CAM PoliticsHomeopathy

Misperceptions by a homeopathic physician

Geoff Woodin, a homeopathic physicians from the UK, has an us-vs-them view of homeopathy and allopathic medicine.

It’s not surprising given the onslaught of criticism targeting his field in the UK. However, his perspective of allopathic medicine is inaccurate, I believe.

Here are the main points from his open letter making the rounds of blogs and websites.

  • “The worst thing to happen to medicine is undoubtedly the Randomized Clinical Trial.”
  • “As clinicians we are ‘encouraged’ (read ‘forced’) to ignore our clinical skills and acumen in favor of flow chart diagnosis and prescribing.”
  • “The narrow-minded view taken by a radical few is that we don’t know how these modalities work, therefore they can’t work.”
  • “Scientific curiosity, informed by actually hearing what people are saying, is the only way forward.”

The bottom line?
Dr. Wooden is almost as far off base as Panda Bear in an earlier entry — almost.

I would counter…

  • Understanding the treatment is as important as understanding the patient.
  • No clinicians I know (and I’ve known plenty) encourage anyone to ignore their clinical skills.
  • The patient-centered view is that our patients benefit more when we know how our treatments work.

His final point is one of common ground. Patients benefit when science and patient empathy are combined.

6/30/08 21:40 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.