How patients feel after treatment
Each of the three (previously five) NHS homeopathic hospitals in the UK has published the findings of in-house patient surveys. Full references to the published papers can be found on the Faculty of Homeopathy website.
Patients with a very wide range of chronic conditions were asked to report how they felt after homeopathic treatment.
On average, 70% of follow-up patients seen at the homeopathic hospitals report a positive outcome from homeopathic treatment.
Five-hospital pilot study
In a pilot study published in 2008, data from 1602 follow-up patient appointments at all five NHS homeopathic hospitals were collected together over a one month period.
Eczema, chronic fatigue syndrome, menopausal disorder, osteoarthritis and depression were the ‘top five’ most referred conditions. The medical problems referred to the hospitals typically are chronic conditions where available conventional treatments are often not effective. In total, the study identified 235 separate medical complaints treated at the hospitals during one month.
At just their second homeopathic appointment, 34% of follow-up patients overall reported an improvement that affected their daily living. For patients at their sixth appointment, the corresponding improvement rate was 59%. The study showed that reported health benefit may be gained more quickly in some medical conditions than in others. Read full paper.
The pilot findings are informing a programme of standard setting for treatment outcomes in the NHS homeopathic hospitals.
Bristol patient outcome study
One of the most comprehensive patient outcome surveys was an analysis of over 23,000 outpatient consultations at the Bristol Homeopathic Hospital from November 1997 to October 2003. This represented over 6,500 individual patients whose outcome was recorded at follow-up. More than 70% of these follow-up patients recorded clinical improvement following homeopathic treatment.
|Clinical condition||% follow-up patients showing clinical improvement|
|Asthma (under 16s)||89%|
|Chronic fatigue syndrome||72%|
|Crohn’s Disease/ulcerative colitis||76%|
|Eczema (under 16s)||82%|
|Irritable bowel syndrome||71%|
Many of the patients in the analysis had previously received mainstream medical intervention at the secondary care level and had either failed to respond satisfactorily or had been unable to tolerate the medication prescribed.
Homeopathy therefore may achieve positive clinical outcomes in certain conditions that have not yet been proven in RCTs, such as Crohn’s disease, depression, eczema, headache, and menopausal syndrome. Full details are given in the original article.