Edzard Ernst

Edzard Ernst
University of Exeter | UoE

55.35
 · 
md, phd

About

2,412
Publications
228,757
Reads
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58,722
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Introduction
emeritus since 2012; about to publish memoire "A SCIENTIST IN WONDERLAND" (spring 2015); busy writing my blog (edzardernst.com); in favour of CRITICAL analysis.
Research Experience
October 1993 - July 2012
University of Exeter
Position
  • Emeritus Professor

Publications

Publications (2,412)
Article
Full-text available
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Complementary and alternative medicine can be defined as diagnosis, treatment, and/or prevention which complements mainstream medicine by contributing to a common whole, by satisfying a demand not met by orthodoxy, or by diversifying the conceptual frameworks of medicine. It is popular; hence doctors should know about it. The term covers a vast arr...
Chapter
There is a growing reliance on the systematic reviews (SRs) in the current evidence‐based medicine and public health. The aim of this chapter is to provide a comprehensive guideline for conducting a high‐quality SR. The authors draw on their own experience and expertise in the field to offer a set of concise recommendations for students, residents,...
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The previous chapter, we discussed the reasons that attract consumers to alternative medicine. As we have seen, these attractions often turn into the opposite, once we realise that they are unfounded. Attractions can thus turn out to be indirect distractions. In this chapter I will outline several direct reasons for people to be disenchanted with a...
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(related modalities: hypnotherapy, meditation, mind-body therapies, mindfulness, progressive muscle relaxation, transcendental meditation).
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Agrohomeopathy is the use of homeopathic remedies and homeopathic principles in the treatment of diseases of plants.
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There are many other issues in alternative medicine which are worth mentioning. Here I will only elaborate on those that are most relevant in the context of this book. For further discussions, I refer you to another recent book of mine.
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Medical ethics are rules that inform us what actions in healthcare are morally right and which might be problematic. They apply to all areas of medicine, including of course alternative medicine. In this chapter, I will focus on those ethical issues which arguably are the most important ones in the context of this book; a full debate of medical eth...
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In Chap. 1, I have been banging on about ‘evidence’. But what is evidence? And why is it important? These are some of the questions I will address in this chapter.
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Alternative medicine is attractive to many customers; the amount we currently spend on it provides ample proof. By 2025, we are predicted to spend just short of US$ 200 billion worldwide on alternative medicine, and most of this sum comes directly out of the consumer’s pocket.[https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/alternative–complementary-medic...
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Applied kinesiology is a method employed for diagnosing diseases and for identifying possible alternative treatments. Its proponents claim to pick up subtle signals via manual muscle testing reflecting the body’s energetic balance.
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(related modalities: Antineoblastons, cancer diets, Carctol, coffee enemas, Essiac, Gerson therapy, Laetrile, mistletoe, New German Medicine, shark cartilage, Ukrain)
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Acupressure is the stimulation of specific points, called acupoints, on the body surface by pressure for therapeutic purposes. The required pressure can be applied manually of by a range of devices. Acupressure is based on the same tradition and assumptions as acupuncture. Like acupuncture, it is often promoted as a panacea, a ‘cure all’.
Book
Alternative medicine (AM) is hugely popular; about 40% of the US general population have used at least one type of alternative treatment in the past year, and in Germany this figure is around 70%. The money spent on AM is considerable: the global market is expected to reach nearly US $ 200 billion by 2025, with most of these funds coming directly o...
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Objectives Prescribing of homeopathy still occurs in a small minority of English general practices. We hypothesised that practices that prescribe any homeopathic preparations might differ in their prescribing of other drugs. Design Cross-sectional analysis. Setting English primary care. Participants English general practices. Main outcome measures...
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This is a protocol for a Cochrane Review (Intervention). The objectives are as follows: To determine the effectiveness of Vitex agnus castus for the treatment of PMS symptoms. We wish to examine the following:(1) The effect of Vitex agnus castus on combined symptoms or global scores associated with PMS versus placebo. (2) The effect of Vitex agnus...
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Research is the gathering of data, information and facts for the advancement or completion of knowledge. By adding to the store of human knowledge, scientific research has great intrinsic value. Research also has substantial practical value, in the guise of beneficial technologies flowing from such knowledge.
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Exploitation can be defined as the use of another person or group for selfish purposes. Exploitative behavior in healthcare can lead to patients and others being harmed which clearly is unethical.
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High quality education is essential for the development of competent practitioners in all medical and medically related fields. Healthcare education entails the provision of knowledge in the sciences relevant to medicine and clinical practice, coupled with appropriate practical instruction. The basic education of healthcare professionals must be de...
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A statement is true when it corresponds with the way the world really is. This is the common meaning of truth that we all know.
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In this chapter, we shall explore the various ways in which CAM research frequently falls short of the ideals of good research practice, using several examples of seriously flawed CAM research studies. We will start with the least severe forms of research misconduct, in terms of the moral culpability of the perpetrators, and progress to the most bl...
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To what extent can practitioners and promoters of CAM be relied upon to practice or recommend safe and effective treatments? This is the question that we shall consider in this chapter.
Book
This book reveals the numerous ways in which moral, ethical and legal principles are being violated by those who provide, recommend or sell ‘complementary and alternative medicine’ (CAM). The book analyses both academic literature and internet sources that promote CAM. Additionally the book presents a number of brief scenarios, both hypothetical an...
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Die derzeitige Popularität der Homöopathie erstaunt viele Mediziner und verärgert Fachleute, die der alternativen Medizin voller Skepsis gegenüberstehen. Warum, so fragen sie sich, verlassen sich Menschen auf Behandlungsmethoden, deren Wirkung weder plausibel noch bewiesen ist? Warum entscheiden sie sich in einer Zeit, in der die Gesundheitsversorg...
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Zur Geschichte der Homöopathie gehört selbstverständlich auch eine Betrachtung des Lebens ihres Begründers, Christian Friedrich Samuel Hahnemann (1755–1843). Da bereits etliche ausgezeichnete Biographien Hahnemanns vorliegen, halte ich es nicht für notwendig, sein faszinierendes Leben hier im Detail nachzuzeichnen. Ich werde mich stattdessen auf di...
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Viele Homöopathen meinen, die tägliche Erfahrung von Tausenden von Homöopathen (und Millionen von Patienten) beweise die Wirksamkeit der homöopathischen Medizin zuverlässiger als jede wissenschaftliche Untersuchung. Wenn es ihren Patienten besser geht, führen sie das auf ihre Behandlung zurück, und zu guter Letzt sind sie dann davon überzeugt, dass...
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Seit den Anfängen der Homöopathie liegen deren Befürworter und Gegner miteinander im Streit. In der Vergangenheit haben diese Auseinandersetzungen eher die Gemüter erhitzt als für Klarheit gesorgt, und auch heute noch scheint die Kluft zwischen beiden Lagern so tief zu sein wie eh und je. In gewissem Maß ist dieser mangelnde Fortschritt darauf zurü...
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Die zu Hahnemanns Zeiten üblichen drakonischen und mit einigen Gefahren verbundenen medizinischen Praktiken bezeichnete man rückblickend als heroische Medizin, da sie vom Patienten geradezu heldenhaften Mut erforderten. Vor diesem Hintergrund ist es verständlich, dass die Homöopathie rasch die Welt eroberte. Zum Teil ist es Hahnemanns Kritik zu ver...
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Dieses Prinzip gilt als die eigentlich Basisannahme der Homöopathie und benennt, was Hahnemann bei seinen Selbstversuchen mit Chinarinde glaubte herausgefunden zu haben: Ähnliches soll mit Ähnlichen geheilt werden (similia similibus curentur). Es handelt sich dabei nicht um ein wissenschaftliches Gesetz. Mehr dazu im ersten Teil dieses Buches.
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Hahnemann riet bei allen Beschwerden und Krankheiten der Menschen zur Homöopathie, und genau das tun auch heute noch viele Homöopathen. Sie empfehlen diese Heilmethode für jede Krankheit oder jedes Symptom, unter denen Menschen (aber auch Tiere und sogar Pflanzen) leiden. Das bedeutet allerdings nicht, dass Patienten, die auf homöopathische Mittel...
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Obwohl sich die Homöopathie heute großer Beliebtheit erfreut, wissen viele Menschen gar nicht, worum es dabei wirklich geht. Eine Umfrage in Großbritannien ergab beispielsweise, dass 40 % der Bevölkerung meinen, die Homöopathie sei eine „natürliche oder Kräutermedizin“. Das ist nicht nur irreführend, es ist, wie wir sehen werden, schlichtweg falsch...
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In der Homöopathie und über sie existieren anscheinend sehr viel mehr Mythen und Missverständnisse als gesicherte Fakten. Die daraus resultierende Verwirrung führt nicht nur die Anwender, sondern auch viele im Gesundheitswesen Tätige in die Irre. Wollen wir diese Situation verbessern, müssen wir die Mythen ausräumen, die Missverständnisse klären un...
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Im vorigen Kapitel haben wir gesehen, dass Hahnemann von seinen Anhängern wiederholt verlangte, sich strikt an seine Lehre zu halten. Jegliche Abweichung von seiner Doktrin war für ihn inakzeptabel, doch diese Forderung nach absoluter Loyalität und unbedingtem Gehorsam führte unweigerlich zu Problemen.
Book
Homöopathie und Wissenschaft Dieses Buch zeichnet die Entstehung der Homöopathie nach, erläutert ihre grundlegenden Prinzipien, klärt über die heutige Praxis auf und diskutiert die Gründe für die anhaltende Beliebtheit dieser Heilmethode. Vor zweihundert Jahren hatte die Medizin Kranken wenig zu bieten: Man ließ sie zur Ader oder verabreichte ihnen...
Article
Background: A major determinant in cardiovascular disease (CVD) is stress. As transcendental meditation (TM) is thought to help in lowering negative stress indicators, it may be a beneficial strategy for the primary prevention of CVD. Objectives: To determine the effectiveness of TM for the primary prevention of CVD. Search methods: We searche...
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Full-text available
1.1 Worum es geht Falsche Behandlungen von Patienten sind ein vielschichtiges Problem, dem nicht zuletzt die Gesundheitspolitik durch Maßnahmen der Qualitätssicherung begegnen muss. Zwei spezifische, aber nicht trennbare Teilaspekte dieses Problems sind Fehlbehandlungen durch (i) Heilpraktiker, die ihre Patienten überwiegend mit Interventionen aus...
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Full-text available
Falsche Behandlungen von Patienten sind ein vielschichtiges Problem, dem nicht zuletzt die Gesundheitspolitik durch Maßnahmen der Qualitätssicherung begegnen muss. Zwei spezifische, aber nicht trennbare Teilaspekte dieses Problems sind Fehlbehandlungen durch (i) Heilpraktiker, die ihre Patienten überwiegend mit Interventionen aus dem Bereich der (i...
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Full-text available
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Beales argues,1 in response to our paper,2 that trialists should bear responsibility for trials with inappropriate comparators. We agree that trialists should share this responsibility. But about half a million randomised trials have been conducted in medicine to date, involving millions of investigators. These researchers will undoubtedly have het...
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Hemoconcentration was induced by administration of oral Furosemide in a group of healthy athletes. Before and after this treatment a variety of hemorheological variables was measured. Simultaneously the time needed to reach the anaerobic threshold during a standardized ergometer test was recorded. The results show that the changes in blood rheology...
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Peter Fisher criticises the methods of a recent review that found no evidence to support homeopathy. But inconclusive evidence, lack of rational explanation, and questions about safety make Edzard Ernst question Europe’s €1bn annual spend on such remedies
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Viele Diabetes-Patienten erliegen der Versuchung alternative Therapien auszuprobieren. Das Angebot ist vielfaltig und die alternativen Therapien beanspruchen einerseits, die metabolische Kontrolle bei Diabetes zu verbessern und andererseits, die Lebensqualitat von Diabetikern zu erhohen. Ausreichende Evidenz liegt jedoch nicht vor.
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Prince Charles's pleas to ministers over complementary medicine have at last been made public. About time, says Edzard Ernst
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Abstract BACKGROUND: This review is an update of a previously published review in the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews on 'Feverfew for preventing migraine' (2004, Issue 1). Feverfew (Tanacetum parthenium L.) extract is a herbal remedy, which has been used for preventing attacks of migraine. OBJECTIVES: To systematically review the evi...
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Troger and co-authors assume to have presented evidence proving that mistletoe treatment in patients with locally advanced or metastatic pancreatic carcinoma significantly improves quality of life compared with best supportive care (BSC). In the original publication (1) the authors claim that survival was significantly extended by this therapy. To...
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Prevalence of alternative therapies-use by menopausal women For the purpose of this chapter, we operationally define alternative therapies (ATs) as medical interventions which are not usually used in conventional medicine. Other terms frequently employed to describe this sector include complementary, holistic, folk, traditional, natural or integrat...
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A major determinant in cardiovascular disease (CVD) is stress. As transcendental meditation (TM) is thought to help in lowering negative stress indicators, it may be a beneficial strategy for the primary prevention of CVD. To determine the effectiveness of TM for the primary prevention of CVD. We searched the following electronic databases: the Coc...
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This is the protocol for a review and there is no abstract. The objectives are as follows: To evaluate the evidence for or against the effectiveness of moxibustion as an adjunctive or as sole therapy for reducing death and disability after stroke.
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This is the protocol for a review and there is no abstract. The objectives are as follows: The aim of this review is to comprehensively and critically evaluate the effects of mind-body movement therapies (yoga, tai chi and qigong) for patients with Parkinson's disease (PD) comparing any type of control treatments.
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Background: An acute ankle sprain is a sudden-onset injury of one or more of the ankle ligaments. It is one of the most common musculoskeletal injuries in the general population as well as in athletes. In some countries, such as China and Korea, acupuncture is frequently used in the treatment of ankle sprains, either as a single treatment or a sec...
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Full-text available
Background: A sedentary lifestyle and stress are major risk factors for cardiovascular disease (CVD). Since yoga involves exercise and is thought to help in stress reduction it may be an effective strategy in the primary prevention of CVD. Objectives: To determine the effect of any type of yoga on the primary prevention of CVD. Search methods:...
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The aim of this systematic review was to determine the effectiveness of acupuncture for the treatment of whiplash associated disorder (WAD). Twenty databases were searched from their inceptions to Oct. 2013. Randomised clinical trials (RCTs) of acupuncture (AT), electroacupuncture (EA), or dry needling (DN) for the treatment of WAD were considered...
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Das australische „National Health and Medical Council“ hat eine Evaluation der Homöopathie vorgelegt, die ihresgleichen sucht. Insgesamt wurden 57 systematische Reviews analysiert und kritisch beurteilt.
Article
Stress and a sedentary lifestyle are major determinants of cardiovascular disease (CVD). As tai chi involves exercise and can help in stress reduction, it may be effective in the primary prevention of CVD. To determine the effectiveness of tai chi for the primary prevention of CVD. We searched the following electronic databases: the Cochrane Centra...
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Full-text available
This review aims to evaluate the efficacy of acupuncture in the treatment of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). 14 databases will be searched from their inception. These include PubMed, AMED, EMBASE, the Cochrane Library, seven Korean medical databases (Korean Studies Information Service System, DBPIA, Oriental Medicine Advanced Searchin...
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Werden Patienten nach einem Schädel-Hirn-Trauma mit Akupunktur behandelt, treten in der Folgezeit signifikant weniger Schlaganfälle auf, ergab eine Studie aus Taiwan.
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Full-text available
Objective: The increased prevalence of obesity has resulted in the current high popularity of dietary supplements marketed as weight reducing agents. The efficacy of most of these supplements is not established. The soluble fiber, glucomannan, is often recommended for weight loss. The aim of this systematic review is to evaluate the evidence for o...
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Background It has been suggested that yoga may be effective in the management of mental health disorders including addictions. Objective To critically evaluate the evidence of effectiveness of yoga as a treatment for addictions. Methods Fourteen electronic databases were searched from inception to January 2013. Randomised controlled trials (RCTs) t...
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Full-text available
Background: Several slimming aids being sold as food supplements are widely available. One of them is pyruvate. Its efficacy in causing weight reduction in humans has not been fully established. The objective of this systematic review was to examine the efficacy of pyruvate in reducing body weight. Methods: Electronic and nonelectronic searches...
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The objective of this overview is to summarize and critically evaluate the current evidence from systematic reviews (SRs) regarding complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) for autism spectrum disorders (ASDs). SRs of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of CAM therapies were identified through searches of electronic databases including The Coch...
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Several complementary and alternative therapies (CATs) are currently popular, particularly for pain control. In this article, the evidence for or against the major forms of CATs will be critically evaluated. The results show that few CATs are demonstrably effective. The risks of CATs are under-researched but, in some cases, they can be considerable...
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Full-text available
Molassiotis is the author of about 40 reviews, all of which are prone to the shortcomings he highlights. His statement, “I urge researchers in the field not to proliferate publications of ‘systematic’ reviews of a very small number and of admittedly poor/low quality level trials”, is thus surprising to say the least. The main point of his response...
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Full-text available
To investigate adverse events attributed to traditional medical treatments in the Republic of Korea. Adverse events recorded in the Republic of Korea between 1999 and 2010 - by the Food and Drug Administration, the Consumer Agency or the Association of Traditional Korean Medicine - were reviewed. Records of adverse events attributed to the use of t...
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