The studies that support homeopathy keep pouring in faster and faster these days. When will their results finally penetrate the media bubble? My guess — when they are co-opted as “obvious, we knew it all along” by the allopathic establishment.
The Summer 2012 issue of the Homeopathy Today— the National Center for Homeopathy’s fantastic quarterly magazine — contains an excellent article by naturopath and homeopath Christopher Johnson about three new important studies about the use of homeopathy for childhood eczema, allergies, and ear infections. He’s been writing several research articles in recent issues and I highly recommend them to you. (If you are a member of the NCH — and I hope you are! — just log in to the site and search the Homeopathy Today database for articles written by him. I hope he forgives me for quoting extensively from his article below!)
As Johnson reports, these three studies are particularly striking because of their rigor and the significance of their results. The first two studies focused on “atopic” conditions — those that relate to allergic responses to the environment. Many children with atopic tendencies progress from eczema to allergies to asthma. I mention this in Impossible Cure when I describe how we beat our pediatrician’s prediction that my older son Izaak would eventually get asthma. Because we turned to homeopathy instead of suppressive allopathic medicines, his eczema and later allergies never made that terrible leap. The first study, conducted in Italy, buttressed our experience with Izaak. (Rossi E, et al. Homeopathy in pædiatric atopic diseases: long-term results in children with atopic dermatitis. Homeopathy 2012 Jan;101(1):13–20.) As Johnson writes,
“The Tuscany Regional Homeopathic Reference Center conducted a study on eczema at the Homeopathic Clinic at Lucca Hospital in Italy… Researchers evaluated data gathered between 1998 and 2008 on children who came to the Clinic for treatment of atopic conditions… 63% of the children experienced improvement rated at the top levels of the scale—“cured” and “important improvement.” Perhaps most exciting, the long term-data supported the assertion by homeopaths that homeopathic treatment of eczema in childhood leads to lower rates of progression to asthma and hay fever. Long-term results of conventional treatment find that 40 to 50% of children with eczema go on to develop asthma and/or allergic rhinitis. In this homeopathic trial, however, only 20% of children later developed either. Whether this is from the positive effects of homeopathic treatment or negative effects of conventional treatment cannot be determined.”
The second study was conducted in Argentina and showed that 82% of eczema patients improved with homeopathy (Eizayaga JE, Eizayaga JI. Prospective observational study of 42 patients with atopic dermatitis treated with homeopathic medicines. Homeopathy 2012 Jan;101(1):21–7). Johnson writes:
“Their methods were rigorous and included: two physicians independently estimating the percentage of skin surface affected by eczema at each visit, with any discrepancies resolved by a third independent physician; four parameters rated by the patients at each visit (intensity of skin affection, intensity of itch, general well-being, and sleep quality), with neither physician nor patient allowed to see the previously completed rating scales. After treatment, 56% of participants rated themselves as “cured” or “much better,” with another 26% saying they were “better”—so, 82% had at least good improvement. The average percentage of total body skin area affected dropped from 21% to 5% over the course of the study period… The results reached very strong statistical significance, meaning it is very unlikely the results were due to chance. Most of the eczema cases were longstanding (averaging more than 4 years), were moderate to severe in intensity, had additional atopic disease present (which generally implies a worse prognosis), and had been unsuccessfully using conventional treatment. Eczema with these features rarely remits spontaneously.”
Finally, the third study on the treatment of ear infections was conducted in India and showed that homeopathy beat allopathic treatment. (Sinha MN, et al. Randomized controlled pilot study to compare Homeopathy and Conventional therapy in Acute Otitis Media. Homeopathy 2012 Jan;101(1):5–12). 81 children were randomly assigned to a homeopathically or conventionally treated group. The trial was also “blinded” — neither the parents nor the researchers knew who belonged to which group. Conventional treatment involved use of anti-inflammatories, analgesic, and fever-reducing medicines for three days, followed by antibiotics if the child hadn’t improved by at least 50%. Homeopathic treatment used LM potencies. As Johnson writes:
“All children had their eardrums examined by an ear, nose, and throat (ENT) specialist—at entry to the study, and at days 3, 7, 10, and 21—and rated on the Tympanic Membrane Examination scale. Parent assessments of their children’s symptoms were also taken at these times. The use of an ENT specialist assessing on the basis of visual observation of the eardrum, unaware of which treatment a patient was receiving, is a rigorous, objective outcome measure, placing the quality of this study at the highest levels of clinical research. At entry to the study, both groups had nearly identical ratings on each of the twelve parameters assessed, meaning they were perfectly matched for comparison. “Cure” was defined as a score of zero on all assessment scales. The results were: • All children in both groups were cured by day 21 • Four in the homeopathic group were cured by day 3, versus one in the conventional group • By day 3, total symptom score dropped from 14.2 to 8.2 (6 points) in the homeopathic group and from 14.5 to 12.5 (2 points) in the conventional group • 39 of 40 children in the conventional group required antibiotics • 0 of 38 children in the homeopathic group required antibiotics. • By day 3, the difference between the two groups in favor of the homeopathic group was hugely significant statistically, with the odds being less than 1 in 1000 that the findings occurred by chance.”
The next time someone tells you there is no proof that homeopathy works for anything, point them to these studies!
Amy L. Lansky, PhD was a Silicon Valley computer scientist when her life was transformed by the miraculous homeopathic cure of her son’s autism. In April 2003 she published Impossible Cure: The Promise of Homeopathy, one of the best-selling introductory books on homeopathy worldwide (www.impossiblecure.com). Amy speaks and writes internationally about homeopathy, hosts a monthly radio show on Autism One Radio (autismone.org), and was an executive board member of the National Center for Homeopathy from 2004-2011. Her second book, on meditation and developing one's innate ability to evolve and transform the world, was published in September 2011 -- Active Consciousness: Awakening the Power Within (www.activeconsciousness.com).