MD, PhD, FMedSci, FRSB, FRCP, FRCPEd

On the website of THE CENTRE FOR HOMEOPATHIC EDUCATION (CHE), an organisation which claims to operate ‘in partnership with’ the MIDDLESEX UNIVERSITY LONDON, we find the most amazing promotion of quackery. Under the title of ’10 Top Homeopathic Remedies for your First Aid Kit’ they state that “we wanted to give you some top tips to put together your own remedy kit to use in first-aid situations for yourself, friends and family.”

Yes, you did read correctly: apparently, the Middlesex University is supporting a homeopathic ‘first aid’ kit. You find this unbelievable? You are not alone!

The remedies they recommend would be ideal in the 30c potency for everyday use, they claim. Here are a few of the high-lighted remedies, together with their ‘indications’:

ACONITE This remedy is great for shock…

ARNICA  This is the classic remedy for trauma… The typical arnica patient will tell you that they’re fine and avoid attention, but may well still be in shock…

ARSENICUM This is your go-to remedy for food-poisoning…

BELLADONNA …This is a great remedy for fever, sunstroke, and for a skin condition such as boils.

HEPAR SULPH Very painful and infected wounds and abscesses respond well to this remedy.

RHUS TOX …used to treat skin rashes like chicken pox and shingles.

There are many more remedies to choose from, but hopefully this will give you a good little starter kit. Also it is possible to buy a comprehensive homeopathic first-aid kit from any of the reputable homeopathic suppliers. These kits will come with instructions on how to use the remedies too.

END OF 1st QUOTE

The CHE run all sorts of courses. It’s a shame that we all missed the recent lecture Evidence based homeopathy – with Dana Ullman. But if you are in London, you might want to attend on 7/9/2016 entitled Homeopathy, Detox and Cancer – with Dr Robin Murphy ND. It will cover subjects like these:

  • The Cancer Diseases –  the cancer disease is an umbrella term for a range of conditions which primarily affects the cells and immune system first.There are many causes of this condition such as emotional shocks, toxins, drugs, trauma, radiation and severe stress, etc. In some cases the cause is genetic or not known. Aging is another factor in the development and treatment of the cancer diseases.
  • Homeopathic remedies: Cancer remedies, cancer pains, chemotherapy and radiation side effects, socks, trauma, sleep, surgery, remedies for prevention and recovery.
  • Detox therapy: Detox principles and methods, heavy metals, chemo drugs, radiation, chemicals, etc. Detox diet, superfoods, herbal tonics and natural remedies.

END OF 2nd QUOTE

Yes, not just first aid but also cancer! This is sensational (or is the term scandalous better suited?) ! Cancer, they claim, can be caused by emotional shock (they do seem to like this term!) and there are homeopathic cancer remedies (the English cancer act prohibits claims, I think). This course must be a bargain at just £30! Perhaps some London sceptics should attend?

It would be ever so easy to make fun at this – but let’s try to keep a straight face because, in fact, this is not funny at all. It seems clear to me that it would be possible to kill quite a few emergency patients following the instructions of the homeopathic first aid kit, and one would most likely hasten the death of many cancer patients following Murphy’s cancer course.

Why is the Middlesex University a ‘partner’ in such monstrosities? Presumably they get some money for it, and officials would probably claim that their ‘partnership’ does not amount to an endorsement of such dangerous quackery (interestingly, when I searched their site for ‘homeopathy’, I got “no results found”). Yet they must be aware that they are lending credibility to indefensible charlatanry and thereby risking their own reputation.

If I were the Vice Chancellor of Middlesex, I would quickly sever all links to THE CENTRE FOR HOMEOPATHIC EDUCATION and publish an apology for having been involved in such mind-boggling quackery.

5 Responses to Middlesex University supports dangerous quackery

  • I don’t quite know where to start.

    Middlesex University still appears to be a bastion of quackacademic support for Big Snakeoil. In 2010 it was the subject of a post on David Colquhoun’s Improbable Science. Since then it seems to have closed its BSc courses in ‘complementary health sciences (Ayurveda)’, ‘Herbal Medicine’, ‘Traditional Chinese Acupuncture’ and ‘Traditional Chinese Medicine’, also its MSc in Ayurvedic Medicine, but its Chinese Medicine MSc is still very much alive and kicking.

    On the research front, Middlesex’s Complementary Health group appears to be thriving. The link boasts ‘groundbreaking findings’, but we are given no account of what these might be; instead there’s just a list of study areas. The university also offers a short course in Tuina, aka ‘Tui na’, which is yet another massage technique in Chinese medicine. “Whilst some of the techniques are similar to those in Western/ Swedish massage, overall the experience is more akin to Shiatsu and is a more therapeutic, than relaxing massage technique.” Wikipedia tells us that “Tui na is a hands-on body treatment that uses Chinese taoist principles in an effort to bring the eight principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) into balance.”

    Then there’s the issue of homeopathic first aid, which Edzard has covered before on this blog. I then wrote a comment linking to the US Amazon.com site, which still offers the Helios homeopathic first aid kit. The reviews continue to maintain the high standard of satire. One of the latest says: “While walking home early one morning with my brother after drinking quite excessively, my brother stumbled out in from of a taxi and his head was completely crushed under the front wheel. He was rushed to the hospital and the doctors said he only had minutes to live. I rang my father who came immediately carrying the Helios Kit. He proceeded to administer several drops of x200c Peruvian Cockroach Scrotum into my brothers ear as he lay on the bed convulsing and twitching. Immediately my brother stabilized into a relaxed state and he began breathing normally. The doctors were flabbergasted. For a guy (who now basically had a two dimensional head complete with tyre marks and grey matter protruding from skull cracks) to stabilize like this was truly remarkable. He has since made a full recovery and all credit goes to this amazing product.”

    • Frank said: “Middlesex’s Complementary Health group appears to be thriving”

      I do try and treat these matters with serious concern but when the groups website uses a remark like, “Our researchers are ahead of curve…” it’s too tempting to resist pointing out this means they are literally round the bend. Glad we cleared that one up then!

      I can never see how homeopaths can advocate the use of homeopathic “first-aid” kits. I thought it all had to be carefully individualised and so forth – apparently not in every case.

      Niall

  • I am amazed to see that Middlesex Uni still validates the CHE homeopathy BSc:

    http://uk.chehomeopathy.com/what-we-offer/practitioner-training/uk-homeopathic-courses/

    I thought all these had been dropped.

  • Having closed down their own courses, some universities at the bottom of the heap have resorted to “validating” courses at private colleges which are not open to FOIA. So we canno longer see the nonsense that they teach (see http://www.dcscience.net/?s=Middlesex ). The minister for universities, Jo Johnson, seems to like this.

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