Azara Blog: Homeopathy allegedly has positive outcomes

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Date published: 2005/11/21

The BBC says:

A six-year study at Bristol Homeopathic Hospital shows over 70% of patients with chronic diseases reported positive health changes after treatment.

More than 6,500 patients took part in the study with problems ranging from eczema to menopause and arthritis.

The biggest improvements were seen in children - 89% of under 16s with asthma reported improvement.

Of the group, 75% felt 'better' or 'much better', as did 68% of eczema patients under 16.

The results come just months after a study in The Lancet concluded that using homeopathy was no better than taking dummy drugs.
Dr David Spence, Clinical Director and Consultant Physician at Bristol Homeopathic Hospital and Chairman of the British Homeopathic Association, a co-author of the new study, said: "These results clearly demonstrate the value of homeopathy in the NHS."

All the patients were referred by their GP or hospital specialist and many had tried conventional treatment first without success.

Professor Matthias Egger, of the University of Berne, who worked on The Lancet study said the study was weakened by the lack of a comparison group.

He also questioned the validity of the way the study recorded improvements in patients' conditions.

"Patients were simply asked by their homeopathic doctor whether they felt better, and it is well known that in this situation many patients will come up with the answer the doctor wants to hear."

It's unbelievable that the BBC gives any credence at all to this study. The comment at the end is the relevant one, and the fact that "the biggest improvements were seen in children" is not that surprising if the patients were just asked if they felt better.

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