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

I have become used to lamentably poor research in the realm of SCAM, particularly homeopathy. Thus, there is little that can amaze me these days; at least this is what I had thought. But this paper is an exception. The new trial is entitled ‘ETHICAL CLINICAL TRIAL OF LESSER KNOWN HOMEOPATHIC REMEDIES IN INFERTILITY IN FEMALES’, and it is truly outstanding. Here is the abstract:

Background & Objective:  Homoeopathy with time honoured results, has a great number of cured cases of infertility, but without much evidence. So, it is imperative to show scientifically the scope of homoeopathy in treating infertility cases. Materials and Methodology: 7 lesser known medicines (Alteris farinosa, Janosia Ashoka, Viburnum opulus, Euphonium, Ustilago, Bacillus sycocuss, Bacillus morgan) were prescribed to the sample size (n=23), at the project site O.P.D/I.P.D. of Homoeopathy university, Saipura, Jaipur and Dr Madan Pratap Khunteta Homoeopathic Medical College, Hospital & Research Centre, Station Road, Jaipur & its extension O.P.D.’s. for study within 12 months. Result-In the present study 7 (30.43%) patients were prescribed Janosia Ashoka amongst whom 2(28.57%) showed marked improvement, while 5(71.43%) remained in the state of status quo. Conclusion- Study has shown encouraging and effective treatment in infertility in females.

It does not tell us much; therefore, let me copy several crucial passages from the paper itself:

Objectives of the study-

  • To study the efficacy of homoeopathic medicines in the treatment of infertility in females.
  • To enhance the knowledge of materia medica in cases of infertility in females.

Material and Methodology-

The study was conducted at O.P.D./I.P.D.of Homoeopathy University, Saipura, Sanganer and Dr M.P.K. Homoeopathic Medical College &Research Centre, Station Road, Jaipur from 2010 to 2013 for a total period of 3 Years. A sample size of n=23 and 7 lesser known remedies were selected for the studies.

Result-

Inferences- Based on clinical symptoms and pathological investigations. It was inferred that out of 23 patients taken for study, 2 (8.69%) patients showed marked improvement, while 21 (91.31%) patients remained in the state of status quo.

_________________________________________________

No, I am not kidding you. There is no further relevant information about the trial methodology nor about the results. Therefore, I feel unable to even criticise this study; it is even too awful for a critique.

As I said: outstanding!

And all this could be quite funny – except, of course, some nutter will undoubtedly use this paper for claiming that there is evidence for homeopathy to efficiently treat female infertility.

You have to be a homeopath to call this an ethical trial!

8 Responses to A farcically incompetent ‘efficacy’ study of homeopathy

  • How on earth can you make “marked improvement” in infertility? “A little pregnant?”

    • and this is just one of the many fatal flaws of this ‘study’!

    • Perhaps they mean that 2 patients felt better about being infertile. This would be consistent with what we know about homeopathy. Patients feel better without being better which is consistent with Placebo effects aka homeopathy. However, the improvement in so few patients after 3 years does not say much for homeopathy being a powerful generator of placebo effects. Kind of worthless maybe. I feel sorry for patients subjected to this foolishness.

  • More to the point, where was this garbage published? (The link doesn’t work)

  • The link worked OK for me. The piece appeared in Homeopathy360, which is described as “an online portal for latest homeopathic news, events, articles, heritage articles, videos, interviews, book reviews and career opportunities.” So it’s not even pretending to be a proper scholarly, peer-reviewed publication.

    Edzard’s right: the article is indeed farcically incompetent. Among the hilarities are the descriptions of the magic potions used [warning: the following is not for the faint-hearted]. e.g.

    “USTILAGO MAYDIS
    Menses – half liquid, half clotted, aggravated from slightest provocation.
    Menses that had ceased returns again, are of bright red colour, soreness and bearing down in left side preceding the flow and partially ceasing with it.
    Menorrhagia of climaxes, post-partum and abortion.
    Yellow and offensive leucorrhoea.”
    etc., etc.

    Homeopathic research at its finest, indeed!

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