Saturday, August 11, 2012

NMD Deville's Homeopathy Nonsense Continues in Arizona

here, I cite from a 2012-08-10 Tuscon Citizen article by NMD (Not-a-Medical-Doctor) Lauren Deville extolling the virtues of the empty-remedy system known as homeopathy.  My comments are in unquoted bold:

001. NMD Deville writes in "Homeopathy Decreases Frequency of Hot Flashes" [vsc 2012-08-11]:

"[recently in] a clinical trial performed in France with 101 subjects, all women over 50 with more than 5 hot flashes daily demonstrated that a combination homeopathic remedy was effective in treating menopausal symptoms (specifically measured by hot flashes [...]  I have also found clinically that hormonal symptoms in general, menopausal or otherwise, respond quite well to homeopathic treatment [...]";

since homeopathic remedies are inert scientifically speaking, this statement, as scientifically and skeptically analyzed, supports the more parsimonious hypothesis that hot flashes have a very psychogenic component.

"making it a good alternative";

no, magic beans and unicorn tears posed as specifically efficacious is not an alternative unless self-deception and deceit are on the table as alternatives to legitimate knowledge and therapy.

"a remedy specific to each subject in a study doesn’t lend itself particularly well to the traditional 'double blind placebo controlled trials' that are the gold standard of medical research [...]";

this is a fake reason for lack of attempting a homeopathic study.  Even if plausibility were considered separately, homeopathy CAN be studied rigorously by having the scripts filled by a pharmacy wherein cohorts can be randomized, doses can be coded, and a cross-over could happen QUITE EASILY.  It is RIDICULOUSLY IGNORANT to think that testing a specific system of pill-dispensing cannot be run as a double blind placebo controlled cross over.  It's not even that expensive.  But, the naturopathy schools don't run them because homeopathy is a sacred cow they do not wish to show the true colors of.

"for you skeptics out there, here are a few other studies that demonstrate the efficacy of homeopathic treatment for a variety of different conditions [...such as] homeopathy for childhood diarrhea [...] how healthy are chronically ill patients after eight years of homeopathic treatment [...] homeopathic treatment of patients with migraine [...] homeopathic treatment of patients with chronic low back pain [...] homeopathic treatment of patients with psoriasis [...] homeopathic medical practice [...] I could go on.  But, as always, the proof is in the pudding, and it works. I’d love to see homeopathy introduced as part of our standard of care in this country [...] Dr. Lauren Deville is board-certified to practice naturopathic medicine";

this is called cherry picking, the selection of only favorable data of low quality.  This is often called pathological science. There's enough junk published that one could probably find selective support for all kinds of junk ideas and weird claims

and please go on.  But I dare you to go where you do not dare, to ALL the evidence, rigorously vetted, regarding homeopathy and naturopathy nonsense.
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