Friday, October 08, 2010

Scientists Conclude Homeopathy Works to Ease Cancer

Some homeopathic remedies may successfully reduce the side effects of cancer therapies without interfering with the treatment regimen, according to a study conducted by researchers from the Cochrane Collaboration.

Led by a scientist from the Royal London Homeopathic Hospital, researchers reviewed the methodology and conclusions of eight different studies into homeopathic relief of cancer treatment side effects.

The researchers noted that few studies were found to qualify for their review, suggesting that very little conventional scientific research has been carried out into the effectiveness of homeopathic treatment.

One study, deemed high quality by the reviewers, found that a mouthwash made from an herb mixture known as Traummel S successfully reduced the symptoms of stomatisis, a side effect of chemotherapy. In stomatisis, painful sores form in the mouth.

Traummel S includes arnica, belladonna, echinacea and St. John's wort.

Another study given the Cochrane Collaboration's seal of approval found that a cream made from calendula was effective at reducing acute dermatitis in breast cancer patients. In fact, the calendula cream was even more effective at reducing the symptoms of dermatitis than the conventional pharmaceutical remedy, trolamine.

The skin inflammation known as acute dermatitis can arise as a side effect of radiation therapy.

Calendula is one of the genera of plants commonly referred to as "marigolds." Previous research has found that calendula can be effective in treating other skin conditions, such as inflammation or acne. It can also be used to reduce bleeding, and has been shown to have anti-viral and anti-inflammatory effects.

The Cochrane researchers found no evidence that any homeopathic remedy interfered with the effectiveness of conventional cancer treatments. One of the studies reviewed by the research team even found that interruptions in radiation therapy were significantly less common when the treatment was paired with homeopathic care.

The researchers said that more investigation would be needed to independently confirm the findings of these studies.

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