The following pages raise questions about terms used by orthodox medicine. The reason for this is that, while it is important to try and explain why homeopathy works, it is also important to recognise that there are a lot of aspects of orthodox medicine which are unexplained. In particular it is questionable whether orthodox medicine is a science in its own right or whether it simply uses the discoveries of scientific fields without any clear idea of how these discoveries fit together.
Among the issues raised in this section are:That diseases are regarded as entities when they are actually concepts; That the word 'effectiveness' is used without defining what it means; That evidence is regarded as having an abstract truth as opposed to being dependent on the way it is viewed;That randomised controlled trials (RCTs) are referred to without clarifying whether or not they have used appropriate protocols.
The grounds on which most of the criticisms of homeopathy are based depend not so much on a failure to answer the questions raised here, as on a refusal to even accept that these questions need to be asked. As a result these questions illuminate the fact that the criticisms do not arise from a scientific analysis but from dogma.
It is in the interest of us all, and especially of those who are ill and those who treat them, that we do not allow medicine to become dominated by an attitude so dogmatic that it cannot face up to basic scientific truths. We need a science based medicine more than ever, and this can only be achieved by looking at the alternatives with open eyes and with as unprejudiced an attitude as possible.
The pages are listed roughly in alphabetical order:
What are diseases?What is effectiveness?What are efficacy and effectiveness?What is evidence?What is evidence based medicine (EBM)?What is the placebo effect?What are randomised controlled trials (RCTs)?What are homogeneity and generalisability - a paradox?What factors affect RCTs of homeopathy?What is the rebound effect?What are side effects?