Homeopathic Medicine? or Scam?

Here are the facts of my recent consult. I would really like to know what you think or have experienced, positive or negative, in this area of medicine.

I wanted to try alternative medicine for my lupus since there doesn’t seem to be anything else to try except for chemo which I don’t want to do. I can still function and work and don’t want to live my life around that. I called this particular doctor of osteopathy because I heard he’d really helped a women with lupus for the past 20 years. He’s  in practice with his son,  a tech. First I met with the doctor, who spent over an hour taking a very comprehensive history.  He said traditional medicine teaches doctors to start with the symptoms, come to a diagnosis, and then treat the symptoms.  He explained that what he does is different in that he looks further back to the causes of the disease and starts his treatment there. Ok….sounded reasonable. He took quite a few vials of blood.

The next step was to go downstairs to his son and get tested for the causes. With blind faith I went, not even asking about what the procedure entailed. What it turned out to be was three hours of testing using some kind of probe on the meridians of my fingers which produced computerized data for his father. (For the uninitiated, meridians are the energy fields used in accupuncture.) This cost $550. and was not covered by insurance.

I then went back to the doctor at a later date for the results. The blood tests were unremarkable. But  the computerized meridian tests indicated all sorts of parasites, bacteria, viruses, low functioning adrenals, and lymes disease which I have apparently had for at least 8 years. I have been tested many times by my rheumatologist for lymes and adrenal functioning but he and his son explained the test was for “stealth” organisms which hide by embedding in the organs and escaping detection of traditional medical tests….He said that the hidden stealth organisms are what cause the autoimmune system to attack the body. 

He offered an eight month treatment plan, to the tune of several thousand dollars, none of which is covered by insurance. To start with, animal stem cell injections. Then various kits from his son with herbal remedies which would definitely help my immune system. I reminded him I’d come in for help with lupus and he said, “Oh? IS it lupus?” He suggested I not tell my regular medical doctor about the treatment since they’re so skeptical of alternative medicine, and then let him be surprised after the treatment with the improvement in my health and THEN tell him how I’d gotten better. (Ok, even as I write that I am embarrassed…what BAD medicine it is to NOT practice coordination of care!)

So now I finally decided to do some research (duh) and I find out that homeopathic remedies are so diluted that basically there is nothing of the original “essence” left by they time you take it. Lots of talk by traditional medicine of no research, just placebo effect. 

Responses, anyone? I would so appreciate them….

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10 Responses to “Homeopathic Medicine? or Scam?”

  1. Amber Says:

    Run girlfriend… run!

  2. Lirone Says:

    I’d say that the most important thing is to get systematic evidence of what works rather than getting anecdotes. There are dozens of stories out there of people who have recovered after (though not necessarily because of) taking complementary treatments – there are also dozens of stories of people who have died after abandoning Western medicine to take alternative therapies. Without getting systematic evidence that rules out chance, placebo and bias by the practitioner, there’s no way to be sure what works and what doesn’t.

    Having said that, this guy sounds like a complete charlatan… his “don’t tell your doctor” approach is a red flag to me. If his treatment is going to have an effect, then there’s a possibility of adverse interactions with what your doctor gives you – how can they be sure of that without working together? And his inability to remember what condition you came in for treatment is alarming! I’m also highly dubious about this “animal stem cells” thing – it sounds cutting edge but I’m not sure any such treatment has been shown to work or been licensed!

    It does seem possible that alternative treatments can help the mind and body deal better with pain and fatigue, so I wouldn’t discourage you from pursuing these options. But do proceed with great caution and scepticism (you may find this website a helpful resource – and perhaps also this one)!

    Sadly there are a lot of people out there using pseudoscience to convince people to buy their treatments when they have no real evidence that it works. I hope you find a way to get some relief of your symptoms without being sold snake oil!

  3. Nath Says:

    In general a nice placebo, but a little expensive.

    The guys who “treated” you, however, go far, far beyond a well meaning old lady with some bottles of water. They are simply scam artists. Disgraceful.

    *hugs*

  4. George Harding Says:

    Sorry…based on what you’ve written above, this osteopath did NOT practice homeopathy. A homeopath does NOT use blood tests to determine which homeopathic medicine to prescribe.

    It seems that the blind are leading the blind. You are criticizing something that you do not understand or seem to know anything about. A tad ironic, eh?

  5. sarah Says:

    I recently came across your blog and have been reading along. I thought I would leave my first comment. I don’t know what to say except that I have enjoyed reading. Nice blog. I will keep visiting this blog very often.
    Sarah
    http://www.thetreadmillguide.com

  6. lupusranting Says:

    “OH, IS IT LUPUS?” As if he’s questioning your diagnosis? A practitioner who wants to “surprise” your other doctors after trying things his way is all about himself and not you, the patient! People like him give alternative medicine a bad rap.

    I agree with Amber …. Run!!

  7. cordieb Says:

    I have to give you my honest opinion …I hope it does not sound too negative, as it is said in love. “He explained that what he does is different in that he looks further back to the causes of the disease and starts his treatment there. ” True, that does sound reasonable . . . but with your background, you know that finding the root cause of any illness can be as devestating and painful as the disease itself; but once it’s rooted out it does not automatically mean there will be instant healing–only when we sincerely want to heal will we heal. In my opinion, the mind and body needs to believe and want to be healed . . . and such treatment gives those who believe in a healing effect a healing effect. In your doubts of its ability to heal, I doubt there will be any measureable healing. Plus, this person is charging an aweful amount of money to give you something that you may very well be able to give yourself. I’d find another practioner who incorporates medicine, such as immune boosters, with guiding you to speak to your body, your cells in such a manner to promote healing. . . You will feel the genuiness in this person and not have the untrusting vibes you feel with this person. You know in your heart the answer to your quest . . . follow your instincts, they speak truth in volumes.

    Blessings to you this Thanksgiving season – we know not why our body turns against us at times, but it may be well worth the energy and time to find out. But, I certainly would not suggest sticking with this particular practioner – as he seems to be giving the gift of hope – but hope only manifests when we have faith. Faith you do not have in him; thus do some more research . . . and of course keep the faith!

    Again, blessings and love. . . CordieB.

  8. psychscribe Says:

    My dear CordieB – thank you so very much for taking the time to write such a well thought out and caring response- I couldn’t agree with you more. I already cancelled any further appointments with him. PLL to you this holiday season. Pscyh

  9. psychscribe Says:

    Amber, Lirone, Nath and LupusRanting, thank you for validating what I already knew but didn’t want to know.. 😦 That’s what friends are for…

  10. psychscribe Says:

    George, your criticism stings a little since I generally consider myself too intelligent to jump into such a thing without the proper research. “The blind leading the blind” is so apt here. I believe I purposely blinded myself by NOT doing the proper research so I could just take it on faith…obviously didn’t work since my poop detector went into overdrive…but thanks for your comment. Sincerely, Psych

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