The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog ran from 2006 to 2016 and was intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    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.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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  • Recent Comments

    FDA warns against using ear candles

    They’re a hollow fabric cone about 10 inches long made from beeswax, paraffin, or a mixture.

    They can cause serious injuries, even when used according to the manufacturer’s directions, says the FDA.

    According to advertised claims, burning an ear candle draws earwax and “impurities” or “toxins” out of the ear canal. Relief from sinus and ear infections, headache and earache, as well as improved hearing, “blood purification,” improvements in brain function, even curing cancer are also purported.

    The bottom line?

    FDA has no valid scientific evidence to support the safety or effectiveness of these devices for any medical claims or benefits.

    What’s more, they have received reports of burns, perforated eardrums, and blockage of the ear canal that required surgery to repair.

    FDA is especially concerned because some ear candles are advertised for use in children. Their smaller ear canal size might make them more susceptible to injuries.

    3/19/10 20:09 JR

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