Homeopathy for childhood diarrhea: combined results and meta-analysis from three randomized, controlled clinical trials.
IACH - Prof. G. Vithoulkas
Homeopathy for childhood diarrhea: combined results and meta-analysis from three randomized, controlled clinical trials.
  • Author(s)

    Jacobs J, Jonas WB, Jimenez-Perez M, Crothers D.

    Journal

    Pediatric Infectious Diseases J. 2003 Mar;22(3):229-34

    Notes

    In this meta-analysis (an analysis carried out to determine overall trends in a group of similar studies) three double blind clinical trials of diarrhoea in 242 children aged 6 months to 5 years were analysed as one group. The children received either an individualised homeopathic medicine or a placebo, for 5 days after each unformed stool. Records were kept by parents and the duration of diarrhoea was defined as the time until there were less than 3 unformed stools per day for 2 consecutive days. Diarrhoea ceased in those taking homeopathic medicines after 3.3 days and after 4.1 days in those using placebo.

    Abstract

    BACKGROUND:

    Previous studies have shown a positive treatment effect of individualized homeopathic treatment for acute childhood diarrhea, but sample sizes were small and results were just at or near the level of statistical significance. Because all three studies followed the same basic study design, the combined data from these three studies were analyzed to obtain greater statistical power.

    METHODS:

    Three double blind clinical trials of diarrhea in 242 children ages 6 months to 5 years were analyzed as 1 group. Children were randomized to receive either an individualized homeopathic medicine or placebo to be taken as a single dose after each unformed stool for 5 days. Parents recorded daily stools on diary cards, and health workers made home visits daily to monitor children. The duration of diarrhea was defined as the time until there were less than 3 unformed stools per day for 2 consecutive days. A metaanalysis of the effect-size difference of the three studies was also conducted.

    RESULTS:

    Combined analysis shows a duration of diarrhea of 3.3 days in the homeopathy group compared with 4.1 in the placebo group (P = 0.008). The metaanalysis shows a consistent effect-size difference of approximately 0.66 day (P = 0.008).

    CONCLUSIONS:

    The results from these studies confirm that individualized homeopathic treatment decreases the duration of acute childhood diarrhea and suggest that larger sample sizes be used in future homeopathic research to ensure adequate statistical power. Homeopathy should be considered for use as an adjunct to oral rehydration for this illness.

    Category: Human Studies

    External url

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12634583

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