Discussion:
Does Alternative Medicine Really Work?
(too old to reply)
rpautrey2
2008-02-24 21:47:54 UTC
MONTGOMERY MEDICINE: Does alternative medicine really work?
The Paper of Montgomery County
Friday, February 15, 2008


Ifm frequently asked by patients to comment on the use of 'non-
medical" treatments or remedies they have heard or read about on TV,
radio or in print. I usually have to respond that I have limited
knowledge about the product but I will do some research on it for
them.

The business of complimentary and alternative medicine or 'CAM" is
booming. This is largely an outgrowth of patient frustration with
traditional medical practice in America. People are fed up with the
high cost of medications and other treatments and are looking for less
expensive 'natural" ways to deal with illness and health promotion. A
study ten years ago estimated that US citizens spent between $36
billion and $47 billion on CAM treatments. This was more than the
public paid out-of-pocket on hospitalizations that year.

Most physicians trained in this country receive little or no education
in CAM treatments in medical school or afterwards. We are trained in
the scientific method from an early age and rely on carefully designed
medical studies to provide evidence that the likelihood of a specific
treatment working is not simply due to chance. We are therefore very
uncomfortable recommending or even commenting on treatments that we do
not feel have passed scientific scrutiny.

Scientific studies that have examined CAM treatments are scarce. To
help alleviate this gap in knowledge, Congress established in 1998 the
National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), a
branch of the National Institutes of Health. It 'is dedicated to
exploring complementary and alternative healing practices in the
context of rigorous science; training complementary and alternative
medicine (CAM) researchers; and disseminating authoritative
information to the public and professionals."

When researching a product, I typically start by going to the NCCAM
website at www.nccam.nih.gov to see if there is any information there.
If not, I resort to an Internet search to find information about the
product or its ingredients. The difficulty with Internet search
engines like Google is that the majority of the web sites that come up
are posted by manufacturers or sellers of the product. These sites
frequently look very professional.

The sites often have testimonials from physicians or other scientists
who are being well paid to support the product. There are frequently
anecdotal stories of people who have received benefit from the
product. I must stress to the readers that these sites are NOT the
place to go for unbiased information. You should look for sites from
academic or clinical institutions if possible. The URLs (Internet
addresses) for reputable sites often end in '.edu" or '.org" rather
than '.com." You should avoid any site that is also selling the
product.

Some web pages or advertisements go so far as to say that physicians,
scientists, the Government and others (particularly pharmaceutical
companies) are suppressing evidence that their product works. I donft
believe there is any vast conspiracy to prevent these types of
products from being marketed. There is, however, concern that they are
being marketed without scientific evidence that they produce the
desired effect and that they are any safer than other treatments that
do have scientific backing.

Hopefully agencies such as NCCAM will be a source of reliable
information for the public so informed choices can be made. In the
meantime, if you read that a product claims to cure one or more major
medical illnesses think to yourself, 'wouldnft that make the front
page of every newspaper on the planet?"

Dr. John Roberts is a local family physician and a Wabash College
graduate. He is also one of the owners of The Paper of Montgomery
County. You can contact him at

***@thepaper24-7.com, or c/o The Paper of Montgomery County, 101
W. Main St., Crawfordsville, Ind.

Content © 2008
Software © 1998-2008 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved
Citizen Jimserac
2008-02-24 23:42:55 UTC
Post by rpautrey2
MONTGOMERY MEDICINE: Does alternative medicine really work?
The Paper of Montgomery County
Friday, February 15, 2008
Ifm frequently asked by patients to comment on the use of 'non-
medical" treatments or remedies they have heard or read about on TV,
radio or in print. I usually have to respond that I have limited
knowledge about the product but I will do some research on it for
them.
The business of complimentary and alternative medicine or 'CAM" is
booming. This is largely an outgrowth of patient frustration with
traditional medical practice in America. People are fed up with the
high cost of medications and other treatments and are looking for less
expensive 'natural" ways to deal with illness and health promotion. A
study ten years ago estimated that US citizens spent between $36
billion and $47 billion on CAM treatments. This was more than the
public paid out-of-pocket on hospitalizations that year.
Most physicians trained in this country receive little or no education
in CAM treatments in medical school or afterwards. We are trained in
the scientific method from an early age and rely on carefully designed
medical studies to provide evidence that the likelihood of a specific
treatment working is not simply due to chance. We are therefore very
uncomfortable recommending or even commenting on treatments that we do
not feel have passed scientific scrutiny.
Scientific studies that have examined CAM treatments are scarce. To
help alleviate this gap in knowledge, Congress established in 1998 the
National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), a
branch of the National Institutes of Health. It 'is dedicated to
exploring complementary and alternative healing practices in the
context of rigorous science; training complementary and alternative
medicine (CAM) researchers; and disseminating authoritative
information to the public and professionals."
When researching a product, I typically start by going to the NCCAM
website atwww.nccam.nih.govto see if there is any information there.
If not, I resort to an Internet search to find information about the
product or its ingredients. The difficulty with Internet search
engines like Google is that the majority of the web sites that come up
are posted by manufacturers or sellers of the product. These sites
frequently look very professional.
The sites often have testimonials from physicians or other scientists
who are being well paid to support the product. There are frequently
anecdotal stories of people who have received benefit from the
product. I must stress to the readers that these sites are NOT the
place to go for unbiased information. You should look for sites from
academic or clinical institutions if possible. The URLs (Internet
addresses) for reputable sites often end in '.edu" or '.org" rather
than '.com." You should avoid any site that is also selling the
product.
Some web pages or advertisements go so far as to say that physicians,
scientists, the Government and others (particularly pharmaceutical
companies) are suppressing evidence that their product works. I donft
believe there is any vast conspiracy to prevent these types of
products from being marketed. There is, however, concern that they are
being marketed without scientific evidence that they produce the
desired effect and that they are any safer than other treatments that
do have scientific backing.
Hopefully agencies such as NCCAM will be a source of reliable
information for the public so informed choices can be made. In the
meantime, if you read that a product claims to cure one or more major
medical illnesses think to yourself, 'wouldnft that make the front
page of every newspaper on the planet?"
Dr. John Roberts is a local family physician and a Wabash College
graduate. He is also one of the owners of The Paper of Montgomery
County. You can contact him at
W. Main St., Crawfordsville, Ind.
Content © 2008
Software © 1998-2008 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved
A statement of opinion from a local family physician
is always welcome and is of interest.

Regretfully, most medical schools decided to exclude
alternative medicine from their curricula in the United
States, whereas in other countries this is not the case.
In Germany for example, medical students are, I believe,
required to take some Homeopathy courses.

The presumption that ALL alternative medicine
is false underlies official policies and this
presumption IS INVALID.

To persist in this false assumption will only
undermine the position of the "standard" (sic)
medicine practitioners.

The sooner they lose their false and obsolete
prejudices against alternative medicine, the better.

Citizen Jimserac
The One True Zhen Jue
2008-02-25 00:26:14 UTC
Post by Citizen Jimserac
Post by rpautrey2
MONTGOMERY MEDICINE: Does alternative medicine really work?
The Paper of Montgomery County
Friday, February 15, 2008
Ifm frequently asked by patients to comment on the use of 'non-
medical" treatments or remedies they have heard or read about on TV,
radio or in print. I usually have to respond that I have limited
knowledge about the product but I will do some research on it for
them.
The business of complimentary and alternative medicine or 'CAM" is
booming. This is largely an outgrowth of patient frustration with
traditional medical practice in America. People are fed up with the
high cost of medications and other treatments and are looking for less
expensive 'natural" ways to deal with illness and health promotion. A
study ten years ago estimated that US citizens spent between $36
billion and $47 billion on CAM treatments. This was more than the
public paid out-of-pocket on hospitalizations that year.
Most physicians trained in this country receive little or no education
in CAM treatments in medical school or afterwards. We are trained in
the scientific method from an early age and rely on carefully designed
medical studies to provide evidence that the likelihood of a specific
treatment working is not simply due to chance. We are therefore very
uncomfortable recommending or even commenting on treatments that we do
not feel have passed scientific scrutiny.
Scientific studies that have examined CAM treatments are scarce. To
help alleviate this gap in knowledge, Congress established in 1998 the
National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), a
branch of the National Institutes of Health. It 'is dedicated to
exploring complementary and alternative healing practices in the
context of rigorous science; training complementary and alternative
medicine (CAM) researchers; and disseminating authoritative
information to the public and professionals."
When researching a product, I typically start by going to the NCCAM
website atwww.nccam.nih.govtosee if there is any information there.
If not, I resort to an Internet search to find information about the
product or its ingredients. The difficulty with Internet search
engines like Google is that the majority of the web sites that come up
are posted by manufacturers or sellers of the product. These sites
frequently look very professional.
The sites often have testimonials from physicians or other scientists
who are being well paid to support the product. There are frequently
anecdotal stories of people who have received benefit from the
product. I must stress to the readers that these sites are NOT the
place to go for unbiased information. You should look for sites from
academic or clinical institutions if possible. The URLs (Internet
addresses) for reputable sites often end in '.edu" or '.org" rather
than '.com." You should avoid any site that is also selling the
product.
Some web pages or advertisements go so far as to say that physicians,
scientists, the Government and others (particularly pharmaceutical
companies) are suppressing evidence that their product works. I donft
believe there is any vast conspiracy to prevent these types of
products from being marketed. There is, however, concern that they are
being marketed without scientific evidence that they produce the
desired effect and that they are any safer than other treatments that
do have scientific backing.
Hopefully agencies such as NCCAM will be a source of reliable
information for the public so informed choices can be made. In the
meantime, if you read that a product claims to cure one or more major
medical illnesses think to yourself, 'wouldnft that make the front
page of every newspaper on the planet?"
Dr. John Roberts is a local family physician and a Wabash College
graduate. He is also one of the owners of The Paper of Montgomery
County. You can contact him at
W. Main St., Crawfordsville, Ind.
Content © 2008
Software © 1998-2008 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved
A statement of opinion from a local family physician
is always welcome and is of interest.
Regretfully, most medical schools decided to exclude
alternative medicine from their curricula in the United
States, whereas in other countries this is not the case.
In Germany for example, medical students are, I believe,
required to take some Homeopathy courses.
No, German physicians do NOT have to take homeopathy.

http://www.dw-world.de/dw/article/0,1564,1575855,00.html

Around 20 percent of Germans reportedly swear by homeopathic
medication. However, this alternative form of medicine is still
awaiting official recognition in Germany.
Post by Citizen Jimserac
The presumption that ALL alternative medicine
is false underlies official policies and this
presumption IS INVALID.
To persist in this false assumption will only
undermine the position of the "standard" (sic)
medicine practitioners.
Over 60% of practicing MD's in the USA believe that acupuncture is at
least somewhat effective. Effective alternatives are of interest to
mainstream medicine. Faith-based methods are not.
Post by Citizen Jimserac
The sooner they lose their false and obsolete
prejudices against alternative medicine, the better.
Citizen Jimserac- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Bee
2008-02-25 01:01:33 UTC
Post by The One True Zhen Jue
Over 60% of practicing MD's in the USA believe that acupuncture is at
least somewhat effective.  Effective alternatives are of interest to
mainstream medicine.  Faith-based methods are not.
Andrew, I haven't made up my mind about homeopathy remedies. I have
met
people that claim they have worked for them. I am kind of interested
in what it is
all about, and I'm going to attend a conference in Texas at Galveston
while I am in Texas in May. Pros and cons of traditional and
alternative therapies.
Should be interesting. They do not allow advertising of products or
literature. I picked
to go to the seminar on homeopathic, and a couple of others that I
have little knowledge
of. The acupuncture seminar is already full. But there was one (if I
decide to stay over)
called "Micro circuit (think, the info is downstairs) acupuncture---
know anything about that?
It sounds like zapping!!
rpautrey2
2008-02-25 01:09:02 UTC
TOTZJ: Tell us more - ? PA
Post by Bee
Micro circuit (think, the info is downstairs) acupuncture---
know anything about that?
It sounds like zapping!!
Post by The One True Zhen Jue
Over 60% of practicing MD's in the USA believe that acupuncture is at
least somewhat effective.  Effective alternatives are of interest to
mainstream medicine.  Faith-based methods are not.
Andrew, I haven't made up my mind about homeopathy remedies.  I have
met
people that claim they have worked for them.  I am kind of interested
in what it is
all about, and I'm going to attend a conference in Texas at  Galveston
while I am in Texas in May.  Pros and cons of traditional and
alternative therapies.
Should be interesting.  They do not allow advertising of products or
literature.  I picked
to go to the seminar on homeopathic, and a couple of others that I
have little knowledge
of.  The acupuncture seminar is already full.  But there was one (if I
decide to stay over)
called "Micro circuit (think, the info is downstairs) acupuncture---
know anything about that?
It sounds like zapping!!
Richard Schultz
2008-02-25 06:13:11 UTC
In article <0a2f5f77-cfbc-4cf3-95dc-***@p73g2000hsd.googlegroups.com>, The One True Zhen Jue <***@yahoo.com> wrote:

: Around 20 percent of Germans reportedly swear by homeopathic
: medication. However, this alternative form of medicine is still
: awaiting official recognition in Germany.

Still waiting for a response from you regarding my corrections to your
post about the status of alternative medicine in the UK. <crickets chirping>


: Over 60% of practicing MD's in the USA believe that acupuncture is at
: least somewhat effective. Effective alternatives are of interest to
: mainstream medicine. Faith-based methods are not.

Talk about cognitive dissonance. Acupuncture claims that an ill-defined
vital force (Qi) flows along meridians within the body. Reflexology (aka
Zone Therapy) claims that a vital force flows along meridians within the
body. Do you think that acupuncture is necessarily more effective than
reflexology? If so, why?

-----
Richard Schultz ***@mail.biu.ac.il
Department of Chemistry, Bar-Ilan University, Ramat-Gan, Israel
Opinions expressed are mine alone, and not those of Bar-Ilan University
-----
"Logic is a wreath of pretty flowers which smell bad."
Peter Moran
2008-02-25 07:04:28 UTC
Post by rpautrey2
MONTGOMERY MEDICINE: Does alternative medicine really work?
The Paper of Montgomery County
Friday, February 15, 2008
Ifm frequently asked by patients to comment on the use of 'non-
medical" treatments or remedies they have heard or read about on TV,
radio or in print. I usually have to respond that I have limited
knowledge about the product but I will do some research on it for
them.
The business of complimentary and alternative medicine or 'CAM" is
booming. This is largely an outgrowth of patient frustration with
traditional medical practice in America. People are fed up with the
high cost of medications and other treatments and are looking for less
expensive 'natural" ways to deal with illness and health promotion. A
study ten years ago estimated that US citizens spent between $36
billion and $47 billion on CAM treatments. This was more than the
public paid out-of-pocket on hospitalizations that year.
Most physicians trained in this country receive little or no education
in CAM treatments in medical school or afterwards. We are trained in
the scientific method from an early age and rely on carefully designed
medical studies to provide evidence that the likelihood of a specific
treatment working is not simply due to chance. We are therefore very
uncomfortable recommending or even commenting on treatments that we do
not feel have passed scientific scrutiny.
Scientific studies that have examined CAM treatments are scarce. To
help alleviate this gap in knowledge, Congress established in 1998 the
National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), a
branch of the National Institutes of Health. It 'is dedicated to
exploring complementary and alternative healing practices in the
context of rigorous science; training complementary and alternative
medicine (CAM) researchers; and disseminating authoritative
information to the public and professionals."
When researching a product, I typically start by going to the NCCAM
website atwww.nccam.nih.govto see if there is any information there.
If not, I resort to an Internet search to find information about the
product or its ingredients. The difficulty with Internet search
engines like Google is that the majority of the web sites that come up
are posted by manufacturers or sellers of the product. These sites
frequently look very professional.
The sites often have testimonials from physicians or other scientists
who are being well paid to support the product. There are frequently
anecdotal stories of people who have received benefit from the
product. I must stress to the readers that these sites are NOT the
place to go for unbiased information. You should look for sites from
academic or clinical institutions if possible. The URLs (Internet
addresses) for reputable sites often end in '.edu" or '.org" rather
than '.com." You should avoid any site that is also selling the
product.
Some web pages or advertisements go so far as to say that physicians,
scientists, the Government and others (particularly pharmaceutical
companies) are suppressing evidence that their product works. I donft
believe there is any vast conspiracy to prevent these types of
products from being marketed. There is, however, concern that they are
being marketed without scientific evidence that they produce the
desired effect and that they are any safer than other treatments that
do have scientific backing.
Hopefully agencies such as NCCAM will be a source of reliable
information for the public so informed choices can be made. In the
meantime, if you read that a product claims to cure one or more major
medical illnesses think to yourself, 'wouldnft that make the front
page of every newspaper on the planet?"
Dr. John Roberts is a local family physician and a Wabash College
graduate. He is also one of the owners of The Paper of Montgomery
County. You can contact him at
W. Main St., Crawfordsville, Ind.
Content © 2008
Software © 1998-2008 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved
A statement of opinion from a local family physician
is always welcome and is of interest.

Regretfully, most medical schools decided to exclude
alternative medicine from their curricula in the United
States, whereas in other countries this is not the case.
In Germany for example, medical students are, I believe,
required to take some Homeopathy courses.

The presumption that ALL alternative medicine
is false underlies official policies and this
presumption IS INVALID.

PM There IS no overall position regarding alternative medicines, merely
some legal regulations regarding what claims can be made, which is eminently
reasonable, and there is a range of official opinions. Medical schools and
some major medical journals are dealing with alternative methods quite
openly and in remarkably unbiased, and some might say, gullible ways.
Governments have always been fairly tolerant.

Skeptical opinion (which is what alternative supporters mainly encounter
here) is dominated by those who are so aghast at all the transparent fraud,
the absurd scientific theory, and the serious quackery regarding serious
illnesses such as cancer, that they would consign alternative medicine to
oblivion if they could. They find it difficult to see any good in it.

Others, like myself, think that alternative methods can help many people
with *some kinds* of medical problem -- as placebo, and probably more
safely than many drugs, which themselves often work only marginally better
than placebo. Medicine has always been largely based upon placebo (as
Andrew Weil also believes, but he overestimates what it can do).

I am therefore prepared to accept that these essentially placebo medicine
(excepting some herbs possessing real pharmacological activity and should be
treated more like drugs) may have a place within the medical system until
something better comes along, especially if people are to use them at their
own expense and risk and the promoters of the treatments are discouraged
from making unjustified medical claims. This is what is supposed to happen
in most countries at present, but in practice the enforcing bodies have no
teeth and the "health freedom" crazies have assumed an unwarranted high
moral ground. There is no value at all to medical treatments that do not
do what they are claimed, whenever serious disability or death is at stake.

My own tolerance is strained severely, however, when I hear of homeopaths
offering travelers completely invalidated homeopathic vaccinations, and AIDS
victims equally unvalidated homeopathic treatments. There is not a scrap
of evidence to support such intrinsically unlikely claims and they should be
stomped on by everyone, including alternative supporters, if they want to
advance the cause of "alternative" medicine..

My message is not to get emboldened by evidence of more tolerance of
alternative methods. They have, despite some decades of intense study not
been able to produce even anecdotal evidence of a capacity to solve any of
medicine's major unsolved problems.

Some of the claims ARE entirely ridiculous, AND dangerous to boot.

PM
Citizen Jimserac
2008-02-25 13:28:19 UTC
On Feb 25, 2:04 am, "Peter Moran" <***@internode.on.net> wrote:


Thanks Peter, you make some excellent points
but I MUST object to one of them.

You state that you will accept some aspects of alternative
medicine as of value but then indicate that this acceptance
is qualified by your ascription of "placebo" effect to them.

I most vehemently object to this condescension.

Now PLEASE, as a man of science, get yourself over
to www.medicalacupuncture.org and search browse
the past issues where you will read stuff like THIS:

from
http://www.medicalacupuncture.org/aama_marf/journal/vol15_2/article3.html

Ultrasonic Visualization And Stimulation
Of Classical Oriental Acupuncture Points
Joie P. Jones, PhD
Young K. Bae, PhD

Medical Acupuncture Vol 15, #2

"Cho and his associates3 used functional MRI
(fMRI) to demonstrate that stimulation of specific
acupoints in the foot and leg, described in
standard acupuncture texts as points related
to vision, elicited increases in cortical blood flow
in circumscribed regions of the visual cortex
comparable in magnitude and brain location
to those obtained by stimulation of the
visual cortex by flashes of light.
When the acupuncture needle was directed
at a nearby but non-acupoint site, no activity
in the visual cortex was seen."

from Medical Acupuncture Vol 15, #2

Citizen Jimserac
Peter Moran
2008-02-25 22:55:37 UTC
Post by Citizen Jimserac
Thanks Peter, you make some excellent points
but I MUST object to one of them.
You state that you will accept some aspects of alternative
medicine as of value but then indicate that this acceptance
is qualified by your ascription of "placebo" effect to them.
I most vehemently object to this condescension.
Now PLEASE, as a man of science, get yourself over
to www.medicalacupuncture.org and search browse
from
http://www.medicalacupuncture.org/aama_marf/journal/vol15_2/article3.html
Ultrasonic Visualization And Stimulation
Of Classical Oriental Acupuncture Points
Joie P. Jones, PhD
Young K. Bae, PhD
Medical Acupuncture Vol 15, #2
"Cho and his associates3 used functional MRI
(fMRI) to demonstrate that stimulation of specific
acupoints in the foot and leg, described in
standard acupuncture texts as points related
to vision, elicited increases in cortical blood flow
in circumscribed regions of the visual cortex
comparable in magnitude and brain location
to those obtained by stimulation of the
visual cortex by flashes of light.
When the acupuncture needle was directed
at a nearby but non-acupoint site, no activity
in the visual cortex was seen."
from Medical Acupuncture Vol 15, #2
Citizen Jimserac
Was this a blinded study on acupuncture-naive subjects? I'll bet not. But
even if it were an authentic observation it is a long way from such findings
towards any understanding of how acupuncture can affect illness otherwise
than as placebo and counterirritant.

I am also not convinced by the studies using injected isotopes supposedly
displaying meridial pathways that don't correspond to any normal anatomical
structures. As a surgeon, I have an intimate acquaintance with the
interior of the human body that Chinese practitioners never had - they were
not permitted to do autopsies. So I trust my observations rather than
fanciful theories regarding unobservable things.

I do have a possible explanation for acupuncture theory. Barefoot persons
in rice paddies would have been very prone to hemolytic strept infections,
the ones that cause those remarkably straight red streaks going up the limb
and inflamed glands in the groin and elsewhere that if punctured with a
needle may sometimes release pus with patient recovery (as though something
was blocked?). The ancient Chinese doctors would have been familiar with
this and some of the depictions of meridia and their confluences are quite
reminiscent of the body's lymphatic system.

There have also been a number of studies showing that it doesn't matter
whether you use traditional acupuncture points or not in treatment. You
have to take into account these negative studies. Also to some extent be
prepared to discount positive studies when performed by enthusiasts, just
as we do with drug company funded drug studies.

PM
The One True Zhen Jue
2008-02-25 23:01:59 UTC
Post by Citizen Jimserac
Thanks Peter, you make some excellent points
but I MUST object to one of them.
You state that you will accept some aspects of alternative
medicine as of value but then indicate that this acceptance
is qualified by your ascription of "placebo" effect to them.
I most vehemently object to this condescension.
Now PLEASE, as a man of science, get yourself over
towww.medicalacupuncture.organd search browse
from
http://www.medicalacupuncture.org/aama_marf/journal/vol15_2/article3....
Ultrasonic Visualization And Stimulation
Of Classical Oriental Acupuncture Points
Joie P. Jones, PhD
Young K. Bae, PhD
Medical Acupuncture Vol 15, #2
"Cho and his associates3 used functional MRI
(fMRI) to demonstrate that stimulation of specific
acupoints in the foot and leg, described in
standard acupuncture texts as points related
to vision, elicited increases in cortical blood flow
in circumscribed regions of the visual cortex
comparable in magnitude and brain location
to those obtained by stimulation of the
visual cortex by flashes of light.
When the acupuncture needle was directed
at a nearby but non-acupoint site, no activity
in the visual cortex was seen."
from Medical Acupuncture Vol 15, #2
Citizen Jimserac
Was this a blinded study on acupuncture-naive subjects?  I'll bet not.  But
even if it were an authentic observation it is a long way from such findings
towards any understanding of how acupuncture can affect illness otherwise
than as placebo and counterirritant.
I am also not convinced by the studies using injected isotopes supposedly
displaying meridial pathways that don't correspond to any normal anatomical
structures.    As a surgeon, I have an intimate acquaintance with the
interior of the human body  that Chinese practitioners never had - they were
not permitted to do autopsies.    So I trust my observations rather than
fanciful theories regarding unobservable things.
I do have a possible explanation for acupuncture theory.  Barefoot persons
in rice paddies would have been very prone to hemolytic strept infections,
the ones that cause those remarkably  straight red streaks going up the limb
and inflamed glands in the groin and elsewhere that if punctured with a
needle may sometimes release pus with patient recovery (as though something
was blocked?).    The ancient Chinese doctors would have been familiar with
this and some of the depictions of meridia and their confluences are quite
reminiscent of the body's lymphatic system.
Peter, you might want to do something other than speculate. Chinese
medicine far predates Acupuncture and non-piercing methods proceded
needles.
There have also been a number of studies showing that it doesn't matter
whether you use traditional acupuncture points or not in treatment.  You
have to take into account these negative studies. Also to some extent be
prepared to discount positive studies when performed by enthusiasts,  just
as we do with drug company funded drug studies.
You are mistaken. A few studies have shown only slight differences,
but more recent and larger studies, such as the recent one on
osteoarthritis show that true acupuncture works better.
PM- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Peter Moran
2008-02-26 04:27:39 UTC
Post by Citizen Jimserac
Thanks Peter, you make some excellent points
but I MUST object to one of them.
You state that you will accept some aspects of alternative
medicine as of value but then indicate that this acceptance
is qualified by your ascription of "placebo" effect to them.
I most vehemently object to this condescension.
Now PLEASE, as a man of science, get yourself over
towww.medicalacupuncture.organd search browse
from
http://www.medicalacupuncture.org/aama_marf/journal/vol15_2/article3....
Ultrasonic Visualization And Stimulation
Of Classical Oriental Acupuncture Points
Joie P. Jones, PhD
Young K. Bae, PhD
Medical Acupuncture Vol 15, #2
"Cho and his associates3 used functional MRI
(fMRI) to demonstrate that stimulation of specific
acupoints in the foot and leg, described in
standard acupuncture texts as points related
to vision, elicited increases in cortical blood flow
in circumscribed regions of the visual cortex
comparable in magnitude and brain location
to those obtained by stimulation of the
visual cortex by flashes of light.
When the acupuncture needle was directed
at a nearby but non-acupoint site, no activity
in the visual cortex was seen."
from Medical Acupuncture Vol 15, #2
Citizen Jimserac
Was this a blinded study on acupuncture-naive subjects? I'll bet not. But
even if it were an authentic observation it is a long way from such findings
towards any understanding of how acupuncture can affect illness otherwise
than as placebo and counterirritant.
I am also not convinced by the studies using injected isotopes supposedly
displaying meridial pathways that don't correspond to any normal anatomical
structures. As a surgeon, I have an intimate acquaintance with the
interior of the human body that Chinese practitioners never had - they
were
not permitted to do autopsies. So I trust my observations rather than
fanciful theories regarding unobservable things.
I do have a possible explanation for acupuncture theory. Barefoot persons
in rice paddies would have been very prone to hemolytic strept infections,
the ones that cause those remarkably straight red streaks going up the
limb
and inflamed glands in the groin and elsewhere that if punctured with a
needle may sometimes release pus with patient recovery (as though something
was blocked?). The ancient Chinese doctors would have been familiar with
this and some of the depictions of meridia and their confluences are quite
reminiscent of the body's lymphatic system.
Peter, you might want to do something other than speculate. Chinese
medicine far predates Acupuncture and non-piercing methods proceded
needles.

PM I am not sure what that changes. None of the theory bears any
correlation otherwise with known physiology, biochemistry, pathology or
anatomy. I am at least offering an explanation as why old physicians
imagined there to be meridia along which something travelled when
struggling to understand what was going wrong with patients.
There have also been a number of studies showing that it doesn't matter
whether you use traditional acupuncture points or not in treatment. You
have to take into account these negative studies. Also to some extent be
prepared to discount positive studies when performed by enthusiasts, just
as we do with drug company funded drug studies.
You are mistaken. A few studies have shown only slight differences,
but more recent and larger studies, such as the recent one on
osteoarthritis show that true acupuncture works better.

PM Which one is that?

PM
PM- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Citizen Jimserac
2008-02-26 12:23:15 UTC
Post by Peter Moran
Was this a blinded study on acupuncture-naive subjects? I'll bet not. But
even if it were an authentic observation it is a long way from such findings
towards any understanding of how acupuncture can affect illness otherwise
than as placebo and counterirritant.
Agreed. I would hope it would open your mind to two possibilities:
that acupuncture is indeed working and that it has a rationally
explainable scientific method of action, whatever that might be,
OTHER than placebo. I recounted in another post my own experience in
having a migraine level headache blotted away within 5 minutes by
acupuncture. I can assure you (though my comment has no research
validity) it was NOT placebo.
Post by Peter Moran
I am also not convinced by the studies using injected isotopes supposedly
displaying meridial pathways that don't correspond to any normal anatomical
structures. As a surgeon, I have an intimate acquaintance with the
interior of the human body that Chinese practitioners never had - they were
not permitted to do autopsies. So I trust my observations rather than
fanciful theories regarding unobservable things.
I am aware of your background and, believe me, have the
highest respect for it. I am alive today because of surgeons.
Please, try and do some reading on modern Chinese research.
The information you have seems badly outdated. It is true at one
time,
under the influence of the Confucianists, that autopsies
were frowned upon. That is NOT the case in modern China.
Post by Peter Moran
I do have a possible explanation for acupuncture theory. Barefoot persons
in rice paddies would have been very prone to hemolytic strept infections,
the ones that cause those remarkably straight red streaks going up the limb
and inflamed glands in the groin and elsewhere that if punctured with a
needle may sometimes release pus with patient recovery (as though something
was blocked?). The ancient Chinese doctors would have been familiar with
this and some of the depictions of meridia and their confluences are quite
reminiscent of the body's lymphatic system.
Your comments are perceptive and not long ago I was reading a book by
Pirog (Practical Application of Meridian Style Acupuncture) which
advanced a similar idea. He seems to think that misinterpretations
of the numerous classical Chinese medical books, in part by the French
promoter of Acupuncture George Soulie de Morant, led to the qi as
energy flowing through meredians idea
and distracted attention from what Priog believes was an early attempt
by the Chinese, using the meridian system, to account for arterial and
venous circulation.
Likewise, the utilization of needles to drain things was well known to
them.

I myself was initially skeptical of the meridian idea UNTIL I noticed
that the ancient Chinese had gone to the trouble of making them
closed loops -> a circulating system AS THOUGH something were
passing through it.
Post by Peter Moran
There have also been a number of studies showing that it doesn't matter
whether you use traditional acupuncture points or not in treatment. You
have to take into account these negative studies. Also to some extent be
prepared to discount positive studies when performed by enthusiasts, just
as we do with drug company funded drug studies.
PM
Well said, I agree fully.

Do more reading, I would be interested in hearing more
of your opinions, particularly regarding acupuncture anesthesia
for major surgery (surely you don't think THAT is placebo effect!?).

Thanks
Citizen Jimserac
Peter Moran
2008-02-26 21:09:20 UTC
Post by Citizen Jimserac
Post by Peter Moran
Was this a blinded study on acupuncture-naive subjects? I'll bet not.
But
even if it were an authentic observation it is a long way from such findings
towards any understanding of how acupuncture can affect illness otherwise
than as placebo and counterirritant.
that acupuncture is indeed working and that it has a rationally
explainable scientific method of action, whatever that might be,
OTHER than placebo. I recounted in another post my own experience in
having a migraine level headache blotted away within 5 minutes by
acupuncture. I can assure you (though my comment has no research
validity) it was NOT placebo.
But a lot of things happen when you have acupuncture.

The scientist says that chi and meridia and acupuncture points are not
acceptable explanations. There is no consistent body of evidence pointing
to their existence in reality, and we now understand how easily treatment
methods falsely acquire a reputation for (intrinsic) effectiveness. We
have had to do too much house-cleaning ourselves to have much tolerance for
this and numerous other quasi-religious superstitions developed in
prescientific times.

But there is nothing to stop acupuncture having some therapeutic activity in
other ways -- through the enforced relaxation, the distraction of the
needles and the patter of the therapist, the counterirritation when a needle
goes through a sensitive spot and the fact that the acupuncture may have
taken only five minutes, but I'll bet it probably took you half an hour or
so before you got to the acupuncturist and out of the waiting room and on
onto the table and that is long enough for some headaches to resolve. Add
a bit of expectation and a strong desire for the method to work so that the
headache stops, and you have a result that does not need to depend at all on
unsubstantiated ancient superstitions.

The thing is that this may not matter to anyone but the pure scientist.
Thus, I am torn between wanting people to reconsider any belief in TCM
theory, and tolerance (plus keeping my mouth shut), so that patients may
continue to enjoy whatever benefits they think they derive from it. The
most important thing is to understand the limitations of acupuneture. I
think most people do. The One True What's-his- face seems to have this
understanding and I hesitate to to be critical of him.

PM
Post by Citizen Jimserac
Post by Peter Moran
I am also not convinced by the studies using injected isotopes supposedly
displaying meridial pathways that don't correspond to any normal anatomical
structures. As a surgeon, I have an intimate acquaintance with the
interior of the human body that Chinese practitioners never had - they were
not permitted to do autopsies. So I trust my observations rather than
fanciful theories regarding unobservable things.
I am aware of your background and, believe me, have the
highest respect for it. I am alive today because of surgeons.
Please, try and do some reading on modern Chinese research.
The information you have seems badly outdated. It is true at one
time,
under the influence of the Confucianists, that autopsies
were frowned upon. That is NOT the case in modern China.
Post by Peter Moran
I do have a possible explanation for acupuncture theory. Barefoot persons
in rice paddies would have been very prone to hemolytic strept infections,
the ones that cause those remarkably straight red streaks going up the limb
and inflamed glands in the groin and elsewhere that if punctured with a
needle may sometimes release pus with patient recovery (as though something
was blocked?). The ancient Chinese doctors would have been familiar with
this and some of the depictions of meridia and their confluences are quite
reminiscent of the body's lymphatic system.
Your comments are perceptive and not long ago I was reading a book by
Pirog (Practical Application of Meridian Style Acupuncture) which
advanced a similar idea. He seems to think that misinterpretations
of the numerous classical Chinese medical books, in part by the French
promoter of Acupuncture George Soulie de Morant, led to the qi as
energy flowing through meredians idea
and distracted attention from what Priog believes was an early attempt
by the Chinese, using the meridian system, to account for arterial and
venous circulation.
Likewise, the utilization of needles to drain things was well known to
them.
I myself was initially skeptical of the meridian idea UNTIL I noticed
that the ancient Chinese had gone to the trouble of making them
closed loops -> a circulating system AS THOUGH something were
passing through it.
Post by Peter Moran
There have also been a number of studies showing that it doesn't matter
whether you use traditional acupuncture points or not in treatment. You
have to take into account these negative studies. Also to some extent be
prepared to discount positive studies when performed by enthusiasts,
just
as we do with drug company funded drug studies.
PM
Well said, I agree fully.
Do more reading, I would be interested in hearing more
of your opinions, particularly regarding acupuncture anesthesia
for major surgery (surely you don't think THAT is placebo effect!?).
Thanks
Citizen Jimserac
The One True Zhen Jue
2008-02-26 23:06:44 UTC
Post by Peter Moran
Post by Citizen Jimserac
Was this a blinded study on acupuncture-naive subjects?  I'll bet not.
But
even if it were an authentic observation it is a long way from such findings
towards any understanding of how acupuncture can affect illness otherwise
than as placebo and counterirritant.
that acupuncture is indeed working and that it has a rationally
explainable scientific method of action, whatever that might be,
OTHER than placebo.  I recounted in another post my own experience in
having a migraine level headache blotted away within 5 minutes by
acupuncture.  I can assure you (though my comment has no research
validity) it was NOT placebo.
But a lot of things happen when you have acupuncture.
The scientist says that chi and meridia and acupuncture points are not
acceptable explanations.   There is no consistent body of evidence pointing
to their existence in reality, and we now understand how easily  treatment
methods falsely acquire a reputation for (intrinsic) effectiveness.    We
have had to do too much house-cleaning ourselves to have much tolerance for
this and numerous other quasi-religious superstitions developed in
prescientific times.
But there is nothing to stop acupuncture having some therapeutic activity in
other ways -- through the enforced relaxation, the distraction of the
needles and the patter of the therapist, the counterirritation when a needle
goes through a sensitive spot and the fact that the acupuncture may have
taken only five minutes, but I'll bet it probably took you half an hour or
so before you got to the acupuncturist and out of the waiting room and on
onto the table and that is long enough for some headaches to resolve.   Add
a bit of expectation and a strong desire for the method to work so that the
headache stops, and you have a result that does not need to depend at all on
unsubstantiated ancient superstitions.
The thing is that this may not matter to anyone but the pure scientist.
Thus, I am torn between wanting people to reconsider any belief in TCM
theory,  and tolerance (plus keeping my mouth shut), so that patients may
continue to enjoy whatever benefits they think they derive from it.  The
most important thing is to understand the limitations of acupuneture. I
think most people do.   The One True What's-his- face seems to have this
understanding and I hesitate to to be critical of him.
I appreciate your sincere attention to what I've said. While I
disagree with your assesment of the usefulness of the TCM paradigm, I
think we are very much in agreement with its clinical application.
(As for my nym, Zhen Jue is short for Zhen Jueologist, the Chinese
term for practitioner of Oriental Medicine. "The One" is reference
from one Jet Li movie when in fact another was intended, Kiss of the
Dragon. At any rate, it was given to me, slightly imperfect just like
I!)
Post by Peter Moran
PM
Post by Citizen Jimserac
I am also not convinced by the studies using injected isotopes supposedly
displaying meridial pathways that don't correspond to any normal anatomical
structures.    As a surgeon, I have an intimate acquaintance with the
interior of the human body  that Chinese practitioners never had - they
were
not permitted to do autopsies.    So I trust my observations rather than
fanciful theories regarding unobservable things.
I am aware of your background and, believe me, have the
highest respect for it.  I am alive today because of surgeons.
Please, try and do some reading on modern Chinese research.
The information you have seems badly outdated.  It is true at one
time,
under the influence of the Confucianists, that autopsies
were frowned upon.   That is NOT the case in modern China.
I do have a possible explanation for acupuncture theory.  Barefoot
persons
in rice paddies would have been very prone to hemolytic strept infections,
the ones that cause those remarkably  straight red streaks going up the
limb
and inflamed glands in the groin and elsewhere that if punctured with a
needle may sometimes release pus with patient recovery (as though something
was blocked?).    The ancient Chinese doctors would have been familiar
with
this and some of the depictions of meridia and their confluences are quite
reminiscent of the body's lymphatic system.
Your comments are perceptive and not long ago I was reading a book by
Pirog (Practical Application of Meridian Style Acupuncture) which
advanced a similar idea.  He seems to think that misinterpretations
of the numerous classical Chinese medical books, in part by the French
promoter of Acupuncture George Soulie de Morant, led to the qi as
energy flowing through meredians idea
and distracted attention from what Priog believes was an early attempt
by the Chinese, using the meridian system, to account for arterial and
venous circulation.
Likewise, the utilization of needles to drain things was well known to
them.
I myself was initially skeptical of the meridian idea UNTIL I noticed
that the ancient Chinese had gone to the trouble of making them
closed loops -> a circulating system AS THOUGH something were
passing through it.
There have also been a number of studies showing that it doesn't matter
whether you use traditional acupuncture points or not in treatment.  You
have to take into account these negative studies. Also to some extent be
prepared to discount positive studies when performed by enthusiasts,
just
as we do with drug company funded drug studies.
PM
Well said, I agree fully.
Do more reading, I would be interested in hearing more
of your opinions, particularly regarding acupuncture anesthesia
for major surgery (surely you don't think THAT is placebo effect!?).
Thanks
Citizen Jimserac- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
Citizen Jimserac
2008-02-26 23:31:51 UTC
On Feb 26, 4:09 pm, "Peter Moran" <***@internode.on.net> wrote:

Thank you for interesting objections
some of which I have answered,
you will find my comments
interspersed within the body
of your text.
Post by Peter Moran
But a lot of things happen when you have acupuncture.
The scientist says that chi and meridian and
acupuncture points are not
acceptable explanations.
There is no consistent body of evidence pointing
to their existence in reality,
and we now understand how easily
treatment methods falsely acquire
a reputation for (intrinsic) effectiveness.
How true, so long as we are willing to admit
to research STILL in progress on these
admittedly rather mysterious conceptions
and NOT automatically disqualify
them from any presuppositional
prejudices which an over reliance
on KNOWN science might entail.

I know that I need not remind
you that research in the matter
of the existence of the meridians
by qualified researchers is ongoing
and while hardly to be considered
definitive, appears to me to be
sufficiently positive in several
different areas to warrant additional
and in depth continuance of investigation,
for example:

Infrared Thermographic Visualization Of The
Traditional Chinese Acupuncture Meridian Points
Veerasak Narongpunt, BE
Pierre Cornillot, MD
Jean-Raymond Attali, MD
Frederic Molinier, DVM
David Alimi, MD
Stefan Datcu, PhD
Laurent Ibos, PhD
Yves Candau, PhD
Bernard Fontas, PhD
Ahmed Raji, PhD
Bernard Clairac, PhD
Suzanne Bloch Danan, PhD
Michel Marignan, MD

http://www.medicalacupuncture.org/aama_marf/journal/vol16_2/article_5.html


In addition, may I MOST STRONGLY suggest
a BRILLIANT article by Dr. Charles Shang M.D. of Emory
Univ. School of Medicine which describes some
modern theories of Acupuncture, including
results obtained with MODERN TECHNOLOGY -
I promise you that you will find it quite
fascinating and, QUITE scientific, to be found here:
http://www.medicalacupuncture.org/aama_marf/journal/vol11_2/conduct.html
Post by Peter Moran
We have had to do too much house-cleaning
ourselves to have much tolerance for
this and numerous other quasi-religious
superstitions developed in prescientific times.
I must disagree with this characterization after
first admitting that for quite some time I shared
this viewpoint myself. BUT... the more I read
about the development of Chinese medicine,
the more I read of the incredible and talented
historical people involved in its development,
and, the more I have come to understand
their manner of thinking, the more I have
discarded my one track logical thinking
and have begun to widen my perspective.
Post by Peter Moran
But there is nothing to stop acupuncture
having some therapeutic activity in
other ways -- through the enforced relaxation,
the distraction of the needles and the patter
of the therapist, the counterirritation when a needle
goes through a sensitive spot and the fact
that the acupuncture may have
taken only five minutes, but I'll bet it probably
took you half an hour or so before you got to the
acupuncturist and out of the waiting room and on
onto the table and that is long enough for
some headaches to resolve.
EXCUSE ME! Peter, you have just finished
rather contemptuously, in my opinion,
dismissing the concept of the meridian
and perhaps also the actual physical existence
of the points themselves but HERE you
are advancing your own theory which may
or may not have some supporting research
behind it. WHAT makes your theory
any BETTER?? Your "common" sense?
Post by Peter Moran
Add a bit of expectation and a strong desire
for the method to work so that the
headache stops, and you have a result that
does not need to depend at all on
unsubstantiated ancient superstitions.
Supposition on top of supposition!
Where went Peter the scientist.
(He is still there but has become
blocked out by POWERFUL prejudice).
Do we not, ALL of us feel it?
As a child I was CONVINCED that
the radio programs and TV came in
through the cord. But the first time
someone showed me a transistor radio
I KNEW immediately,since there was
no wire, that what others had
told me and what I had read,
that there must be some
sort of invisible waves carrying the
programs, was TRUE. It went against my childish
common sense but was quite REAL.

WHICH exactly of the many curious
ancient Chinese theories are indeed
superstition and which NOT?
We MUST wait for research to decide.

In todays world of Quantum strangeness,
atomic chain reactions that can allow
small amounts of matter to destroy a city
and quite MYSTERIOUS "spontaneous"
remission from cancer by a lucky few,
how can we do otherwise?
Post by Peter Moran
The thing is that this may not matter to anyone
but the pure scientist. Thus, I am torn between
wanting people to reconsider any belief in TCM
theory, and tolerance (plus keeping my mouth shut),
so that patients may continue to enjoy whatever
benefits they think they derive from it.
The most important thing is to understand
the limitations of acupuncture.
I think most people do.
The One True What's-his- face seems to have this
understanding and I hesitate to to be critical of him.
PM
So it is NOT really the beneficial effects
experienced by MANY, including myself
that bothers you but the THEORIES of how
it might work, particularly those bad old
SUPERSTITIOUS theories.

BUT... if you are not bothered by invisible high
frequency electromagnetic
waves passing through things -
which were UNDETECTABLE
BY KNOWN SCIENCE a few
hundred years ago, how can
you BE SURE that the meridians
and the qi do not exist
until research has been allowed
to take its course and prove them -
OR prove that they could not possibly
exist. HOW can you ALREADY
KNOW that we might not have
a detector for those things
200 years hence??

Only if our science had attained
all knowledge could we
possibly support such a presupposition.


Thanks again for quite interesting
comments!

Citizen Jimserac
Peter Moran
2008-02-27 07:45:56 UTC
Post by Citizen Jimserac
Thank you for interesting objections
some of which I have answered,
you will find my comments
interspersed within the body
of your text.
Post by Peter Moran
But a lot of things happen when you have acupuncture.
The scientist says that chi and meridian and
acupuncture points are not
acceptable explanations.
There is no consistent body of evidence pointing
to their existence in reality,
and we now understand how easily
treatment methods falsely acquire
a reputation for (intrinsic) effectiveness.
How true, so long as we are willing to admit
to research STILL in progress on these
admittedly rather mysterious conceptions
and NOT automatically disqualify
them from any presuppositional
prejudices which an over reliance
on KNOWN science might entail.
I know that I need not remind
you that research in the matter
of the existence of the meridians
by qualified researchers is ongoing
and while hardly to be considered
definitive, appears to me to be
sufficiently positive in several
different areas to warrant additional
and in depth continuance of investigation,
Infrared Thermographic Visualization Of The
Traditional Chinese Acupuncture Meridian Points
Veerasak Narongpunt, BE
Pierre Cornillot, MD
Jean-Raymond Attali, MD
Frederic Molinier, DVM
David Alimi, MD
Stefan Datcu, PhD
Laurent Ibos, PhD
Yves Candau, PhD
Bernard Fontas, PhD
Ahmed Raji, PhD
Bernard Clairac, PhD
Suzanne Bloch Danan, PhD
Michel Marignan, MD
http://www.medicalacupuncture.org/aama_marf/journal/vol16_2/article_5.html
I remain skeptical. The methodology is not well described i.e. whether sham
followed true acupupressure or preceded it and we don;t know ho reprodicible
the results are.

And it is, again, not clear how this relates to a therapeutic system.
There is a condtion called "referred itch" which is not understood
anatomically (you might scratch a point on your nose and feel an itch at a
point on your back). So the finding of weird connections does not
necessarily translate into a medical treatment. I am also sure there is a
lot of negative research along similar lines that does not get
published -these may also be enthusisats who keep on doing their tests until
they get the results they want. I know this is cyncial but this kind of
thing is well-known within science and medicine.
Post by Citizen Jimserac
In addition, may I MOST STRONGLY suggest
a BRILLIANT article by Dr. Charles Shang M.D. of Emory
Univ. School of Medicine which describes some
modern theories of Acupuncture, including
results obtained with MODERN TECHNOLOGY -
I promise you that you will find it quite
http://www.medicalacupuncture.org/aama_marf/journal/vol11_2/conduct.html
Well any placebo releases endorphins so that is not unique to acupuncture.
Different electrical impedance at acupuncture points -- that depends how
hard you push on the electrodes. The kind of scientific material discussed
here is only valid if conducted under the most rigorous scientific
circumstances and it is ALSO replicable by anyone who performs the same
tests.
Post by Citizen Jimserac
Post by Peter Moran
We have had to do too much house-cleaning
ourselves to have much tolerance for
this and numerous other quasi-religious
superstitions developed in prescientific times.
I must disagree with this characterization after
first admitting that for quite some time I shared
this viewpoint myself. BUT... the more I read
about the development of Chinese medicine,
the more I read of the incredible and talented
historical people involved in its development,
and, the more I have come to understand
their manner of thinking, the more I have
discarded my one track logical thinking
and have begun to widen my perspective.
Post by Peter Moran
But there is nothing to stop acupuncture
having some therapeutic activity in
other ways -- through the enforced relaxation,
the distraction of the needles and the patter
of the therapist, the counterirritation when a needle
goes through a sensitive spot and the fact
that the acupuncture may have
taken only five minutes, but I'll bet it probably
took you half an hour or so before you got to the
acupuncturist and out of the waiting room and on
onto the table and that is long enough for
some headaches to resolve.
EXCUSE ME! Peter, you have just finished
rather contemptuously, in my opinion,
dismissing the concept of the meridian
and perhaps also the actual physical existence
of the points themselves but HERE you
are advancing your own theory which may
or may not have some supporting research
behind it. WHAT makes your theory
any BETTER?? Your "common" sense?
No. I am merely offering some of the possible explanations for a phenomenon
that has probably been more frequently demonstrated than any other within
medicine, and that is that sham treatments of many different kinds can
produce results indistingushable from "real" treatments. Many studies of
acupuncture itself have shown this.
Post by Citizen Jimserac
Post by Peter Moran
Add a bit of expectation and a strong desire
for the method to work so that the
headache stops, and you have a result that
does not need to depend at all on
unsubstantiated ancient superstitions.
Supposition on top of supposition!
Where went Peter the scientist.
(He is still there but has become
blocked out by POWERFUL prejudice).
Do we not, ALL of us feel it?
My assertions are backed by solid scientific research. There is much
research that you are evidently unaware of on placebo-related effects, for
example there are quite a number of surgical operations that were thought by
multiple respected doctors to produce spectacular improvements for patients
such conditions as asthma or angina, with thousands of patients supposedly
helped by them, but which were found to work no better than sham operations
when a skin incision was made and merely closed up again.
Post by Citizen Jimserac
As a child I was CONVINCED that
the radio programs and TV came in
through the cord. But the first time
someone showed me a transistor radio
I KNEW immediately,since there was
no wire, that what others had
told me and what I had read,
that there must be some
sort of invisible waves carrying the
programs, was TRUE. It went against my childish
common sense but was quite REAL.
WHICH exactly of the many curious
ancient Chinese theories are indeed
superstition and which NOT?
We MUST wait for research to decide.
In todays world of Quantum strangeness,
atomic chain reactions that can allow
small amounts of matter to destroy a city
and quite MYSTERIOUS "spontaneous"
remission from cancer by a lucky few,
how can we do otherwise?
Post by Peter Moran
The thing is that this may not matter to anyone
but the pure scientist. Thus, I am torn between
wanting people to reconsider any belief in TCM
theory, and tolerance (plus keeping my mouth shut),
so that patients may continue to enjoy whatever
benefits they think they derive from it.
The most important thing is to understand
the limitations of acupuncture.
I think most people do.
The One True What's-his- face seems to have this
understanding and I hesitate to to be critical of him.
PM
So it is NOT really the beneficial effects
experienced by MANY, including myself
that bothers you but the THEORIES of how
it might work, particularly those bad old
SUPERSTITIOUS theories.
BUT... if you are not bothered by invisible high
frequency electromagnetic
waves passing through things -
which were UNDETECTABLE
BY KNOWN SCIENCE a few
hundred years ago, how can
you BE SURE that the meridians
and the qi do not exist
until research has been allowed
to take its course and prove them -
OR prove that they could not possibly
exist. HOW can you ALREADY
KNOW that we might not have
a detector for those things
200 years hence??
I can't. But but I am entitled to hold the opinion that this is
*extremely* unlikely. And the reason it is extremely unlikely is that there
is no good reason to even postulate their existence. Good science is
based upon observations of the real world -- there is something that needs
to be explained and valid theories are ones that best explain the
observations. The claimed therapeutic effects of acupuncture are better
explained by more mundane matters than chi and meridia and there is no other
reason to postulate them.

PM.
Post by Citizen Jimserac
Only if our science had attained
all knowledge could we
possibly support such a presupposition.
Thanks again for quite interesting
comments!
Citizen Jimserac
Citizen Jimserac
2008-02-27 23:44:36 UTC
On Feb 27, 2:45 am, "Peter Moran" <***@internode.on.net> wrote:

As always, though I may not agree
with you on various
topics, your statements are well reasoned
and we all should consider them
in deciding our positions.

I will leave you with a quote from that
Shang article whose link I listed (repeated
here for convenience). It represents,
in my opinion, a good scientific approach
which begins to explain the Acupuncture
effects and which is backed by solid research:

http://www.medicalacupuncture.org/aama_marf/journal/vol11_2/conduct.html

from "Medical Acupuncture, Beyond Neurohumeral Theory"
by Charles Shange M.D., which appeared in the
journal Medical Acupuncture. Vol 11, No. 2

(the numbers in the text refer to footnotes
which can be found in the full article at the link)

Begin article quote
"Since the 1950s, researchers in several countries have discovered and
confirmed with refined techniques2 that most acupuncture points
correspond to the high electrical conductance points on the body
surface,3-7 and vice versa.8 The high skin conductivity of the
meridian system is further supported by the finding of high density of
gap junctions at the epithelia of the acupuncture points.9-12 Gap
junctions are hexagonal protein complexes that form channels between
adjacent cells. It is well established in cell biology that gap
junctions facilitate intercellular communication and increase
electrical conductivity. Acupuncture and meridian points also have
been found to have a higher temperature,13 higher metabolic rate, and
greater carbon dioxide release.8"
End Article quote.

Thanks again for some interesting
viewpoints.

Citizen Jimserac

Mark Probert
2008-02-26 04:37:18 UTC
Post by Citizen Jimserac
Post by rpautrey2
MONTGOMERY MEDICINE: Does alternative medicine really work?
The Paper of Montgomery County
Friday, February 15, 2008
Ifm frequently asked by patients to comment on the use of 'non-
medical" treatments or remedies they have heard or read about on TV,
radio or in print. I usually have to respond that I have limited
knowledge about the product but I will do some research on it for
them.
The business of complimentary and alternative medicine or 'CAM" is
booming. This is largely an outgrowth of patient frustration with
traditional medical practice in America. People are fed up with the
high cost of medications and other treatments and are looking for less
expensive 'natural" ways to deal with illness and health promotion. A
study ten years ago estimated that US citizens spent between $36
billion and $47 billion on CAM treatments. This was more than the
public paid out-of-pocket on hospitalizations that year.
Most physicians trained in this country receive little or no education
in CAM treatments in medical school or afterwards. We are trained in
the scientific method from an early age and rely on carefully designed
medical studies to provide evidence that the likelihood of a specific
treatment working is not simply due to chance. We are therefore very
uncomfortable recommending or even commenting on treatments that we do
not feel have passed scientific scrutiny.
Scientific studies that have examined CAM treatments are scarce. To
help alleviate this gap in knowledge, Congress established in 1998 the
National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), a
branch of the National Institutes of Health. It 'is dedicated to
exploring complementary and alternative healing practices in the
context of rigorous science; training complementary and alternative
medicine (CAM) researchers; and disseminating authoritative
information to the public and professionals."
When researching a product, I typically start by going to the NCCAM
website atwww.nccam.nih.govtosee if there is any information there.
If not, I resort to an Internet search to find information about the
product or its ingredients. The difficulty with Internet search
engines like Google is that the majority of the web sites that come up
are posted by manufacturers or sellers of the product. These sites
frequently look very professional.
The sites often have testimonials from physicians or other scientists
who are being well paid to support the product. There are frequently
anecdotal stories of people who have received benefit from the
product. I must stress to the readers that these sites are NOT the
place to go for unbiased information. You should look for sites from
academic or clinical institutions if possible. The URLs (Internet
addresses) for reputable sites often end in '.edu" or '.org" rather
than '.com." You should avoid any site that is also selling the
product.
Some web pages or advertisements go so far as to say that physicians,
scientists, the Government and others (particularly pharmaceutical
companies) are suppressing evidence that their product works. I donft
believe there is any vast conspiracy to prevent these types of
products from being marketed. There is, however, concern that they are
being marketed without scientific evidence that they produce the
desired effect and that they are any safer than other treatments that
do have scientific backing.
Hopefully agencies such as NCCAM will be a source of reliable
information for the public so informed choices can be made. In the
meantime, if you read that a product claims to cure one or more major
medical illnesses think to yourself, 'wouldnft that make the front
page of every newspaper on the planet?"
Dr. John Roberts is a local family physician and a Wabash College
graduate. He is also one of the owners of The Paper of Montgomery
County. You can contact him at
W. Main St., Crawfordsville, Ind.
Content © 2008
Software © 1998-2008 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved
A statement of opinion from a local family physician
is always welcome and is of interest.
Regretfully, most medical schools decided to exclude
alternative medicine from their curricula in the United
States
So you say. Others say that this is not true.

http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/2008/02/quackademic_medicine_in_the_us_the_view.php

, whereas in other countries this is not the case.
Post by Citizen Jimserac
In Germany for example, medical students are, I believe,
required to take some Homeopathy courses.
The presumption that ALL alternative medicine
is false underlies official policies and this
presumption IS INVALID.
To persist in this false assumption will only
undermine the position of the "standard" (sic)
medicine practitioners.
The sooner they lose their false and obsolete
prejudices against alternative medicine, the better.
Citizen Jimserac- Hide quoted text -
- Show quoted text -
d***@insightbb.com
2008-02-25 00:18:23 UTC
Post by rpautrey2
MONTGOMERY MEDICINE: Does alternative medicine really work?
The Paper of Montgomery County
Friday, February 15, 2008
Ifm frequently asked by patients to comment on the use of 'non-
medical" treatments or remedies they have heard or read about on TV,
radio or in print. I usually have to respond that I have limited
knowledge about the product but I will do some research on it for
them.
That sounds reasonable and maybe, even, honest. He admits that he is
ignorant but will look into it using sources that cannot possibly
provide an honest or complete answer.
Post by rpautrey2
The business of complimentary and alternative medicine or 'CAM" is
booming. This is largely an outgrowth of patient frustration with
traditional medical practice in America. People are fed up with the
high cost of medications and other treatments and are looking for less
expensive 'natural" ways to deal with illness and health promotion. A
study ten years ago estimated that US citizens spent between $36
billion and $47 billion on CAM treatments. This was more than the
public paid out-of-pocket on hospitalizations that year.
And, this huge monetary loss is why modern, scientific (?) medicine is
determined to put and end to so called "alternative" medicine. They
might allow morphing some of the info into allopathic medicine as long
as they continue to profit and keep the allopathic medical lie intact
and money producing.
Post by rpautrey2
Most physicians trained in this country receive little or no education
in CAM treatments in medical school or afterwards. We are trained in
the scientific method from an early age and rely on carefully designed
medical studies to provide evidence that the likelihood of a specific
treatment working is not simply due to chance. We are therefore very
uncomfortable recommending or even commenting on treatments that we do
not feel have passed scientific scrutiny.
Ahh, this is the really big lie and excuse for their muderous ways.
They "receive little or no education". They are trained "in the
scientific method" yet the practice of medicine us decidely un-
scientific. Their scientific method has given us Vioxx and mercury in
vaccines. How much more do you want? How much more proof do you
need? The docs kill over 250,000 people a year with their treachery.
I say enough is enough. Hang the murderers high, and hang them often.
Post by rpautrey2
Scientific studies that have examined CAM treatments are scarce. To
help alleviate this gap in knowledge, Congress established in 1998 the
National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), a
branch of the National Institutes of Health. It 'is dedicated to
exploring complementary and alternative healing practices in the
context of rigorous science; training complementary and alternative
medicine (CAM) researchers; and disseminating authoritative
information to the public and professionals."
Considering the billions spent on producing drugs that do not work and
the billions spent on getting people to buy these deadly products, how
much is about 120 Million a year NCCAM budget going to accomplish?
Increase the money to 120 billion and then let us see how valuable CAM
modalites might be worth.
Post by rpautrey2
When researching a product, I typically start by going to the NCCAM
website atwww.nccam.nih.govto see if there is any information there.
If not, I resort to an Internet search to find information about the
product or its ingredients. The difficulty with Internet search
engines like Google is that the majority of the web sites that come up
are posted by manufacturers or sellers of the product. These sites
frequently look very professional.
Well, duh, so do the sites put up by the medical drug pushers.
Post by rpautrey2
The sites often have testimonials from physicians or other scientists
who are being well paid to support the product. There are frequently
anecdotal stories of people who have received benefit from the
product. I must stress to the readers that these sites are NOT the
place to go for unbiased information. You should look for sites from
academic or clinical institutions if possible. The URLs (Internet
addresses) for reputable sites often end in '.edu" or '.org" rather
than '.com." You should avoid any site that is also selling the
product.
More bogus information. The allopathic medical sites are funded by
the trillion dollar medical monopoly. These sites do not have to
advertise as .com since big pharma secretly funds them via the back
door. If you believe this comment, I have some beach front property
in Utah for sale that you might like.
Post by rpautrey2
Some web pages or advertisements go so far as to say that physicians,
scientists, the Government and others (particularly pharmaceutical
companies) are suppressing evidence that their product works. I donft
believe there is any vast conspiracy to prevent these types of
products from being marketed.
Believe what you want. Big pharma will use slapp suits, the FDA, the
CDC, the Federal Trade Org, the US post office, and local state health
depts to control the competition. There is nothing they will not do,
including assination.


There is, however, concern that they are
Post by rpautrey2
being marketed without scientific evidence that they produce the
desired effect and that they are any safer than other treatments that
do have scientific backing.
Products that have been in general use for thousands of years and have
no record of killing 100's of thousands of users is safer than the
modern day poisons of big pharma.
Post by rpautrey2
Hopefully agencies such as NCCAM will be a source of reliable
information for the public so informed choices can be made. In the
meantime, if you read that a product claims to cure one or more major
medical illnesses think to yourself, 'wouldnft that make the front
page of every newspaper on the planet?"
Big pharma controlls the news. Big pharma controls the papers, the
magazines, the radio, the TV etc. The censors of big pharma would
never allow any information contrary to the interests of big pharma to
be published. All you have to do is look at the Hoxsey cancer tonic
to see big pharma in action. The above claim is just more propaganda
from big pharma.
Post by rpautrey2
Dr. John Roberts is a local family physician and a Wabash College
graduate. He is also one of the owners of The Paper of Montgomery
County. You can contact him at
W. Main St., Crawfordsville, Ind.
Content © 2008
Software © 1998-2008 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved
Maybe we should send him the link to this comment.

DrCee
Not a member of the medical monopoly ( I have no license to maim or
kill )
f***@yahoo.com
2008-02-25 02:47:15 UTC
I suffered 20 years under Drs care taking medicine for colitis. A
supplement called multi-enzymes has been working 90% better for the
last 10 years.
Stan
Post by rpautrey2
MONTGOMERY MEDICINE: Does alternative medicine really work?
The Paper of Montgomery County
Friday, February 15, 2008
Ifm frequently asked by patients to comment on the use of 'non-
medical" treatments or remedies they have heard or read about on TV,
radio or in print. I usually have to respond that I have limited
knowledge about the product but I will do some research on it for
them.
The business of complimentary and alternative medicine or 'CAM" is
booming. This is largely an outgrowth of patient frustration with
traditional medical practice in America. People are fed up with the
high cost of medications and other treatments and are looking for less
expensive 'natural" ways to deal with illness and health promotion. A
study ten years ago estimated that US citizens spent between $36
billion and $47 billion on CAM treatments. This was more than the
public paid out-of-pocket on hospitalizations that year.
Most physicians trained in this country receive little or no education
in CAM treatments in medical school or afterwards. We are trained in
the scientific method from an early age and rely on carefully designed
medical studies to provide evidence that the likelihood of a specific
treatment working is not simply due to chance. We are therefore very
uncomfortable recommending or even commenting on treatments that we do
not feel have passed scientific scrutiny.
Scientific studies that have examined CAM treatments are scarce. To
help alleviate this gap in knowledge, Congress established in 1998 the
National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), a
branch of the National Institutes of Health. It 'is dedicated to
exploring complementary and alternative healing practices in the
context of rigorous science; training complementary and alternative
medicine (CAM) researchers; and disseminating authoritative
information to the public and professionals."
When researching a product, I typically start by going to the NCCAM
website at www.nccam.nih.gov to see if there is any information there.
If not, I resort to an Internet search to find information about the
product or its ingredients. The difficulty with Internet search
engines like Google is that the majority of the web sites that come up
are posted by manufacturers or sellers of the product. These sites
frequently look very professional.
The sites often have testimonials from physicians or other scientists
who are being well paid to support the product. There are frequently
anecdotal stories of people who have received benefit from the
product. I must stress to the readers that these sites are NOT the
place to go for unbiased information. You should look for sites from
academic or clinical institutions if possible. The URLs (Internet
addresses) for reputable sites often end in '.edu" or '.org" rather
than '.com." You should avoid any site that is also selling the
product.
Some web pages or advertisements go so far as to say that physicians,
scientists, the Government and others (particularly pharmaceutical
companies) are suppressing evidence that their product works. I donft
believe there is any vast conspiracy to prevent these types of
products from being marketed. There is, however, concern that they are
being marketed without scientific evidence that they produce the
desired effect and that they are any safer than other treatments that
do have scientific backing.
Hopefully agencies such as NCCAM will be a source of reliable
information for the public so informed choices can be made. In the
meantime, if you read that a product claims to cure one or more major
medical illnesses think to yourself, 'wouldnft that make the front
page of every newspaper on the planet?"
Dr. John Roberts is a local family physician and a Wabash College
graduate. He is also one of the owners of The Paper of Montgomery
County. You can contact him at
W. Main St., Crawfordsville, Ind.
Content � 2008
Software � 1998-2008 1up! Software, All Rights Reserved