MD, PhD, FMedSci, FRSB, FRCP, FRCPEd.

If you had chronic kidney disease (CKD), would you be attracted by an article entitled ‘How to Reduce Creatinine Level in Homeopathy’? (Elevated levels are normally caused by CKD which makes it an important diagnostic test to diagnose the condition) I am sure many patients would! A few days ago, an article with exactly this title caught my eye; it comes from this website. I find it remarkable and cannot resist showing you a short excerpt from it:

START OF QUOTE

…These [homeopathic] medicines work in two ways. First of all, they control the condition so that no more damage is done to the kidneys. Secondly, they start elimination the root causes of renal failure. Unlike allopathic medicines, there are no side effects associated with the use of Homeopathic medicines. If treatment is done in a right, patients starts feeling better within few weeks. After few months, most of the patients are recovered and their kidney starts functioning properly and normally. And then your creatinine level will come down…

Toxin-Removing Treatment for patients with high creatinine level

Here we recommend you another treatment. It is Toxin-Removing Treatment, which is a combination of various Chinese medicine. Compared with homeopathy, Chinese medicine has a particularly longer history. It can expel waste products and extra fluid out of body to make internal environment good for kidney self-healing and other medication application. It can also dilate blood vessels and remove stasis to improve blood circulation and increase blood flow into damaged kidneys so that enough essential elements can be transported into damaged kidneys to speed up kidney recovery. Besides, it can strengthen your immunity to fight against kidney disease. After about one week’s treatment, you will see floccules in urine, which are wastes being passed out. After about half month’s treatment, your high creatinine, high BUN and high uric acid level will go down. After about one month’s treatment, your kidney function will start to increase. With the improvement of renal function, creatinine can be excreted out naturally.

END OF QUOTE

After reading this article some CKD patients might decide to try homeopathy or Chinese Herbal Medicine (CHM) for their condition. This, however, would be very ill-advised.

Why?

Because there is not a jot of evidence to suggest that homeopathy works for CKD. If any homeopath reading this has a different opinion, please show us the evidence.

There is also, as far as I can see, little good evidence to suggest that CHM is effective for CKD. On the contrary, there is quite a bit of evidence to show that CHM can cause kidney damage.

So?

The above article is misleading to the extreme! Or, to put it bluntly, it’s full of lies.

But why is this remarkable? On the Internet, we find thousands of similarly idiotic texts promoting bogus treatments for every disease known to mankind – and nobody seems to bat an eyelash about it. Nobody seems to think that the public needs to be better protected from the habitual liars who write such vile stuff. Many influential people and institutions not merely tolerate such abuse but seem to support it.

Precisely … and this is why I find this article, together with the thousands of similar ones, remarkable.

 

 

28 Responses to Lies, damned lies, and homeopathy

  • Problem is that many of those who should be regulating all this are not interested, eg the UK’s General Medical Council:

    https://majikthyse.wordpress.com/2017/10/20/the-general-medical-council-nice-bedside-manner-with-quacks/

  • The GMC always argues that their only responsibility is to regulate those practitioners registered with them.
    It is for the government to arrange the regulation of other practitioners – if it wants to, or can be made to.

    And the GMC will only respond to those unethical registered practitioners who prescribe HPs without obtaining fully informed consent (advising patients of the consensus of medical opinion), when a patient complains. And patients desirous of care from a homeopath do not complain – except to complain that the rest of us object to paying for their whims.

    The GMC stance fails to protect patients, but protects the repute of government which does not want to be too much of a ‘nanny’ and is well aware of the principle of caveat emptor.

    That is why education, and Ernstification, is so important in enabling the emptor to caveat.

  • “That is why education, and Ernstification, is so important in enabling the emptor to caveat.”

    Lies, damned lies and Ernst. Makes more sense.

  • I thank God for people like you reporting this kind of bs. For a patient like myself, looking on the internet JUST TO SEE if there were any legitimate doctors who think there are some more natural ways to release my toxins or any other form of less harsh treatments, it was educational and not condescending. My husband is a RN in the OR and has drilled it into my head about most homeopathy and it’s dangers. He likes to use Steve Jobs as a reference. If one of the most innovative and wealthiest men in the world could find a way to treat himself homeopathically after everything else failed -he’d still be alive today. I am grateful for him and you. Sad to think people don’t trust the medical community whose sole desire it is to help and hope to cure.

  • Kathryn Araya

    “Sad to think people don’t trust the medical community whose sole desire it is to help and hope to cure.”

    Soooo, there is not financial incentives in medicine ?

    As for Steve Jobs, you might want to read this;

    “So Jobs’ alleged decision to delay his treatment may not have been as ill-advised as some have claimed.
    “I don’t think waiting nine months for surgery was a bad decision,” Dr. Maged Rizk, a gastroenterologist at Cleveland Clinic, told WebMD in an interview last week. “Especially if it is limited disease, especially if it is an islet-cell tumor and the cells are [typical of early cancer], and as long as you don’t have symptoms, you can sit on it a bit,” Rizk said. (Neuroendocrine tumors are also known as islet-cell tumors.)
    But what about Jobs’ use of alternative medicine? Could that have had an impact on his cancer?
    Some experts say that, if anything, use of alternative medicine approaches may have helped Jobs’ overall health. Jobs lived 8 years after his diagnosis.
    The average life expectancy for someone with a metastatic neuroendocrine tumor is about two years, according to PCAN. (It remains unclear whether Jobs’ cancer was metastatic when he was diagnosed.)
    “I believe that he must have really refocused his heath practices,” through changes in diet and exercise, said Dr. Ashwin Mehta, an assistant professor and medical director of integrative medicine at the University of Miami’s Sylvester Cancer Center. “To do as well as he did, he must have done a lot of things right,” Mehta said.”

    https://www.livescience.com/16551-steve-jobs-alternative-medicine-pancreatic-cancer-treatment.html

  • The Swiss Government has recently accepted Homeopathy as a recognized treatment. Its is a recognized treatment in Germany and many other countries. So, just because you don’t understand something, you’ve no right to just trash it. They are outside the long reach of the Pharma industry that basically runs the world, and spends billions of dollars lobbying governments around the world to have products passed that have not been properly tested, or, for which there are known side effects. Cure your headache but you could die of liver failure, or maybe cause you tuberculosis … how very special. TV commercials for drugs spend more time revealing the many, many potential side effects than they do the perceived benefits. PHARMS is to blame for much pain and suffering. My mother passed away with 3 DAMNED PAGES OF DRUGS many to offset the side-effects of the one’s that came before, and died mentally and emotionally suffering

    • Andrea
      “The Swiss Government has recently accepted Homeopathy as a recognized treatment.”

      This is true. It was on the basis of a referendum (a Swiss obsession). What they don’t understand is that science is not a popularity contest. The referendum question bundled homeopathy with a range of CAM therapies, so nobody could vote only for homeopathy. a very silly way to make decisions about health care (and many other things).

      “…just because you don’t understand something, you’ve no right to just trash it.”

      You totally misunderstand the argument. This is not about understanding homeopathy, it is about evidence. Asking for evidence is not “trashing”. However I do understand homeopathy, I have attended a training course:

      https://majikthyse.wordpress.com/2018/05/12/going-undercover-homeopathy/

      I must say that I have never before encountered so much deluded poppycock, eg that ultra-diluted gold salts can be matched to personality types. Scientific validation of these claims was never mentioned.

      And I do have the right to ask for evidence.

      “They are outside the long reach of the Pharma industry that basically runs the world, ….”
      The usual anti-science trope. Drug development is not perfect, errors and cheating do occur. I spent 40 years in the industry and even blew the whistle on a company once. Marketers breach the rules and make up stories. But the science tells us that overall, prescription drugs do more good than harm. That is the evidence. Please don’t trot out the “third leading cause of death” claim, that has been debunked comprehensively. All I am asking is, what is the risk:benefit ratio for CAM? Please tell me what it is for homeopathy, based on real data.

      “TV commercials for drugs spend more time revealing the many, many potential side effects than they do the perceived benefits.”
      We don’t have direct to consumer marketing of prescription drug here in Europe, and the US practice to which you refer seems reprehensible to me. But I must explain something. The reason for a very long list of side effects is that in clinical trials all adverse effects seen must be reported, irrespective of whether the observer thinks they are caused by the treatment. Furthermore, after marketing, all adverse events reported by patients and health care professionals must be recorded. So the drug information includes many very rare side effects, that may not even have been caused by the drug. Maybe the TV ad should say that the drug works in say 75% of patients and that 0.2% suffered a serious adverse effect. These are typical figures – would this approach help your understanding?

      I appreciate that the profit-driven health care system in some countries (and I am guessing that you are in the USA) encourages serious abuses including over-prescribing. This is something that we Europeans are determined to oppose.

      • As a man of science I can understand your position, and your reflex to defend a system that is not working for millions upon millions of people. I am indeed in N. America and the abuse of drugs by doctors peddling drugs because of drug company incentives, the addictions going on here is abominable. The unnecessarily high price of life-saving drugs is obscene. The Pharma industry does run the world and I laugh when people think its the oil companies. Get us sick and keep us sick is a great motto and the recent scandal regarding Perdue and Oxycotin is a prime example of said abuse — they knew the dangers and saw dollars signs and unleashed an epidemic with the help of doctors (many of whom are being sued as we discuss this.)

        Pharma spends billions of dollar lobbying to get their products to the market, often without enough research and/or skewed research. What’s more, much of the chemicals that are pushed out are actually based on things that exist in nature and pharma has figure out a way to mass product and manufacture with more harmful added ingredients than exist in nature.

        There is scientific evidence and then their is empirical evidence. Homeopathy has been around for thousands of years; the Romans used it and so did the Egyptians so to scoff at it counterproductive.

        While I agree that to suggest that Homeopathy alone can cure cancer or other life-threatening diseases is questionable, but as a side-by-side treatment I absolutely believe in.

        I have personal success stories using herbs and homeopathy over 35 years and I trust MY personal experiences with family and friends. I know, in the hands of the right people it does work because I’ve seen the results of coughs, stomach, liver and other issues being resolved using it.

        Bottom line for me is that I believe both modalities have a place in healing and recovery.

        • Andrea:
          “There is scientific evidence and then their is empirical evidence. Homeopathy has been around for thousands of years; the Romans used it and so did the Egyptians so to scoff at it counterproductive.”
          Please provide any evidence to support these claims. I am not scoffing, I am asking for evidence. You are the one making claims so you have to support them with evidence, or expect to be criticised.

          Having been an industry insider I am entirely aware of its shortcomings. Pharma spends more on marketing than it does on R&D, which is unacceptable. But to couch that in terms of a conspiracy is not supported by any evidence. Corporations will do whatever they can get away with, irrespective of the industry sector. It’s down to regulators and consumer awareness to limit this. It’s worth however remembering that the natural health movement is backed by Big Pharma, which sells the multitudes of unnecessary supplements and herbs. They do it to make money.

          “I have personal success stories using herbs and homeopathy over 35 years and I trust MY personal experiences with family and friends.”
          Do you think that prescription drugs should be approved by regulators on the basis of “personal success stories”? I suggest you read about cognitive bias: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cognitive_bias

          “I know, in the hands of the right people it does work because I’ve seen the results of coughs, stomach, liver and other issues being resolved using it.”
          You are talking about self-limiting conditions, ie they get better anyway.

          • RE-WRITING MEDICAL HISTORY: ” Homeopathy has been around for thousands of years; the Romans used it and so did the Egyptians”

  • “This is true. It was on the basis of a referendum (a Swiss obsession). What they don’t understand is that science is not a popularity contest. The referendum question bundled homeopathy with a range of CAM therapies, so nobody could vote only for homeopathy. a very silly way to make decisions about health care (and many other things).”

    One also has to ask, why would the Swiss have demanded a referendum on Homeopathy unless they’re using it to treat their health issues and its working for them and they wanted it to be added as a recognized therapy and treatment!

    • think of Brexit!

    • Andrea:
      “One also has to ask, why would the Swiss have demanded a referendum on Homeopathy unless they’re using it to treat their health issues and its working for them and they wanted it to be added as a recognized therapy and treatment!”
      Simple – a small and vociferous group, mainly homeopaths who were worried about their incomes, lobbied persistently. You still don’t grasp what evidence is.

  • Homeopathy like traditional medicine have their roots plant based ‘natural remedies’ that exist in nature. Foxglove, a poisonous plant would be Digitalis for the heart:

    https://www.poison.org/articles/2015-mar/foxglove

    White Willow is where Aspirin came from:

    http://pennstatehershey.adam.com/content.aspx?productId=107&pid=33&gid=000281

    How about some coffee for good health:

    https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/expert-answers/coffee-and-health/faq-20058339

    Hundreds of other examples but these are a few easy to relate to examples.

    ~~~~~~~

    Dioscorides’ pharmacopeia

    Pedanius Dioscorides lived around 40–90 C.E. He was a Greek botanist, pharmacologist, and physician who practiced in Rome when Nero was the ruler.

    He became a famous Roman army doctor.

    He wrote a 5-volume pharmacopeia called “De Materia Medica,” which listed over 600 herbal cures. Doctors used “De Materia Medica” extensively for the next 1,500 years.

    Many Roman doctors came from Greece. They firmly believed in achieving the right balance of the four humors and restoring the “natural heat” of people with medical conditions.

    Galen said that opposites would often cure people. For a cold, he would give the person hot pepper. If they had a fever, he advised doctors to use cucumber.

    https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/323600.php#dioscorides-pharmacopeia

    • you are talking about herbal medicine.
      homeopathy is defined as medicine following Hahnemann’s ;like cures like’ assumption. It is ~ 200 years old and uses any material and immaterial source including: Berlin wall, X-ray, etc.

  • Homeopathic medicines, also called “remedies” are derived from natural substances such as plants, minerals and animal sources.

    No offense intended but does this mean you are also an anti-vaxer? Because the concept of vaccines is not dissimilar from Homeopathy – like treats like.

    “Vaccines contain the same germs that cause disease. (For example, measles vaccine contains measles virus, and Hib vaccine contains Hib bacteria.) But they have been either killed or weakened to the point that they don’t make you sick. Some vaccines contain only a part of the disease germ.”

    Except with Homeopathy a person’s constitution is taken into account; personality traits, trauma, ongoing symptoms, recurring issues etc.

    IF you have stomach gas Carbo Veg would be one answer among many based on very specific symptoms based on recurrence, when it happens, where in the body you experience it etc.

    Arnica Montana has gone mainstream for pain and pharma co’s are adding it to the concoctions along with Rhus Tox and Rutra Grav for muscle and tendon pain.

    Silcea works extremely will for gum pain and abscesses caught in its early stages. How do I know, because I’ve used it dozens of times.

    My point is that there are many applications and circumstances that people would benefit from looking into Homeopathy as a stand-alone or adjunct to other things they’re doing.

    To decry it as a hoax or gimmickry is unfortunately not doing justice to people who suffer needlessly, or are forced to go on a cocktail of drugs, all with side affects, that require other drugs for said side-effects. It’s a hamster wheel for conditions that are not life-threatening and do not require pharma solutions IMHO.

    Done here, thanks for listening and posting my responses.

    • sorry to see you leave – it was interesting to hear someone so deeply ill-informed as your good self

    • Andrea:
      Now you are getting really silly. How vaccines work is very solidly supported by science. It has nothing to do with `like cures like’, it is about priming the immune system by presenting antigens. Any resemblance to homeopathy is purely coincidental, because nobody has reliably shown that homeopathic `medicines’ actually contain anything active. If you know differently please cite the studies.

      We have asked you precise and clear questions, asking for evidence, and you never reply. You only trot out the same anecdotal stuff.

    • Andrea

      You claim that “Homeopathic medicines, also called “remedies” are derived from natural substances such as plants, minerals and animal sources.”

      Bunk.

      They are derived from anything and everything. Have a look here at some of the various homeopathic “remedies” available from Ainsworths.

      https://www.ainsworths.com/index.php?node=_RemedyStore2&

      Rather a lot of very unnatural things on that list, wouldn’t you say?

  • Thank you for that … not going away just feel that this thread has been exhausted for now at least.

    • I thought you had gone!
      who ever denied that the romans [and most other ancient cultures] used herbalism?
      are you too limited to keep track of an argument?

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