Alternative Medicine: Take 1

Talking about oneself is crass solipsism at worst & a crashing bore at best. Be that as it may, I have to resort to some over-sharing – all for a good porpoise, I mean, purpose. Fear not, I won’t make this a meandering personal narrative. So, bear with me. Or not – At this mo’, I don’t particularly care which.

{Flashback Fades In Here} Many years back, I developed a stomach ailment – Acid Reflux, to be precise. “Developed” – What a word, as if I’m a photographer working on a roll of film πŸ˜‰ It was particularly severe & my doctor hyper-ventilated whenever she heard my symptoms. I had to pat her back sympathetically. She set out heart-breaking wails every time she upped my dosage. My family became woozy with worry when the doctor started bringing in interns to study my “interesting case”. So in the Winter of 2001, a relative offered to cure me thru Reiki.

“Just believe fully in my powers to cure you!” his voice fluted pleasantly. I had to lie down on the sofa & close my eyes. “Er, what happens then?” I asked, cheering up. Alternative medicine is glamorous if nothing else – so I was hoping for fancy-shmancy pyrotechnics. “I move my hands above your stomach for 10 minutes!”. “What, that’s all?” I asked, outraged. Any reader of my post knows I’m a skeptic: I was deeply suspicious of Reiki by now. I’ve swallowed enough Zantac to fell a giant, 1 of the interns opined that I had no oesophagus left & hence had no business to be alive – and this bloke thought randomly flailing his arms would cure me.

I chewed my nails for a few minutes pensively. There are many things that we don’t know. So I agreed in-principle that Reiki might work. I suspended all judgement & put myself in his hands – literally. After the session, he asked me “Did you feel your body bounce off the sofa? That usually happens during healing!” I mulled over this honestly & told him – “No”. “But, you must feel some heat on the stomach now!” he piped in, crest-fallen. “Er, my acidity keeps my stomach rather hot & lively all the time. I didn’t feel anything unusual. And I don’t feel better either” I said helpfully. “I…I can’t continue this treatment” he said nervously. “Why not? I persisted. {Flashback Fades Out Here}

The Stitch On My Side
Seriously now. I’ve been watching with increasing discomfort at how the mind-share of science is shrinking in the 21st century. Its premature to order a coffin – but educated people are ready to jump head-long into any “New Age Cure” flapdoodle. Pseudo-scientific healing methods spring up more quickly these days than mushrooms after a rain. For the record, science doesn’t brush aside anything that can’t be proven. If some form of alternative medicine is unable to show how it works, but is able to cure patients – I won’t attempt to deconstruct it. The means or the end – if neither can be shown – stop sniveling. Skeptics will jump in for the kill, with pleasure.

If you came to this site wanting to hear plaudits sung on Alternative Medicine, you’ll be sorely disappointed. I’ll explain as lucidly as possible why I don’t have a scintilla of belief in unproven methods. Now, how should we go about methodically figuring out whether an Alternative Healing technique is any good? Here are some indications that some mischief is afoot & all’s not well in Eden:

Power of Placebos
If the miracle cure says, “You’ve gotta believe in it for it to work” – That’s a clear signal that they absolve themselves of all responsibility. If the treatment didn’t work, they can always blame it on your “attitude”. If it does work, they get free word-of-mouth publicity. Either way, they win. If it works, its the “Placebo Effect” – also called “Faith Healing” – masquerading as new age jiggery-pokery.

The “Placebo Effect” is a well documented phenomenon, where the patient feels better – not because of the munificence of the treatment, but because the patient believes fully in it. Most of the benign alternative therapies work this way, by harnessing your own belief. Approximately, 35% of the people are susceptible & they feel marginally to considerably better after ingesting placebos. Pharmaceutical companies have to conduct Double-blind Experiments – Where the experimenter doesn’t know who the “Test” & “Control” subjects are. They are expected to prove that their drugs work better than “Sugar Pills” – which is what is used as placebos in their control experiments. Ergo, they have to prove that their remedies work as advertised.

Practitioners of quackery have no such obligations. What isn’t rigorously tested may not work.

Nature <> Benign
I was jawing with my hair-dresser Amy on her mom’s impending menopause. Amy said “Oh, I’ve put my mom on natural estrogen!” – She was positively beaming & looked at me like a Labrador Retriever in dire need of petting. “Ah – Excellent. But, Amy, have you checked with her doctor before starting her on this?” I asked. “B-But – Plant Estrogens are natural!!” said Amy indignantly. “Well, I wouldn’t try it without a doctor’s say-so” I persisted. “Really? Not even something Natural?” wondered Amy, banishing further thought. As far as she was concerned, that settled it.

“Well, Rattlesnake Venom & Latin American Toad Poison are natural. Hot Lava cremating us ahead of schedule is natural. A tiger chomping someone’s butt off is natural. Heck, aging & death are natural. I don’t see you queueing up for any of that!” – I said. Actually, I didn’t. My good sense prevailed. Arguing with someone wielding scissors is a no-no in my book.

Just because natural drugs don’t have “chemicals” doesn’t make them good for you. There are definitely some very beneficial natural therapies – but it would be a fallacy to think they are good because they are natural. Before you lose fistful of $$ for that natural remedy, research it for contra-indications. For all you know, it may be a poison. Or, it may interact with other drugs that you take.

Weasel Words
Look for “Weasel Words”, the Lingua Franca of quacks. The advertiser may manipulate you by hiding behind ambiguity, by being dodgy, shifty & crafty. Stated simply, you can’t accuse them of being straight arrows πŸ˜‰ Examples are:

1. “Studies done by leading doctors prove this!!!” – Which doctors did this study? Who determined they are “leading”? Who commissioned the study?
2. “It has been well accepted that our capsule gives excellent results!!!” – Accepted by whom? Define “Excellence” in terms of relief – 10%, 20% – What?
3. “90% of the people saw improvement after our electro-static massage!!!” – How many people were studied? How many times was this study repeated? “Improvement” is an ambiguous word – How did the subjects feel 1, 3 or 6 months after the treatment?

Such claimants hope that you won’t poke your nose & demand specifics. If their treatment is so good, why don’t they get an FDA certification? Or, publish their findings before an August committee of doctors, who can independently verify their claims? You’d think they’ll be making a beeline to present their therapy & win the Nobel! If their claims are true, they will. On the other hand, if they are liars & cheats, they have every reason to avoid peer reviews.

“Ancient Therapy” Ploys
Some of you may now say, “There are age old cures that work, you git!”. Granted, there are some ancient therapies that work. Neem extracts, Tea Tree Oil (good for nail fungus ; for the nail, I mean – not the fungus), Vajradanti Tooth Powder, Candied ginger for nausea – its a long list. Most – not all – of these cures were arrived upon by the ancient people after repeated experimentation & observation. That’s the basis of science.

But, before using any “ancient” therapy, check how old it really is. Reiki for e.g., is touted as an ancient therapy – if you consider “150 years old” ancient πŸ˜€ So, to get public benediction, a shyster simply needs to state that their therapy is based “On the Ancient Wisdom of Japan/China/Tibet/India”. Poor Iraq, Iran & Egypt. They have older cultures, but they haven’t managed to capture sufficient woo-woo mind-share.

Please note that modern practitioners of ancient therapies make marked departures from the proscribed medical texts! Some acupuncturists for e.g. – pass a mild current thru the needles. I may be wrong, but something tells me that electricity wasn’t freely available 1000 years back πŸ™‚ Still think its based on “age old” wisdom?

Some of the ancient therapies – we know now – are extremely harmful. Certain Ayurvedic medicines use Antimony compounds – and they are as toxic as Arsenic. Semi-literate people scoop, pound & package these chemicals cheerfully. What, they are gonna exercise special precaution because you are buying? Improper synthesis of such drugs can kill you. Per Ayurvedic texts, these compounds should be fired at a certain temperature to lose their toxicity. And no qualified person is regulating all this. If someone is dead set (pun intended) in popping these pills, I’ll get some for them πŸ˜‰

Summing Up
Consider this – There’s no money in skepticism & cart-loads in mumbo-jumbo. Who is more likely to gip you? Me or them? I have to catch my breath – None of us is getting younger & I’m totally winded out after all this pontificating.

Whenever I exhibit my inner skeptic, I get hate mail from people, threatening a punch in my solar plexus – and I didn’t know I had this “solar” gimcrack πŸ˜† If I’m not killed or maimed – and otherwise feel reasonably alive & limping, I’ll pen a follow-up post on how quacks abuse science to confound people & sell more of their tripe.


Comments

  1. Quote
    senthil (subscribed) said February 15, 2008, 2:35 pm:

    To be frank, i could not figure out, whether you support or oppose alternative medicines.. πŸ™

    There is a saying in the rural side.. “kudal yetham theriyama koadi ruba selavu senchanam ” .. i do not know how to translate this.. but, in my child hood, whenever, i get dysentry, i would be sent to a paati, who would massage my stomach and will ask me to jump three times.. and the illness gets solved after that..

    And when i got mumps (ammai), i would be placed amidst full of neem leaves, with daily diet of saltless watery rice (uppu illatha kanchi) and around 10 tender coconut per day.. and when i got chicken pox, neem seeds (aamanakku) will be grind along with manchal & neem leaves, and applied at all the bubble spots in my body, (in addition to above diets)..

    And whenever i complain of stomach pain, a few ml of “Oma water” will be administered… and once in a month, i would be given few teaspoon fulls of castor oil, after which i have to run behind the bathroom for around half a day.. πŸ™‚

    Sometimes, for the stomach pain, leaves of Nochi, vadanarayanan, and other plants, would be boiled down, and given as kashayam..

    Most of the times, it worked..

    You know.. in traditional siddha medicine, even Bull shit is used as ingredient of the medicine.. πŸ™‚ .. (For your info, bullshit is same as cow dung.. the name matters here most πŸ™‚ .. )

  2. Quote
    senthil (subscribed) said February 15, 2008, 2:42 pm:

    I have tons of harsh experiences with allopathic doctors.. particularly, the gastroenterologists.. in the name of science, the looting they do is unbearable..

    I bet.. if you go to a new gastro in future, the first thing they will ask is to undergo endoscopy.. and then scan.. and after all, they will formulate a theory, and explain you.. (without even verifying, if their findings is true or not..)..

    Vasoolraja MBBS – it seems to be a true story rather than a film..

  3. Quote
    Sridhar N.K said February 15, 2008, 5:25 pm:

    Senthil,

    It sounds like you are in agreement with Priya’s contention – watch out for the crooks. If you think there are crooks in formal medicine trying to deprive you of your hard earned (insert currency here), imagine how many are around if unregulated environment.

    The examples that you have given are all very interesting. Sounds like every one of them is a true and tested ailment. Here’s another example for you – if I am suffering from a 105 degree fever and I am about to go into seizures, I am not so sure my family would let me run to the “patti” and for her to tell me to jump up and down a couple of times and send me home πŸ™‚

    What if someone is suffering from cancer? Where would that person have to get massaged? I fully support tried and tested medicine (alternate or otherwise), the key operating word being tested. Yes, there are crooks in every field of medicine, more so in the unregulated field.

    My personal opinion – If I have to eat bull shit, I’d rather take it in a pill form πŸ™‚

  4. Quote
    Sukumar (subscribed) said February 15, 2008, 8:08 pm:

    Great post Priya with a lot of insights clothed in humor.

    Senthil, maybe you missed the point where Priya talks about how there are real ancient remedies (we call them grandma’s medicine these days) that work. As you say they do work. I would recommend that you re-read the post without your ideology glasses.

    Did Priya say that there are no crooks in Allopathy? The metholdogy she is proposing applies to all manner of crooks not just alternative medicine touters.

    Sreedhar,
    you are right. when i have a serious illness i better goto a qualified doctor which in this day and age means allopathic. I have actually consulted Siddha doctors for illnesses that Allopathy couldn’t cure and it actually worked. I wish the Siddha doctors would take the effort to get FDA certification. If they did that Siddha medicine will spread far and wide. Instead we choose to cloak Siddha and Ayurveda in Quack’s Clothing and get them relegated to the category of fringe therapies or grudingly – alternative medicine.

  5. Quote

    Senthil – Thanks for your comment.

    Did you bother reading my post? At all? Or did you jump in with a comment after glancing at the title?

    You seem to have missed the whole point about the post, haven’t you? There are no “sides” to be taken. Its illogical to club all alternative therapies together. Think about Valluvar’s “Mei Porul”, when applied to Science. That’s what skepticism is.

    Some ancient therapies work, provided they are administered by someone truly knowledgeable. No university is handing out degrees, so we have no way of differentiating the quacks from the real healers.

    There are no cures once someone gets small-pox or chicken-pox, so the neem leaves are the best bet. There are no medicines in allopathy for curing liver ailments – Siddha has an herbal medicine that works wonderfully. But NK makes a good point. What about febrile seizures? What about an emergency brain surgery? AIDS? Can the patti take care of those?

    So you never go to the allopathy doctors? Because you’ve concluded that they are all “Vasool Rajas & Ranis”?

  6. Quote

    NK – Thanks for your comment.

    That’s exactly what I mean. There are way too many quacks in unregulated environments. People who are educated gleefully sign-up for “Refloxology” treatments. Without checking if that treatment has any merit. I just want people to check the veracity of claims before jumping head-long in an alternative therapy.

  7. Quote

    Sukumar – Thanks for your comment.

    Only romantics would love unregulated environments, especially when applied to medicine. Heck, isn’t that the same as writing software without methodlogy, tools & process quality?

    Many medicines used in formal medicine these days are derived from native therapies. Only, the native therapies were put thru a rigorous study, the dosage was perfected etc.

    Not all native therapy is useful though. Which is why blanket belief & disbelief are irrational.

  8. Quote

    Priya, .. i agree with both your post & comment.. (This time, i did not have anything contradicting you πŸ™‚ . i just made my points.. ) ..

    Btw, i have spent more than 50k in last two years for allopathic treatments.. seen many doctors in apollo and other major hospitals.. i have far lot of interesting (but bitter) things to share…

    my observation is, allopathic and siddha, ayurvedic can be excellent complementary for each other..

    Sukumar.. as you said, siddha & ayurvedic medicine should be perfected.. but i feel, more importantly, the proceedures described in ancient texts should not be altered.. some might not be acceptable to science.. but as priya mentioned, if ends are good, then it can be practised as it is..

    Long back, my father was very interested in siddha, and he prepared a medicine called “Aindhennai Thailam” decoding texts from ancient texts and it served the whole village for all kinds of joint pains .. (Please note that I am not romanticising it.. i am just sharing what i came across… ) ..

    Sreedhar,
    I agree with you..for 105 degree fever, we should not go to paati πŸ™‚ .. even what i mentioned, is only applicable for childrens, and not in all circumstances.. we can consider these as indigenous traditional knowlede, which was developed over generations.. we should be pragmatic in choosing allopathic & alternative..

    And for that cow dung i mentioned, its a different process.. its widely used in preparing a product called “Panchakavya & Dasakavya), and administered to poultry for inducing growth.. In ancient texts, it has been mentioned to be administered to humans too. Now its not applied to humans
    But, used to stimulate growth in plants, that’s gave encouraging results more than the pesticides & fertilisers..

  9. Quote

    Priya,

    In native therapies, since the ends are important, it will survive only if gives results.. so, people will automatically reject those, if anything did not give results.. automatically, all those medicines/treatment will lead to natural death, if it did not serve its purpose..

    IF government could regulate this field, it would be excellent & cheap means of health remedy for people.. ie, to strengthen & streamline the knowledge possessed by our society.. its really paining to see, how such knowledge is being losed now, in the guise of allopathic supremacy.. My own patti, who used give lot of alternative medicines to me earlier, now started depending on allopathic.. Castor oil, once used to relieve pains, is now replaced by creams & pain killers .. 100’s of years of traditional knowledge is lost suddenly now almost everywhere.. dont know if its documented anywhere…

  10. Quote

    Senthil – I don’t believe in a big government. Our govt is already spending way too much money inefficiently. NGOs are a better idea if we want to protect & preserve such ideas.

    Sorry to hear about your bitter experiences. There are unscrupulous doctors in formal medicine who order a medley of tests without curing anything.

    True, many ineffective remedies would have been abandoned after trial & error. But – I don’t think people are all that discerning about who’s a good native doctor & who isn’t. Many of these native doctors mix religion, ghosts and medicine – and use fear to control people. That’s where regulating it will help.

    As you yourself said, many effective ancient therapies are not used anymore & no one remembers these. And I agree that we need to combine effective remedies from various systems of medicine.

  11. Quote

    Thanks priya.. I will attempt something for you .. by some crude remedy for your acidity.. πŸ™‚ (if you can follow it πŸ™ )

    Peel off the skin of Aloe Vera, and swallow few pieces. If taken for two times a day for atleast three days, you will feel your stomach getting cooled.. you have to bear bitter smell in your breath for few hours.. πŸ™‚

    (Aloe vera is best curator for ulcers & intestinal inflammations)..

  12. Quote

    Priya
    Nice one. I take this as unbiased review of alternative medicines. I just recalled Surya’s character from movie ‘Pita Magan’ Actually I had experience with this alternative medicine, last year my dad was suffered from kidney failure and that time Tamil Nadu govt. banned all kidney transplantation because of massive fraud. So all so called half cooked “vaithiars” marketed their version of unproved kidney treatment. But I strongly disagreed all those claims and their case studies. I opted for Baxtor’s CAPD treatment, which is little expensive but affordable by me. Today when I spoke with my dad, he informed me that one of our neighbor, who went thru the same problem as my father opted for “vaithiar’s” treatment, passed away. Our neighbor also can afford this advance treatment but he might be cheated by one of this “vaithiars” or he just fell into their trap.

    Subba

  13. Quote

    Senthil – Thanks for your kind suggestion. Yes, I’ve heard from my grandmom that Aloe Vera has a cooling effect, though I’ve never tried it for my stomach so far. I’ve also found that cold milk helps.

    After trying Siddha (which made my condition worse), I decided to try behavior & lifestyle modification – to take full control of myself. And I’m very glad to say that I’m not on regular medication anymore πŸ˜€ Once in a while, I suffer searing pain – and either age-old remedies (like the one you suggested) or a couple of Zantacs at that time – are enough.

    My doctor is shocked & delighted at my improvement.

  14. Quote

    Subba – Thanks for your comment.

    I’m shocked to hear about your neighbor. In general, I find the average Indian less informed than his/her European/American peers – and that includes medicine. How did your neighbor’s son/daughter/nephews/nieces let this happen – didn’t they advise against going to the Vaithiyar?

    I wish stem cell research would speed up & make waiting lists for organ transplants a memory of the past. And I also hope that life-saving treatments would become more affordable.

  15. Quote

    Yes…i’m also shocked, as of i know they started dialysis and don’t know what made them to change decision down the line. I’m following stem cell research also, but looks like conservative here won’t let it happen.
    Subba

  16. Quote

    Subba – Too bad. They abandoned dialysis mid-way??

    Oh, the ultra-conervatives who oppose stem-cell research. Their stance is too moronic for words. I wish they’ll do us the favor of stopping further breeding – that will greatly improve the human gene pool.

  17. Quote

    Priya,

    There is one major rejection criteria for siddha medicine.. IF some one offers siddha medicine just like allopathic medicine, then you can very well reject it .. because, in most of the siddha treatment, the body is conditioned before treatment begins. Maintaining food habits is an essential part of this treatment. This is the main reason, why siddha fails for many person.. (you might have heard.. “Unavae marunthu.. marunthae unavu”)

    I too sufferred from intestinal problems for long, and after taking doctor’s medicines, the burning increased day by day.. I went to Arya Vaidya Pharmacy, and they gave me a kashayam “Lasunerandhadhi”, and it almost had the same cooling effect and i could say, the problem almost cured…

    From my experience, for problems like acidity, Ulcers, allopathy will be ineffective.. They have only Gel, & some pain killers, which would be temporary..

    I feel, Taking zentac will be worsening the situation for you.. because, the chemical may make us not feel the pain, but it will further damage the inner walls of stomach..

  18. Quote

    Senthil – I’m aware of the food restrictions needed in Siddha. Don’t you think the Siddha doctor I consulted would have told me about it? I have high levels of self control & will power. So I followed all the restrictions to a “T”. I’m saying the medicine was ineffective for my condition. Period.

    For the record, Zantac is not a painkiller, as I’m sure you know. It doesn’t dull the pain, but neutralizes & prevents excess acid in the stomach.

    In my previous comment, I had mentioned that I’m almost healed now – not because of any medicine, but because I realized what my triggers were & modified my lifestyle & approach.

  19. Quote
    Maheswari said February 17, 2008, 12:12 pm:

    Priya,
    Nice write up.”Alternative medicine” is a big no no for me.But what about “complementary medicine ” , which eases/reduces the discomfort/pain during/after the conventional treatment.I would go if some kind of aromotherapy reduces my discomfort after a huge surgery..but ofcourse with a load of pills..:)

  20. Quote

    Maheswari – Thanks for your comment.

    I think it all depends on the what the complementary medicine is. Does it really reduce discomfort? And more importantly, does it interfere with the treatment that the patient is already receiving? I think the 2nd question is more important than the 1st question.

    Many (not all) complementary medicines are simple remedies worth $5, but they are sold in fancy jars with mystical names & cost $50. A foot massage is cheaper. Call it “reflexology” & its price tag – not effectiveness – goes up.

    Though there are several effective complementary therapies. Like ginger to alleviate motion sickness & cumin extract for an upset stomach.

  21. Quote

    @ Priya – “Doctor is delighted?” – Oh!! She is losing a casestudy??? Good for you, but not for the interns… He he. just kidding. How can someone swallo aloe vera- it’s gel is too greasy to touch

    I have few alternative medicine tips… TRIED AND TESTED ON ME!!!

    For dandruff – split aloe leaf and keep a handuful of fenugreek seeds in between, & after few days, the seeds sprout, dry them in sun and put them in coconut oil, use it every week on the hair and wash with a good/gentle shampoo.

    For acidity – chill milk, biscuits will do; regulate food habits, lessen spicy food intake & NEVER GET STRESSED.

    Carrot with milk – for facial skin, Carrot paste with Milk; a gentle face massage.

    Many would know this, I know!!! If you can tolerate the pain/discomfort, and want to make yourself a sample specimen, wait for cure by alternative medicines! If you want an IMMEDIATE cure & get back to work ASAP, start taking the FDA approved, 21 CFR Part 11 adherening manufacturer’s ALLOPATHIC drugs.

    But choose a non-money snatchy doctor if you dont want to burn a hole in your pocket. Have a healthy day!

    Rupi

  22. Quote

    Rupi – Thanks for your comment & your suggestions.

    Since this is right up your alley, I was eagerly awaiting your comments.

    Yes, I’ve tried remedies 1 & 2. Remedy 2 works beautifully – fruit flavored yoghurt works fine if there isn’t any milk. Remedy 1 works fine for mild to moderate dandruff, especially if its acute. Coal Tar or Selenium Sulfide shampoos are the only ones that work for severe dandruff, esp if its chronic.

    My skin is beyond help πŸ™‚ Mild remedies don’t work for extreme situations. The only medicines that can help my skin are teratogenic, so I’m giving such treatments a wide berth.

  23. Quote

    Good one Priya…

    I agree to both Priya and Senthil.

    In Alternative medicine, be it Siddha or Ayurvedha it all depends on whom we go to consult. Nowadays, even Siddha specialists, wanting the patient to be cured very soon, they prescribe some heavy stuff to get early results. But in Siddha, there is no early cure like allopathy.
    Allopathy cures you with the start of the dosage itself. But Siddha finds the problem based on the symptoms, analyses the individual’s body (hot or cold or any other type), seasons the body towards remedy by way of food habits (they also suggest not to take non-veg or avoid brinjal/tomato etc) till the treatment period, customise the medicines accordingly and then it takes a complete course which lasts for atleast 45 to 90 days.
    In Siddha or Natural med many ailments dont show up again. That is they have permanent cure. Whereas in Allopathy (not in all cases) we hear that the same ailment starts again after few years or months, wherein you need to go to he doc again get checked and then go for a little higher or heavier dosage than last time, because your body becomes resistant to the earlier medicine and seeks heavier dose next time for the ailment to cure.
    Anyway, good thoughts shared here. Keep up good work.
    Saravanan

  24. Quote

    Saravanan – Thanks for your comment.

    I agree with you that allopathy cures quicker. Rupika also mentioned this. So, if speed of cure is what we want, we should certainly turn to formal medicine. And as you mention, we should carefully choose the doctors for alternative medicine – someone who has been successful in treating similar conditions in the past.

    Formal medicine has no cure for some ailments. Likewise, Ayurvedha & Siddha can’t cure all ailments either. So, “Approach With Caution” is the phrase to bear in mind I think.

  25. Quote

    Siddha and Ayurveda and time-taking remedies, which can be undergone for only certain ailments. Incase of painful, terminal diseases, just rush to get it cured & stop the pain with allopathy! Siddha/Ayur cures for sure, but need to wait for a long time.

    Stemcell therapy is not only the astonishing development in medicine, nanomedicine is another oceanous subject getting explored! Scientists are trying to model proteins using nanorobots with medicines with haptics! The nanorobots coated/encapsulated with medicines will go into the body and with haptic technology, it will reach the destination/target where it has to deliver the medicine and start releasing the medicine, over a period of time (to be very precise, sustained & targeted delivery system using nanorobots with medicine)!

    Haptic interfaces are used in medical simulation, that might be useful in minimally invasive procedures (laparoscopy), and remote surgery using teleoperators. In future, a surgeon can operate remotely, s/he can even do multiple surgeries at a time using Haptic interfaces.

  26. Quote

    Another funny write up Priya…

    In my opinion…I feel people should take any therapy as long one is comfortable with it..I mean one thing is certain…a person can get well if we wants to get well…so i mean recovery is based on belief and trust one has on the doctor and medicine as well…

    Some people say Yoga is healing..so people believe on “Vepalle Adikarthe ” :).. I guess faith is an important thing here …

  27. Quote

    Rupika – Yes, nanomedicine is an amazing field. Right now, delivering meds to the target area is becoming a huge pain in the behind. And if haptic technology delivers its promise, all that will be a thing of the past.

    On the whole, exciting times ahead.

    Perhaps you’ll be kind enough to write a post on nano-medicine?

  28. Quote

    Karthik – Thanks for your comment.

    I’ve known many people who valiantly fought to survive, but they collapsed because the treatment wasn’t effective. If all it took for people to get well is the will to get well, we don’t need doctors.

    A person’s belief – Placebo Effect – kicks in only for those that are susceptible. They could chew a button, thinking they were given aspirin & hey presto – their headache would be gone. Even for such impressionable people, placebo effect doesn’t work all the time. So, while a positive mental attitude & the will to survive will help – undergoing a proven, effective treatment is even more important.

  29. Quote
    senthil (subscribed) said February 19, 2008, 2:26 pm:

    Today, i met my friend, who recently got detected of TB. He is taking ayurvedic cum Naturopathy treatment for TB, and he says, he believes in this completely.. Through sustained dieting, detoxification of body, and strengthening immune system, the doctor aspires to cure his ailment..

    I just got reminded of what karthick said.. Its depends on patients belief. In ayurvedic text, there is a suggestion that a vaithiyar should not start treatment unless the patient believes him..

    Similarly, a naturopathy doctor in Theni District, has more than two thousand case studies, of treating ciritical illness, like diabetes, cancer etc even without medicine.. He showed me the photos, how he cured a diabetic person who had serious injury in his leg.. Since these kind of positive results doesnt get noticed, the general public is not aware of it..

    For AIDS, many people are taking siddha medicines, rather than allopathic.. i saw a traditional siddha doctor, challenging in public, through TV’s and Paper ADs that any one can prove his claim false.. he is now more now..

    As rupika said.. Allopathic is life saving in many circumstances.. I personally, suffered from killing stomach pain, 4 times in the past.. and nothing but allopathic injections brought me back to normal.. But, after that, I pursued with precautionary and ayurvedic treatments, and got considerable results..

    Priya.. i referred the details of zantac, at the following site..
    http://www.drugs.com/zantac.html

    Its a brand name for ranitidine.. The side effects mentioned in the above URL is more alarming than the supposed cure..

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