Category: Acupuncture

Are placebo effects genetically determined?

We frequently write about placebo effects here at SBM because understanding placebo effects is essential to understanding a lot of clinical trial science and, most relevant to the topics of this blog, how those promoting unscientific medicine misunderstand and misuse placebo effects to promote quackery. Last week, The NYT published an article asking if placebo effects are genetically determined. The evidence supporting...

/ November 12, 2018
Homeopathy, naturopathy, and acupuncture at the University of Michigan

The Integrative Oncology Scholars Program: Indoctrinating the next generation of “integrative oncology” believers

"Integrative oncology" involves "integrating" pseudoscience, mysticism, and quackery with science-based oncology and co-opting science-based lifestyle modalities as "alternative" in order to provide cover for the quackery. Unfortunately, my alma mater, funded by the National Cancer Institute, is running a course to indoctrinate 100 health care professionals in the ways of "integrative oncology." The Trojan horse of "lifestyle interventions" and "nonpharmacologic treatments for...

/ October 22, 2018

AAFP Promotes Acupuncture

The AAFP is not following its own standards for CME. Its monograph on Musculoskeletal Therapies devotes 1/4 of its content to acupuncture, dry needling, and cupping; and one of its four "key practice recommendations" is to consider electroacupuncture for fibromyalgia.

/ October 9, 2018

Integrative Medicine finally admits it’s attracting bad apples

Integrative medicine proponents finally acknowledge their field is attracting bad apples but fail to identify the real source of their problem: It's rejection of science-based medicine, not lack of training in integrative medicine.

/ September 13, 2018

Acupuncture versus breast cancer treatment-induced joint pain: Spinning another essentially negative study

The investigators behind a recent clinical trial testing acupuncture to treat joint pain caused by aromatase inhibitors used to treat breast cancer are spinning it as a positive study. As is usually the case for acupuncture studies. It isn't

/ September 10, 2018
NCCIH

NCCIH has a new director, and she’s a true believer in acupuncture.

Helene Langevin has been named the new director of the National Center for Complemenary and Integrative Health. Given her history of dodgy acupuncture research, my prediction is that the quackery will flow again at NCCIH, the way it did in the 1990s when Tom Harkin zealously protected it from any attempt to impose scientific rigor.

/ September 3, 2018

Bait and switch in Oregon: Substituting quackery for opioids for Medicaid patients

The Oregon Health Authority is on the verge of passing a radical policy that would require chronic pain patients receiving Medicaid to have their opioids tapered to zero while covering "nonpharmacologic treatments for pain" that include primarily acupuncture, chiropractic, massage therapy, and other "alternative" treatments. Not surprisingly, the Oregon Chronic Pain Task Force, which is responsible for this proposed infliction of quackery...

/ August 30, 2018
Homeopathy, naturopathy, and acupuncture at the University of Michigan

Confronting homeopathy, naturopathy, homeopathy, and other quackademic medicine at my alma mater

Several years back, I was forced to confront quackery at my alma mater in the form of an anthroposophic medicine program at the University of Michigan. The situation has deteriorated since then, as now the Department of Family Medicine there is inviting homeopaths to give talks and teaching acupuncture as credulously as any acupuncturist. Will the disease metastasize to other departments in...

/ August 27, 2018

Private Textbook

The Textbook of Natural Medicine reveals what students of naturopathy are taught. It claims to be a scientific presentation, but it reveals just how unscientific naturopathy is. It mixes good science with bad science, pseudoscience, outright errors of fact, vitalism, philosophy, ancient history, superstition, gullibility, misrepresentations, metaphysics, religion, hearsay, opinion, and anecdotes.

/ August 14, 2018
Quackery duck

ASCO endorses the integration of quackery into breast cancer care

In 2014, the Society for Integrative Oncology first published clinical guidelines for the care of breast cancer patients. Not surprisingly, SIO advocated "integrating" dubious therapies with oncology. Last week, the most influential oncology society, the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), endorsed a 2017 update to the SIO guidelines, thus endorsing the "integration" of quackery with oncology and paving the way for...

/ June 18, 2018