Article

Homeopathic treatment of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder: a randomised, double blind, placebo controlled crossover trial

Universität Bern, Berna, Bern, Switzerland
European Journal of Pediatrics (Impact Factor: 1.98). 12/2005; 164(12):758-67. DOI: 10.1007/s00431-005-1735-7
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT An increasing number of parents turn to homeopathy for treatment of their hyperactive child. Two publications, a randomised, partially blinded trial and a clinical observation study, conclude that homeopathy has positive effects in patients with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The aim of this study was to obtain scientific evidence of the effectiveness of homeopathy in ADHD. A total of 83 children aged 6-16 years, with ADHD diagnosed using the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-IV criteria, were recruited. Prior to the randomised, double blind, placebo controlled crossover study, they were treated with individually prescribed homeopathic medications. 62 patients, who achieved an improvement of 50% in the Conners' Global Index (CGI), participated in the trial. Thirteen patients did not fulfill this eligibility criterion (CGI). The responders were split into two groups and received either verum for 6 weeks followed by placebo for 6 weeks (arm A), or vice-versa (arm B). At the beginning of the trial and after each crossover period, parents reported the CGI and patients underwent neuropsychological testing. The CGI rating was evaluated again at the end of each crossover period and twice in long-term follow-up. At entry to the crossover trial, cognitive performance such as visual global perception, impulsivity and divided attention, had improved significantly under open label treatment (P<0.0001). During the crossover trial, CGI parent-ratings were significantly lower under verum (average 1.67 points) than under placebo (P =0.0479). Long-term CGI improvement reached 12 points (63%, P <0.0001). CONCLUSION: The trial suggests scientific evidence of the effectiveness of homeopathy in the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, particularly in the areas of behavioural and cognitive functions.

Download full-text

Full-text

Available from: Heiner Frei, Aug 01, 2015
0 Followers
 · 
143 Views
  • Source
    • "We conducted a search up to 3 April 2012 which identified 2,785 unique records of which 2,723 were screened out on the basis of the title and abstract. On the remaining 63, 20 were not about ADHD or did not have an ADHD-related outcome, 12 were not RCTs, 14 were not 'other supplements' as defined in the protocol, including two trials of personalized homoeopathy (Frei, Everts, & von Ammon, 2005; Jacobs, Williams, Girard, Njike, & Katz, 2005) and one trial of liothyronine (L-T-3) on children with ADHD and resistance to thyroid hormone (Weiss, Stein, & Refetoff, 1997), four in which supplements were adjuncts to other treatments, and one which included patients who were too old. Thus 11 trials were identified that investigated the effects of food supplements other than FFA that met the inclusion criteria. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The efficacy of three dietary treatments for ADHD has been repeatedly tested in randomized controlled trials (RCTs). These interventions are restricted elimination diets (RED), artificial food colour elimination (AFCE) and supplementation with free fatty acids (SFFA). There have been three systematic reviews and associated meta-analyses of the RCTs for each of these treatments. The aim of this review is to critically appraise the studies on the dietary treatments of ADHD, to compare the various meta-analyses of their efficacy that have been published and to identify where the design of such RCTs could be improved and where further investigations are needed. The meta-analyses differ in the inclusion and exclusion criteria applied to potentially eligible studies. The range of average effect sizes in standard deviation units is RED (0.29-1.2), AFCE (0.18-0.42) and SFFA (0.17-0.31). The methodology of many of the trials on which the meta-analyses are based is weak. Nevertheless, there is evidence from well-conducted studies for a small effect of SFFA. Restricted elimination diets may be beneficial, but large-scale studies are needed on unselected children, using blind assessment and including assessment of long-term outcome. Artificial food colour elimination is a potentially valuable treatment but its effect size remains uncertain, as does the type of child for whom it is likely to be efficacious. There are additional dietary supplements that have been used with children with ADHD. A systematic search identified 11 RCTs that investigated the effects of these food supplements. Despite positive results for some individual trials, more studies are required before conclusions can be reached on the value in reducing ADHD symptoms of any of these additional supplements.
    Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry 02/2014; 55(5). DOI:10.1111/jcpp.12215 · 5.67 Impact Factor
  • Source
    • "For instance, classical homeopathy for children suffering from atopic eczema showed comparable results to conventional treatment in usual care [4]. Moreover, randomized controlled double blind trials using the dynamization scale introduced by the 6 th edition (fifty-millesimal or Quinquagintamillesimal dynamization and its products, the Q-potencies) showed that homeopathically individualized Q-potencies were superior to placebo for fibromyalgia [5] or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in children [6], and not inferior to the antidepressant fluoxetine in a sample of patients with moderate to severe depression [7]. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The question, proposed by the German Central Union of homeopathic Doctors, is the pivotal subject addressed in a series of lectures and discussions being held all over Germany in 2010, to celebrate the bicentenary of homeopathy´s first medical textbook. Hahnemann´s Organon of the Healing Art is the basis for classical homeopathy. Reading its 6th and posthumous edition is part of the education of 90% of the homeopaths, as indicated by a survey carried out at the 60th Homeopathic World Medical Congress (Berlin 2005). This might be odd to conventional doctors, used to read the latest editions of textbooks and journals, but Hahnemann´s therapeutics seems to be ahead of his time, in that classical homeopathy can be at least as effective as current standard pharmacotherapy. For instance, classical homeopathy for children suffering from atopic eczema showed comparable results to conventional treatment in usual care. Moreover, randomized controlled double blind trials using the dynamization scale introduced by the 6th edition (fifty-millesimal or Quinquagintamillesimal dynamization and its products, the Q-potencies) showed that homeopathically individualized Q-potencies were superior to placebo for fibromyalgia or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in children, and not inferior to the antidepressant fluoxetine in a sample of patients with moderate to severe depression. More studies using the clinical-pharmaceutical protocol of the Organon are of course needed, but so far its use by trained physicians have yield to challenging results, keeping up with what is recommended in most recent clinical textbooks for the treatment of some chronic diseases.
  • Source
    • "The dilution level that will ultimately be used may be beyond the Avogadro number, for example, the probability for even a single molecule of the mother tincture to be present in the dilution is virtually zero. Although several randomized placebocontrolled double-blind clinical trials reported effects of homeopathic preparations superior to placebo [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7] [8], their clinical effectiveness was disputed by a recent meta-analysis [6] that launched a debate and earned public attention. Subsequently , several authors, including statisticians, detected fundamental methodological problems with this metaanalysis [9] [10] [11]. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Homeopathic preparations are used in homeopathy and anthroposophic medicine. Although there is evidence of effectiveness in several clinical studies, including double-blinded randomized controlled trials, their nature and mode of action could not be explained with current scientific approaches yet. Several physical methods have already been applied to investigate homeopathic preparations but it is yet unclear which methods are best suited to identify characteristic physicochemical properties of homeopathic preparations. The aim of this study was to investigate homeopathic preparations with UV-spectroscopy. In a blinded, randomized, controlled experiment homeopathic preparations of copper sulfate (CuSO(4); 11c-30c), quartz (SiO(2); 10c-30c, i.e., centesimal dilution steps) and sulfur (S; 11×-30×, i.e., decimal dilution steps) and controls (one-time succussed diluent) were investigated using UV-spectroscopy and tested for contamination by inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). The UV transmission for homeopathic preparations of CuSO(4) preparations was significantly lower than in controls. The transmission seemed to be also lower for both SiO(2) and S, but not significant. The mean effect size (95% confidence interval) was similar for the homeopathic preparations: CuSO(4) (pooled data) 0.0544% (0.0260-0.0827%), SiO(2) 0.0323% (-0.0064% to 0.0710%) and S 0.0281% (-0.0520% to 0.1082%). UV transmission values of homeopathic preparations had a significantly higher variability compared to controls. In none of the samples the concentration of any element analyzed by ICP-MS exceeded 100 ppb. Lower transmission of UV light may indicate that homeopathic preparations are less structured or more dynamic than their succussed pure solvent.
    Evidence-based Complementary and Alternative Medicine 06/2009; 2011:692798. DOI:10.1093/ecam/nep036 · 1.88 Impact Factor
Show more