilisation whether human sacrifice was necessary to keep the Sun rising would they have insisted that they had hundreds of years history to support it?
          Stupid things can persist for a long time especially ehen its practitioners have neither to motivation nor the intellectual tools to examine their own beliefs and you have given us a tour de force display of the ways homeopaths excuse their trade from objective testing.

        • “What would happen to the treatment if most people did not benefit from it? Would it still be there after 100s of years? ”

          Cargo cultism.
          Walking under ladders
          Vampires & zombies
          Blood letting
          Spilling salt
          First-footing

          Human history is STUFFED with examples of things people were SURE were true – until we looked at them properly. And that includes conventional medicine! We don’t often blood-let these days. We don’t believe in humours. But at the time people were absolutely convinced they were right. When we looked properly – these things were found to be imaginary. And every time we look at acupuncture properly, it stops working.

          Are acupuncturists like the guy in Mystery Men who could become invisible – but only if nobody was looking?

        • “The millions of anecdotal evidence (case reports) that it has worked for millions of people world wide, are a fact and these are supporting evidence for homeopathy. ”

          If the fact that a lot of people believe in homeopathy is to be taken as a reason to accept it works, then can I assume you also believe in the usefulness of acupuncture, Reiki, aura manipulation, ley lines, reflexology, feng shui, moxibustion, prayer, remote viewing, telepathy, alien abduction, that the earth is hollow, the moon is an alien spaceship, demonic possession, werewolves, Fox News is reliable, vampires, the moon landings were faked (obviously, as the moon is alien spaceship), Hitler escaped to South America and was cloned, zombies, Elvis is still alive and the Queen of England is an alien lizard.

          Do any of those have less supporting evidence than homeopathy? (Ah, spotted one – Fox News. Scrub that one.)

        • Sorry for butting in so late, do you remember a MR Steve Jobs ( ex ceo of Apple ) modern medicine promised him a 90% survival rate if he allowed them to treat him, alas he opted for Homeopathy, we all know what happened, Homeopathy FAILED him.

    • I don’t know if you are physician or whatever, but you have no clue on how science work obviously.
      Homeopathy have been studied for more than one hundred years and nothing come out of this : no significant clinical effect beyond placebo response, no mecanism that could explain how it work (at biological, physical or chemical point of view). It’s based on belief of god (shaking with the bible etc) and poor understanding of chemistry. It’s not that there is ‘no evidence’, we got lot of evidence… Lot of negative evidence for homeopathy.

      Then, you are taking poor exemple. Yes smoking was considered harmless for a while, but when we got a clue that it may not be the case, tons of studies highlighted the risk of cancer in few years. And all the paradigm shifted. Yet, the homeopathy have such a resilience to science… Even with all the studies showing that’s bullshit, we still have people like you, stuck in the stone age, drenched in cognitive dissonance, under hard dunning kruger effect who believe that they know, they know that studies are wrong, that scientist got a ‘closed mind’. Oh, and you come with the little story of ‘how homeopathy saved my life’ too. Cool story man, I can tell you how homeopathy never helped me or anyone I know. This is straight bullshit.

      And of course we got the ‘homeopathy can’t be tested anyway, because wathever gobbeldigook mumbo jumbo’.
      Two things :
      – If homeopathy have effect (like claimed) we should see clinical effect beyond placebo even if we don’t understand why. But it’s not the case at all. (And there is LOT of clinical trial and meta-analyse)
      – If the homeopathic effect is so subtle that we can’t assess it, why claim that it can help people ?

      So pick one. Choose wisely. Keep in mind that, in any case, you are wrong.

      • We have been studying the universe for hundreds of years to too, and know almost nothing compared to what there is to know. So let’s first admit that our knowledge about everything is minuscule compared to what the real truth is. So let’s not be narrow minded and think that our methods for gathering evidence is perfect and can reveal information which should be blindly believed in (see Pat’s reply in relation to recent ‘evidence’ about saturated fatty acids and heart disease).

        “you have no clue on how science work obviously.” and you obviously don’t know or admit that we still are understanding science, and we have a long way to go before we can dismiss something based on science (which is still evolving) and that you can’t get ‘evidence’ when the method is inappropriate (small study sample/ homeopathy being more complex than mainstream medicine). See my reply to Pat and others as I can’t be bothered rewriting all that again.

        • And in reply to your last few para: inspite of the fact that majority of the scientific community and people like you are closed minded and blindly believe in these poor study (e.g. low sample size) results and reviews based on those, millions of people are everyday being cured by homeopathy and those people will continue to return to homeopathy. My only question is, if you had paracetamol (or any medication) and saw no benefit, would you have it again for your ailment, advice people or it or advocate for it? What would happen to paracetamol if the majority in the world did not benefit from it? Would doctors prescribe it over 100s of years, or would it be ‘extinct’ /a thing of the past? Don’t make me laugh by comparing it to religion. Every time one prays they may get meditative benefits, but if my child gets ill (croup) and I give homeopathy and it doesn’t work (e.g.child suffocates) while I have access to mainstream medicine, why on earth would I give homeopathy a second time?

          Obviously if there were no actual benefits, homeopathy would have died by now (assisted by people like you). Lots of different therapies are not in use anymore (e.g. using voodoo). But do you know why you will never win and homeopathy will live on (as you rightly fear)? Because it bloody works (given a good doctor/right dosing).

          And what makes you think that ‘case evidence’ is not evidence? There are millions of case/patient evidences (like mine and recognised by medical specialist). [ And like when I was almost being operated on due to 50+ large gall bladder stones and homeopathy ‘miraculously’ dissolved them in 3 months- ultrasound findings; and when my colleague’s infertile patient with fibroid tumour refused surgery revealed no fibroid after 2 months homeopathy and got pregnant soon after? When my daughter ends up in A and E with croup unless given homeopathy. Homeopaths can give endless case evidence of such types] Yes, we yet don’t have strong “epidemiological” evidence, you are so keen for, but it doesn’t mean, we won’t in the future, when the technology/method is appropriate to find the ‘miracle particles in the water’ and the so desirable “significant” associations! One size does not fit all, we don’t know enough, and smart people should realise that .

          • Science is not only knowledge, it’s METHOD. It’s what i’m talking about when i tell you that you know nothing about science. Scientific method is not single anecdote because we know the bias that it can bring. Of course we can discard thing that is not showing to work with science, we do this everyday (how many drug are screened, how many get past clinical trial ?). But homoopathy is big money and harmless (it’s sugar), so there are the only reasons why this shit is still in the place.

            You still miss the point. You are claiming that ‘million of people are healed by homeopathy’, but no one is able to show that. How is this even possible ? ? ? Tons of people are treated but not a single GOOD trial ? With big pharma like Boiron with billion of dollar to drive it ? Are you just out of your mind ?
            Why there is even ‘normal’ pharma if homeopathy work ? I mean, it’s way cheaper than running research for new drugs ! Why the dumb pharma are not doing sugar pill only ? But like is said, you are just drenched in anecdotal evidence, missing the obvious : If it worked, why no one can report a STRONG clinical effect ? It work on people with no control over their daily diet or sleep (or anything else) but it can’t work when scientist test it ? Well well, it’s FAITH.

            “Homeopaths can give endless case evidence of such types”

            YOU BET ! It’s the only thing they can get, because otherwise they would get a nobel prize for this discovery. You are a joke. You have no proof to bring, call everyone ‘narrow minded’ and can’t answer an obvious question :
            – Homeopathy cure lot of disease, why no one can show it ?
            And i’m not even talking about how it work. I don’t want someone to show me ‘miracle particule in the water’, just a controlled trial with a clinical effec. Think for a time : homeopathy heal in everyday life, ok, so the set up for a trial is fairly easy, what are the technology we are missing to assess this ? Answer this one i’m very curious.

          • “homeopathy heal in everyday life, ok, so the set up for a trial is fairly easy, what are the technology we are missing to assess this ? Answer this one i’m very curious.”

            Ok, my last reply, since you are ‘very curious’. I will again give my case as example and show why it would be difficult to do a meticulously conducted large clinical trial WHEN they is proper homeopathy treatment being conducted. You would have to be patient reading through this.

            For my rare and incurable debilitating condition (signs: inflammatory/recurrent abscess with multiple discharging sinsus- which had autoimmune responses- was off work for 6 months and I could not stand up- failed medical treatment for 1 year), firstly, I was prescribed (by my homeopath aunt) to have a specific diet (easily digestible and low in nutrients and no supplements) which was extremely hard for me to follow, then I was given drops of medicine that needed to be diluted in large and measured quantities of distilled water and if there was an ‘excess dose- say two drops instead of one- my inflammation soared and immediately after adjusting the dose (e.g. diluting again), my inflammation would reduce. The target was to keep my inflammation to minimum by adjusting doses, if necessary twice a day. If the symptoms increased due to increased medication, I would often have off days until symptoms subsided (too much homeopathy in high potency can increase the disease symptoms). Gradually over time (3 months) the lump completely disappeared and inflammation and oozing completely disappeared (leaving a lot of scarring); I returned to work healthy in time as otherwise I would have lost my job. My surgeon recorded improvements with clinical examination every 15 days (astounded and amazed everytime) as well as by ultrasound. (Similarly my daughter’s croup is controlled with adjustable homeopathy dosing and strict diet> with the croup flaring should there be excess dosing)

            Now, for a clinical trial, you would ideally need patients all under the same doctor (my aunt preferably!), in a clinic where she can monitor all patients and give them the same diet and adjust their dosing (this is personalised medicine). And how many patients would you need for a robust trial? I can’t imagine such a meticulous large sized trial happening.

          • Did you ever get a name for your “rare and incurable debilitating condition”? I assume you did, or you wouldn’t know it was “incurable”, would you? The first time you mentioned this, I got the impression you were talking about a malignacy, this time it sounds more like hidradenitis or possibly cutaneous endometriosis. Would you mind sharing with us?

          • “Yes, we yet don’t have strong “epidemiological” evidence, you are so keen for, but it doesn’t mean, we won’t in the future,”

            This is truly wonderful. “We have no evidence but we might some day” is presented as a reason to decide clinical practice?

            The obvious question is why homeopathy with it’s AMAZING cures can’t produce evidence, whereas conventional therapies which only produce an improvement of a few % can.

          • You are a fraud bilking gullible people into giving you money for bogus treatments that are 100% worthless. Have you no shame? Homeopathy has never helped anyone, studies have conclusively proven that it has no value and its practitioners are all con-artists.

        • Ah, the old “We don’t know everything about the universe so you can’t know my nonsense isn’t true.”

          Yes.

          Yes, we can.

          The capacity of the human mind for self-delusion is the only thing I know bigger than the known universe.

          • So it’s entirly possible to do a clinical trial with what we know, no need to go full ‘we don’t know universe, we can’t assess homeopathy blablabla’.
            So, you are telling me that every MILLION of people healed by homeopathy are all on restricted diet ? Do you really believe that ? How do you know that it’s not diet that helped you but the homeopathy then ? See how personnal story mean nothing ? You can’t exclude the counfounder.
            But anyway, there is lot of studies about the effect of different diet on a plethora of disease, so why not add homeopathy into that ? It’s not “impossible” at all, it’s feasible, and we already do it for number of other habbit (smoking, drinking etc…). You are just hidding behind this because you don’t want to see the obvious : two hundred years of study, HUGE (very huge) effect claimed by homeopath, and still no result (not even tiny). You are just dismissing clear-cut result because of one self-deluting personnal experience.
            You don’t even need to be a genius in medicine/biology (because if you were, you would know that homeopathy is bullshit) to understand that it’s shaked water ! For god’s sake : SHAKED WATER. People have taken ultra diluted high potency of deadly poison and nothing happened. Every water in the world should be ‘contaminated’ by something nasty, how do you explain that no one is dying straight ?

          • Dear Dr Chowdhury, may I ask again – what was this “For my rare and incurable debilitating condition”? It would also be very useful if you could give us the references of the paper your surgeon published and the conferences at which he made his presentation. If you don’t know the exact title of the journal or conference, the full name of the surgeon, the rough date, where he was working at the time and the name of your condition will be enough for me to find it in PubMed or MedLine.

        • Only fantastists sucxh as yourself assert about what we do not know. Scientists work on the edge of what we do know.

          We know that homeopathy has no effect beyond placebo. We also know why people can be fooled into confusing cause and effect. Thus we know how scam treatments such as homeopathy survive.

    • so you don’t think I am a dumb layperson

      That patronising little remark is quite informative but not in the way you think it is.

      What it tells us is that everything which follows will be an argument from supposed personal authority and laypeople should bow before your brilliance.

      There is a nasty little core of paternalism in homeopathy and other SCAM therapies whereas real medicine has put a lot of effort in trying to free itself from that insidious tendency.

      • S. Chowdhury

        I’m not sure you are accessible via rational argument, but let me try.

        If a “dumb layperson” says the Earth is round and presents a raft of evidence, but a maverick physicist says it is flat and insists he just knows it, who should we believe?

        For me, the fact that you may be a doctor is worrying not reassuring.

    • @S Chowdhury

      NEVER ever say something does not work JUST because you don’t have evidence.

      We do have evidence, and it points to homoeopathy not working. See the results of the NHMRC review, for example. The trouble is that homoeopaths and their apologists claim that something works when they don’t have evidence that it does, and in the face of all the available evidence.

      Modern science is only a few hundred years old. It needs 1000s and not 100s of years to evolve and be ‘accurate’.

      Congratulations! You just used a computer to post a claim that science doesn’t work on the internet.

      It doesn’t work like allopathics and can not be assessed in the way allopathics are assessd.

      That is tantamount to an admission that homoeopathic treatments don’t work. All controlled trials (“the way allopathics are assessd”) do is to detect the difference between outcomes for grops given different courses of treatment, for example one group given homoeopathy and another given a placebo. If there is a difference in outcome it can be detected by RCTs. If there is no difference then homoeopathy doesn’t work. It’s as simple as that, and all the special pleading and handwaving in the world won’t change it.

      If with homeopathy, it’s difficult to conduct a proper trial on a large sample size…

      It isn’t. All you need do is allow the homoeopath to go through their shenanigans with both groups of patients, and then give one group the prescribed homoeopathic remedy and the other group a placebo. It is very easy to produce a convincing placebo for a homoeopathic remedy because the remedy is indistinguishable from the stock solvent or sugar pill that it is claimed to be carried on.

      He admitted that it was impossible for this to be ‘spontaneous’ [He was seeing me for almost a year]. He said he would ‘record this remarkable improvement due to homeopathy’. Finally after following me up on homepathy for 6 months, he decided to include this information in a paper on my rare disease and had already presented my case in an international conference with 4 slides on my homeopathic treatment.

      Oh good. You’ll be able to provide references to where this was published. That’ll be a first for homoeopathic anecdotes, I think.

    • Hay muchas evidencias que el discurso oficial escinde en favor de los intereses de las compañías farmacéuticas. O de cualquier otra industria. Retomando lo del cigarro los médicos de los 50 s aseguraban y anunciaban públicamente que el cigarro no causaba siquiera irritación.

  • And by the way, if you don’t publish my post, I will write to the newspapers how transparent you are, along with my post.

      • At least he did post it…I was beginning to think he only publishes posts that only support him..so that post was rather useful, I should think! I hate science/scientists with a narrow view.

        • “I was beginning to think he only publishes posts that only support him.”

          You’ve not looked at the acupuncture thread, I take it?

          • I don’t read his blog. I only came here to post my initial text to him after reading a tweet by guardian (where they call homeopathy ‘bullshit’) in relation to his viewpoints.

          • So you think making threats is a good way to open a dialogue, rather than a little further reading?

        • No, you hate scientists who call you out. Is it you claims to have ‘cured many difficult rather almost incurable diseases with the use of 50 millesimal, i.e. LM potency’? And then you lambast those who will not accept such a claim without evidence?

        • “I was beginning to think he only publishes posts that only support him”

          Are you saying that your posts *don’t* support the view that homeopathy is pseudoscience?

    • I say, go ahead and ‘write to the newspapers’. Cautionary tale.

    • @S Chowdhury

      And by the way, if you don’t publish my post, I will write to the newspapers how transparent you are, along with my post.

      How would you know that the failure of your post to appear was because Professor Ernst had decided not to publish it, and not simply because your computer doesn’t work? After all if, as you claim, “modern science is only a few hundred years old. It needs 1000s and not 100s of years to evolve and be ‘accurate’”, then it is highly unlikely that something as complicated as your computer, which relies on science being correct, would work.

    • Yes! The newspapers! Think of the scandal!

  • the Australian homeopaths just published a lengthy response. here is the summary:
    Homoeopathy has a two hundred-year worldwide history of clinical practice: homoeopathy is currently practised in 41 out of 42 European countries, in the Americas, the Caribbean and the Indian sub-continent. In many instances homoeopathy forms an integral part of national health programs. The World Health Organisation (WHO) promotes the “endorsement, integration and evaluation” of traditional medicine (TM) and recognises homoeopathy as the second most widely practised health care modality worldwide after Traditional Chinese Medicine (www.who.int/medicines/technical_briefing/tbs/Technical_briefing_11_10pdf).
    Australia is a WHO Member State and key signatory. The World Health Organisation has recently published its Traditional Medicines Strategy 2014-2023: this strategy seeks to
    “Support Member States in developing proactive policies and implementing action plans that will strengthen the role TM plays in keeping populations healthy..” and aims to :
    “support Member States in harnessing the potential contribution of TM to health, wellness and peoplecentred health care, and
    promote(s) the safe and effective use of TM by regulating, researching and integrating TM products, practitioners and practice into health systems, where appropriate.”
    The NHMRC, rather than “harnessing the potential contribution of Traditional Medicine to health, wellness and people-centred health-care”, appears to have had a directly contradictory agenda in relation to homoeopathy.
    We seek your reflections on the stance that Australia’s peak medical science authority takes towards the aspirations and commitment of the WHO 2014-2023 Traditional Medicines Strategy, seeking as it does to support and utilize the resources of CM/TM for the benefit of the community at large.
    Thank you for your attention to this document, Professor Anderson. We look forward to receiving your responses to the many important and pressing questions posed within it and respectfully seek your reply as a matter of urgency.

    the full text is here http://aha.onefireplace.com/Resources/Documents/NHMRC_Open_response_letter_by_AHA_to_NHMRC.pdf

    not that either make much sense!!!

    • I love the way the Australian homoeopathic Association (AHA) text quotes Sir Paul Nurse (President of the Royal Society): “Good science must be free of pressure and influence by lobby groups; such groups…are ideologically driven or commercially motivated, and their hallmarks emerge in the use of highly intemperate and sometimes abusive language”. but they complain that the NHMRC ignored submissions from the AHA
      These people have absolutely no sense of irony!

    • The
      HWC excluded observational studies of outcomes in homoeopathy, irrespective of the size and quality
      of these studies. Many of these studies are large (between 2,000 and 6,000 patients).

      That stupid burns so badly!!

      • And see my comment here http://edzardernst.com/2015/03/the-final-verdict-on-homeopathy-its-a-placebo/#comment-65337 for analysis relevant to that burning stupidity.

        • You all have a lot of time and energy to talk against homeopathy, don’t you? Lol. Look, if something doesn’t work, people won’t use it. Logic.

          You really don’t need to be trying to convince homeopathy users or governments not to use/advocate homeopathy. It doesn’t matter what you say. Things won’t go away just because you don’t understand it or have biases against it or are trying to show your ‘evidence’ or lack of it. People are not stupid. Trust their judgement. Or in your opinion, if it’s wrong, you still have no right to dictate what others should or need to do. They have their rights to make their own decisions. If homeopathy did not cure, why would people waste their money on it? I never went back to the homeopath who took a 100 pounds of consultancy fees and could not cure me.

          Anyway, I think I need to sign out of receiving responses because I don’t have the time or will to convince people who can’t see beyond their biases. Nice listening to you all!

          • “? Lol. Look, if something doesn’t work, people won’t use it. Logic. ”

            Do you have a television? It might help you to watch a few ads for beauty products and then re-think that claim. Especially the ads for the products presented by scienticians in white coats, telling you the extract of dodo placenta reduces scumbulation by 34%.

          • You will be prosecuted for fraud and you will be sentenced to ten years in jail.

  • S Chowdhury

    One last thing for now.

    You have deployed argument using the No True Scotsman fallacy on several occasions in this thread.

    Let’s pretend that homeopathy works.

    You must think it is an utter scandal that over the counter homeopathic remedies are sold.
    You must think it is an utter scandal that there are ‘bad’ homeopaths out there who cure nothing while taking money and giving false hope.
    What are you personally doing to address these scandals? What can be done? Should each homeopath be forced to demonstrate objectively that their methods work and the duds banned from practice? Do you think groups of homeopaths should be put together to practise individualised homeopathy and if they fail then the whole lot should be banned? Doesn’t that sound like a regime of clinical trials where homeopaths are banned if they cannot cure patients?

    Hmmm…those trials have been done. The homeopaths fail. Such a shame they have not been barred from practice.

    I think we could solve the problem of homeopathy quite quickly and benefit the world considerably. At least you could return to the practise of real medicine. The non-MD homeopaths will be in rather more trouble.

    OK. You have your mission, Jim.

  • You all have a lot of time and energy to talk against homeopathy, don’t you?

    It’s fun.

    Lol. Look, if something doesn’t work, people won’t use it. Logic.

    LogicAL FALLACY.

    Corrected that for you. You’re welcome.

    People are not stupid. Trust their judgement.

    I think you missed the part about the Aztecs. Though it is possible you engage in human sacrifice to keep the Sun rising because, as you say, “Trust their judgement”.

    If homeopathy did not cure, why would people waste their money on it?

    I can think of several reasons. The convinced stupidity of the therapists is an obvious factor.

    Anyway, I think I need to sign out of receiving responses because I don’t have the time or will to convince people who can’t see beyond their biases. Nice listening to you all!

    You’ve clearly heard nothing but trot out the same fallacious arguments.

    Take care now, be careful you don’t kill too many people with inappropriate use of your sugar pills. At least make sure you get the money from them first because while they’re paying you must be right and if they die you’ll still think you were right, Dr Teflon.

  • Ok, my last reply, since you are ‘very curious’. I will again give my case as example and show why it would be difficult to do a meticulously conducted large clinical trial WHEN they is proper homeopathy treatment being conducted. You would have to be patient reading through this.

    For my rare and incurable debilitating condition (signs: inflammatory/recurrent abscess with multiple discharging sinsus- which had autoimmune responses- was off work for 6 months and I could not stand up- failed medical treatment for 1 year), firstly, I was prescribed (by my homeopath aunt) to have a specific diet (easily digestible and low in nutrients and no supplements) which was extremely hard for me to follow, then I was given drops of medicine that needed to be diluted in large and measured quantities of distilled water and if there was an ‘excess dose- say two drops instead of one- my inflammation soared and immediately after adjusting the dose (e.g. diluting again), my inflammation would reduce. The target was to keep my inflammation to minimum by adjusting doses, if necessary twice a day. If the symptoms increased due to increased medication, I would often have off days until symptoms subsided (too much homeopathy in high potency can increase the disease symptoms). Gradually over time (3 months) the lump completely disappeared and inflammation and oozing completely disappeared (leaving a lot of scarring); I returned to work healthy in time as otherwise I would have lost my job. My surgeon recorded improvements with clinical examination every 15 days (astounded and amazed everytime) as well as by ultrasound. (Similarly my daughter’s croup is controlled with adjustable homeopathy dosing and strict diet> with the croup flaring should there be excess dosing)

    Now, for a clinical trial, you would ideally need patients all under the same doctor (my aunt preferably!), in a clinic where she can monitor all patients and give them the same diet and adjust their dosing (this is personalised medicine). And how many patients would you need for a robust trial? I can’t imagine such a meticulous large sized trial happening.

    Please just this once, you irritatingly obtuse muppet, read the replies and learn from them.

    For proof of principle one would not choose an obscure condition for which recruitment of a reasonable number of relatively homogenous patients would be hard. Various trials of individualised homeopathy have been performed. Homeopathy fails.

    All you need for a trial is two pots of pills. The homeopaths can chose whatever they want to put in the ‘active’ arm, including different things for different patients, so long as a similarity appearing blank could be substituted in the placebo arm. It really is not hard. Do you really fail to see how simple this all is? You stand awed by all the complex ritual but the only interesting question is whether substitution of the little pills for blanks alters the outcome. Your aunty can slaughter a chicken and dance naked at midnight and so can all her homeopath friends. None if it matters if the patients do as well on blank pills as on ‘active’ pills. These trials have been done. Have you ever read the trial reports? I think you have not.

    You say you are a doctor, so I assume you know that autoimmune conditions can just burn themselves out. Which is why a single anecdote tells us nothing. If you say homeopathy can cure loads of cases similar to you and can present loads then your special pleading to excuse trialling falls away.

    Croup is usually a self-limiting condition or resolves on simple treatment.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Croup

    Your description of apparently chronic treatment of your daughter worries me considerably.

    • Dear Simon,

      Have you ever conducted clinical trials and treated a patient or even understand what I am saying? Have you ever treated croup cases or have family members with this condition? Your source of information is wikipedia?? All you can do is, insult people because you can’t understand logic. What is your background anyway? I have intense distaste in carrying on conversations with people like you who want to abuse and harass people on the internet to make themselves be heard! Disgusting nature. Get a life.

      • have YOU ever conducted a clinical trial? if yes, please provide the reference.

        • Dear Professor Edzard,

          I have no intention of replying to others on this blog who resort to derogatory language to make their point. However I will answer your query. Yes, I indeed have been involved in several clinical trials (2003-2008) with respect to setting up the projects as per protocol, managing the projects, being responsible for patient treatment (e.g. single bolus dose vs medication per diagnosis in STI of sex workers- ESM/PPT) application of (blinded) randomised drugs (e.g. to feed children in a fructo-oligosaccharide vs placebo trial to prevent diarrhoea) adverse event reporting (in vaccine trials- rota virus) supervising my team of nurses and out reach officers in the field and in anthropometric measurements for assessment of patients, and in the analysis and writing up of reports. Since then, I moved from research to public health and genetics. Therefore I have first hand experience of RUNNING clinical trials. So what I say is not from wikipedia, lol.

          I personally Hope you will leave an open mind to homeopathy still because if it didn’t work, millions over the world (including myself and my family) would not be cured by it. (And as I said before, we can admit that many non meticulous homeopaths give homeopathy a bad name) Please read back some of the points I made, particularly about the reliability of ‘evidence’. You are, I am sure aware of the recent NEW evidence that the saturated fatty acid guidelines that the government had brain washed us with , are indeed based on a POOR evidence base from many years ago. Recent robust meta analyses show otherwise. Soon we are expecting further population data to prove that. This goes to show that today’s evidence is tomorrows rubbish (or yesterdays evidence can be today’s rubbish).

          I believe that in the future we will have appropriate evaluation methods and test assays to prove that homeopathy is indeed a system of medicine that works to cure disease by helping the body to fight the disease. Science is still in it’s infancy and we still have a lot to learn. The science of today will evolve. So many facts are still not 100% proven. Many facts have no evidence. E.g. a lot of herbal medicine used for thousands of years. But more and more, we are understanding nature has many answers. I can’t remember from top of my head, but, e.g. there is epidemiological evidence for antimicrobial action of turmeric, anti viral action of elderberry etc (but they are simpler to evaluate than homeopathy). You are also aware that homeopathy uses extracts of plants. If human misery of disease can be truly reduced by a combination of mainstream as well as alternative medicine; then why not? We need all the help we can get. Anyway, I expect this is the last time I return to your blog. You have my email address if you have any particular questions. Best wishes

          • I personally Hope you will leave an open mind to homeopathy still because if it didn’t work, millions over the world (including myself and my family) would not be cured by it.

            All of which shows that you don’t really understand the first thing about hypothesis testing and everything you say shows that you cannot bear to have your ideas challenged.

            You have learned nothing from the arguments presented against you and keep falling back on your argumentum ad populum despite the numerous times that it has been patiently explained to you why it is a fallacy.

            If you were capable of any insight into your own beliefs you would respond to the question put to you about the Aztecs. Your failure to do so implies that you are clueless as to its impications for you.

          • That’s quite a range of subjects to be primary investigator. Could you give us the references for the final published papers? I’d like to see how you handled the statistical issues and how they compare to your approach to handling variance in your homeopathy practice.

      • My background is not really relevant. Prof Ernst among others know my status and would probably affirm that I am speaking on topics in which I have competence, but you keep trying to turn this into some sort of argument by authority. On that basis Edzard Ernst beats you automatically and you should humbly apologise for your foolishness.

        But this is not decided on authority, it is weight of logical argument and evidence. You have brought neither to this discussion.

        I will pick up just one of the many threads that you hsve left dangling. The Aztecs: why are their beliefs a relevant rejoinder to the arguments you have presented? You have now written hundreds of words here and said nothing. Please address this one point and show that you can sustain a rational discussion.

        On the subject of croup, I linked to a Wikipedia page to illustrate a point and provide background. The story you presented still worries me.

        • oh no! do not rely on me, please. I have not the slightest knowledge of your background, knowledge, expertise etc.

          • Fair enough. I’ll have to rely on the strength of the arguments I present. That’s a huge disappointment.

            [I do hope Dr Choudhury’s sarcasm-detector chip is functional. I think it may be defective]

          • This is the best comment on this blog! Made my day 🙂

          • Simon: “My background is not really relevant. Prof Ernst among others know my status and would probably affirm that I am speaking on topics in which I have competence..”

            Edzard: “oh no! do not rely on me, please. I have not the slightest knowledge of your background, knowledge, expertise etc.”

            Hahaha….Prof Edzard’s reaction is the best one on this blog! Made my day 🙂

          • I’m glad it made your day.

            But I’m sure that petty pleasure does not make up for your unwillingness and inability to deal with the substantive issues.

      • I have intense distaste in carrying on conversations with people like you who want to abuse and harass people on the internet to make themselves be heard!

        Let me remind you that in the face of an imagined suppression of your comments you used a threat to write to the newspapers as if that wouldn’t just make you look more silly.

        So to be clear, the only harassment that has occurred here is your rather childish attempt at a bullying tactic.

      • I get the impression that you are not accustomed to having your views challenged. Would I be right?

      • You will go to jail. Perhaps you will abscond to Mumbai?

  • SC

    I have given your questions some thought and I have decided not to answer. Nothing useful will be gained by giving the answers to someone like you.

    However, even if I had never been involved in s clinical trial it would have no relevance. I know how to run one.

    I don’t need to be a pilot to be able to conduct a simple test to know whether aeroplanes fly.

  • Respected Sir,
    It is a matter of great concern that when there exists sufficient areas in Modern Science that consist contradictory and weak explanations for even simple experimental results yet such knowledge is used to discard homeopathy !!!
    Respected viewers, please have a look at our blog http://www.aminchakraborty.blogspot.com and find such fundamental contradictions in respect of Generation, Conduction & Retention of electrical energy in water, the main vehicle for Homeopathic remedies.
    Please also find therein the article “How and why Homeopathy is Scientific” and post your valuable suggestions.
    It is always easy to discard than to recognize !
    Thanks.
    Biplab Chakraborty

    • Good luck with that.

      Does this mean that a tin-foil hat stops the remedies from working?

      • Respected Sir,
        Thanks for the comment. While appreciating your valuable comment we earnestly request you kindly to provide scientific explanations to the contradictions shown by us regarding Generation, Conduction and retention of electrical energy by distilled water as detailed below.
        A) Generation :How distilled water generates emf with different metals/non-metal electrodes without chemical reactions or having concentration difference of electrode /electrolyte as shown in table below
        Sl No. Electrode pairs Observed emf (in mV) In Distilled water

        1 Gr – Zn 1150
        2 Gr – Pb 778
        3 Gr – Cu 240

        Ref: “Untold Facts of Science –The Science Behind Homeopathy” (www.hpathy.com)
        Ref:“ Generation of Electrode Potential of an Electrode” (www.hanp.net)
        B) Conduction: Here, please find this simple experiment with four graphite electrodes (GrA, GrB, GrC&Gr D) placed in a glass bowl containing 30 ml of distilled water at a distance of about 3.5 cm as shown in fig 3. The graphite electrodes GrC & GrD are placed just at the opposite side of GrA & GrB respectively. Now an LED is connected to GrC & GrD while a 9 volt battery is connected to GrA & GrB with positive end of the battery connected to GrA and negative end to GrB(connections shown in Figure3) (As the related figure could not be posted Please see Fig 3 of “How and why Homeopathy is Scientific” (www.aminchakraborty.blogspot.com)
        .
        Our observations: The emf shown at the GrC- Gr D pair is about 1.46 volts. The LED glows when its negative lead is connected to the Graphite GrD and positive lead to GrC
        Now, it is not clear how Direct Current is conducted from GrA (Graphite) & GrB(Graphite) to the neutral electrodes GrC & Gr D i.e. why the ions approach to neutral electrodes for generating emf of 1.46 volts at GrC –GrD and lighting the LED therein, as the existing theories only allow approach of any ions to its opposite electrodes while conduction of electrical energy i.e. cations (positive ion) to cathode(negative electrode) and anions (negative ions) to anode(positive electrode) .
        If there exist any such theory that permits approach of ions even at neutral electrodes while conduction of electrical energy, may please be intimated.
        c) Retention: Here, please find another simple experiment wherein a pair of electrodes Cu & Zn are placed in a beaker containing distilled water and its emf recorded to be 914mV (Fig. 7). (As the related figure could not be posted Please see Fig 7 of “How and why Homeopathy is Scientific” (www.aminchakraborty.blogspot.com)
        After recording of initial emf , direct current from a source of 9 volt battery is allowed to pass through it, such that the positive terminal of the external source(i.e 9 volt battery) is attached to the positive electrode (i.e: Cu) & negative terminal to the negative electrode (i.e: Zn) . The direct current from the external source is allowed to pass for 60 seconds and thereafter disconnected. The Final reading of Cu & Zn pair is recorded to be 1250 mV after 15 seconds of disconnecting the circuit i.e. there is clear increase in emf of Cu & Zn pair (1250-914=336mV)
        Now, How Direct current is retained even in distilled water i.e. distilled water is able to hold electrical charge similar to that of a rechargeable battery / accumulators may please be explained in the light of existing theories of Science .
        Ref: “Water the Magic Liquid: Retaining Electrical Energy” (www.hpathy.com)

        Thanks.
        Biplab Chakraborty

        • Do you conduct your experiments in a blinded manner?

        • Without a M.Sc in Pseudoscience I couldn’t possibly comment.

          Where is this published?

        • You seem to want to be taken seriously as a scientist but the page to which you linked is incomprehensible drivel. It reads like a school science project. There is a curious mixture of unsupported assertions and uselessly elliptical descriptions of what you did.

          I suggest you speak to someone who knows about electrochemistry and can teach you how to write a scientific paper.

          Until then you will remain a genius in only in your own mind and a legend to no one but your mother.

        • And don’t forget to keep wearing your tinfoil hat.

        • OK. I have some time;

          d) How emf in case of Einthoven triangle is generated i.e. whether there is any chemical reaction between the human body and electrodes placed on the body or existence of any concentration gradient in respect of electrode /electrolyte.

          Yiu start that with the word “how”, the conjunction “whether” appears halfway down, but it’s not a question. I accept that English is not your first language but this mode of expression clearly reflects deeply confused thought processes. Even you don’t know what you think.

        • How emf in the case of the Electromagnetic Flowmeter is generated
          In the electromagnetic flow meter, the conductor is water, that when placed in a magnetic field is able to show induced current due to induced emf. What then generates induced current in water? It is believed that such generation of emf is due to the presence of ions in water. This suggests that ions, like electrons are also deflected in the magnetic field, thereby generating induced emf and hence induced current. Therefore, in water ions seem to flow between electrodes of Electromagnetic Flowmeter, in lieu of electrons, while generating emf in presence of a magnetic field. Further it implies that the difference in concentration of ions at the electrodes of the Flowmeter generates emf by pushing ions through the water. This shows that ions not only can move towards the opposite electrodes as in electrolysis, but also can move even to the neutral electrodes for generating emf , as in the electromagnetic flow meter!

          As far as I can tell from that digital scribble you have shown that distiller water is a conductor. Do you know that one way of measuring the purity of distilled water is by its conductivity? This is because even the purest of distilled water contains a residual amount of ions that permit electrical conductivity.

          So, distilled water conducts electricity. Well done. The Nobel Prize committee, however, will not be calling you.

          • Respected Sir, (Simon Baker)
            From your comment it is now quite clear to me that ions in distilled water conduct electrical energy. But how ions move to the neutral electrodes while conduction of current as shown above and “Now, it is not clear how Direct Current is conducted from GrA (Graphite) & GrB(Graphite) to the neutral electrodes GrC & Gr D i.e. why the ions approach to neutral electrodes for generating emf of 1.46 volts at GrC –GrD and lighting the LED therein, as the existing theories only allow approach of any ions to its opposite electrodes while conduction of electrical energy i.e. cations (positive ion) to cathode(negative electrode) and anions (negative ions) to anode(positive electrode)” remain unexplained. So, please explain how such ions approach to even neutral electrodes while conduction of electrical energy . If ,after any decision, ions are now allowed to approach even to the neutral electrodes the same may kindly be intimated.
            Biplab Chakraborty

          • From your comment it is now quite clear to me that ions in distilled water conduct electrical energy.

            I’m glad you learned something, though rather later than would be sensible given how much you had already written on the topic.

            So, please explain how such ions approach to even neutral electrodes while conduction of electrical energy

            That would suggest to me that, regardless of how you think you have set up your circuit, your neutral electrode is not neutral.

            But, really, what’s the point of your footling about with simple electrical circuits? I suppose it impresses the Dr Chowdhurys of this world, but he thinks sugar pills are medicine and is not really any judge of scientific validity. Your whole presentation boils down to an sppeal to personal incredulity. You don’t understand your circuits, therefore homeopathy. Quite a few intermediate steps are missing.

          • Biplab Chakraborty, I’ve already given you a large hint when I wrote “PS: I very much hope that you do not store your distilled water in glass or metal containers.”
            http://edzardernst.com/2014/10/homeopathy-works-for-animals-so-it-cant-be-a-placebo/#comment-65528
            Q1: Do you not understand what happens when you put distilled deionized water in a glass container, such as the glass bowl used in your experiment? Hint: You have invalidated your experiment.
            .
            Q2: Do you not understand that water is a dielectric and, like all dielectrics, it suffers dielectric absorption? Hint: Even capacitors and insulators would show a voltage rise with time after disconnecting the voltage source as per your “retention test”. I very much doubt that you’re capable understanding how a microwave oven heats water.
            .
            Oh, isn’t electricity delightfully magical to those who don’t understand it.

          • Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.

            Clarke’s Third Law:
            Profiles of the Future (revised edition, 1973)

            I’m not sure that AJC would have counted Biplab’s experiments as “sufficiently advanced” but it seems they have been advanced enough to bamboozle Biplab and Dr Chowdhury.

          • I’m not sure how I converted his initials to AJC. I meant ACC!

          • I met him once – he didn’t strike me as the sort of person to get too upset about the switch of an initial 😉

            Might I suggest a slight modification to “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic”?

            How about “To any sufficiently unqualified observer, all technology is indistinguishable from magic”?

            I think it fits quite well in this debate!

          • I agree.

        • Whether or not something else can be explained has no bearing on whether or not homoeopathy works. The appropriate tool for determining whether homoeopathy works is the RCT. And they consistently fail to establsh efficacy.

        • “c) Retention: Here, please find another simple experiment wherein a pair of electrodes Cu & Zn are placed in a beaker containing distilled water and its emf recorded to be 914mV (Fig. 7). ”
          I’m not a physicist, but isn’t this a standard chemical battery setup – two different metals in polar liquid?

          “After recording of initial emf , direct current from a source of 9 volt battery is allowed to pass through it, such that the positive terminal of the external source(i.e 9 volt battery) is attached to the positive electrode (i.e: Cu) & negative terminal to the negative electrode (i.e: Zn) . The direct current from the external source is allowed to pass for 60 seconds and thereafter disconnected. The Final reading of Cu & Zn pair is recorded to be 1250 mV after 15 seconds of disconnecting the circuit i.e. there is clear increase in emf of Cu & Zn pair (1250-914=336mV)
          Now, How Direct current is retained even in distilled water i.e. distilled water is able to hold electrical charge similar to that of a rechargeable battery / accumulators may please be explained in the light of existing theories of Science .”
          Again, IANAP but this is a standard electrolytic cell. By applying charge, you drove a reversible chemical reaction in one direction. When the voltage is removed, the reaction reverses, generating current. As your electrolysis has generated ions in the water, it now has a lower resistance, so you get a greater effect than before.

          You are mistaken in thinking the “distilled water is able to hold electrical charge”. You’ve built a battery and the whole thing (water, electrodes, dissolved ions) is capable of storing energy, which you put in from your electrical source.

          I suspect a lot of your confusion arises from the belief that distilled water is chemically pure. It will have fewer electrolytes in it than tap water, but it isn’t 100% H2O.

          • I suspect a lot of your confusion arises from the belief that distilled water is chemically pure. It will have fewer electrolytes in it than tap water, but it isn’t 100% H2O.

            I get the same impression. I think he thinks that distilled water if H2O and nothing else. I note he did not react yo my comments about conductivity testing of DW.

        • “Our observations: The emf shown at the GrC- Gr D pair is about 1.46 volts. The LED glows when its negative lead is connected to the Graphite GrD and positive lead to GrC
          Now, it is not clear how Direct Current is conducted from GrA (Graphite) & GrB(Graphite) to the neutral electrodes GrC & Gr D i.e. why the ions approach to neutral electrodes for generating emf of 1.46 volts at GrC –GrD and lighting the LED therein, as the existing theories only allow approach of any ions to its opposite electrodes while conduction of electrical energy i.e. cations (positive ion) to cathode(negative electrode) and anions (negative ions) to anode(positive electrode) .”

          You have just done an electrolysis of water (you put a 9 volt batterie on 2 of the electrode). Graphite IS a conductor, right ? (‘Neutral’ mean nothing, the term you want is ‘INERT’, meaning that it just don’t melt at most of the electrolysis product). You are generating a current and then mesure it, what did you expect ? You generate ion with your electrolysis and then they follow your current, and light the led. WOW, that’s worth a bachelor degree, IMPRESSIVE !
          The water you use is just not pure, as Simon Baker says, you just assessed the purity of your water. Congratulation.

        • You’ve now had your fundamental lack of understanding of electrochemistry demonstrated to you. Can we expect to see a retraction on your website any time soon?

    • Thank you Biplob, for giving your viewpoint. However, I would advice that to keep your sanity and dignity, don’t bother replying back to crazy people on this blog!

      You might be sweared at, if they don’t agree to your reasoning!

      Best wishes

      • Grow up, Dr Chowdhury. No one “sweated” at you. I called you an irritatingly obtuse muppet and with good reason as you repeat over and over again the same fallacious arguments and appeals to authority.

      • Respected Sir ( S Chowdhury)
        Thanks, we are walking our way irrespective of their comments.
        Biplab Chakraborty

        • So, you have no meaningful response to any of the questions put to you having obliged us to read your outpouring of digital dribble.

          Well, that’s not very impressive.

          • Simon, it isn’t at all impressive, but it served to highlight the insidious creeps of quackery.

          • Respected Sir (Simon Baker)
            Those experiments apparently are at the level of school children but pose as big questions before conventional fundamentals of science . So, I once again earnestly request you to provide proper scientific explanations for the following contradictions in science
            i) how electrodes generates emf when placed in distilled water without any chemical reaction.
            ii) how ions are conducted to even neutral electrodes
            iii) how water retains electrical charge.
            Thanks.
            Biplab Chakraborty

          • I think you need to speak to an electrochemist.

        • Dear Biplap, you ask
          “) how electrodes generates emf when placed in distilled water without any chemical reaction.
          ii) how ions are conducted to even neutral electrodes
          iii) how water retains electrical charge.”

          I’m no electrochemist but my thoughts are

          1) You haven’t demonstrated the absence of a chemical reaction.
          2) I don’t think ions are “conducted”; I assume you mean attracted. But have you shown the movement of ions? Or have you merely shown the passage of current and are inferring movement of ions? When you say “neutral electrode”, do you mean one at no voltage differential? In that case I must ask – no differential to WHAT? Where’s your reference point?
          3) You haven’t shown retention of charge, you’ve show storage of energy. Because you built a battery.

          You seem mystified by your discoveries – but I suggest that that’s because you don’t understand the basic science of what you’re doing.

        • You are both frauds. Con-artists!

  • I will leave two comments (and two article links which definitely you should see as they are in mainstream Journals- 1 is meta-analysis of “individualized” homeopathic treatments ) from USA to this news article:http://www.cjad.com/dr-joe/2015/03/10/when-is-enough-enough (reported by oe Schwarcz)

    Dana Ullman · Top Commenter · Berkeley, California
    Further, Joe Schwarcz knows (or should know) that a leading medical journal that specializes in publishing meta-analyses (reviews of research) published a review of homeopathic treatment that is individually prescribed, as is done when people go to real homeopaths, as distinct from the conventional medical model that gives the same drug to everyone with the seemingly same disease. This review of research also confirmed that FOUR of the last FIVE meta-analyses have found that there IS a difference between homeopathic treatment vs. placebo.

    Reference: Mathie RT, Lloyd SM, Legg LA, Clausen J, Moss S, Davidson JR, Ford I. Randomised placebo-controlled trials of individualised homeopathic treatment: systematic review and meta-analysis. Systematic Reviews 2014; 3:142. doi:10.1186/2046-4053-3-142. http://www.systematicreviewsjournal.com/content/pdf/2046-4053-3-142.pdf

    It seems that Joe prefers to cherry-pick research that shows that homeopathy doesn’t work (isn’t that “convenient”?). I bet that Joe will now personally attack me rather than response to real evidence published in real (and respected) scientific journals.
    Reply · Like · 2 · Follow Post · March 11 at 7:18am

    Dana Ullman · Top Commenter · Berkeley, California
    When is Joe Schwarcz’s misinformation campaign against homeopathy going to stop. He knows (or should know) that the American Chemistry Society’s journal, LANGMUIR, published strong evidence that nanodoses of a homeopathic medicine remain in their solutions even after being diluted 200 times. Further, this evidence was repeated on SIX different medicines and was confirmed using three different types of spectroscopy. Still further, the doses that remained were equivalent to the very low doses that many of our body’s endocrine system are known to have physiological effect.

    However, perhaps Joe thinks our hormones are placebo too!

    Chikramane PS, Kalita D, Suresh AK, Kane SG, Bellare JR. Why Extreme Dilutions Reach Non-zero Asymptotes: A Nanoparticulate Hypothesis Based on Froth Flotation.
    Langmuir. 2012 Nov 1.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23083226

    • Dana Ullman…oh dear. He’s the one a US Court found to be “Not credible” in giving his evidence for homeopathy.

      Perhaps you missed the blog post and comments where the problems with Mathie et al. were highlighted? Mathie himself tried to answer them , but he seemed unable to provide cogent explanations and left them unanswered:

      HOMEOPATHY: proof of concept or proof of misconduct?

      But even if you didn’t, it’s worth quoting the whole conclusion of it:

      Conclusions: Medicines prescribed in individualised homeopathy may have small, specific treatment effects.

      Findings are consistent with sub-group data available in a previous ‘global’ systematic review. The low or unclear overall quality of the evidence prompts caution in interpreting the findings. New high-quality RCT research is necessary to enable more decisive interpretation.

      Do you really believe that’s an adequate basis for considering homeopathy to be something useful for any medical condition?

      Ullman’s second paper is his usual fluff: it’s nothing to do with the evidence for specific effects of homeopathy.

    • Mentioning Dana Ullman serves only to further discredit yourself:
      http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Dana_Ullman
      .
      These words, by Dan King, are just as true today as when hew wrote them 157 years ago:
      “Now Homoeopathy does not gain proselytes by teaching its true principles. Such a course would be suicidal, and soon exterminate the sect; but it is propagated by other means.

      If it is still insisted that the number and respectability of the supporters of Homoeopathy are proofs in its favor, we might urge, with much more propriety, the truth of Divination, Sorcery and Witchcraft. The believers in these delusions have been far more numerous, and their attestations far more imposing.” — Quackery Unmasked (1858) by Dan King, MD.
      https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Quackery_Unmasked

      • Thanks for that RationalWiki link to DUllman’s entry. I especially enjoyed the reporting of he Wikipedia battles with him. I was there at the time and cannot count the number of words I’ve devoted to dismantling his tendentious references to those Cazin and Frass papers that are mentioned in the RationalWiki article.

        Watching him destroy himself at Wikipedia was amazing and amusing. His problem there was twofold. One is that Wikipedia does not forget previous edits and secondly he was highly motivated to keep fighting, which just meant he got himself into more and more trouble. In normal Internet forums the attention span of the readership is that of a goldfish and defeated fools can just flounce off to start the same defeated argument from scratch in another place on another day. Dr Chowdhury is showing that behaviour here. I wonder whether we have now seen the last of him. It’s such a pity when the homs run from the field and don’t even recognise their defeat.

    • I see that you have cited Mathie’s most recent foray into the world of systematic reviews. Clearly you failed to read this blog page;

      http://edzardernst.com/2014/12/homeopaty-proof-of-concept-or-proof-of-misconduct/

      where his methods are analysed and Mathie himself makes a brief appearance. Please wake up to the fact that we know your literature better than you do.

      The best you can say is that your skin condition got better while your aunly treated you though you cannot say the same of your daughter’s chronic cough with which you continue to mess about with sugar pills. I hope she gets better regardless of your sugar pills or you apply some real medicine to her problem.

      Also, any argument in which you cite DUllman earns you an automatic fail.

    • Have you read this analysis of the writings of Dana Ullman? http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Dana_Ullman

      The section relating to WikiPedia edits is very… interesting.

      His testimony in court in the case of Rosendez vs Green Pharmaceuticals last year (http://www.consumerproductslawblog.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/393/2014/12/Prop-Stat-of-Dec-11-25-14.pdf) lead to the judge saying “The Court found Mr Ullman’s testimony to be not credible.” and “Mr. Ullman’s credibility was undermined by his admission that he advocated the use of a radionics machine, whereby a physician puts a picture of his patient on one side, and a few medicines on the other side, and then sees which of the medicines the needle points toward. He relied on his personal experience with a radionics machine.”

  • This, by the way;

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/23083226/

    is hilarious.

    If it was actually true then it would just show that homeopaths can’t even do simple dilutions properly. It would not validate any of the other essential mechanisms claimed for homeopathy.
    And it still fails under trial conditions.

    • According to the methods section, they succussed by banging their tubes on a rubber sheet. If they’d used a leather-bound (German) bible, as recommended by Hahnemann, they might have had completely different results.

      • The rubber sheet may be indistinguishable ifrom the flooring of a padded cell.

        Or

        Maybe the rubber sheet is the floor of the padded cell where they have been safely incarcerated to keep them isolated from the confusing realities of the harsh outside world. In our enlightened modern society tours of bedlam are no longer conducted to permit people to point and laugh at them. Unfortunately we are still presented with their spoor as a source of bitter amusement. Quite pitiful.

    • “Why extreme dilutions reach non-zero asymptotes: a nanoparticulate hypothesis based on froth flotation.”
      The title of the paper couldn’t be more apt — “based on froth flotation” as in: based on airing worthless or insubstantial talk, ideas, or activities.

  • @S Chowdhury:

    You claim that your “surgeon” was so impressed with the alleged results of your homoeopathic treatment that “he decided to include this information in a paper on [your] rare disease and had already presented [your] case in an international conference with 4 slides on my homeopathic treatment.”

    Please provide references for these reports. If you don’t have the skills necessary to find them yourself, please provide the name of the surgeon and any other relevant infromation (such as the diagnosis and the date and location of the international conference) so that others can track down the references. If you won’t provide this information, people might begin to suspect that the whole thing is a figment of your imagination.

  • just found this encouraging interview on the internet [http://www.nouse.co.uk/2015/03/14/120765/]:
    As I asked the Minister my final question, pertaining to his views on homeopathy, I half expected the ministerial aide next to me to slam his hand on the table and stop the questions. The Minister stated “I have never voiced support for homeopathy, I have never believed in homeopathy […] as far as I can see there is no evidence to support the claims of homeopathy”.

    The reason I asked is because in 2007 he signed an early-day motion in the House of Commons that, as stated on the UK parliamentary website, “welcomes the contribution made to the health of the nation by the NHS homeopathic hospitals”. The Minister made his position on homeopathy unmistakeably clear during the interview, but it would seem homeopathy fans still carry a lingering hope – a website branding itself as the “World’s Top Homeopathy News website” advertised his signing of the bill, seemingly suggesting it to be a sign of progress for their cause.

  • The scientific debate on homeopathy has long been over. They made extravagant claims but produced no reliable evidence to support it.

    The latest mendacious tactic appears to be the claim that because they are complaining about evidence there somehow is still a scientific debate, there isn’t.

    The homeopaths will go about with their marketing techniques of celebrity endorsement, obfuscations and lies. They will continue to dress up in white coats and pretend to be doctors and scientists.

    It will be a long struggle of attrition to stamp out this reprehensible and harmful practice. My thanks go to likes of Prof Ernst, Alan Henness and others no less worthy.

    • I agree with your excellent summary, Acleron. I am deeply grateful to Prof Ernst, Alan Henness, and the many others who expose the wilful obscurantism used by proponents of sCAM to maximally exploit vulnerable members of society.

  • Has Dr S Chowdhury really run away for good?

    I am left waiting for him to come smashing back through the window to sing at us again.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kyn4KJzbL3c

    🙂

  • S Chowdhury has written comments on this article that, it seems to me, were deliberately designed to ridicule, even to the absurd level of making childish threats to Prof Ernst, the medical practitioners, scientists, specialists, and skeptics who try their utmost to protect vulnerable members of society from the ravages of 21st Century quackery.
    .
    Biplab Chakraborty has written many comments using a different, but no less childish, tactic to support the notion that homeopathy is (or might be) medically efficacious by a mechanism that is yet to be understood by science. The only evidence presented is the results of ‘experiments’ conducted at the level one might expect from a six-year-old; yet Chakraborty, whom I assume to be an adult, has made the very bold request to me: “I shall only request you to provide scientific explanations for the above mentioned experimental results in the light of existing theories of science i.e. in respect of following FUNDAMENTAL CONTRADICTIONS IN SCIENCE…”
    http://edzardernst.com/2014/10/homeopathy-works-for-animals-so-it-cant-be-a-placebo/#comment-65526
    .
    In order to start answering that bold request, it is imperative to start by addressing some of the fundamental errors made in the much more simple, but no less relevant, experiment reported as “The Exponential Release of Electrical Strain Grades Water- Peerless Vehicle for Homeopathic Remedies” by Ruhul Amin and Biplab Chakraborty, Hpathy Ezine, November, 2014, retrieved on 2015-03-18 from
    hpathy[dot]com/scientific-research/exponential-release-electrical-strain-grades/
    .
    JUST 4 of the obvious ERRORS in that REPORT:
    1. The usage of the term “emf” is atotally incorrect in this context: only potential differences were being calculated. NB: The emf in an electrical circuit is the effective source voltage whereas the voltage measured on the graphite electrodes was the load voltage, which is always different from the emf due to current flowing through the internal resistance of the source. The load in this case is, of course, the voltmeter. The internal resistance of the source is unknown because no attempt was made to measure it.

    2. The report failed to state the make and model of the voltmeter, which makes it impossible to estimate its internal resistance, offset current, and sampling error. Neither are there adequate details of: the graphite electrodes; the distilled water and other liquids; the container(s) used; the methods used; etc. etc. The experiment cannot be independently replicated without such details therefore it is scientifically invalid.

    3. The resolution of the recorded voltages is one mV +/- meter sampling errors, which will be at least 1 mV. Table 1 columns 6 & 7 are nonsense because there isn’t enough resolution in the measurements to calculate these differential values. This fact is made obvious by the increasing percentage of randomness of the values as the measured voltage decreases. These values are all over the place — they are meaningless, which renders much of the text in the report, and its conclusions, invalid.

    4. By far the most silly error is the conclusion of the experiment: “This suggests that the electrical energy contained in the water declines exponentially with time and theoretically the induced electrical strain in water will be totally removed […] only when t approaches infinity[…]. In other words any possibility for the process to get complete as a whole seems impossible!”.
    .
    There are solid scientific reasons why that conclusion is so silly:
    1. If it was true that the process never completes then the experiment would be a source of infinite energy, which we all know to be physically impossible.
    2. The experiment would produce similar results using different values of capacitors to represent the different liquids. It is irrelevant to the experiment whether the initial charge from the battery is stored in an electrolyte (as ions) or in a dielectric (as electrons).
    3. The voltage decay will continue exponentially while the number of charges available in the source is considerably greater than one. After a period of time, the number of charges will drop to low numbers then to zero, at which point the available energy from the source has reached zero. This is indeed the completion of the process, which occurs long before the elapsed time approaches infinity, duh!
    4. Those in the scientifically bankrupt arena of homeopathy are still pretending that infinitely divisible reality actually exists. They are hopelessly wrong: there is no such thing as half a molecule of a substance; just as there are no such things as half an ion and half an electron (fundamental units of charge).
    .
    In the real world, a 30C homeopathic remedy contains zero molecules of the original substance, which also means that it contains zero molecular ions of the original substance. If it contains any residual atomic ions or electrons from the original substance then so what? Tap water contains atomic particles that have passed through Napoleon Bonaparte and undergone countless cycles of dilution and succussion.
    .
    Claiming that homeopathic remedies contain charged particles that are beneficial to health would be as fraudulent as claiming that exhausted batteries are useful for powering our devices. Fortunately, there are laws protecting consumers from unscrupulous vendors of the latter claim.
    .
    It seems fairly clear to me that the report I’ve addressed was written either by people who are genuinely scientifically bankrupt or by people who are fully engaged in the process of casting doubts on science in order to increasingly exploit vulnerable members of society (vulnerable due to their lack of sufficient skills and/or due to debilitating health problems). I shall leave it to the readers to decide whether the writers of the report should be pitied for their ignorance or despised for their complicity.

    • My own opinion to your question is both. All homeopaths exhibit a staggering ineptitude when any question of fact arises. But even in their mind numbingly displays of ignorance and antipathy to science they have no compunction against using results ‘scientifically’ obtained to sell their worthless concoctions of water and sugar.

  • This brief interview with Dr Nik Zeps of the NHMRC’s independent working committee who conducted the research is worth watching: Homeopathy study: Any benefit, “we would have found it”.

    He says:

    This is not about opinion. This is about evidence. The evidence is clear: when homeopathy is tested against placebo or tested against other types of treatments it doesn’t show any benefits and that is essentially what we have shown. I’ll reiterate: it is not our opinion; it is a statement of the evidence.

  • …from the interaction and the advocacy for science over homeopathy is driven by greed rather than well being of the people!
    I can only imagine the volumes of medical pharmaceutical professionals and companies that will be out of work and relegated to poverty if homeopathy was allowed to show its hand!

    Maybe this is what you advocates of science are scared of?

    You scientists prescribe chemotherapy for cancer – does it work? If yes, how many were cured and how many died? Evidence suggests more died! BUT you still prescribe it don’t you?
    Imagine if you scientists stopped prescribing chemotherapy, what do you think the profit line of the pharmaceuticals would look like?

    Yet a simple example of using cannabis treatment in lieu of chemotherapy appears to be fought with vigor that it is telling of the fear that is felt by the scientific community!
    Instead of working together, modern science wants center stage and claim victory of something it has very little knowledge of.

    Cannabis (used in homeopathy treatments) has shown the real cure for cancer – unlike modern science could do in 100 years!

    Lets take a look – the human body has receptors or templates that manage the life and death of cells. In the case of cancer, if the cancerous cell endogenous ceramide (chemical compound) is high then the cancer cell dies. But if the endogenous ceramide is low, the cancer cell is strong and healthy and reproduces. So then, what has this got to do with marijuana?
    Very simply, the THC ingredient found in marijuana connects to the receptors of the cancer cell and causes the increase in ceramide. Given the former explanation of cancer cell dynamics, the conclusion is death to cancer!

    Even with this type of evidence, the scientific community will rally governments (like it is being done in Australia) to ban the evaluation of entities that have proven successes.

    Last word, science (medicine) is a greedy profession!

    • @Samuel
      Does it never cross your mind that there might be thousands of scientists around the globe investigating cancer cell receptors, many with access to brilliant chemical library resources? You seem to think you’ve come across something (by googling?) that all these people have missed. Governments don’t “ban the evaluation of entities that have proven successes” when there is robust evidence to support the conjecture. Sorry, but you really haven’t the faintest clue what’s going on in biomedical research! Why do so many people with wonderful healing ideas think (a) that cancer is a single disease and (b) that they shouldn’t publish their fascinating data to earn a well deserved Nobel Prize. Why do so many people not have even the vaguest glimmer of a clue about the real world of science? Where is our education system so badly failing so many?

    • @Samuel:

      You don’t know what homeopathy is, do you?

    • I can only imagine the volumes of medical pharmaceutical professionals and companies that will be out of work and relegated to poverty if homeopathy was allowed to show its hand!

      Really? Or is it that homeopathy companies do not do research, because they do not want to? What about listening to what Boiron, the world’s largest vendor of homeopathy has to say about this? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8cA_oGiNTOk&feature=youtu.be&t=8m22s

      Imagine if you scientists stopped prescribing chemotherapy, what do you think the profit line of the pharmaceuticals would look like?

      Easy: there would be no effect whatsoever. Scientists don’t prescribe chemotherapy, nor any other form of therapy for that matter.

      Cannabis (used in homeopathy treatments) has shown the real cure for cancer – unlike modern science could do in 100 years!

      On what is this claim based, please?

  • I’ve got an idea. Homeopathic placebo: contains a therapeutic dose of a real drug.

  • “In short, the continued promotion of homeopathy would represent a commercial scam preying on the gullible,”

    You mean a scam like pharmaceutical rep’s coercing doctor’s into prescribing drugs for things they were never developed or tested to treat, or have never been shown effective at treating, just so they can sell their drugs? But yeah, let’s trust the “tested” pharmaceutical industry over other alternatives. So trust worthy! How about a form of “treatment” that has been proven to shorten the lives of patients in most cases, while also making their last months/weeks/days far more miserable (chemotherapy). Don’t expect anyone to trust the medical industry when such scams are at the forefront. Medical industry doesn’t create cures, they create customers. They literally have a vested interest in making sure people don’t actually get better. That is about the only fact in that industry.

  • Really? You think there is nothing in the homeo meds? Here is my open challenge:

    Try taking Natrum Mur CM or Silicea CM – 2 doses on a day and see what happens to your mind forever!

    By the way, Natrum-Mur is PLAIN SALT and Silicea is plain SAND diluted to “nothing”. You can get them from helios.co.uk (http://helios.co.uk/)

    And before you laugh at salt and sand, I double dare you or you can just stop spreading your half-baked, biased knowledge 🙂

    • Try taking Natrum Mur CM or Silicea CM – 2 doses on a day and see what happens to your mind forever!

      At first I missed Rich’s irony. Then I looked on the Helios website. Both products come in a huge variety of formulations. The pure substances (salt and silicon dioxide) are offered in a range of homeopathic formulations (tablets, soft tablets, large soft tablets [extra large not on offer], pills, granules, oral liquid, etc.). The lowest potency (highest concentration of substance) I could find was salt 3X, which is a 1:1000 dilution. We all ingest far more sodium chloride per day than is contained in these tablets.

      I was particularly taken by this website, which solemnly warns “If you would like to try the nat mur homeopathic remedy, discuss it first with your doctor.” Your doctor, who will doubtless be impressed with your half-baked, biased knowledge of everyday physiology.

    • Homeopathy does seem to damage its users, but I doubt the pills themselves are to blame

    • Let me guess how this pans out.

      Skeptic (S) does as requested and nothing happens.
      Homeopath (H) screams that the remedy wasn’t taken, was touched, wasn’t held under the tongue long enough or some such twaddle.
      S OK I’ll do it in front of a video camera. Does so, still no effect.
      H By now even more incoherent than normal, shouts scum bag cheat. Rushes off to be comforted by other homeopaths. Meanwhile the video plays on.

      Actually I’m not guessing, some of us recently saw this happen.

      • I have done tests of this nature several times.
        a German pharmacologist did one with an entire class of students [he repeated Hahnemann’s cinchona experiment].
        the results were much as you have just sketched them.

  • I had a German friend who was permanently healed of Graves’ disease with homeopathy. It was the only treatment she chose to receive. It was years later when I knew her and she was still free of Graves’ disease. She said she chose it because it is a widely used healing modality in Germany and she has known numerous people who have been cured of illnesses that have stayed well. I don’t believe this fits placebo. Placebo is a temporary effect.

    So say what you will, here is one story that runs contrary to your claims and she said that the result she had is not uncommon in Germany where she is from.

    • the plural of anecdote is anecdotes, not evidence!

    • Lisa

      To amplify a little on Edzard’s reply to you. The problem is that when attempts are made to verify such anecdotes, there has been a systematic failure to be able to back them up.

      The one time when homeopaths and their alt.med. colleagues place absolute and unquestioning faith in conventional medicine and ignore the potential for false diagnosis is when those diagnoses are used to support a tale of miracle cure.

    • Grave’s disease is caused by antibodies directed (in part) against the thyroid. Most of the symptoms result from this immune stumulation. If enough thyroid tissue is destroyed, the symptoms recede. In most patients, relapse and remission is the usual route – but some people will have only a single episode in their lives.

      From http://www.gpnotebook.co.uk/simplepage.cfm?ID=1657798677&linkID=16660&cook=no “the clinical spectrum of Graves’ disease is made more complex by the rare occurrence of patients who secrete antibodies that either lead to stimulation of the TSH receptor (TSI) or result in the blocking of the TSH receptor. Therefore, depending on the activity of the stimulating and blocking antibodies the clinical condition ranges from hyperthyroidism to euthyroidism, to hypothyroidism and recurrent hyperthyroidism”

      Your friends experience is within the spectrum of untreated Graves’ disease.

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