The Sunday Times reported yesterday reported that five NHS trusts currently offer moxibustion to women in childbirth for breech babies, i.e. babies presenting upside down. Moxibustion is a form of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) where mugwort is burned close to acupuncture points. The idea is that this procedure would stimulate the acupuncture point similar to the more common way using needle insertion. The fifth toe is viewed as the best traditional acupuncture point for breech presentation, and the treatment is said to turn the baby in the uterus so that it can be delivered more easily.
At least four NHS trusts are offering acupuncture and reflexology with aromatherapy to help women with delayed pregnancies, while 15 NHS trusts offer hypnobirthing classes. Some women are asked to pay fees of up to £140 for it. These treatments are supposed to relax the mother in the hope that this will speed up the process of childbirth.
The Nice guidelines on maternity care say the NHS should not offer acupuncture, acupressure, or hypnosis unless specifically requested by women. The reason for the Nice warning is simple: there is no convincing evidence that these therapies are effective.
Campaigner Catherine Roy who compiled the list of treatments said: “To one degree or another, the Royal College of Midwives, the Care Quality Commission and parts of the NHS support these pseudoscientific treatments.
“They are seen as innocuous but they carry risks, can delay medical help and participate in an anti-medicalisation stance specific to ‘normal birth’ ideology and maternity care. Nice guidelines are clear that they should not be offered by clinicians for treatment. NHS England must ensure that pseudoscience and non-evidence based treatments are removed from NHS maternity care.”
Birte Harlev-Lam, executive director of the Royal College of Midwives (RCM), said: “We want every woman to have as positive an experience during pregnancy, labour, birth and the postnatal period as possible — and, most importantly, we want that experience to be safe. That is why we recommend all maternity services to follow Nice guidance and for midwives to practise in line with the code set out by the Nursing and Midwifery Council.”
A spokeswoman for Nice said it was reviewing its maternity guidelines. NHS national clinical director for maternity and women’s health, Dr Matthew Jolly, said: “All NHS services are expected to offer safe and personalised clinical care and local NHS areas should commission core maternity services using the latest NICE and clinical guidance. NHS trusts are under no obligation to provide complementary or alternative therapies on top of evidence-based clinical care, but where they do in response to the wishes of mothers it is vital that the highest standards of safety are maintained.”
On this blog, we have repeatedly discussed the strange love affair of midwives with so-called alternative medicine (SCAM), for instance, here. In 2012, we published a summary of 19 surveys on the subject. It showed that the prevalence of SCAM use varied but was often close to 100%. Much of it did not seem to be supported by strong evidence for efficacy. We concluded that most midwives seem to use SCAM. As not all SCAMs are without risks, the issue should be debated openly. Today, there is plenty more evidence to show that the advice of midwives regarding SCAM is not just not evidence-based but also often dangerous. This, of course, begs the question: when will the professional organizations of midwifery do something about it?
Acupuncture is emerging as a potential therapy for relieving pain, but the effectiveness of acupuncture for relieving low back and/or pelvic pain (LBPP) during pregnancy remains controversial. This meta-analysis aimed to investigate the effects of acupuncture on pain, functional status, and quality of life for women with LBPP pain during pregnancy.
The authors included all RCTs evaluating the effects of acupuncture on LBPP during pregnancy. Data extraction and study quality assessments were independently performed by three reviewers. The mean differences (MDs) with 95% CIs for pooled data were calculated. The primary outcomes were pain, functional status, and quality of life. The secondary outcomes were overall effects (a questionnaire at a post-treatment visit within a week after the last treatment to determine the number of people who received good or excellent help), analgesic consumption, Apgar scores >7 at 5 min, adverse events, gestational age at birth, induction of labor and mode of birth.
Ten studies, reporting on a total of 1040 women, were included. Overall, acupuncture
- relieved pain during pregnancy (MD=1.70, 95% CI: (0.95 to 2.45), p<0.00001, I2=90%),
- improved functional status (MD=12.44, 95% CI: (3.32 to 21.55), p=0.007, I2=94%),
- improved quality of life (MD=−8.89, 95% CI: (−11.90 to –5.88), p<0.00001, I2 = 57%).
There was a significant difference in overall effects (OR=0.13, 95% CI: (0.07 to 0.23), p<0.00001, I2 = 7%). However, there was no significant difference in analgesic consumption during the study period (OR=2.49, 95% CI: (0.08 to 80.25), p=0.61, I2=61%) and Apgar scores of newborns (OR=1.02, 95% CI: (0.37 to 2.83), p=0.97, I2 = 0%). Preterm birth from acupuncture during the study period was reported in two studies. Although preterm contractions were reported in two studies, all infants were in good health at birth. In terms of gestational age at birth, induction of labor, and mode of birth, only one study reported the gestational age at birth (mean gestation 40 weeks).
The authors concluded that acupuncture significantly improved pain, functional status and quality of life in women with LBPP during the pregnancy. Additionally, acupuncture had no observable severe adverse influences on the newborns. More large-scale and well-designed RCTs are still needed to further confirm these results.
In case you are in a hurry: NOT A LOT!
In case you need more, here are a few points:
- many trials were of poor quality;
- there was evidence of publication bias;
- there was considerable heterogeneity within the studies.
The most important issue is one studiously avoided in the paper: the treatment of the control groups. One has to dig deep into this paper to find that the control groups could be treated with “other treatments, no intervention, and placebo acupuncture”. Trials comparing acupuncture combined plus other treatments with other treatments were also considered to be eligible. In other words, the analyses included studies that compared acupuncture to no treatment at all as well as studies that followed the infamous ‘A+Bversus B’ design. Seven studies used no intervention or standard of care in the control group thus not controlling for placebo effects.
Nobody can thus be in the slightest surprised that the overall result of the meta-analysis was positive – false positive, that is! And the worst is that this glaring limitation was not discussed as a feature that prevents firm conclusions.
In consideration of these points, let me rephrase the conclusions:
The well-documented placebo (and other non-specific) effects of aacupuncture improved pain, functional status and quality of life in women with LBPP during the pregnancy. Unsurprisingly, acupuncture had no observable severe adverse influences on the newborns. More large-scale and well-designed RCTs are not needed to further confirm these results.
I find it exasperating to see that more and more (formerly) reputable journals are misleading us with such rubbish!!!
The aim of this evaluator-blinded randomized clinical trial was to determine if manual therapy added to a therapeutic exercise program produced greater improvements than a sham manual therapy added to the same exercise program in patients with non-specific shoulder pain.
Forty-five subjects were randomly allocated into one of three groups:
- manual therapy (glenohumeral mobilization technique and rib-cage technique);
- thoracic sham manual therapy (glenohumeral mobilization technique and rib-cage sham technique);
- sham manual therapy (sham glenohumeral mobilization technique and rib-cage sham technique).
All groups also received a therapeutic exercise program. Pain intensity, disability, and pain-free active shoulder range of motion were measured post-treatment and at 4-week and 12-week follow-ups. Mixed-model analyses of variance and post hoc pairwise comparisons with Bonferroni corrections were constructed for the analysis of the outcome measures.
All groups reported improved pain intensity, disability, and pain-free active shoulder range of motion. However, there were no between-group differences in these outcome measures.
The authors concluded that the addition of the manual therapy techniques applied in the present study to a therapeutic exercise protocol did not seem to add benefits to the management of subjects with non-specific shoulder pain.
What does that mean?
I think it means that the improvements observed in this study were due to 1) exercise and 2) a range of non-specific effects, and that they were not due to the manual techniques tested.
I cannot say that I find this enormously surprising. But I would also find it unsurprising if fans of these methods would claim that the results show that the physios applied the techniques not correctly.
In any case, I feel this is an interesting study, not least because of its use of sham therapy. But I somehow doubt that the patients were unable to distinguish sham from verum. If so, the study was not patient-blind which obviously is difficult to achieve with manual treatments.
The orgone accumulator (ORAC) is an invention of the psychiatrist Wilhelm Reich which he developed along with his ‘orgone hypothesis’ while residing in the US from 1939 on. It is a device that is used to collect the hypothetical ‘orgone energy’ from the environment and to concentrate it.
One provider of the ORAC claims he had received the exact building instructions in interviews with Wilhelm Reich. The conversation with the deceased Reich was allegedly realized with the assistance of a medium and in close cooperation with angels. Since his death, Reich allegedly has been able to vastly improve the ORAC. The correct arrangement of eight rose quartzes in every corner is said to be essential. The book “Der Engel-Energie-Akkumulator nach Wilhelm Reich” (The Angel-Energy-Accumulator by Wilhelm Reich) does not only quote the late Reich, but also Archangel Raphael and Jesus Christ have their say.
Wilhelm Reich developed the ORAC believing that the box trapped orgone energy that he could harness in groundbreaking approaches towards psychiatry, medicine, the social sciences, biology, and weather research. His discovery of orgone began with his research of a physical bio-energy basis for Sigmund Freud’s theories of neurosis in humans. Wilhelm Reich believed that traumatic experiences blocked the natural flow of life energy in the body, leading to physical and mental disease. Reich concluded that the Freudian libidinal energy was the primordial energy of life itself, connected to more than just sexuality. Orgone was everywhere and Reich measured this energy in motion over the surface of the earth and even determined that its motion affected weather formation.
In 1940, Wilhelm Reich constructed the first ORAC: a six-sided box constructed of alternating layers of organic materials (to attract the energy) and metallic materials (to radiate the energy toward the center of the box). Patients would sit inside the ORAC and absorb the energy through their skin and lungs. The accumulator allegedly had beneficial effects on blood and body tissue by improving life-energy flow and releasing energy blocks.
But Reich’s work with cancer patients and the ORAC received negative press and the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) sent an agent to investigate Reich’s research center. In 1954, the FDA issued an injunction against Reich, claiming that he had violated the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act by delivering misbranded and adulterated devices in interstate commerce and by making false and misleading claims. The FDA called the ORAC a sham and orgone energy non-existent. A judge ordered all accumulators rented or owned by Reich and those working with him destroyed and all labeling referring to orgone energy to be destroyed. Two years later, Reich was imprisoned for contempt of the injunction. On November 3, 1957, Wilhelm Reich died in his jail cell of heart failure. In his last will and testament, he ordered that his works be sealed for fifty years, in hopes that the world would someday be a place better to accept his work.
The FBI does have a whole section on its website dedicated to Wilhelm Reich. This is what they had to say:
This German immigrant described himself as the Associate Professor of Medical Psychology, Director of the Orgone Institute, President and research physician of the Wilhelm Reich Foundation, and discoverer of biological or life energy. A 1940 security investigation was begun to determine the extent of Reich’s communist commitments. In 1947, a security investigation concluded that neither the Orgone Project nor any of its staff were engaged in subversive activities or were in violation of any statue within the jurisdiction of the FBI. In 1954 the U.S. Attorney General filed a complaint seeking permanent injunction to prevent interstate shipment of devices and literature distributed by Dr. Reich’s group. That same year, Dr. Reich was arrested for a Contempt of Court for violation of the Attorney General’s injunction.
The Wilhelm Reich Orgon Institut Deutschland currently state that they have been able to teach some Americans the proper way to build an ORAC:
Our teacher has been Dr. Walter Hoppe, the best student of Wilhelm Reich. He had lived over 40 years in Israel, and had done there very successful work with the orgone accumulator. Since 1974 he has been teaching psychiatric orgone therapy and the construction of the orgone accumulator in Germany.
So the triumphal procession of this model was starting up there. Dr. Hoppe gave the construction of the accumulator in the hands of Joachim Trettin. He said: orgone therapy is for few people while the orgone accumulator is for everybody. Meanwhile the Americans orientate themselves by this model today. So this accumulator is the best you can get.
We produce this accumulator with 5, 7, 10, 15 and 20 double layers. Every accumulator has a autonomous shooter which you can take out and use separately.
We also offer the accumulator with a breast and pelvis shield. We have a special packaging and ship our accumulator to every part of the world.
The orgone accumulator with 20- double layers, inside dimensions 120 x 70 x 55 cm, is available for the price of 7,250 EUR
It has been reported that the Regional Court of Dortmund has prohibited the manufacturer of the homeopathic cold remedy Meditonsin from advertising with false health claims. The court did not see sufficient evidence for the advertising claims.
The Consumer Advice Centre (VZ) of North Rhine-Westphalia issued a warning to the Meditonsin manufacturer (MEDICE Arzneimittel Pütter GmbH & Co.) for misleading advertising statements and sued them. The complaint was:
- that the advertising gave the false impression that an improvement in health could be expected with certainty after taking the product,
- that no side effects were to be expected,
- that the product was superior to “chemical-synthetic medicines”.
The Dortmund Regional Court was not convinced by a study referred to by the manufacturer. On its website, the manufacturer of Meditonsin presents the results of a “current, large-scale user study with more than 1,000 patients” under the heading “Proven efficacy & tolerability”. According to a pie chart, 90% of the patients were satisfied or very satisfied with the effect of Meditonsin.
However, according to the VZ, the study was only a “pharmacy-based observational study” with little scientific validity. Despite the lack of evidence, the manufacturer claimed that “the good efficacy and tolerability of Meditonsin® Drops could once again be impressively confirmed”. The Dortmund Regional Court, however, followed the VZ’s statement of grounds for action. “It is not allowed to advertise with statements that give the false impression that a successful treatment can be expected with certainty, as the advertisement for Meditonsin drops suggests,” emphasized Gesa Schölgens, head of “Faktencheck Gesundheitswerbung”, a joint project of the consumer centres of North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate. According to the Therapeutic Products Advertising Act, this is prohibited.
The Dortmund Regional Court also found that consumers were misled by the advertising because it gave a false impression that no harmful side effects were to be expected when taking Meditonsin. The package leaflet of the drug listed several side effects. According to this, there could even be an initial worsening of the symptoms after taking the medicine.
According to the VZ, the alleged advantage of the “natural medicinal product” over “many chemical-synthetic medicinal products that only suppress the symptoms”, as presented by the manufacturer, is also inadmissible. This is because it is not permissible to advertise to consumers with claims that the effect is equivalent or superior to that of another medicinal product. This, too, was confirmed by the court.
In case you like to know more about the remedy, this is from its English language site:
Meditonsin consists of Aconitum, Atropinum Sulfuricum, Mercurius Cyanatus. Active ingredient is the part of the drug or medicine which is biologically active. This portion of the drug is responsible for the main action of the drug which is intended to cure or reduce the symptom or disease.
This systematic review, meta-analysis, and meta-regression investigated the effects of individualized interventions, based on exercise alone or combined with psychological treatment, on pain intensity and disability in patients with chronic non-specific low-back pain.
Databases were searched up to January 31, 2022, to retrieve respective randomized clinical trials of individualized and/or personalized and/or stratified exercise interventions with or without psychological treatment compared to any control.
The findings show:
- Fifty-eight studies (n = 10084) were included. At short-term follow-up (12 weeks), low-certainty evidence for pain intensity (SMD -0.28 [95%CI -0.42 to -0.14]) and very low-certainty evidence for disability (-0.17 [-0.31 to -0.02]) indicates superior effects of individualized versus active exercises, and very low-certainty evidence for pain intensity (-0.40; [-0.58 to -0.22])), but not (low-certainty evidence) for disability (-0.18; [-0.22 to 0.01]) compared to passive controls.
- At long-term follow-up (1 year), moderate-certainty evidence for pain intensity (-0.14 [-0.22 to -0.07]) and disability (-0.20 [-0.30 to -0.10]) indicates effects versus passive controls.
Sensitivity analyses indicate that the effects on pain, but not on disability (always short-term and versus active treatments) were robust. Pain reduction caused by individualized exercise treatments in combination with psychological interventions (in particular behavioral-cognitive therapies) (-0.28 [-0.42 to -0.14], low certainty) is of clinical importance.
The certainty of the evidence was downgraded mainly due to evidence of risk of bias, publication bias, and inconsistency that could not be explained. Individualized exercise can treat pain and disability in chronic non-specific low-back pain. The effects in the short term are of clinical importance (relative differences versus active 38% and versus passive interventions 77%), especially in regard to the little extra effort to individualize exercise. Sub-group analysis suggests a combination of individualized exercise (especially motor-control-based treatments) with behavioral therapy interventions to boost effects.
The authors concluded that the relative benefit of individualized exercise therapy on chronic low back pain compared to other active treatments is approximately 38% which is of clinical importance. Still, sustainability of effects (> 12 months) is doubtable. As individualization in exercise therapies is easy to implement, its use should be considered.
Johannes Fleckenstein, the 1st author from the Goethe-University Frankfurt, Institute of Sports Sciences, Department of Sports Medicine and Exercise Physiology, sees in the study “an urgent health policy appeal” to strengthen combined services in care and remuneration. “Compared to other countries, such as the USA, we are in a relatively good position in Germany. For example, we have a lower prescription of strong narcotics such as opiates. But the rate of unnecessary X-ray examinations, which incidentally can also contribute to the chronicity of pain, or inaccurate surgical indications is still very high.”
Personally, I find the findings of this paper rather unsurprising. As a clinician, many years ago, prescribing exercise therapy for low back pain was my daily bread. None of my team would have ever conceived the idea that exercise does not need to be individualized according to the needs and capabilities of each patient. Therefore, I suggest rephrasing the last sentence of the conclusion: As individualization in exercise therapies is easy to implement, its use should be standard procedure.
The aim of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of craniosacral therapy on different features in migraine patients.
Fifty individuals with migraine were randomly divided into two groups (n = 25 per group):
- craniosacral therapy group (CTG),
- sham control group (SCG).
The interventions were carried out with the patient in the supine position. The CTG received a manual therapy treatment focused on the craniosacral region including five techniques, and the SCG received a hands-on placebo intervention. After the intervention, individuals remained supine with a neutral neck and head position for 10 min, to relax and diminish tension after treatment. The techniques were executed by the same experienced physiotherapist in both groups.
The analyzed variables were pain, migraine severity, and frequency of episodes, functional, emotional, and overall disability, medication intake, and self-reported perceived changes, at baseline, after a 4-week intervention, and at an 8-week follow-up.
After the intervention, the CTG significantly reduced pain (p = 0.01), frequency of episodes (p = 0.001), functional (p = 0.001) and overall disability (p = 0.02), and medication intake (p = 0.01), as well as led to a significantly higher self-reported perception of change (p = 0.01), when compared to SCG. The results were maintained at follow-up evaluation in all variables.
The authors concluded that a protocol based on craniosacral therapy is effective in improving pain, frequency of episodes, functional and overall disability, and medication intake in migraineurs. This protocol may be considered as a therapeutic approach in migraine patients.
Sorry, but I disagree!
And I have several reasons for it:
- The study was far too small for such strong conclusions.
- For considering any treatment as a therapeutic approach in migraine patients, we would need at least one independent replication.
- There is no plausible rationale for craniosacral therapy to work for migraine.
- The blinding of patients was not checked, and it is likely that some patients knew what group they belonged to.
- There could have been a considerable influence of the non-blinded therapists on the outcomes.
- There was a near-total absence of a placebo response in the control group.
Altogether, the findings seem far too good to be true.
This study described osteopathic practise activity, scope of practice and the osteopathic patient profile in order to understand the role osteopathy plays within the United Kingdom’s (UK) health system a decade after the authors’ previous survey.
The researchers used a retrospective questionnaire survey design to ask about osteopathic practice and audit patient case notes. All UK-registered osteopaths were invited to participate in the survey. The survey was conducted using a web-based system. Each participating osteopath was asked about themselves, and their practice and asked to randomly select and extract data from up to 8 random new patient health records during 2018. All patient-related data were anonymized.
The survey response rate was 500 osteopaths (9.4% of the profession) who provided information about 395 patients and 2,215 consultations. Most osteopaths were:
- self-employed (81.1%; 344/424 responses),
- working alone either exclusively or often (63.9%; 237/371),
- able to offer 48.6% of patients an appointment within 3 days (184/379).
Patient ages ranged from 1 month to 96 years (mean 44.7 years, Std Dev. 21.5), of these 58.4% (227/389) were female. Infants <1 years old represented 4.8% (18/379) of patients. The majority of patients presented with musculoskeletal complaints (81.0%; 306/378) followed by pediatric conditions (5%). Persistent complaints (present for more than 12 weeks before the appointment) were the most common (67.9%; 256/377) and 41.7% (156/374) of patients had co-existing medical conditions.
The most common treatment approaches used at the first appointment were:
- soft-tissue techniques (73.9%; 292/395),
- articulatory techniques (69.4%; 274/395),
- high-velocity low-amplitude thrust (34.4%; 136/395),
- cranial techniques (23%).
The mean number of treatments per patient was 7 (mode 4). Osteopaths’ referral to other healthcare practitioners amounted to:
- GPs 29%
- Other complementary therapists 21%
- Other osteopaths 18%
The authors concluded that osteopaths predominantly provide care of musculoskeletal conditions, typically in private practice. To better understand the role of osteopathy in UK health service delivery, the profession needs to do more research with patients in order to understand their needs and their expected outcomes of care, and for this to inform osteopathic practice and education.
What can we conclude from a survey that has a 9% response rate?
If I ignore this fact, do I find anything of interest here?
Not a lot!
Perhaps just three points:
- Osteopaths use high-velocity low-amplitude thrusts, the type of manipulation that has most frequently been associated with serious complications, too frequently.
- They also employ cranial osteopathy, which is probably the least plausible technique in their repertoire, too often.
- They refer patients too frequently to other SCAM practitioners and too rarely to GPs.
To come back to the question asked in the title of this post: What do UK osteopaths do? My answer is
ALMOST NOTHING THAT MIGHT BE USEFUL.
Camilla spent ten days at the end of October in a sophisticated meditation and fitness center in southern India. Life has recently been hectic for the Queen Consort: at 75, she has been in a non-stop succession of various ceremonies for the funeral of Elizabeth II, always one step behind her husband, not to mention her new status as sovereign… Enough to block her chakras in no time.
She came to the resort with her bodyguards and a handful of friends and was able to take advantage of the tailor-made treatments concocted for her by the master of the house, Dr Issac Mathai, who created this high-end holistic centre on a dozen hectares of scented gardens near Bangalore. The program includes massages, herbal steam baths, yoga, naturopathy, homeopathy, meditation, and Ayurvedic treatments to “cleanse, de-stress, soothe and revitalize the mind, body and soul”, as the establishment’s website states.
Guests are required to follow an individualized, meat-free diet, with organic food from the resort’s vegetable gardens, based on lots of salads or soups – Camilla is said to be a fan of sweet corn soup with spinach. Cigarettes and mobile phones are not allowed, although it is assumed that Camilla must have some privileges due to her status… and the basic rate for the suites, which starts at $950 a night – the price of the rooms varies between $260 and $760, the rate including a consultation with the doctors.
Charles and Camilla have been fans of the Soukya Centre in India for a decade. The place corresponds in every way to their deep-rooted convictions about health. Like her husband, Camilla is a follower of organic food, she also practices yoga and treats her face with creams made from nettle and bee venom. For his part, Charles has long been an advocate of alternative medicine, homeopathy, acupuncture, aromatherapy, and also hypnosis… He even set up a foundation to support complementary medicine by lobbying the British health service to include it in complementary therapies for certain patients, which caused an uproar among the pundits of traditional medicine.
If you suspected I was (yet again) sarcastic about the royal couple, you are mistaken. The text above is only my (slightly shortened) translation of an article published in the French magazine LE POINT (even the title is theirs). I found the article amusing and interesting; so, I looked up the Indian health center. Here are some of the things I found:
The 1st impression is that they are not shy about promotion calling themselves THE WORLD’S BEST AYURVEDA TREATMENT CENTER. The doctor in charge was once a ‘Consultant Physician’ at the Hale Clinic in London, where he treated a number of high-profile people. As his professional background, he offers this:
M.D. (Homeopathy); Hahnemann Post-Graduate Institute of Homeopathy, London M.R.C.H, London; Chinese Pulse Diagnosis and Acupuncture, WHO Institute of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Nanjing, China; Trained (Mind-Body Medicine Programme) at Harvard Medical School, USA
The approach of the center is described as follows:
The fundamental principle underlying Holistic Treatment is that the natural defense and immune system of an individual when strengthened, has the potential to heal and prevent diseases. In the age of super-specialisation where human beings are often viewed as a conglomeration of organs, it is crucial to understand ourselves as multi-dimensional beings with a body, mind and spirit. These interconnected dimensions need to be in perfect harmony to ensure real well-being.
And about homeopathy, they claim this:
Homeopathy originated in 1796 in Germany, and was discovered by Dr. Samuel Hahnemann, a German scientist. Homeopathy is popular today as a non-intrusive, holistic system of medicine. Instead of different medicines for different parts of the body, one single constitutional remedy is prescribed. As a system of medicine, Homeopathy is highly scientific, safe, logical and an extremely effective method of healing. For over 200 years people have used Homeopathy to maintain their good health, and also to treat and cure a wide range of illnesses like allergies, metabolic disorders, atopic dermatitis, Rheumatoid arthritis, Auto-immune disorders.
At this stage, I felt I had seen enough. Yes, you are right, we did not learn a lot from this little exploration. No, hold on! We did learn that homeopathy is highly scientific, safe, logical, and extremely effective!
The question, however, is should we believe it?
I was fascinated to find a chiropractor who proudly listed ‘the most common conditions chiropractors help kids with‘:
- Vision problems
- Skin conditions
- Sinus problems
- Loss of hearing
- Ear Infections
- Hip, leg, or foot pain
- Poor coordination
- Breastfeeding difficulties
- Arm, hand, or shoulder pain
- Anxiety and nervousness
The birth process, even under normal conditions, is frequently the first cause of spinal stress. After the head of the child appears, the physician grabs the baby’s head and twists it around in a figure eight motion, lifting it up to receive the lower shoulder and then down to receive the upper shoulder. This creates significant stress on the spine of the baby.
“Spinal cord and brain stem traumas often occur during the process of birth but frequently escape diagnosis. Infants often experience lasting neurological defects. Spinal trauma at birth is essentially attributed to longitudinal traction, especially when this force is combined with flexion and torsion of the spinal axis during delivery.” ~Abraham Towbin, MD
Growth patterns suggest the potential for neurological disorders is most critical from birth to two years of age, as this time is the most dynamic and important phase of postnatal brain development. Over sixty percent of all neurological development occurs after birth in the child’s first year of life. This is why it is so important to bring your child to a local pediatric chiropractor to have them checked and for your child to get a chiropractic adjustment during the first year of their life. Lee Hadley MD states “Subluxation alone is a rational reason for Pediatric Chiropractic care throughout a lifetime from birth.”
As our children continue to grow, the daily stresses can have a negative impact on an ever growing body. During the first few years of life, an infant often falls while learning to walk or can fall while tumbling off a bed or other piece of furniture. Even the seemingly innocent act of playfully tossing babies up in the air and catching them often results in a whiplash-like trauma to the spine, making it essential to get your baby checked by a pediatric chiropractor every stage of his/her development as minor injuries can present as major health concerns down the road if gone uncorrected.
On the Internet, similar texts can be found by the hundreds. I am sure that many new parents are sufficiently impressed by them to take their kids to a chiropractor. I have yet to hear of a single case where the chiropractor then checked out the child and concluded: “there is nothing wrong; your baby does not need any therapy.” Chiropractors always find something – not something truly pathological, but something to mislead the parent and to earn some money.
Often the treatment that follows turns out to be a prolonged and thus expensive series of sessions that almost invariably involve manipulating the infant’s fragile and developing spine. There is no compelling evidence that this approach is effective for anything. In addition, there is evidence that it can do harm, sometimes even serious harm.
And that’s the reason why I have mentioned this topic before and intend to continue doing so in the future:
- There is hardly a good reason for adults to consult a chiropractor.
- There is no reason to take a child to a chiropractor.
- There are good reasons for chiropractors to stop treating children.
But let’s be a bit more specific. Let’s deal with the above list of indications on the basis of the reliable evidence:
- Vision problems – no sound evidence that chiropractic manipulations are effective.
- Skin conditions – no sound evidence that chiropractic manipulations are effective.
- Bedwetting – some evidence that chiropractic manipulations are ineffective.
- Sinus problems – no sound evidence that chiropractic manipulations are effective.
- ADD/ADHD – some evidence that chiropractic manipulations are ineffective.
- Stomachaches – no sound evidence that chiropractic manipulations are effective.
- Asthma – some evidence that chiropractic manipulations are ineffective.
- Allergies – no sound evidence that chiropractic manipulations are effective.
- Loss of hearing – no sound evidence that chiropractic manipulations are effective.
- Ear Infections – some evidence that chiropractic manipulations are ineffective.
- Hip, leg, or foot pain – no sound evidence that chiropractic manipulations are effective.
- Constipation – no sound evidence that chiropractic manipulations are effective.
- Poor coordination – no sound evidence that chiropractic manipulations are effective.
- Breastfeeding difficulties – no good evidence that chiropractic manipulations are effective.
- Arm, hand, or shoulder pain – no sound evidence that chiropractic manipulations are effective.
- Anxiety and nervousness – no sound evidence that chiropractic manipulations are effective.
- Colic – some evidence that chiropractic manipulations are ineffective.
- Scoliosis – no sound evidence that chiropractic manipulations are effective.
I rest my case.