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J Altern Complement Med. 2018 Jul;24(7):684-693. doi: 10.1089/acm.2017.0388. Epub 2018 Mar 22.

Semi-Individualized Homeopathy Add-On Versus Usual Care Only for Premenstrual Disorders: A Randomized, Controlled Feasibility Study.

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1 Department of Health and Nutrition, Louis Bolk Institute , Bunnik, The Netherlands .
2 Department of Nursing, Mid-Sweden University , Sundsvall, Sweden .
3 Naturopathy and Integrative Medicine, Department of Gynecological Endocrinology and Reproductive Medicine, University Women's Hospital , Universitätsfrauenklinik Heidelberg, Heidelberg, Germany .



Premenstrual syndrome and premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMS/PMDD) bother a substantial number of women. Homeopathy seems a promising treatment, but it needs investigation using reliable study designs. The feasibility of organizing an international randomized pragmatic trial on a homeopathic add-on treatment (usual care [UC] + HT) compared with UC alone was evaluated.


A multicenter, randomized, controlled pragmatic trial with parallel groups.


The study was organized in general and private homeopathic practices in the Netherlands and Sweden and in an outpatient university clinic in Germany.


Women diagnosed as having PMS/PMDD, based on prospective daily rating by the daily record of severity of problems (DRSP) during a period of 2 months, were included and randomized.


Women were to receive UC + HT or UC for 4 months. Homeopathic medicine selection was according to a previously tested prognostic questionnaire and electronic algorithm. Usual care was as provided by the women's general practitioner according to their preferences.


Before and after treatment, the women completed diaries (DRSP), the measure yourself concerns and well-being, and other questionnaires. Intention-to-treat (ITT) and per protocol (PP) analyses were performed.


In Germany, the study could not proceed because of legal limitations. In Sweden, recruitment proved extremely difficult. In the Netherlands and Sweden, 60 women were randomized (UC + HT: 28; UC: 32), data of 47/46 women were analyzed (ITT/PP). After 4 months, relative mean change of DRSP scores in the UC + HT group was significantly better than in the UC group (p = 0.03).


With respect to recruitment and different legal status, it does not seem feasible to perform a larger, international, pragmatic randomized trial on (semi-)individualized homeopathy for PMS/PMDD. Since the added value of HT compared with UC was demonstrated by significant differences in symptom score changes, further studies are warranted.


PMS/PMDD; homeopathy; pragmatic trials; premenstrual; randomized clinical trials

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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