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

The COVID-19 pandemic has posed an unprecedented challenge to global health. Classical homeopathy may, according to homeopaths, have a role to play in alleviating this burden. The objective of this study was to curate data on the treatment effect of classical homeopathy for COVID-19 in a real-world scenario to guide future scientific investigations.

Classical homeopaths from the International Academy of Classical Homeopathy (IACH) were asked to provide details on cases they treated by filling out a standardized questionnaire. COVID-19 cases were defined according to World Health Organization (WHO) criteria as suspected/probable/confirmed cases, with intervention provided being either stand-alone classical homeopathy or combined with conventional therapy for COVID-19. Cases were followed up with main outcomes being ‘improved’, ‘not improved’, or ‘progressed’ post-treatment. Details of the homeopathic remedies used and the main symptoms at the presentation were gathered. Factors associated with main outcomes were investigated with correlational and regression analyses.

367 patients (male 166, female 201) met eligibility criteria (mean age 42.75 years). The mean follow-up period was 6.5 (standard deviation, SD=5.3) days. 255 were confirmed COVID-19 cases, with 61 probable and 51 suspected cases, respectively. The most used remedy was Arsenicum album. Over 73% of COVID-19 patients (and about 79% of severe cases) improved under classical homeopathic treatment. The number of remedies required per individual was negatively correlated to improvement (P< 0.01). Fever, the most common symptom at presentation (74.4%), was associated with an increased likelihood of improvement (P<0.01). Improvement was negatively associated with advanced age, but not associated with sex (P<0.01).

The authors conclude that this study suggests that classical homeopathy was associated with improvement in COVID-19, including severe cases. Despite limitations from study design and data sources, our findings should prompt further studies on the role of classical homeopathy in the management of COVID-19.

I BEG TO DIFFER!

These cases suggest nothing of the sort. If anything, these highly selected cases suggest that about 27% of the exemplary patients did not improve, perhaps they even died. This implies to me that classical homeopathy worsens the prognosis of patients infected with COVID-19.

The ‘International Academy of Classical Homeopathy‘ is led by the ‘Ueber-Homeopath’, George Vithoulkas. His vision is that this Academy will become a center of real knowledge which will provide an education that will far exceed the technical and strictly “medical” aspect of one’s learning. One might ask what fanatics like he truly want to achieve – is it perhaps the promotion of ‘euthanasia homoeopathica’?

11 Responses to Classical homeopathy worsens the prognosis of patients infected with COVID-19.

  • “The number of remedies required per individual was negatively correlated to [sic] improvement (P< 0.01)."

    What a daft statement. Let's see how they have (mis)used the term "improvement"…

    For mild to moderately severe disease, recovery in 7 days was considered to be “improved”. Recovery after 7 days was considered to be “not improved”.

    For severe disease, up to 15 days to recovery was considered to be “improved”, and over 15 days was considered to be “not improved”.

    Using the above, we get:

    “The number of remedies required per individual was positively correlated with the time taken to improve.”

    A finding that is banal. Or have I missed some relevant detail in the study?

  • “The number of remedies required per individual was negatively correlated to [sic] improvement (P< 0.01).”

    What a daft statement. Let’s see how they have (mis)used the term “improvement”…

    For mild to moderately severe disease, recovery in 7 days was considered to be “improved”. Recovery after 7 days was considered to be “not improved”.

    For severe disease, up to 15 days to recovery was considered to be “improved”, and over 15 days was considered to be “not improved”.

    Using the above, we get:

    “The number of remedies required per individual was positively correlated with the time taken to improve.”

    A finding that is banal.

    Or have I missed some relevant detail in the study…

    [my formatting for clarity]

    The number of homeopathic remedies required was strongly correlated with improvement (Table 2). This is in keeping with the homeopathic principles of levels of health.[27]

    Healthier patients present with stronger and clearer symptoms for homeopathic prescription, and their response is quick and in the right direction.

    Less healthy patients require a few more remedies in the right sequence to bring them up to the same level of efficient response.

    If a homeopath makes mistakes in identifying the remedy, the response is delayed, and the number of remedies required will also increase.

    In either case, improvement is inversely correlated to the number of remedies required.[27]

    27. Vithoulkas G. “Levels of Health”. International Academy of Classical Homeopathy; 2019.

    🤣🤣🤣🤣

  • 73% of cases improved! 27% not. Ernst, your comment is the most funny that I read in this times. You need understand the basis of statistics!

    • @RG “Funny”

      73% of cases improved! 27% not.

      Yes, that is correct. And that is also exactly what Edzard repeats:

      these highly selected cases suggest that about 27% of the exemplary patients did not improve …

      So when you say

      You need understand the basis of statistics!

      I’m afraid that YOU need to understand the basis of the English language, as well as the basis of proper reasoning.

      Normally, you would expect the vast majority of mild COVID-19 cases to show improvement within 1 to 2 weeks. When this improvement ratio drops to about 73% in groups treated with homeopathy, then this would suggest that homeopathy is associated with a worse outcome – exactly like Edzard says.

      Even apart from the above, this ‘study’ is a total joke. Without a matched control group, it says absolutely nothing at all about any effects of homeopathic treatment. All it says is that most people eventually recover from a COVID-19 infection. Duh.

      And about this number of ‘remedies’ required: I have no idea what they even try to say by that. It seems like total nonsense to me.

      • And about this number of ‘remedies’ required: I have no idea what they even try to say by that. It seems like total nonsense to me.

        Perhaps it’s to do with individualisation. If the patient improves, the correct remedy has been selected; if the patient doesn’t improve, they choose another remedy. The longer it takes for the patient to improve, the more remedies will be selected.

        • @Mojo

          Perhaps it’s to do with individualisation.

          Interesting thought, but I can’t find anything pointing in this direction in this dung beetle feast they call ‘study’.

          But I think I see it now: their finding that “The number of remedies required per individual was negatively correlated to improvement” simply says that homeopaths tended to try another ‘remedy’ when patients didn’t show improvement within a couple of days or a week. Duh.

          (Which in fact lends further support to the notion that homeopathy doesn’t work, and relies on spontaneous recovery for ‘success’.)

      • “When this improvement ratio drops to about 73% in groups treated with homeopathy, then this would suggest that homeopathy is associated with a worse outcome – exactly like Edzard says.”



        RG, I told you that, before I allow your comments again, you need to apologize.
        I am not posting ‘funny’ comments!

  • It’s not mentioned that the homeo medicine is tested on vaccinated or unvaccinated individuals. According to the homeowner doctors we talked with, homeo medicines doesn’t work with the vaccinated people.

    • any evidence?
      if not, I can claim homeopathy only works at full moon!

    • “homeo medicines doesn’t work with the vaccinated people”

      Very true! Doesn’t seem to work with unvaccinated people either…

      Homeopathic optimism: the case of the ‘Swiss report’
      Published Monday 05 May 2014
      Guest Post by Jan Willem Nienhuys
      https://edzardernst.com/2014/05/homeopathic-optimism-the-case-of-the-swiss-report/

      Moreover, if a treatment or trial doesn’t work out, then a number of additional hypotheses about homeopathy can be invoked, which is what Maxion-Bergemann et al. do. Homeopathic remedies supposedly are counteracted by lots of regular medications and even by strong tasting or smelling food, such as coffee, parsley, garlic and peppermint. Hahnemann even disapproved of reading in bed and long afternoon naps and prolonged suckling of infants (Organon, section 260). Poor performance of homeopathy can be blamed on something called ‘initial aggravation’ or else on lack of experience of the poorly performing homeopath.

      Organon Sixth Edition, Aphorism § 260, Samuel Hahnemann

      Hence the careful investigation into such obstacles to cure is so much the more necessary in the case of patients affected by chronic diseases, as their diseases are usually aggravated by such noxious influences and other disease-causing errors in the diet and regimen, which often pass unnoticed.1

      1 Coffee; fine Chinese and other herb teas; beer prepared with medicinal vegetable substances unsuitable for the patient’s state; so-called fine liquors made with medicinal spices; all kinds of punch; spiced chocolate; odorous waters and perfumes of many kinds; strong-scented flowers in the apartment; tooth powders and essences and perfumed sachets compounded of drugs; highly spiced dishes and sauces; spiced cakes and ices; crude medicinal vegetables for soups; dishes of herbs, roots and stalks of plants possessing medicinal qualities; asparagus with long green tips, hops, and all vegetables possessing medicinal properties, celery, onions; old cheese, and meats that are in a state of decomposition, or that passes medicinal properties (as the flesh and fat of pork, ducks and geese, or veal that is too young and sour viands), ought just as certainly to be kept from patients as they should avoid all excesses in food, and in the use of sugar and salt, as also spirituous drinks, undiluted with water, heated rooms, woollen clothing next the skin, a sedentary life in close apartments, or the frequent indulgence in mere passive exercise (such as riding, driving or swinging), prolonged suckling, taking a long siesta in a recumbent posture in bed, sitting up long at night, uncleanliness, unnatural debauchery, enervation by reading obscene books, reading while lying down, Onanism or imperfect or suppressed intercourse in order to prevent conception, subjects of anger, grief or vexation, a passion for play, over-exertion of the mind or body, especially after meals, dwelling in marshy districts, damp rooms, penurious living, etc. All these things must be as far as possible avoided or removed, in order that the cure may not be obstructed or rendered impossible. Some of my disciples seem needlessly to increase the difficulties of the patient’s dietary by forbidding the use of many more, tolerably indifferent things, which is not to be commended.

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