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Rheumatology (Oxford). 2011 Jun;50(6):1070-82. doi: 10.1093/rheumatology/keq234. Epub 2010 Nov 13.

Homeopathy has clinical benefits in rheumatoid arthritis patients that are attributable to the consultation process but not the homeopathic remedy: a randomized controlled clinical trial.

Author information

  • 1Complementary and Integrated Medicine Research Unit, Primary Medical Care, Aldermoor Health Centre, Aldermoor Close, Southampton SO16 5ST, UK. s.brien@southampton.ac.uk

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

To assess whether any benefits from adjunctive homeopathic intervention in patients with RA are due to the homeopathic consultation, homeopathic remedies or both.

METHODS:

Exploratory double-blind, randomized placebo-controlled trial conducted from January 2008 to July 2008, in patients with active stable RA receiving conventional therapy. Eighty-three participants from three secondary care UK outpatient clinics were randomized to 24 weeks of treatment with either homeopathic consultation (further randomized to individualized homeopathy, complex homeopathy or placebo) or non-homeopathic consultation (further randomized to complex homeopathy or placebo). Co-primary outcomes: ACR 20% improvement (ACR20) criteria and patient monthly global assessment (GA). Secondary outcomes: 28-joint DAS (DAS-28), tender and swollen joint count, disease severity, pain, weekly patient and physician GA and pain, and inflammatory markers.

RESULTS:

Fifty-six completed treatment phase. No significant differences were observed for either primary outcome. There was no clear effect due to remedy type. Receiving a homeopathic consultation significantly improved DAS-28 [mean difference 0.623; 95% CI 0.1860, 1.060; P = 0.005; effect size (ES) 0.70], swollen joint count (mean difference 3.04; 95% CI 1.055, 5.030; P = 0.003; ES 0.83), current pain (mean difference 9.12; 95% CI 0.521, 17.718; P = 0.038; ES 0.48), weekly pain (mean difference 6.017; 95% CI 0.140, 11.894; P = 0.045; ES 0.30), weekly patient GA (mean difference 6.260; 95% CI 0.411, 12.169; P = 0.036; ES 0.31) and negative mood (mean difference - 4.497; 95% CI -8.071, -0.923; P = 0.015; ES 0.90).

CONCLUSION:

Homeopathic consultations but not homeopathic remedies are associated with clinically relevant benefits for patients with active but relatively stable RA.

TRIAL REGISTRATION:

Current controlled trials, http://www.controlled-trials.com/, ISRCTN09712705.

Comment in

PMID:
21076131
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC3093927
Free PMC Article

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