Confessions of a Quackbuster

This blog deals with healthcare consumer protection, and is therefore about quackery, healthfraud, chiropractic, and other forms of so-Called "Alternative" Medicine (sCAM).

Wednesday, December 15, 2004

The Top Ten Questions Homeopaths can't answer

JREF Forums - The Top Ten Questions Homeopaths can't answer

1. Why do the effects of homeopathy, which are quite considerable when described anecdotally, dissapear when testing is performed under controlled conditions ?

2. What evidence do you have to support your assertion that "like cures like" is a natural law?

3. Exactly how does the solvent's "memory" of the active ingredient become selective, to somehow erase the intimate contact it has had with possibly millions of other compounds in its history and since the dilution process is supposed to dilute out the undesirable parts of the remedy's effects, and potentise the desirable parts, how does the remedy know which is which?

4. How is information stored in water? It's no good just saying that unexpected processes occur in solvents they must store energy and information in a completely faithful and stable manner?

5. How does the memory of water apply when the final remedy is dried onto a lactose pill?

6. How come you can prescribe for animals when you don't "prove" the remedies on animals?

7. Provings are demonstrably nonsense. In the vast majority no attention at all is paid to using controls. So it is vanishingly unlikely that many remedies in use today have the effects claimed for them in provings even if there was some validity behind the principles of homeopathy so that some remedies might truly work. So how come homeopaths using all the dodgy remedies claim success in using them? Doesn't the existence of this mass of defective remedies (even if we cannot identify them from a notional set of valid remedies) completely undermine the homeopaths' claims to make valid inferences from their much-vaunted 'clinical evidence'?

8. What can homeopathy not cure? How do these diseases differ absolutely from all the things they say it can cure. Can it cure genetic diseases?

9. What are the limits of homeopaths' credulity? Are there any alt med therapies they do not believe in? If there are really wild and weird things they do not believe in then please can they explain the rationale for making that distinction?

10. The Randi Challenge Special Question:

Is there any way to tell if a preparation is different from plain water or other solvent? Please do so and earn $1M (and no this is not a single dollar diluted homeopathically