Sunday, June 2, 2013

The End of Acupuncture in Terms of Science [So, Long Live Ontario Naturopathy's Acupuncture!]

here, I cite from recent scientific analysis regarding acupuncture [see 001., below]; then, I take a look at Ontario, Canada where acupuncture as a therapy is fused with naturopathy [see 002., below]:

001. David Colquhoun writes:

001.a. in "Acupuncture is a Theatrical Placebo: The End of a Myth" (2013-05-30) [citing his recently coauthored article in Anesthesia & Analgesia, June 2013 116:1360-1363 with MD Novella]:


"a lot more research has been done on acupuncture than on any other form of alternative medicine, and some of it has been of quite high quality. The outcome of all this research is that acupuncture has no effects that are big enough to be of noticeable benefit to patients, and it is, in all probability, just a theatrical placebo [...] its alleged principles are as bizarre as those on any other sort of pre-scientific medicine [...its] meridians don’t exist, so the 'theory' memorized by qualified acupuncturists is just myth [...do] patients get a useful degree of relief [?...] it is now clear that they don’t there is now unanimity between acupuncturists and non-acupuncturists that any benefits that may exist are too small to provide any noticeable benefit to patients.  That being the case it’s hard to see why acupuncture is still used.  Certainly such an accumulation of negative results would result in the withdrawal of any conventional treatment [...] a small excess of positive results after thousands of trials is most consistent with an inactive intervention [...] the best controlled studies show a clear pattern: with acupuncture the outcome does not depend on needle location or even needle insertion. Since these variables are what define 'acupuncture' the only sensible conclusion is that acupuncture does not work. Everything else is the expected noise of clinical trials, and this noise seems particularly high with acupuncture research. The most parsimonious conclusion is that with acupuncture there is no signal, only noise."

Note: I remember taking the basic TCM course which included acupuncture in naturopathy school in Connecticut.  It seemed far-fetched then.  Hey, there's my teacher, an ND as well as an LAc., on the right.


"if your problem can't be solved, then it's human nature to clutch at straws. And there is no shortage of people willing to cash in on your desperation [...] quacks [...] eager to sell you false hope at a high price [...] if it looks too good to be true, it probably is [...like] the myth that acupuncture is more effective than a placebo [...] Steven Novella and I use evidence to deconstruct this myth in the June issue of the journal Anesthesia & Analgesia [...] how is the innocent consumer to find out what's right and what's exaggerated? The answer has now become to look at blogs. An army of bloggers has arisen, who quickly dissect false and exaggerated claims. Of course there is a lot more misinformation on the web than good information, so how do you tell which is which? Try including 'quack' or 'nonsense' when Googling."

Note: blogs!  Of all places, blogs!  Speaking of 'false and exaggerated claims...'

002. in Northern naturopathyland, particularly in Ontario, Canada, acupuncture is written into the naturopathy practice scope:

002.a. first, there's the law [aka how to teach, license and oversee falsehood]:

according to the new College of Naturopaths of Ontario [which isn't a school but a regulatory body, wink-wink], one must presently refer to the older Board of Directors of Drugless Therapy - Naturopathy (until all has been transferred over from naturopathy's old-decrepit-corporate-terminology to naturopathy's new-deceptive-learned-terminology!).

their page "Modalities" states: "Oriental medicine and acupuncture comprise a unique system that has been in use for 5,000 years for the diagnosis and treatment of disease. This system employs unique methods for evaluating the flow and balance of energy in the body, and includes the specialized use of Oriental herbs and acupuncture. Naturopathic doctors are trained to use this system when indicated as part of an integrated approach with Western diagnostic methods."  Also, there's their page "Guidelines for Candidates Preparing for Ontario Board Examinations" (2013): "candidates should be familiar with the following diagnoses: lung: qi deficiency [...] spleen: qi deficiency [...] qi sinking [...] heart: qi deficiency [...] intestine: qi stagnation [...] pericardium: qi stagnation [...] liver: qi stagnation."

ah, that science-ejected vitalism [qi or chi, of Chi-nese medicine that they are tea-chi-ng] coded quite falsely as the science term energy!  As I said, FUSED in Ontario.  Normally, naturopaths who practice acupuncture in the U.S. have a separate degree and license, and the ND /NMD granting schools like that extra requirement because that's more tuition for them since they offer that degree as well quite falsely posed as science aka a M.S.Ac. since it is all based on that medieval TCM junk.

002.b. the provincial CAND branch, Naturopathic Doctors Ontario:

in the Powerpoint slideshow "Naturopathic Medicine: A Journey Toward Wellness" [saved 2013-06-02]: "traditional Chinese medicine and acupuncture [...] balances the flow of energy (chi) [...and is] effective in maintaining health and healing."  NDO will be the new name of the older OAND. OAND hosts the Powerpoint slideshow "Naturopathic Doctors Ontario" [saved 2013-06-02] which states: "science-based, safe and effective patient-centered care is at the heart of naturopathic care."

Note: of course it does, of course it is.  In naturopathyland, where values are reversed.



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