Homeopathy—A lively relic of the prescientific era

Homeopathy was first postulated by the German physician Samuel Hahnemann in 1796 and 220 years later homeopathy is the most popular and widespread alternative medicine. Partly, it is also part of the national healthcare and insurance systems but homeopathy is not without controversy within the medical and healthcare community. Its implausible basic assumptions, some of which contradict natural laws, do not lead us to expect that its remedies have any specific effect. In fact, there is no study or systematic review to date that reliably certifies homeopathy to have an effect beyond the placebo effect and other context effects. In this respect it must be disconcerting how widely homeopathy is applied and represented in therapeutic practice. It indeed claims a role within scientific (evidence-based) medicine but cannot substantiate this claim. It displays clear characteristics of pseudoscience [1]. This implies a lot of problems, such as misleading people and tackling medical ethics up to scientific publication practices. Furthermore, it turns out that quite a few people do not know exactly what homeopathy is, which may lead them to make wrong decisions for their personal health. This article summarizes the information about homeopathy and its problematic implications and serves as a general introduction to this topic and its unacceptable role in today’s medicine. The medical irrelevance of the sham method of homeopathy has been proven with more than sufficient probability [2]. As a major testimonial, the statement “Homeopathic products and practices” of the European (EASAC 2017) can be regarded. The primary aim of this brief report is therefore not to take another look at homeopathy from a medical scientific perspective, but rather focus attention on the implications of the still continuous and largely uncritically accepted existence of this method in medical practice, in the medical scientific sphere and in the judgement of the general public.

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