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http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19678780

+1 for "alt. medicine"?
 
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Green Dan
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There is no such thing as Alternative Medicine. Either it's medicine, or it's not.
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Greendan wrote:
There is no such thing as Alternative Medicine. Either it's medicine, or it's not.
Alternative Medicine is a marketing term, but it is still a useful term to make a distinction against traditional medicine. Traditional medicine is not clear-cut, either. Good luck seeing drug stores and doctor offices prescribe turmeric for arthritis.

 
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Aurendrosl wrote:
Greendan wrote:
There is no such thing as Alternative Medicine. Either it's medicine, or it's not.
Alternative Medicine is a marketing term, but it is still a useful term to make a distinction against traditional medicine. Traditional medicine is not clear-cut, either. Good luck seeing drug stores and doctor offices prescribe turmeric for arthritis.



Why not? Once it's gone through correct testing and apporval process, if it works it works. Hell, I get an infection and the Dr prescribes me substance that comes out of a fungus.

The only reason that stops a lot of drugs getting to market is the profit margin involved. Which isn't the fault of the medicine, but our lame system.
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Greendan wrote:
Aurendrosl wrote:
Greendan wrote:
There is no such thing as Alternative Medicine. Either it's medicine, or it's not.
Alternative Medicine is a marketing term, but it is still a useful term to make a distinction against traditional medicine. Traditional medicine is not clear-cut, either. Good luck seeing drug stores and doctor offices prescribe turmeric for arthritis.



Why not? Once it's gone through correct testing and apporval process, if it works it works. Hell, I get an infection and the Dr prescribes me substance that comes out of a fungus.

The only reason that stops a lot of drugs getting to market is the profit margin involved. Which isn't the fault of the medicine, but our lame system.

Our "lame system" is precisely why a term (albeit a loose and mostly useless term) like "alternative medicine" exists, because outside the realm of prescribed medicine there are proven and effective treatments to illness and disease. That's why it is called "alternative".
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Yes, but also outside of the realm of medicine exists all sorts of hokey that shouldn't count as medicine. So my objection is to the inclusion of the term Medicine. In this case, it turns out that a spice can be effective. But in many cases "Alternative Medicine" doesn't do what it's supposed do, or has complications. So it's not really medicine. It's a vague guess.

However, some times these things should be investigated.
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Just the abstract is shown on this link. It would be nice to have some more details. This part in particular bothers me:

". . . . assessed by time spent during 100-m walk and going up and down a flight of stairs . . . . There was no difference in those parameters between the patients receiving ibuprofen and C. domestica extracts, except pain on stairs"

First, why no placebo control? Second, which one did better on the stairs? That's probably when knee pain is the worst, and from the methods description that's half the study right there. To then say "There was no difference . . . . except pain on stairs" makes me think it was probably the spice that did worse on the stair pain, but they don't say.

Maybe it's a legit finding, but it's hard to be convinced from just the abstract.
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Erik17 wrote:
Just the abstract is shown on this link. It would be nice to have some more details. This part in particular bothers me:

". . . . assessed by time spent during 100-m walk and going up and down a flight of stairs . . . . There was no difference in those parameters between the patients receiving ibuprofen and C. domestica extracts, except pain on stairs"

First, why no placebo control? Second, which one did better on the stairs? That's probably when knee pain is the worst, and from the methods description that's half the study right there. To then say "There was no difference . . . . except pain on stairs" makes me think it was probably the spice that did worse on the stair pain, but they don't say.

Maybe it's a legit finding, but it's hard to be convinced from just the abstract.


An excellent example of how the wider aspects of the scientific method could now swing in. If another groups picks up on this study they could expand and falisify the claim. This is a signpost, it is not the destination.
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Greendan wrote:
Aurendrosl wrote:
Greendan wrote:
There is no such thing as Alternative Medicine. Either it's medicine, or it's not.
Alternative Medicine is a marketing term, but it is still a useful term to make a distinction against traditional medicine. Traditional medicine is not clear-cut, either. Good luck seeing drug stores and doctor offices prescribe turmeric for arthritis.


The only reason that stops a lot of drugs getting to market is the profit margin involved. Which isn't the fault of the medicine, but our lame system.

Exactly, which is why a term like "alternative medicine" has meaning and value. Alternative medicine is not an alternative to medicine but an alternative to Traditional Medicine, which is locally defined as what a licensed doctor is allowed to prescribe for treatment.

Turmeric could be the most efficacious solution for knee pain, but a U.S. doctor cannot prescribe it because it has not been approved by the FDA for the treatment of knee pain. And it won't be until someone pays for the approval process. Who's going to do that?

There are treatments that are considered alternative medicine because you can't get a doctor to tell you about them (because they will lose their license to practice). Some of them are efficacious. Some of them are bunk.
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out4blood wrote:
There are treatments that are considered alternative medicine because you can't get a doctor to tell you about them (because they will lose their license to practice). Some of them are efficacious. Some of them are bunk.

This is precisely why people like me investigate "alt. medicine".

It is not because we believe magnet waves, barefoot walking, and crystal salt lamps can cure any illness. It is because we believe...no, not "believe"...it is because we know that there are factual, proven, time-honored methods of treating illness that are not given during a doctor's visit.

There seems to be a mental block in some people's minds when it comes to "alt. medicine", as if any follower of alt. medicine follows EVERYTHING that falls under that label. That just doesn't make sense. A quack claiming that special-frequency plates of colored glass can remove turmors can easily be labeled "alternative medicine", but that doesn't discount the truth of - for instance - the health benefits of drinking green tea. Tim Seitz said it best:

Quote:
Alternative medicine is not an alternative to medicine but an alternative to Traditional Medicine


Alt. medicine's purpose is not to replace pills and surgery and scans. It's an alternative. It is an option that is not FDA-approved. By the way, the FDA does not determine what is or is not healthy. It simply determines what can and cannot be advertised as healthy.

Even doctors and surgeons will disagree as to the best method for treating an illness within traditional medicine, so does that discount the entire body of traditional medicine?

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Aurendrosl wrote:
There seems to be a mental block in some people's minds when it comes to "alt. medicine", as if any follower of alt. medicine follows EVERYTHING that falls under that label.


Thats because people who don't believe in magnet waves, barefoot walking, and crystal stalt lamps are the exception, not the rule.
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Erik17 wrote:

First, why no placebo control? Second, which one did better on the stairs? That's probably when knee pain is the worst, and from the methods description that's half the study right there. To then say "There was no difference . . . . except pain on stairs" makes me think it was probably the spice that did worse on the stair pain, but they don't say.


No ethics commitee would approve of a placebo control because iboprofen was shown to be more effective than a placebo in earlier studies.

I have access to the article.

The Curcuma extract did better on the stairs than ibuprofen (about 1 pain score) over the whole treatment. And yes, they admitted that the dose of ibuprofen used in the control group was at the lower level.

Quote:
A sample size of 50 patients per group was calculated as
a noninferiority trial, with the assumption that the significant difference in pain score after treatment with ibuprofen
and C. domestica extracts was 1 point with standard deviation (SD) of 2, 5% type I error, and 20% type II error. Repeated-measures analyses of variance were used to analyze
the main outcomes. The differences in mean value of pain
and time spent on a 100-m walk and going up and down a
flight of stairs at week 6 between ibuprofen and C. domestica
groups were analyzed by independent t-test. The 
2
test was
used to analyze adverse events and satisfaction level. Student’s t-test was used to analyze the compliance of drug intake. The per-protocol analysis was chosen for this noninferiority trial.


This is great for a study like that. That study was really well done!
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Dispaminite wrote:
Aurendrosl wrote:
There seems to be a mental block in some people's minds when it comes to "alt. medicine", as if any follower of alt. medicine follows EVERYTHING that falls under that label.


Thats because people who don't believe in magnet waves, barefoot walking, and crystal stalt lamps are the exception, not the rule.

According to what? Generalization? I would argue that there are many people who adhere to "alt. medicine" without even knowing it (the aforementioned "drink green tea for good health").
 
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Aurendrosl wrote:
Dispaminite wrote:
Aurendrosl wrote:
There seems to be a mental block in some people's minds when it comes to "alt. medicine", as if any follower of alt. medicine follows EVERYTHING that falls under that label.


Thats because people who don't believe in magnet waves, barefoot walking, and crystal stalt lamps are the exception, not the rule.


According to what? Generalization? I would argue that there are many people who adhere to "alt. medicine" without even knowing it (the aforementioned "drink green tea for good health").


Vocalness
 
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Dispaminite wrote:
Aurendrosl wrote:
There seems to be a mental block in some people's minds when it comes to "alt. medicine", as if any follower of alt. medicine follows EVERYTHING that falls under that label.

Thats because people who don't believe in magnet waves, barefoot walking, and crystal stalt lamps are the exception, not the rule.

It's a crazier notion to believe that FDA-approved Traditional Medicine completely encompasses all medicine.
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out4blood wrote:
Dispaminite wrote:
Aurendrosl wrote:
There seems to be a mental block in some people's minds when it comes to "alt. medicine", as if any follower of alt. medicine follows EVERYTHING that falls under that label.

Thats because people who don't believe in magnet waves, barefoot walking, and crystal stalt lamps are the exception, not the rule.

It's a crazier notion to believe that FDA-approved Traditional Medicine completely encompasses all medicine.


Who claimed that?
 
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The MatrixCube wrote:
Erik17 wrote:

First, why no placebo control? Second, which one did better on the stairs? That's probably when knee pain is the worst, and from the methods description that's half the study right there. To then say "There was no difference . . . . except pain on stairs" makes me think it was probably the spice that did worse on the stair pain, but they don't say.


No ethics commitee would approve of a placebo control because iboprofen was shown to be more effective than a placebo in earlier studies.

I have access to the article.

The Curcuma extract did better on the stairs than ibuprofen (about 1 pain score) over the whole treatment. And yes, they admitted that the dose of ibuprofen used in the control group was at the lower level.

Quote:
A sample size of 50 patients per group was calculated as
a noninferiority trial, with the assumption that the significant difference in pain score after treatment with ibuprofen
and C. domestica extracts was 1 point with standard deviation (SD) of 2, 5% type I error, and 20% type II error. Repeated-measures analyses of variance were used to analyze
the main outcomes. The differences in mean value of pain
and time spent on a 100-m walk and going up and down a
flight of stairs at week 6 between ibuprofen and C. domestica
groups were analyzed by independent t-test. The 
2
test was
used to analyze adverse events and satisfaction level. Student’s t-test was used to analyze the compliance of drug intake. The per-protocol analysis was chosen for this noninferiority trial.


This is great for a study like that. That study was really well done!


Thanks for the additional information.

I'm not an expert, but does it say that the extract did 1 point better than ibuprofen in the part you quoted or somewhere else? In this part I just read it as they were both assumed to give a 1-point improvement over the initial pain level. But I could be completely misreading it.
 
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Dispaminite wrote:
Vocalness

Please quantify "vocalness" in the context of our discussion and describe how people who don't believe in magnet waves and salt crystals are "the exception, not the rule" in alt. medicine.

Thanks.
 
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Erik17 wrote:

I'm not an expert, but does it say that the extract did 1 point better than ibuprofen in the part you quoted or somewhere else? In this part I just read it as they were both assumed to give a 1-point improvement over the initial pain level. But I could be completely misreading it.


Sorry , the quote was just to show how the statistics were done. The researchers were very honest and upfront about that.

Quote:
The mean pain scores
on level walking were 5.3 and 5.0, and mean pain scores on
stairs were 5.7 and 6.2 in the C. domestica extracts and the
ibuprofen groups, respectively.


I would post the figures, too, but I'd probably infringe someone's copyright.
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Aurendrosl wrote:
Dispaminite wrote:
Vocalness

Please quantify "vocalness" in the context of our discussion and describe how people who don't believe in magnet waves and salt crystals are "the exception, not the rule" in alt. medicine.

Thanks.


Or?
 
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The MatrixCube wrote:
Erik17 wrote:

I'm not an expert, but does it say that the extract did 1 point better than ibuprofen in the part you quoted or somewhere else? In this part I just read it as they were both assumed to give a 1-point improvement over the initial pain level. But I could be completely misreading it.


Sorry , the quote was just to show how the statistics were done. The researchers were very honest and upfront about that.

Quote:
The mean pain scores
on level walking were 5.3 and 5.0, and mean pain scores on
stairs were 5.7 and 6.2 in the C. domestica extracts and the
ibuprofen groups, respectively.


I would post the figures, too, but I'd probably infringe someone's copyright.

No, I understand. Thanks for the follow-up response!
 
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Dispaminite wrote:
Aurendrosl wrote:
Dispaminite wrote:
Vocalness

Please quantify "vocalness" in the context of our discussion and describe how people who don't believe in magnet waves and salt crystals are "the exception, not the rule" in alt. medicine.

Thanks.


Or?

Or...your comments contribute nothing to the discussion at hand, that's all.
 
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Aurendrosl wrote:
Dispaminite wrote:
Vocalness

Please quantify "vocalness" in the context of our discussion and describe how people who don't believe in magnet waves and salt crystals are "the exception, not the rule" in alt. medicine.

Thanks.


And to answer your question, it's the 34$ billion spend annually by Americans on alternative medicine, 44% of which was spent on "products like fish oil, glucosamine and echinace", the $3 billion spent on homeopathy. The 38 million adults who spend on average of $50 per treatment with alternative medical practitioners.

From a July 2009 MSNBC story.
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Helpful Link..

http://healthland.time.com/2009/07/31/american-spending-on-y...

Key quote:
Quote:
Each year, Americans spend $22 billion treating themselves by taking classes, buying self-help relaxation guides and herbal supplements, for example, with $14.8 billion of that going toward over-the-counter "natural products" such as Echinacea and fish oil. In some 300 million annual visits to chiropractors, massage therapists and other non-physician caregivers, we spend $11.9 billion, about a quarter of out-of-pocket spending for traditional doctor's visits.


Okay-- I think the $22 billion is an unfair number if 6 billion goes to classes and self help books. Likewise, a large chunk of the 11.9 billion is for massage therapy which feels fantastic and is not being done for curative purposes.

A large chunk is apparently for Yoga classes which are about the same as Gym and other exercise methods.

Still, I'd grant north of $30 billion.
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Mac's link highlight one of the major problems with this debate.

They list "Fish Oil" as part of the Alt-Med $$ which is fine if you are going to list multi-vitamins as well.

My doctor has said if I didn't like fish and was unwilling to eat it X times a week I could/should sub in Fish Oil caplets to get my Omega-3 intake up.

I happen to like Fish so I don't take them. But my roommate does take them almost every day.

The fact that dietary supplements of almost every kind keep getting lumped into alt-medicine numbers blurs that line even more.

That would be like lumping in Gym Memberships to the total spent on Alt Medicine.
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