Medical group finds no evidence to support homeopathy

HOMEOPATHY makes you feel better, isn't that enough? Apparently not.

Australia's top medical research group has found there is "no reliable evidence" homeopathy is effective in treating medical or health conditions in its latest draft report.

The National Health and Medical Research Council examined 68 health conditions including ulcers, sinusitis, warts, fibromyalgia and asthma.

The NHMRC used 57 "systematic reviews" which allowed for the combining of research comparing homeopathy to placebos.

The Australian Homeopathic Association has questioned the findings, with spokeswoman Ana Lamaro asking whether the NHMRC set out to attack the industry.

The AHA has members working in Queensland towns of Toowoomba, Sunshine Coast, Hervey Bay, Ipswich, Gladstone and on the Gold Coast plus Coffs Harbour and Lismore in New South Wales.

Ms Lamaro said the NHMRC may have chosen studies that were negative towards homeopathy.

She said homeopaths often used different treatments even for the same ailment, meaning a consistent study would be difficult.

"We are concerned this may not have been the fairest of research examinations," Ms Lamaro said.

"Evidence is a bit like beauty - it's in the eye of the beholder.

"We suspect there is a pre-formed agenda here."

Bond University Professor Paul Glasziou chaired the NHRMC panel.

"What we were looking at were fairly done studies - that is the gold standard that we would look for with most orthodox treatments," he said.

"There was quite a lot of evidence there, but none of it was convincingly saying that homeopathy was any better than a placebo.

"If you give someone something they think is working, it relieves their anxiety," he said.

"That doesn't last forever."

The NHMRC is now asking for more studies and research to consider.



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