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

    A checklist for higher quality CAM studies

    Researchers from Taiwan observed inconsistencies in the results of massage therapy studies. In this article, they list the issues in study design that have plagued past studies.

    No CAM researchers should be permitted to conduct research until they memorize this list and apply it to their studies.

    Here are the deficiencies in study design, stated as essentials for good research.

    Rigorous attention to research design

    • Strict inclusion criteria
    • Population size that permits adequate statistical power
    • Consistent doses and protocols
    • Random allocation to treatment and placebo groups
    • At least single-, and when possible, double-blinding
    • Appropriate outcome measures
    • Appropriate timing of measurements

    Data analysis

    • Consider the effect of all potential confounding variables
    • Apply only the highest sensitivity evaluative tools
    • Examine the duration of response over time

    The bottom line?
    If they want to be taken seriously, CAM researchers who embark on evidence-based studies must conform to the basic tenants of evidence-based research.

    11/13/08 20:18 JR

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