What is Homeopathy?
Homeopathy is a natural form of medicine used by over 200 million people worldwide to treat both acute and chronic conditions. It is based on the principle of ‘like cures like’. In other words, a substance taken in small amounts will cure the same symptoms it causes if taken in large amounts.
The holistic nature of homeopathy means each person is treated as a unique individual and their body, mind, spirit and emotions are all considered in the management and prevention of disease. Taking all these factors into account a homeopath will select the most appropriate medicine based on the individual’s specific symptoms and personal level of health to stimulate their own healing ability.
What does Homeopathic Treatment Involve?
Homeopathic doctors work in the same way as any other conventional doctors. History taking, examination and investigation are all important in establishing the diagnosis. However, as well as asking about your symptoms, a homeopathic doctor will be interested in you as an individual and the unique way in which your symptoms affect you.
Randomised Controlled Trials
- Up to the end of 2014, a total of 104 papers reporting good-quality placebo-controlled randomised controlled trials (RCTs) in homeopathy (on 61 different medical conditions) have been published in peer-reviewed journals. 41% of these RCTs have reported a balance of positive evidence, 5% a balance of negative evidence, and 54% have not been conclusively positive or negative.
- The medical conditions for which positive RCTs of homeopathy have been reported include the following: allergies and upper respiratory tract infections; childhood diarrhoea; hay fever; influenza; insomnia; rheumatic disease; sinusitis; vertigo.
Patient Outcome Studies
- Bristol Homeopathic Hospital, 2005: In 2005, the largest service evaluation of homeopathic treatment reported that 70% of 6,500 follow-up patients experienced improvement in their health. Eczema, asthma, migraine, irritable bowel syndrome, arthritis, depression and chronic fatigue syndrome – difficult chronic problems suffered by many people – all improved.
- Five-hospital Study, 2008: The most recent hospitals outcome study confirms the findings of earlier studies. A total of 1,602 patients were seen at follow-up appointments in all five UK NHS homeopathic hospitals during one month in 2007. The study found that eczema is currently the most common referral to homeopathy by NHS doctors. Other commonly treated complaints were chronic fatigue, menopausal disorder and osteoarthritis.
[It is important to tell your medical doctor if you decide to use homeopathic remedies.]