PREPARATION OF HOMEOPATHIC REMEDIES
Materials for use in remedies are finely ground or dissolved in water. They are then mixed with a solvent, and the mixture is allowed to soak. The fluid containing the original substance is then filtered or strained. The filtered solution–the mother tincture–is placed in a dark jar for keeping.
One drop of the mother tincture will be diluted with either nine or ninety-nine parts solvent, and then shaken vigorously and banged down firmly on a hard surface, a process devised by Hahnemann. Homeopathy teaches that the essence [imprint] can be carried by water even after all molecules of the original substance are diluted out of the solution. Once the mixture has reached the required strength and potency, a few drops of it are added to lactose tablets, pills, granules, or powder to impregnate them with the remedy. These are then stored in dark glass bottles.
Dilutions are made starting with one part of the mother tincture and nine parts solution [1–X]. With each additional dilution the labeling would be 2–X, 3–X, etc. When dilutions go beyond 24–X there may not be one molecule left of the mother tincture in the solution.
Homeopaths do not depend on molecules of the original substance to effect healing. They are looking to the signature or energy imprint of the original substance to be passed on and magnified by dilution. This signature or imprint said to be in water has not been scientifically demonstrated.
Below are given examples of common “remedies” listed in Natural Health, Encyclopedia of Homeopathy, by Dr. Andrew Lockie, :
“Mercury: found in cinnabar ore from Spain, Italy, US, Peru, China Rx for symptoms:
a. Foul smelling discharge
b. Reserved, suspicious state of mind
d. Copious perspiration that does not relieve condition
e. Person feels worse at night
“Hellborus: Southern Europe–extremely poisonous Rx for symptoms:
a. Mental dullness
c. Tendency to drop things
d. Person feels worse between 4 pm and 8 pm
“Aconite: Europe, Central Asia–deadly poisonous, handling root can cause poisoning Rx for symptoms:
a. Symptoms triggered by shock or cold wind
b. Panic attack and fear of death
c. Acute infection with sudden onset
“Nux Vomica: [strychnine] [poison nut tree] India, Burma, Thailand, China, Rx for symptoms:
b. Over-critical nature
c. Tendency to be highly driven and ambitious
e. Desire for rich foods
“Carcinosin: Cancer cells usually from breast Rx for symptoms:
a. Workaholic, of passionate nature
b. Conditions that are affected by being at the beach
c. Desire for travel
d. Desire for butter or chocolate
e. Sleeping difficulty
“Medorrhinum: White blood cell infected with gonorrhea from male urethra, [pus] Rx for symptoms
a. Behavior extremes
b. Harried feeling
c. Extremely passionate
d. Person feels better from lying on the abdomen in evening
Remember, there are more than 2000 remedies in the homeopathy pharmacy! In review, homeopathy came from the concept of one man’s beliefs which were not scientifically verified. However, it had a great advantage over the common medical care of his day. He did not advocate the use of harmful drugs in large doses. He promoted not only good personal hygiene, but also good hygienic conditions for the home and its surroundings. Diet, fresh air and exercise were also part of his regimen. The remedies [substances given in minute doses] were given credit for the improvements in health, without any scientific evidence to verify that they had anything to do with improvement.
HAS HOMEOPATHY BEEN VERIFIED?
Studies have been done to test the value of these remedies but there is no clear proof that they have any effect on the body in minute doses. Larger [more concentrated] doses when used have shown some effect on the system. This effect may not always be good. Some remedies available may contain regular modern drugs added to them so they will have an effect on human physiology.
There has been a strong effort on the part of believers in alternative therapeutic modalities to scientifically explain the perceived effects of such methods as acupuncture, homeopathic, therapeutic touch, Rolfing, osteopathic, chiropractic, hypnosis, and many other therapy techniques. James Oschman in his book, ENERGY MEDICINE The Scientific Basis, makes a strong argument for the scientific explanation. He presents the recent advances in the understanding of electromagnetic physiology in biology. Some researchers, who are adherents of the concept of vitalism, have reported advances in laboratory research of electromagnetic discharges of body, organs, cells and molecules. Other researchers are unable to reproduce these same laboratory results. The gap between hypothesis and true scientific proof of cause and effect is still wide. Many believers in alternative medicine, or energy medicine, tend to proclaim that energy medicine is now proven to be scientific. They have ignored this gap of proof in a presumptuous manner.
Controlled studies of homeopathic remedies, when done by the homeopaths, tend to show positive results. However, most other studies do not support these positive results. Studies should be repeated by objective investigators, with independent analyses of the homeopathic formulations employed, to assure that they have not been adulterated with active medications.
A recent meta-analysis of one hundred and seven controlled homeopath trials appearing in ninety-six published reports also found:
“the evidence of clinical trials is positive but not sufficient to draw definitive conclusions because most trials are of low methodological quality and because of the unknown role of publication bias.” The reports also concluded that there is a legitimate case for further evaluation of homeopathy, “but only by means of well performed trials.” [Kleijnen, 1991].”
In the British medical journal Lancet August 27, 2005, a large study made by the University of Berne in Switzerland reported the results of a meta-analysis of one hundred and ten trials each of homeopathy and conventional medicine. No convincing evidence was found that the homeopathic approach to illness was any different from using a placebo. Conventional medicine did significantly better.
April 19, 2010 Med J Aust. 192(8):458-60 carried an article Homeopathy: what does the “best” evidence tell us? The author Edzard Ernst of Peninsula Medical School, University of Exeter, Exeter, United Kingdom summarized his study of homeopathy as follows:
The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews (generally considered to be the most reliable source of evidence) was searched in January 2010….DATA EXTRACTION: Each of the six reviews was examined for speciﬁc subject matter; number of clinical trials reviewed; total number of patients involved; and author’s conclusions. The reviews covered the following conditions: cancer, attention-deﬁcit defect, hyperactivity disorder, asthma, dementia, inﬂuenza and induction of labour. DATA SYNTHESIS: The ﬁndings of the reviews were discussed narratively (the reviews; clinical and statistical heterogeneity precluded meta-analysis). CONCLUSIONS: The ﬁnding of currently available Cochrane reviews of studies of homeopathy do not show that homeopathic medicines have effects beyond placebo. http://www.cochrane.org/evidence
WORLD HEALTH CONDEMS HOMEOPATHIC Rx
Homeopathy not a cure, says WHO. Homeopathic remedies often contain few or no active ingredients. People with conditions such as HIV, TB and malaria should not rely on homeopathic treatments, the World Health Organization has warned. It was responding to calls from young researchers who fear the promotion of homeopathy in the developing world could put people’s lives at risk.
The group, Voice of Young Science Network, has written to health ministers to set out the WHO view. Objective evidence that homeopathy is effective on these infections does not exist says Dr. Nick Beeching, Royal Liverpool University Hospital by letter June 2010, to WHO. The doctors from the UK and Africa said:
We are calling on the WHO to condemn the promotion of homeopathy for treating TB, infant diarrhea, influenza, malaria and HIV. Homeopathy does not protect people from, or treat, these diseases. Those of us working with the most rural and impoverished people of the world already struggle to deliver the medical help that is needed. When homeopathy stands in place of effective treatment, lives are lost.
A researcher in bimolecular science at the University of St Andrews, Dr. Robert Hagan, and a member of Voice of Young Science Network, part of Sense About Science promoting “evidence-based” care said:
We need governments around the world to recognize the dangers of promoting homeopathy for life-threatening illnesses. We hope that by raising awareness of the WHO’s position on homeopathy we will be supporting those people who are taking a stand against these potentially disastrous practices.
Dr. Mario Raviglione, director of the Stop TB department at the WHO, said:
Our evidence-based WHO TB treatment/management guidelines, as well as the International Standards of Tuberculosis Care do not recommend use of homeopathy.
Physicians also complained that homeopathy was being promoted as a treatment of children with diarrhea. A representative of the WHO department of child and adolescent health and development said:
We have found no evidence to date that homeopathy would bring any benefit. Homeopathy does not focus on the treatment and prevention of dehydration – in total contradiction with the scientific basis and our recommendations for the management of diarrhea.
Dr. Nick Beeching, a specialist in infectious diseases at the Royal Liverpool University Hospital, said:
Infections such as malaria, HIV and tuberculosis all have a high mortality rate but can usually be controlled or cured by a variety of proven treatments, for which there is ample experience and scientific trial data. “There is no objective evidence that homeopathy has any effect on these infections, and I think it is irresponsible for a healthcare worker to promote the use of homeopathy in place of proven treatment for any life-threatening illness.”