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Flashcards in complementary and alternative medicine Deck (17)
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what is the classification of CAM

alternative medical systems
mind body interventions
biologically based therapies
manipulative and body based methods
energy therapy


what is the principle behind homeopathic preparations

serial of dilutions of a mother tincture- potentisation


what are the harms of homeopathy

no risk of interactions with other medicines
however a delay in receiving appropriate treatment


how is homeopathy regulated in the uk

society of homeopaths, faculty of homeopaths, british homeopathic association
regulated by EU directive


what drugs can st johns wort interact with

hormonal contraception
anti depressants
anti coagulants
anti epileptic
heart medication
anti cancer
anti virals
and more


what are the risks of herbal medicines

adverse drug reactions and interactions
quality control
delay in receiving treatment


what body regulates herbal medicine

medicines and healthcare regulatory agency


what are the principles of chiropractice

disease is caused by displaced vertebrae
x rays
spinal manipulations


what are the risks of chiropractice

– 50% of chiropractic patients suffer an adverse reaction
– Tearing of artery wall leading to stroke
– Injury to the spinal cord
– Chiropractic X rays


what are the principles of acupuncture

chi flows through medidians
associated with major organs
illness is due to disrupted chi
needles are inserted along meridians
restores flow of chi


what are some theories of how placebos work

endogenous opiates release (test with naloxone)
pavlovian conditioning


what are some problems with testing complementary therapies

difficulty in blinding for the patient and practitioner

may be able to use comparative treatments eg physiotherapy or massage


why do people use CAM

health promotion
exhausted conventional options
side effects and risks of conventional medicine
no conventional therapy available
more attention from practitioner
may not know its CAM


What are some impediments to making inferences about treatment

natural history of disease
causal inferences
reluctance to admit when wrong
respect for authority
conspiracy view of the world


what are some ethical considerations of CAM

if its nothing more than a placebo, is that a bad thing?
do we need to know how a treatment works
is it safe?
direct/ indirect harm
balancing patient choice around non maleficence
should it be researched or funded
undermines public trust?
exploration of the limits of EBM


describe the case of simon singh and the british chiropractic association

Singh claimed that chiropractice was bogus and was sued for libel
the case was dropped


describe the theory of water having a memory

Prof Benveniste believed that water retains its ability to evoke a biological response even when it has been diluted so that none of the mother tincture remains
was published in nature but subsequently retracted