Homeopathy effective for 0 out of 68 illnesses, study finds

February 21, 2016

Categories: Skepticism , Tags: Pseudoscience, Homeopathy

Last year professor Paul Glasziou from Bond University in Australia headed up a team that wrote a systematic review of systematic reviews on homeopathy as part of a report for Australia's National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC).

The report concluded (opens new window) that there was no condition for which there was sufficient evidence that homeopathy was effective.

Professor Glasziou recently wrote in a blog post (opens new window) for the British Medical Journal (BMJ):

"As chair of the working party which produced the report I was simply relieved that the arduous journey of sifting and synthesising the evidence was at an end. I had begun the journey with an 'I don't know attitude', curious about whether this unlikely treatment could ever work… but I lost interest after looking at the 57 systematic reviews which contained 176 individual studies and finding no discernible convincing effects beyond placebo."

The UK has several homeopathic hospitals (opens new window), but thankfully they are gradually closing down:

The publication NZ Farmer published an article (opens new window) this week about a farming couple who have turned to homeopathy:

Llew and Tania Gray converted their Bay of Plenty farm to dairy:

A big driver for them to use homeopathy was their desire to drink raw milk from the vat. They wanted it to be as pure as possible.

The Grays were introduced to homeopathy by friends who have an organic farm. Tania says organics wasn't for them personally but they could see the benefits of homeopathy.

"Farming where we do, we need to leave our options open," she says. "We do use nitrogen and weed spray, but stay as close to natural principles as possible. There is a time and a place for conventional medicine but we will always use homeopathy first."

They complete a refresher course in homeopathy through Homeopathic Farm Support each year, and send their staff along as well.

His favourite homeopathic remedies include gunpowder for drawing out infection, phytalaca for treating mastitis, ignatia for milk let down and calming and settling calves, and arnica for calves who have had a traumatic birth. When drying off the herd, they put a capful of Dry Cow remedy in the water trough and it's done.