Night shift: Can a homeopathic remedy alleviate shift lag?

Intensive Care Unit, Waikato Hospital, Hamilton, New Zealand.
Dimensions of Critical Care Nursing 05/2006; 25(3):130-136.
Source: PubMed


Night shift nurses are subject to shift lag or circadian dysrhythmia, which may result in physical and mental symptoms ranging from fatigue, irritability, depression, and apathy to gastrointestinal, cardiovascular, and sleep disorders. This study investigated the effect a homeopathic remedy No-Shift-Lag had on the night shift nurses in an intensive care unit. The study was a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover trial. The measures included an objective computer-based vigilance test and a series of subjective questionnaires.

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    • "Following Mexican homeopathic regulations and starting from the original mother tincture – an ethanolic extract in this case – several dynamizations/succussion (shaking by forceful striking) and serial dilutions in distilled water were performed to obtain 6th (6C) and 30th (30C) dilutions. (Note: Acn 30C is a common dosage used in homeopathy[18] and there have been no reported adverse effects from homeopathic remedies above 12C.)[39] The final solutions contained A. napellus, all in decimal dilutions of Hahnemann (dH) in distilled water, were colorless and odorless, and had a 1% alcohol concentration. "
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    ABSTRACT: Aconitum napellus (Acn) is used topically to relieve pain, itching and inflammation, and internally to reduce febrile states, among others. Any circadian time-related consequences of Acn administration are unknown. The objective of this study was to explore the effects of two doses of Acn on body temperature (BT) of mice treated at six different times over 24 hours. BALB/c female mice were housed in six chambers (six mice each) with air temperature 24 ± 3°C, humidity 60 ± 4%, and a 12-hours light (L)/12-hours dark cycle, but with L-onset staggered by 4 hours between chambers so that study at one external test time resulted in six test times (02, 06, 10, 14, 18 and 22 hours [h] after light onset). Rectal temperature (RT; in °C) was measured at baseline (B) and 1 hour after oral treatment with placebo (P) or two doses of Acn (6C and 30C, two studies each) in six studies over an 8 day span. The difference in RT for each mouse from the respective B + P timepoint mean RT was computed following each Acn treatment, and data from each of the six studies (original RT and difference from B + P) were analyzed for time-effect by analysis of variance (ANOVA) and for circadian rhythm by 24-hour cosine fitting. A CIRCADIAN RHYTHM IN RT WAS FOUND AT B AND AFTER P (MEAN: 35.58°C vs. 35.69°C; peak: 15:31 h vs. 15:40 h) and after each Acn dose (30C or 6C). Acn induced hyperthermia and the overall change in BT was rhythmically significant for each dose (mean = +1.95°C vs. +1.70°C), with greatest hyperthermia observed during the L-span for each dose (peak = 08:56 h vs. 05:17 h). Acn administered around the clock induced hyperthermia overall and in a time-dependent manner, with greatest effects during the resting (L) span. Thus, time of day may significantly impact the outcome of Acn and other homeopathic treatments and should be considered in determining optimal dosing and treatment time(s) in order to increase the desired outcome and decrease undesired effects.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2011 · Pharmacognosy Magazine
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    ABSTRACT: Insomnia is a common problem which impacts on quality of life. Current management includes psychological and behavioural therapies and/or pharmacological treatments. To systematically review research evidence for effectiveness of homeopathy in the management of insomnia. Comprehensive searches of biomedical databases (MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, Cochrane library, Science Citation Index), homeopathy-specific and complementary medicine-specific databases were conducted. (A) Homeopathic medicines: four randomised controlled trials (RCTs) compared homeopathic medicines to placebo. All involved small patient numbers and were of low methodological quality. None demonstrated a statistically significant difference in outcomes between groups, although two showed a trend favouring homeopathic medicines and three demonstrated significant improvements from baseline in both groups. A cohort study reported significant improvements from baseline. (B) Treatment by a homeopath: No randomised controlled trials of treatment by a homeopath were identified. One cohort study, three case series and over 2600 case studies were identified. The limited evidence available does not demonstrate a statistically significant effect of homeopathic medicines for insomnia treatment. Existing RCTs were of poor quality and were likely to have been underpowered. Well-conducted studies of homeopathic medicines and treatment by a homeopath are required to examine the clinical and cost effectiveness of homeopathy for insomnia.
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