Homeopathy in the age of antimicrobial resistance: Is it a viable treatment for upper respiratory tract infections?

Fixsen, Alison 2018. Homeopathy in the age of antimicrobial resistance: Is it a viable treatment for upper respiratory tract infections? Homeopathy. 107 (2), pp. 99-114. doi:10.1055/s-0037-1621745

TitleHomeopathy in the age of antimicrobial resistance: Is it a viable treatment for upper respiratory tract infections?
AuthorsFixsen, Alison
Abstract

Background: Acute upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs) and their complications are the most frequent cause of antibiotic prescribing in primary care. With multi-resistant organisms proliferating, appropriate alternative treatments to these conditions are urgently required. Homeopathy presents one solution, however there are many methods of homeopathic prescribing. This review of the literature considers firstly whether homeopathy offers a viable alternative therapeutic solution for acute upper respiratory tract infections (URTIs) and their complications and secondly how such homeopathic intervention might take place.

Method: Critical review of post 1994 clinical studies featuring homeopathic treatment of acute upper respiratory tract infections and their complications. Study design, treatment invention, cohort group, measurement and outcome were considered. Discussion focused on the extent to which homeopathy is used to treat URTIs; rate of improvement and tolerability of the treatment; complications of URTIs; prophylactic and long-term effects; the use of combination versus single homeopathic remedies.

Results: Multiple peer review studies were found in which homeopathy had been used to treat upper respiratory tract infections and associated symptoms (cough, pharyngitis, tonsillitis, otitis media, acute sinusitis etc.). 9 RCTs and 8 report observational/ cohort studies were analysed, 7 of which were paediatric studies. 7 RCTs used combination remedies with multiple constituents. Results for homeopathy treatment were positive overall, with faster resolution, reduced use of antibiotics and possible prophylactic and longer-term benefits.

Conclusions: Variations in size, location, cohort and outcome measures make comparisons and generalisations concerning homeopathic clinical trials for URTIs problematic. Nevertheless, study findings suggest at least equivalence between homeopathy and conventional treatment for uncomplicated URTI cases, with fewer adverse events and potentially broader therapeutic outcomes. The use of non-individualised homeopathic compounds tailored for the pediatric population merits further investigation, including through cohort studies. In the light of antimicrobial resistance, homeopathy offers alternative strategies for minor infections and possible prevention of recurring URTIs.

Keywordshomeopathy, antibiotic resistance, upper respiratory tract infections, clinical studies, combination remedies
JournalHomeopathy
Journal citation107 (2), pp. 99-114
ISSN1475-4916
Year2018
PublisherElsevier
Accepted author manuscriptHomeopathy%20paper%20051217.pdf
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)doi:10.1055/s-0037-1621745
Publication dates
Published online05 Feb 2018
Published05 Feb 2018
LicenseCC BY-NC-ND 4.0

Related outputs

Evaluation Report of the Social Prescribing Demonstrator Site in Shropshire – Final Report
Polley, M.J., Seers, H. and Fixsen, Alison 2019. Evaluation Report of the Social Prescribing Demonstrator Site in Shropshire – Final Report.

Shades of communitas: A study of soft skills programs
Fixsen, Alison and Ridge, Damien T. 2019. Shades of communitas: A study of soft skills programs. Journal of Contemporary Ethnography. 48 (4), p. 510– 537. doi:10.1177/0891241618792075

Shades of communitas: a study of soft skills programs
Fixsen, Alison and Ridge, Damien T. 2019. Shades of communitas: a study of soft skills programs. Journal of Contemporary Ethnography. 48 (4), pp. 510-537. doi:10.1177/0891241618792075

HRI Malta 2017—Cutting Edge Research in Homeopathy: HRI’s Third International Research Conference in Malta
Mosley, A.J., Roberts, E.R., Partington, H., Gaertner, K., Fisher, P., Lex Rutten, A.L.B., Mathie, R.T., Cartwright, S.J., Fixsen, Alison, Kokornaczyk, M.O., Sokol, A.M. and Tournier, A.L. 2018. HRI Malta 2017—Cutting Edge Research in Homeopathy: HRI’s Third International Research Conference in Malta. Homeopathy. 107 (1), pp. 50-54. doi:10.1055/s-0037-1609018

Self-care and entrepreneurism: An ethnography of soft skills development for higher education staff
Fixsen, Alison, Cranfield, S. and Ridge, Damien T. 2018. Self-care and entrepreneurism: An ethnography of soft skills development for higher education staff. Studies in Continuing Education. 40 (2), pp. 181-197. doi:10.1080/0158037X.2017.1418308

Mixing work with therapy: a work based autoethnography
Fixsen, Alison 2017. Mixing work with therapy: a work based autoethnography. Work Based Learning e-Journal International. 7 (1), pp. 40-63.

Stories of Hell and Healing: Internet Users’ Construction of Benzodiazepine Distress and Withdrawal
Fixsen, Alison and Ridge, Damien T. 2017. Stories of Hell and Healing: Internet Users’ Construction of Benzodiazepine Distress and Withdrawal. Qualitative Health Research. 27 (13), pp. 2030-2041. doi:10.1177/1049732317728053

Feeling Our Way: An ethnographic exploration of university staff experiences of ‘soft skills’ learning and development programmes
Fixsen, Alison 2017. Feeling Our Way: An ethnographic exploration of university staff experiences of ‘soft skills’ learning and development programmes. PhD thesis University of Westminster Leadership and Professional Development

Interaction Rituals and Jumbled Emotions Among “Relative Strangers”: Simulated Patient Work on a Trainee Complementary Therapy Practitioner Program
Fixsen, Alison, Ridge, Damien T., Kirkpatrick, S. and Foot, D. 2015. Interaction Rituals and Jumbled Emotions Among “Relative Strangers”: Simulated Patient Work on a Trainee Complementary Therapy Practitioner Program . Sage Open. pp. 1-12. doi:10.1177/2158244015595090

“I’m Not Waving, I’m Drowning”: An Autoethnographical Exploration of Biographical Disruption and Reconstruction During Recovery From Prescribed Benzodiazepine Use
Fixsen, Alison 2015. “I’m Not Waving, I’m Drowning”: An Autoethnographical Exploration of Biographical Disruption and Reconstruction During Recovery From Prescribed Benzodiazepine Use . Qualitative Health Research. 26 (4), pp. 466-481. doi:10.1177/1049732315576496

Should homeopathy be considered as part of a treatment strategy for otitis media with effusion in children?
Fixsen, Alison 2013. Should homeopathy be considered as part of a treatment strategy for otitis media with effusion in children? Homeopathy. 102 (2), pp. 145-50. doi:10.1016/j.homp.2013.01.004.004.

Performance, emotion work, and transition: challenging experiences of complementary therapy student practitioners commencing clinical practice
Fixsen, Alison and Ridge, Damien T. 2012. Performance, emotion work, and transition: challenging experiences of complementary therapy student practitioners commencing clinical practice. Qualitative Health Research. 22 (9), pp. 1163-1175. doi:10.1177/1049732312449213

Permalink - https://westminsterresearch.westminster.ac.uk/item/q3vy0/homeopathy-in-the-age-of-antimicrobial-resistance-is-it-a-viable-treatment-for-upper-respiratory-tract-infections


Share this
Tweet
Email