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Points of Interest 05/07/2015

Pharmacy, Acupuncture Schools to MergeLarge Study Finds MMR Vaccine Doesn’t Cause Autism, And May Lower Autism RiskJAMA Forum: When Good Science Doesn’t Sway Minds, It’s Time to Move OnHealth (London). 2015 May 4. pii: 1363459315583154. ’A necessary evil that does not “really” cure disease’: The domestication of biomedicine by Dutch holistic general practitioners. “The integration of biomedicine into complementary and alternative medicine, then, follows the same logic of domestication of complementary and alternative medicine into biomedicine: it is made subordinate to the prevailing model of health and illness and treated as a practical add-on that does not ‘really’ cure people.”
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Points of Interest 05/06/2015

Is Homeopathic Medicine Only for Suckers - or Only the Smart? The Gloves Are Off2 accused of death during alternative medicine procedure. “The woman’s daughter, Liy Liu, was referred to the two naturopathy doctors about a new but medically unapproved procedure that she believed would maintain health. The procedure involved an “Octozone” machine that Stoneking billed as a way to kill pathogens in the blood. Police said he tried to sell the machine for $4,400 but offered to give the women the treatment in Las Vegas for $100 per procedure…According to detectives, the two women visited the doctors at their east Las Vegas Valley apartment for the procedure, which was described as injecting a person with a syringe filled with oxygen taken from a small box machine… During the second treatment, Kim Liu was given the injection but then began seizing and going unconscious. She was later rushed to Sunrise Hospital for treatment, where she later died. Police noted the victim appeared healthy in the days before her death.”Womens Health Issues. 2015 Apr 29. pii: S1049–3867(15)00026–2. doi: 10.1016/j.whi.2015.03.001. Women’s Use and Self-Prescription of Herbal Medicine during Pregnancy: An Examination of 1,835 Pregnant WomenJ Manipulative Physiol Ther. 2014 Dec 5. pii: S0161–4754(14)00242–5. doi: 10.1016/j.jmpt.2014.11.001. Chiropractors’ Characteristics Associated With Physician Referrals: Results From a Survey of Canadian Doctors of Chiropractic. “The percentage of patients with somatovisceral conditions, using a particular chiropractic technique (hole in one and Thompson), taking his/her own radiographs, being the client of a chiropractic management service, and considering maintenance/wellness care as a main sector of activity were associated with fewer MD referrals.”Am J Ophthalmol. 2015 Apr 29. pii: S0002–9394(15)00236–6. doi: 10.1016/j.ajo.2015.04.033. Prospective Evaluation of Acupuncture as Treatment for Glaucoma.
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Unsinkable Rubber Duck

Search PubMed for 'acupuncture' and 'meta analysis'. Look at the results. Anyone see a pattern?

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Points of Interest 05/01/2015

 

Fam Pract. 2015 Apr 28.Homeopathy in France in 2011–2012 according to reimbursements in the French national health insurance database (SNIIRAM).. “ About 10% of the French population, particularly young children and women, received at least one homeopathic preparation during the year.”

Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2015;2015:908538. doi: 10.1155/2015/908538. Epub 2015 Apr 2. Acupuncture to Reduce HIV-Associated Inflammation.. “ CAIP-based acupuncture did not favorably modulate inflammatory or lipid parameters. Additional studies are warranted of CAIP-based protocols of different frequencies/durations.” It didn’t work. Why would it? So lets do more studies.

PLoS One. 2015 Apr 28;10(4):e0125240. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0125240. eCollection 2015. Acupuncture therapy for sudden sensorineural hearing loss: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. “There was not sufficient evidence showing that acupuncture therapy alone was beneficial for treating SSHL. However, interventions combining acupuncture with WMCT had more efficacious results in the treatment of SSHL than WMCT alone. Electroacupuncture alone might be a viable alternative treatment besides WMCT for SSHL. However, given that there were fewer eligible RCTs and limitations in the included trials, such as methodological drawbacks and small sample sizes, large-scale RCTs are required to confirm the current findings regarding acupuncture therapy for SSHL.”J Altern Complement Med. 2015 Apr 27. Acupuncture for Treating Aromatase Inhibitor-Related Arthralgia in Breast Cancer: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis.”Acupuncture has been reported as a safe and promising treatment for AIMSS, but the present analysis indicated that the effects were not statistically significant.”Seven year old boy dead after bizarre alternative treatment for diabetesCouncil officers warn about bleach-like solution being offered as miracle cure at Brighton alternative medicine eventYet another illegal stimulant in dietary supplementsAn Alternative-Medicine Believer’s Journey Back to ScienceWriter comments on pseudo-facts, half-truths and misleading informationChinese medicine experts say slap therapy a fraud. And what part of Chinese medicine isn’t?Prospective Evaluation of Acupuncture as Treatment for Glaucoma. “Acupuncture has no overall effect on diurnal IOP or BCVA, but may temporally increase the IOP immediately after a treatment session.” But why would it? Another failure of the IRB.
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Snowflakes

I keep coming back to the concept that there is no acupuncture: no standardization of the intervention by its practitioners. 

There are dozens of forms of the intervention, perhaps as many as there are practitioners. It is perhaps the only unique pseudo-medicine, with no two practitioners the same. It is acupunctures, plural.

There will probably be increasing standardization in the US as acupuncture is regulated and its practitioners have to pass a standardized test to practice. One style of acupuncture in the US may eventually dominate, if for no other reason than that the schools will have to teach to the test in order for their graduates to get work. A little of the invisible hand in action, guiding the evolution of acupuncture.

And even within acupuncture, I would expect that once in practice there will be no consistency between practitioners. Because their practice is not based in reality, there is no reason so suspect they will all arrive at the same conclusion given the same information. I would hope that every case of S. aureus endocarditis would get the same antibiotic. In medicine we know what to do for the same diagnosis.

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Janet Camp
And yet, the acupunctures are becoming the most widely accepted (perhaps) of the myriad modalities. Otherwise not so wooish people... Read More
Wednesday, 29 April 2015 19:30
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Points of Interest 04/28/2015

 

Women Birth. 2015 Apr 21. pii: S1871–5192(15)00043–8. doi: 10.1016/j.wombi.2015.03.007. Impact of acupressure on onset of labour and labour duration: A systematic review. As always, what is acupuncture: “Seven trials with data reporting on 748 women using different acupressure points and methods of administration were included in the review.”Acupunct Med. 2015 Apr 24. pii: acupmed–2014–010722. doi: 10.1136/acupmed–2014–010722. Single-blinded, randomised preliminary study evaluating the effects of 2 Hz electroacupuncture for postoperative pain in patients with total knee arthroplasty.. “In this small preliminary study, EA retarded the first demand for PCA in comparison with no EA. No effect was seen on the total dosage of PCA required and no point-specific effect was seen.”Global Health. 2015 Apr 25;11(1):17. The influence of social context on the treatment outcomes of complementary and alternative medicine: the case of acupuncture and herbal medicine in Japan and the U.S.

Zhongguo Zhen Jiu. 2015 Jan;35(1):94–7. Zhu Lian’s characteristics and experiences in clinical practice of acupuncture and moxibustion. Yet another acupuncture: ZHU Lian invented the slow insertion technique by rotating needle and the embedding needle technique, improved moxibustion technique with moxa roll and proposed the three keys on the treatment with acupuncture and moxibustion, as well as discovered new acupoints for treatment.

Bill Maher’s bizarre anti-vaccine rant: Stop calling these people “kooks and liars”How To Talk To Anti-Vaccine Advocates Without Your Head ExplodingDr. Oz is popular because the truth is boring. “Oz has done EBM a favor. By making alternative medicine sexy, he has unwittingly made EBM, its antithesis, sexy.”Why doctors and scientists are so anxious about the rise of pop science John Oliver’s glorious Dr. Oz takedown: “You are the worst person in scrubs who has ever been on television — including Katherine Heigl”Why the Food Babe Takedowns Are What Our Society NeedsHealth Food Stores Recommend Body-Shaping Supplements To Minors, Despite Being Illegal In 49 States
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Points of Interest 04/24/2015

Am J Hypertens. 2014 Sep;27(9):1146–51. doi: 10.1093/ajh/hpu078. Epub 2014 May 2. A systematic review and meta-analysis of yoga for hypertension. “Larger studies are required to confirm the emerging but low-quality evidence that yoga may be a useful adjunct intervention in the management of hypertension.” Same as it ever was.

Acupunct Med. 2015 Apr 21. pii: acupmed–2014–010633. doi: 10.1136/acupmed–2014–010633. Acupuncture for melasma in women: a systematic review of randomised controlled trials. “MA appeared to be beneficial and safe for women with melasma, but insufficient evidence was found to reach conclusions. The encircling needling method, the quick needling method, intensive needle manipulations and individualised points’ selection were widely used. Well-designed trials are required.” Same as it ever was.

EU orders Britain’s organic farmers to treat sick animals with homeopathy British organic farmers must treat their animals with unscientific homeopathic remedies under new rules from Brussels.

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Points of Interest 04/20/2015

Intern Med. 2015;54(8):975–8. doi: 10.2169/internalmedicine.54.2238. Epub 2015 Apr 15. Guillain-barré syndrome following bee venom acupuncture. Probably true-true and unrelated.

BMC Complement Altern Med. 2015 Mar 31;15(1):98. doi: 10.1186/s12906–015–0633–4. Tragic result of traditional Chinese medicine manipulation: an unusual case report of bilateral anterior shoulder dislocations.

BMC Complement Altern Med. 2015 Mar 28;15(1):90. Effectiveness of acupuncture for angina pectoris: a systematic review of randomized controlled trials. “The findings showed very low evidence to support the use of acupuncture for improving angina symptoms and ECG of angina patients. However, the quality of the trials included in this study was low”J Bronchology Interv Pulmonol. 2015 Apr;22(2):162–4. Delayed recognition of an uncommon cause of iatrogenic pneumothorax. . The images enclosed from our case report show the subtle radiographic findings on the plain film, less subtle findings on computed tomographic scan, and what we believe is the first to be reported 3-dimensional reconstructed image of an acupuncture needle remaining in the chest after treatment. The case highlights the importance of looking for subtle abnormalities on imaging and the importance of history taking to finally establish a cause. We consider this an instructive case for internists and respirologists who should ask about this potential iatrogenic form of penetrating chest trauma when evaluating a patient for pneumothorax.BMC Complement Altern Med. 2015 Apr 2;15(1):103. Auricular acupuncture with seed or pellet attachments for primary insomnia: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Same as it ever was: “Nonetheless, considering the poor methodological quality, insufficient sample size and possible publication bias, current evidence is not yet adequate to provide a strong support for the use of auricular acupuncture in the treatment of primary insomnia. More strictly designed clinical studies will be needed to obtain a more explicit conclusion.”Evidence based medicine: a movement in crisis or just one with a long way to go?FDA to revisit its policies on homeopathic productsFalsified medicines taint global supplyAnti-Vaccine Beliefs Raced Around The World While Science Was Putting On Its Shoes.No room for science and facts with the anti-vaccination mob who are putting young lives at riskGot money to burn? Earthing wants youNew WikiLeaks documents reveal the inner workings of the Dr. Oz Show
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Points of Interest 04/16/2015

Physicians want Dr. Oz gone from Columbia medical faculty

The making of Dr. Oz How an award-winning doctor turned away from science and embraced fame.

J Altern Complement Med. 2015 Apr 15. Effects of Acupuncture on Pain and Inflammation in Pediatric Emergency Department Patients with Acute Appendicitis: A Pilot Study.

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Worse than snakes on a plane?

What could be worse than snakes in a plane?

I was flying from New York to San Francisco Monday. We were half way across the US when there was an announcement.

“If there is a licensed medical provider on the flight, please identify yourself. We have a medical problem.”

I thought 'crap' as I pushed the call light. This has never happened before. I also thought, where is my hospital? When problems usually arise I have an infrastructure for back-up, if not at my finger tips, then a 911 call away.

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nazani
The acupuncturist did indicate that "the necessary medicines" would have been his first choice. I'm left wondering if Air China f... Read More
Wednesday, 15 April 2015 17:40
Guest — DaveK23
There's another article about the schoolkids on the flight at the daily express website; currently down, but I can see it in Googl... Read More
Wednesday, 15 April 2015 19:50
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Points of Interest 04/11/2015

Explore (NY). 2014 Jul-Aug;10(4):256–9. doi: 10.1016/j.explore.2014.04.001. Epub 2014 Apr 18. Treating the root cause: acupuncture for the treatment of migraine, menopausal vasomotor symptoms, and chronic insomnia. “The patient’s medical problems had been treated for years with a multitude of medications, which led to adverse effects and little symptomatic improvement. Providers of complementary, alternative, and integrative medicine and providers practicing allopathic medicine should seek treatment options for their patients that promise to be helpful for various symptoms or diseases, that is, treating the root cause rather than using polypharmacy for various symptoms.”Complement Ther Med. 2015 Apr;23(2):185–199. doi: 10.1016/j.ctim.2015.01.007. Epub 2015 Jan 14. Measuring expectations of benefit from treatment in acupuncture trials: A systematic review..Clin Infect Dis. 2015 Apr 6. pii: civ186. Unorthodox Alternative Therapies Marketed to Treat Lyme Disease.Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2015;2015:413173. Epub 2015 Mar 11. Differences between Male and Female Consumers of Complementary and Alternative Medicine in a National US Population: A Secondary Analysis of 2012 NIHS Data.Aussie organisation linked to anti-vaccination campaigner Sherri Tenpenny has charity status revokedBelle Gibson’s cookbook still for sale, despite doubts about cancer survival claimsTara Hills’s anti-vaccination switch gains social media supportIn California Hippies, Religious Right Find Common Enemy in Vaccine ScienceMore evidence that near death experiences are related to brain activity, not the supernaturalHomeopathy is for suckers: What the medicine industry doesn’t want you to know A new study out of Australia confirms what many doctors and skeptics have long suspectedRobert Kennedy Jr., not your garden-variety anti-vaxxerHomeopathic medicine from snake venom can arrest spread of HIV, claim researchers.Jane Hansen: Anti-vax trolls attack baby Riley’s grieving parentsNow desperate Yolanda Foster heads to Mexico to try ‘ancient medicine’ in bid to cure Lyme disease
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Points of Interest 04/03/2015

Clin Rehabil. 2015 Mar 31. pii: 0269215515578699. Efficacy of the Alexander Technique in treating chronic non-specific neck pain: A randomized controlled trial.. “The Alexander Technique was not superior to local heat application in treating chronic non-specific neck pain. It cannot be recommended as routine intervention at this time.”Integr Cancer Ther. 2015 Apr 1. pii: 1534735415572879. Defining the Quality of Acupuncture: The Case of Acupuncture for Cancer-Related Fatigue.. “Systematic reviews of acupuncture are likely to continue to be inconclusive while comparisons are conducted of heterogeneous interventions without providing.”Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2015;2015:453423. Metabolomic analysis of clinical plasma from cerebral infarction patients presenting with blood stasis.. “Blood stasis (BS) is characterized as a disorder of blood circulation.” The initials say it all.Op-Ed: Is homeopathy a form of quackery
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Points of Interest 03/31/2015

FDA To Scrutinize Unproven Alternative Remedies

Measles officially enters Oklahoma

An Apple a Day May Not Keep the Doctor Away, Study Says

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Acupuncture for Acute Rhinitis.

Evidence-based medicine, as Dr. Novella realized, fails when applied to therapies that are not based in reality. As a result he coined the phrase, and idea, of science-based medicine.

The inadequacy of evidence-based medicine often rears its head in guidelines, where fantasy based therapies sneak in based on flawed evidence.

For example, Clinical Practice Guideline Allergic Rhinitis, where they say at lucky

STATEMENT 13. ACUPUNCTURE: Clinicians may offer acupuncture, or refer to a clinician who can offer acupuncture, for patients with AR who are interested in nonpharmacologic therapy. Option based on RCTs with limitations, observational studies with consistent effects, and a preponderance of benefit over harm.

They do not mention who is involved with writing with each sections recommendation, but I would wager their acupuncturist had some input into the positive recommendation.

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Janet Camp
Why not stick the needles into the nose? Or perhaps treat AR with homeopathy-- with snot being the thing to dilute into oblivion.
Saturday, 28 March 2015 20:09
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Points of Interest 03/23/2015

A New Skeptic’s Bibliography.Stop sharing this insane warning about vaccines and drug use!Acupunct Med. 2015 Mar 20. pii: acupmed–2014–010717. doi: 10.1136/acupmed–2014–010717. Unusual case of pyogenic spondylodiscitis, vertebral osteomyelitis and bilateral psoas abscesses after acupuncture: diagnosis and treatment with interventional management.Paleo isn’t a fad diet, it’s an ideology that selectively denies the modern world.Advice on how to fight misleading stories on Facebook. Step one: Your Snopes link isn’t going to help your cause.Standing up for the truth about homeopathy and Nazi medicine.Crazy Joe Mercola Is Behind The “Times”. “The terms “Mercola” and “bad idea” go together like Abbott and Costello. Or Cheech and Chong. And if you want to read about a whole bunch of them, I suggest checking out what Dr. David Gorski has to say. His site, Science-Based Medicine, makes me sound kind. OK, maybe not.”
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Points of Interest 03/21/2015

Acupunct Med. 2015 Mar 19. pii: acupmed–2014–010700. doi: 10.1136/acupmed–2014–010700. Acupuncture-induced haemothorax: a rare iatrogenic complication of acupuncture.. “ After some delay while trying other treatment, she was eventually transferred to the emergency department where a chest X-ray revealed a right pneumothorax and fluid collection.”False Hope Is Quack Docs’ Go-To Medicine. “But think about it this way—when have you ever seen doctors and lawyers agreeing about anything? Is it a vast conspiracy to suppress alternative treatments? No, there is a much more mundane reason for opposing the Saatchi Bill: false hope.”Herbal Supplement Safety Crackdown Underway.Claire Harvey: Anti-vaxers, you are baby killers
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Points of Interest 03/20/2015

Health (London). 2015 Mar 18. pii: 1363459315574116. Integration of acupuncture into conventional medicine from health professionals’ perspective: A thematic synthesis of qualitative studies.. “In general, acupuncture has been adapted to the biomedical model (often practised in an unsystematic and individual manner), and it is conceived as a supplement of Western medicine. ‘Working together’ and overcoming the biomedical model are recognised by the participants as key conditions for successful integration of acupuncture.”PRACTICAL SKEPTICISM VALUE AND USES OF A SKEPTICAL PROCESS IN EVERYDAY LIFEAutopsy to be held on woman who died after receiving acupunctureShould Alternative Remedies Carry a Health Warning?.Autism-Busting Paleo Book for Babies Pulled Because It Will Kill Them
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Points of Interest 03/11/2015

National Health and Medical Research Council says homoeopathy doesn’t work and patients are putting their health at risk. “The nation’s peak medical research body has pronounced homoeopathy an ineffective medical treatment and warned the health of people who use it may be at risk if they delay proven treatments.”Dr Ginni Mansberg: ‘The medical profession has a problem’. “What’s even scarier is that Complementary Medicines Australia say they expect “the sales of vitamin and dietary supplements will overtake the sales of over-the-counter medicines by 2015”.Parents’ Beliefs vs. Their Children’s Health

PLoS One. 2015 Mar 10;10(3):e0118498. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0118498. eCollection 2015. Effectiveness of traditional chinese medicine as an adjunct therapy for Parkinson’s disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis.. “Although the data were limited by methodological flaws in many studies, the evidence indicates the potential superiority of TCM as an alternative therapeutic for PD treatment and justifies further high-quality studies.”

PLoS One. 2015 Mar 6;10(3):e0119612. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0119612. eCollection 2015. Can acupuncture treatment be double-blinded? An evaluation of double-blind acupuncture treatment of postoperative pain

Acupunct Med. 2015 Mar 6. pii: acupmed–2015–010772. doi: 10.1136/acupmed–2015–010772. Knowledge, attitude and practice among Chinese acupuncturists receiving sham and/or placebo acupuncture: a cross-sectional survey..

Acupunct Med. 2015 Mar 6. pii: acupmed–2014–010708. doi: 10.1136/acupmed–2014–010708. Training in self-needling and performing it as part of a clinical trial: the practitioner and patient experience.. DYI acupuncture.

Iran J Pediatr. 2014 Aug;24(4):339–44. Epub 2014 Jul 4. What is the best available evidence for using homeopathy in patients with intellectual disabilities?. If I were snarky I would suggest that may apply to all who use homeopathy.

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Points of Interest 03/10/2015

Meet The Internet Entrepreneur Profiting Off The Anti-Vaxxer Movement.Acupuncture Provides Minimal Benefits After Study Design Bias Is Removed.Anti-science advocates are freaking out about Google truth rankings
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Points of Interest 03/04/2015

Health Aff (Millwood). 2015 Mar 1;34(3):438–46. Mandatory disclaimers on dietary supplements do not reliably communicate the intended issues.. “The available evidence indicates that replacing government restrictions on pharmaceutical marketing with potentially ineffective disclaimers will be an inadequate way of informing patients about the efficacy and safety of drugs, and it risks returning the United States to a previous era when inappropriate marketing claims about prescription drugs proliferated and contributed to the inappropriate use of those products.”

Recent Pat Inflamm Allergy Drug Discov. 2015 Mar 1. Complementary and Alternative Medicine for Childhood Asthma: An Overview of Evidence and Patents.. “Parents seeking CAM for asthma must consult qualified registered practitioners before using it.” Qualified CAM practioner. Like military intelligence or business ethics.

Acupunct Med. 2015 Mar 2. Acupuncture for joint symptoms related to aromatase inhibitor therapy in postmenopausal women with early-stage breast cancer: a narrative review. “Acupuncture is safe and results in improvement in AIMSS symptoms, but similar benefits are also elicited by non-penetrating sham acupuncture.” Which means it does nothing.

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