Introduction: This study is a prospective uncontrolled observational study to evaluate how individualized homeopathy influences the personal well-being index for adults (PWI-A).
Methods: 50 Patients between 18 and 62 years old who are willing to receive homeopathic treatment for their chronic diseases were surveyed using PWI-A before and after they got homeopathic treatment in 2017. The sum of the PWI-A score results were compared before and after treatment with homeopathic medicine.
Results: There are statistical differences between before and after treatment scores with 95% confidence (Sig. (2-tailed 0.000<0.05). The mean total sum of the score before treatment was 47.2 . At 4 to 6 weeks after the treatments the mean of the total sum of score increased up to 54.92.
Fourteen people had pain and the mean of Visual Analog Score (VAS ) was 7.71 before treatment. After the first follow up the VAS score decreased to 3.79. There are statistical differences between the scores for before and after treatments with 95% confidence (Sig. (2tailed 0.000<0.05).
Conclusion: Classical homeopathy lowers chronic pain and has a beneficial effect on the subjective Personal Well Being Index in adults, as indicated by VAS scores.
The World Health Organization (WHO) describes health as a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. (1) Since the WHO revised the definition to include mental and social well-being, how can we measure well-being? The research of Bekir Fatih Meral’s study using the Personal Wellbeing Index-Adult (PWI-A)— developed by the International Wellbeing Group (2006) and one of the most commonly used scales—determined that the index could be a useful assessment tool when it comes to measuring positive psychology and quality of life in a sample of Turkish adults. (2)
Dr. Hahnemann, developer of homeopathy, explains the law of homeopathy, ‘like cures like’ in Aphorism 27: ‘The curative power of medicines, therefore, depends on their symptoms, similar to the disease but superior to it in strength, so that each individual case of disease is most surely, radically, rapidly and permanently annihilated and removed only by a medicine capable of producing (in the human system) in the most similar and complete manner the totality of its symptoms, which at the same time are stronger than the disease. (3)
Simply, it means that a particular substance can cure a disease whose symptomatology in the patient is similar to that caused by the same substance on healthy subjects.
In Aphorism 255, Hahnemann suggests that the cure would begin with the improvement of the mind: If an improvement in the disposition and mind have already been observed, the medicine must have affected positive diminution of the disease, or, if sufficient time has not yet elapsed for this, it will soon affect it. Now, supposing the remedy is perfectly appropriate’ (3).
Hahnemann’s idea about the mind being cured was later developed by Dr. Constantine Herring and is today known as Herring’s Law of Cure. Healing goes from head down and from inside to outside. In other words, from most important system to least important, with most recent symptom treated first. (4-5). Meaning first mind and mood symptoms improve and well-being. This is a prospective observational study to evaluate classical homeopathy; individualized homeopathy; influences personal well-being index and pain.
Patients between 18-62 years old who came to our private practice to get homeopathic treatment; and volunteered to be part of this study included. They had both oral and written consent. The Personal Well-being Index for adults (PWI-A) survey given to them and explained to give a score for each question from 1 to 10. A physician who had 5 years’ of experience in classical homeopathy had given the chosen remedy as befits their totality of symptoms. 30C, 200C, 1M remedies were chosen according to patients’ needs and given in oral dry dose only once.
All patients were asked for follow up in 4 to 6 weeks after their first dose. A new survey has been completed by the patients. Both the patients and the physician did not know the previous scores. Consequently, the total scores have been compared for before and after treatment.
PWI-A is used because it has been translated to Turkish and studied on Turkish people and concluded that it could be a useful assessment tool when it comes to measuring positive psychology and quality of life in Turkey. (2)
There are statistical differences between the scores for before and after treatments within %95 confidential (Sig. (2-tailed 0.000<0.05). The mean total sum of score was 47,2 and within 4-6 weeks after treatment the mean of the total sum of score was 54,92 with total N:50. Out of 50 patients, 11 of the patients were male with the mean sum of scores 55 before treatment and 61 after treatment. The remaining 39 Female patients with mean sum of scores 45 before treatment and 53,21 after treatment. (Picture 1-2)
Only 14 people had pain and the mean of VAS score was 7.71 before treatment and after the first follow up, VAS score was 3.79. There are statistical differences between the scores for before and after treatments with %95 confidential (Sig. (2-tailed 0.000<0.05).(Picture1)
Patients diagnosis were carrying as in the table 1 and the remedies chosen were shown in table 2. And survey used is Table 3.
Table 3: Personal Well Being Index -Adult
Classical homeopathy has a beneficial effect on subjective Personal Well Being Index in adults and lowers the chronic pain. Other positive reactions could not be excluded with this preliminary data. Further double blinded controlled studies must be performed to evaluate that this kind of scale could be a tool to monitor the progress of homeopathic improvement.
There have been many studies on the effects of homeopathic medicine. Below is a tiny sample:
There was a double blind randomized clinical trial designed in Germany to evaluate homeopathic effects on acute stress response, well-being and sleep. They found that stress induced cortisol levels did not differ but the verum group had lower norepinephrine levels and better sleep quality than the placebo group. (6)
Another Randomized Placebo controlled double blind multi-center study with 150 non-small cell lung cancer patient showed significant improvement in the homeopathy added group, compared to placebo after 9-18 weeks of homeopathic treatment in quality-of-life scale.
Also, survival was significantly longer in the homeopathy group after 730 days: with median 435 days than placebo with median 257 days and control group with median 228 days. (7)
A pragmatic RCT assessed the effects of individualized homeopathic treatment on global health status and subjective well-being in 373 patients with a variety of different stage 3 and 4 tumors. They found significant improvements in both parameters after four months of follow-up.
They also noted significant improvements in the group receiving individualized homeopathy compared to the control group in a variety of other domains including physical, cognitive, and emotional functioning as well as fatigue, pain, insomnia, and appetite. (8)
A recent study from Mexico compared individualized homeopathy to fluoxetine to placebo in 133 peri- and post-menopausal women with moderate to severe depression who were not currently taking psychiatric medications or engaged in psychotherapy.
After six weeks of treatment, individuals in both the homeopathy and fluoxetine groups had a significant decrease in depression compared to the placebo group. However, only individuals in the homeopathy group had an improvement in their menopause symptoms compared to the placebo group. (9)
A study from Switzerland investigated patient satisfaction and perception of side effects in homeopathy compared with conventional care in a primary care setting. They sent questionnaires to the patients and 3126 responded. They concluded that in a primary care setting patient satisfaction is higher with homeopathic treatment compared to conventional treatment. Furthermore, certified homeopathic treatment is perceived as a low-risk therapy with less side effects than conventional treatmnt. (10) ‘
A public Health project from Germany within a prospective documentation of over 5000 acupuncture and over 900 homoeopathy patients showed benefit of treatment with middle to large-sized effects for the quality-of-life questionnaire SF-36.
Since the results showed evidence of a subjective benefit for patients from acupuncture and homoeopathy, this may account for the increase in demand for these treatments especially when patients are chronically ill and unsatisfied with the conventional treatment given previously. (11)
A special thanks to the homeopathic doctor Martien Brands who mentored and encouraged me. And a special thanks to Dr. Pakize Yigit who did the statistics.
Disclosure: The author has declared no conflicts of interest.
2- Psychometric properties of Turkish form of the Personal Well-Being Index-Adult of Happiness
& Well-Being, Bekir Fatih Meral; The Journal of Happiness & Well-Being, 2014, 2(2), 119-131 3- Organon of Medicine ; Samuel Hahnemann ;B.Jain Publishers; January 1976 4-Hahnemann’s three rules concerning the rank of symptoms; Hering C.Hahnemann Monthly, 1865; 1: 5-12.
5-The development and use of Hering’s Law Assessment Tool (HELAT) in clinical trials;Hugh Harrison; HRI Research Article Issue 18 Winter 2012
6- Effects of a Homeopathic Combination Remedy on the Acute Stress Response, Well-Being, and Sleep: A Double-Blind, Randomized Clinical Trial ; Juliane Hellhammer, MSc, and Melanie Schubert, PhD ;THE JOURNAL OF ALTERNATIVE AND COMPLEMENTARY MEDICINE Volume 19, Number 2, 2013, pp. 161–169
7-Homeopathic Treatment as an Add-On Therapy May Improve Quality of Life and Prolong Survival in Patients with Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer: A Prospective, Randomized, PlaceboControlled,Double-Blind, Three-Arm, Multicenter Study ; Micheal Frass, Peter Lechleitner; The Oncologist 2020;25:e1930–e1955
8-Influence of adjunctive classical homeopathy on global health status and subjective wellbeing in cancer patients – A pragmatic randomized controlled trial; Frass M, Friehs H, Thallinger C, et al.Complement Therapy Med. 2015 Jun; 23(3):309–17.
9-. Individualized homeopathic treatment and fluoxetine for moderate to severe depression in peri- and postmenopausal women (HOMDEP-MENOP study): a randomized, double-dummy, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial; Macías-Cortés EDC, Llanes-González L, Aguilar-Faisal L, Asbun-Bojalil J ;PloS One. 2015; 10(3): e0118440.
10-Patient satisfaction and side effects in primary care: An observational study comparing homeopathy and conventional medicine Florica Marian, Kerstin Joost, Krishan D Saini, Klaus von Ammon, André Thurneysen and André Busato; BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine 2008, 8:52
11-Measuring the effects of acupuncture and homoeopathy in general practice: An uncontrolled prospective documentation approach, Corina Güthlin, Oliver Lange and Harald Walach; BMC Public Health 2004, 4:6