Are vaccinations bad? And homeopathy.

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Grace
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Nov 27 2006 15:19
Saii wrote:
Knock off the 'don't be humourless' thing though, it was an unreasonable comment even if it was meant to be jokey.

As I've said before, perhaps I've just been unlucky with the doctors I've encountered, but I wouldn't say it was unreasonable. I don't know how you deal with pronunciation but I've studied Latin, Greek and Chemistry and still have trouble wink

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Rob Ray
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Nov 27 2006 15:25

How about 'penecillin'? Or for that matter, 'you've got a broken arm, we'll have to put a cast on that'? Or maybe, 'you've got a bad cold, go home, drink penty of water, and have some rest.' Then there’s ‘you’ll need your tonsils out’, ‘you’ve got high blood pressure, so we’ll give you something to thin it out a bit’, or ‘you’re anemic, so you’ll need to take some iron tablets’?

Meanwhile on the alternative medicines front there’s ‘I’m going to stick this Hopi candle in your ear and light it, and it will draw up all the bad humors from you’. Clear as a bell, that.

Grace
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Nov 27 2006 15:35

Man, I'm really gonna have to cut out the jokes grin

Nah I don't think you're wrong tbh.

I wanna try that candle stuff though, sounds fun! And safe!

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pingtiao
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Nov 27 2006 15:39

some man in India came up to me once when I was in a park and showed me some rusty tongs and some yellowed "testimonials" from "previous patients" and asked me if i'd like him to "clean out my ears".

I said no.

Grace
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Nov 27 2006 15:43

Damn, I'd have done it. My ears get well dirty.

Thora
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Nov 27 2006 15:48

And the guy had testimonials from previous customers, so he must be good.

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Demogorgon303
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Nov 27 2006 16:04

http://www.quackwatch.org/

Thought this might be a relevant website given there's been a few discussions in this vein.

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Khawaga
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Nov 27 2006 16:31

Quick question to those anti-homepoathy folks out there. Do you know the principle of homeopathy? How would you test whether a remedy worked?

Those two questions are very much linked together, and the problem is that homeopathy most of the time is tested on the wrong premises with the wrong methodology.

Btw it was homeopaths who first introduced the idea of placebo controlled study (in the mid 1880s). Also interesting that people refer to homeopathy as something medieval; it basically started in 1800 by Hahneman, a rigorous scientist.

Don't have time to post more now, but will later.

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Joseph Kay
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Nov 27 2006 16:33

i was told by someone who's studying it at college that it was medieval, fwiw

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pingtiao
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Nov 27 2006 16:38
atlemk wrote:
Those two questions are very much linked together, and the problem is that homeopathy most of the time is tested on the wrong premises with the wrong methodology.

What? confused

What possible methodology could be better than a double-blind RCT?

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Joseph Kay
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Nov 27 2006 16:40

you're making "the wrong premises" ping

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pingtiao
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Nov 27 2006 16:45

shh! grin

Grace
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Nov 27 2006 16:54
pingtiao wrote:
atlemk wrote:
Those two questions are very much linked together, and the problem is that homeopathy most of the time is tested on the wrong premises with the wrong methodology.

What? confused

What possible methodology could be better than a double-blind RCT?

Surely there's always room for improvement in any form of testing?

But that's a different issue, I don't know much about the subject. Perhaps different methods could be used, I don't know, but for now I wouldn't dispute the accuracy of established methods.

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pingtiao
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Nov 27 2006 17:23

I can't think of any methodology that elminates bias better than a double-blind randomised controlled trial. I'm interested in what atlemk means

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Steven.
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Nov 27 2006 17:25
atlemk wrote:
Quick question to those anti-homepoathy folks out there. Do you know the principle of homeopathy?

Yes, I've posted it up several times. The leading "pro-homeopathy" poster on here didn't know what it was, and sorry Grace but I don't think you've been talking about the main bit either, you've been conflating it with other things too.

Quote:
How would you test whether a remedy worked?

As ping said - double blind RCTs. Multiple studies, which are then peer reviewed on mass, then hell why not studies done of groups of the studies, also peer reviewed. You?

Quote:
Those two questions are very much linked together, and the problem is that homeopathy most of the time is tested on the wrong premises with the wrong methodology.

Evidence?

Quote:
Btw it was homeopaths who first introduced the idea of placebo controlled study (in the mid 1880s).

Again, evidence? AFAIK it wasn't used until the 1950s.

edit - not that's it's relevant anyway, but according to wikipedia the first placebo controlled study was in 1948:

Quote:
The first well documented use of a placebo in a clinical trial was reported in "Streptomycin treatment of pulmonary tuberculosis". BMJ 1948;2:769--782, a research paper by the Medical Research Council. Source

Quote:
Also interesting that people refer to homeopathy as something medieval; it basically started in 1800 by Hahneman, a rigorous scientist.

I know it was the 1800s, so what? It's since been disproved.

Pepe
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Nov 27 2006 18:03

Yeah yeah, can we talk about Grace's vagina again please?

Grace
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Nov 27 2006 18:09

It doesn't smell of yeast any more!

Pepe
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Nov 27 2006 19:13

Haha, when was this and what did your alt medicine lady give you for it? Was it a mooncup, coz that sorted me right out?

Thora
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Nov 27 2006 19:17

Mooncups sort out yeast infections? As in, it cured an infection you had, or it just prevented a re-occurence?

Pepe
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Nov 27 2006 19:26

prevented re-occurence. Thrush always clears itself up pretty quickly (in my experience). Or maybe it was the same infection, it just sort of.. waxed and waned, now you come to mention it.

Anyway. Mooncups = brilliant.

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Lazy Riser
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Nov 27 2006 19:37

Hi

Quote:
In todays increasingly individualised world collective thinking is dying.

We're thinking collectively, there are just a load more histrionic drama queens who can't take being ordered about. At all. Anti-vaccine types have what you might call "issues" with institutional authority.

Love

LR

Mike Harman
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Nov 27 2006 19:38
John. wrote:
Grace wrote:
Does anyone have experience of private conventional treatment?

This is a good question. The stuff you say above about your homeopath is good. The bad thing appears to be just the homeopathy. It's not really the fault of conventional medicine or science that the NHS is shit.

Was this homeopath you saw paid for/private?

Bit late on this thread. I'd never go to one now, but when I was about 15, after seeing an Ear Nose and Throat specialist, a Neurologist, a Counsellor and my GP about three times about chronic headaches that could last upto a week, I was referred to the Royal London Homeopathic hospital (NHS), and they correctly diagnosed me as being addicted to caffeine. They did some acupuncture that didn't work at all and gave me some pills which I don't think did anything either, but stopping drinking caffeine completely killed the headaches 100%. Basically because I didn't know what I was addicted to, if it got bad enough that I was off school I'd not drink the 3 cans of coke per day I was drinking and just have maybe one cup of tea (which I'd have 2-3 of anyway), so I'd stay withdrawn but not properly cold turkey (which later when I went on big coffee binges lasted about two days before I was back to normal).

Again, it was the diagnosis rather than that treatment that made any difference. Also it's quite possible that the doctor was properly trained in conventional medicine as well(it being a central London specialist hospital) rather than some random bloke above a health food shop or something.

Grace
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Nov 27 2006 20:14
Jess wrote:
Haha, when was this and what did your alt medicine lady give you for it? Was it a mooncup, coz that sorted me right out?

I had one before you did, jerk.

Nah she gave me some pills and let me cry. Hippiiiiiiie.

And yogurt was well good.

arf
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Nov 27 2006 21:06

I and my family all see a homeopathist. We've grown up with allopathic medicine and frankly it's a bit of a joke. Those of you who say homeopathy works some of the time but not other times and therefore MUST be placebo - has it occured to you that in conventional medicine the first treatment given does not in fact work in many cases? Almost everyone I know sees conventional gps (as I still do occasionally, and every time I wonder why I wasted my time), and they all seem to be continuously jumping from one medication to the next, as things dont work or stop working or have unbearable side effects, and they seem to be constantly on waiting lists to see this consultant or that one.

Anyway - homeopathy. Works for us. And - for every study against it (ever wonder who funds these studies folks?) there's another that has positive results. And - the NHS has a handful of homeopathic hospitals around the country, in some regions homeopathic care is and has always been available on the NHS, since the day it was founded in fact. And - more and more conventionally qualified gps and other sorts of doctors are also choosing to become qualified in homeopathic styles of medicine, which include homeopathy itself and acupuncture.

It makes me laugh to see people talk about allopathic medicine as if it is "scientifically proven". Who are you trying to kid? New drugs are constantly being trialled on the general population. Wind back a couple of decades - thalidomide. Wind back a bit more - doctors recommending tobacco to pregnant women and new mothers, "diet pills" for day and valium for night. EVEN IF the drugs and the treatments that medical doctors prescribe did work, fine, without side effects that are often worse or longer lasting than the original illness, even if that were true, doctors prescribe whole cocktails of drugs to their patients, cocktails that haven't been "scientifically tested" or proven to be useful, or harmless.

Everyone who does illegal drugs knows that its stupid and unpredictable to mix different types of drugs. Everyone who has ever drunk alcohol knows that it's effect on your body depends on a number of factors - your age, size, weight, diet, allergies, etc. Yet some gp sees you for five minutes (if they bother to see you at all now that appointments and prescribing over the telephone are becoming more common) and prescribes you a standard dose pill for an illness you may or may not have, without even checking any of those factors or what other medicines you may be taking, and you think thats scientific? My gp, when he prescribes something, almost always tells us to just try it and come back if and when it doesnt work to try something else. Is that scientific? Who is really being foolish here?

If you applied your ideas of "scientifc testing" to your allopathic medicine i guarantee you'd get one hell of a shock. As it is, cancers of various kinds and all types of illnesses are CONSTANTLY being linked to "proven" conventional medicines and treatments. Even if the one you're taking solves the problem it is intended for, there is no guarantee that it isnt causing something worse.

I look at all methods available when I or my family are ill. Most of the time, you just get ill, and you have to get well again on your own. That's the way it should be, people heal by themselves and they are all the better for it. But sometimes we need a bit of help and i'd rather look at all that is on offer and make an educated decision than phone my gp and go pick up the inevitable prescription for antibiotics he leaves at the desk.

arf
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Nov 27 2006 21:20

Oh - and regarding money and "rip off"s.

I dont pay for homeopathy. We are friends with our homeopath and we recieve treatment on a sort of barter system, we do things for them and they do this for us. I know not everyone is that lucky, but maybe more people need to try and create these sorts of agreements.

I do know how much he charges though. The first appointment is the longest and most expensive, and it's approximately £70. For that you get an hour and a half of him listening and talking to you, going through your history, and asking questions about you and your whole system, diet, stools, sleep, stress, temperament, etc. You don't pay extra for any remedies he gives you. Further appointments are rare, they cost approx £40 for an hour (and remember part of what homeopaths offer is someone to listen, like a counsellor). What you also get for your money, he will take calls and emails from us at any time, and offer us advice or send us remedies if we need them.

Compared to conventional medicine - this is cheap. I've looked into acupuncture and I know, for example, that carpal tunnel syndrome can be treated with courses of acupuncture that cost maybe £40 a session, and the entire thing takes maybe 6 sessions. Thats cheap treatment compared to the appointments and consultants and injections and even operations that people go through on the NHS for the same result.

And if you really want to talk about money and rip offs, who is really wealthy? Complementary therapists, who are mostly self employed and earn a decent living, sure, but are hardly loaded, or the pharmaceutical industry and medical practitioners?

Medicine and pharmaceuticals is an industry folks, an industry absolutely dripping with wealth and influence and power. Did you miss that?

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Joseph Kay
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Nov 27 2006 21:27

you are completely impervious to reality. congratulations.

arf wrote:
Anyway - homeopathy. Works for us. And - for every study against it (ever wonder who funds these studies folks?) there's another that has positive results.

no there isn't, if you're making accusations of bias, i'm open to evidence - have you got any?

arf wrote:
has it occured to you that in conventional medicine the first treatment given does not in fact work in many cases?

could be a diagnosis issue, could be all sorts, it doesn't justify wholesale relativism. God cured me, worked for me, spend public money on religion! After all "everyone knows ..."

I have a feeling you're using 'homeopathy' to mean 'everything that isn't shit about western medicine' and not what it actually means, i.e. ultra-diluted potions

Mike Harman
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Nov 27 2006 21:28
Grace wrote:

And yogurt was well good.

Someone I know was sharing a flat with a couple, and he managed to interrupt them sorting some yoghurt in the living room, went all over the carpet apparently when she tried to stand up eek.

Grace
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Nov 27 2006 21:41
arf wrote:
Everyone who does illegal drugs knows that its stupid and unpredictable to mix different types of drugs. Everyone who has ever drunk alcohol knows that it's effect on your body depends on a number of factors - your age, size, weight, diet, allergies, etc. Yet some gp sees you for five minutes (if they bother to see you at all now that appointments and prescribing over the telephone are becoming more common) and prescribes you a standard dose pill for an illness you may or may not have, without even checking any of those factors or what other medicines you may be taking, and you think thats scientific? My gp, when he prescribes something, almost always tells us to just try it and come back if and when it doesnt work to try something else. Is that scientific? Who is really being foolish here?

Excellent point. The mixing of drugs is something that I didn't think of when replying to the points on this thread, but if you think of the amount of old people and those with serious illnesses who have to take many different kinds of medication each day...

A genuine question here because I don't know - is it standard practise in conventional medicine to do trials on mixtures of drugs? Say for example someone had a permanent condition for which they needed to take drugs every day, would it be safe to assume that this drug had been tested in combination with drugs used to treat illnesses that are more punctual, say a bacterial infection? Or if a condition may require taking a number of different kinds of medication, would it be the case that tests had been carried out on these drugs not only in isolation but also in combination with the other drugs used to treat the condition?

arf
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Nov 27 2006 21:50

Joseph -I know exactly to what I refer when I discuss homeopathy, having spent much of my time reading about it, learning about it, and using it. What exactly is your experience? Better yet - where is your evidence?

Your arguments regarding 'public money' are horseshit and dont stand up to any scrutiny whatsoever. Complementary therapies cost far less than conventional therapies do to achieve the same results, for many different illnesses. Complementary therapists tend to earn much less than conventional medical practitioners, despite doing equivalent time in training and education. Much money wasted in the medical system doesnt get anywhere near therapy of any sort. Huge amounts of money go on drugs that do nothing new, merely mimic what already existing drugs are able to do. Huge amounts of money goes on solving illnesses that are actually caused by conventional medicines and treatments.

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Joseph Kay
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Nov 27 2006 21:51

that is a good q actually arf (+ grace) on the combos, i don't know. i'd say we need double-blind RCTs to ascertain what if any effects there are.