Latest Naturopathic Medicine Research

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  • NATUROPATHY IN THE LITERATURE
      PubMed Abstracts - Some citations may include links to full-text content from PubMed Central and publisher web sites. [Source: National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM). NCBI Copyright and Disclaimers]
    • Selling falsehoods? A cross-sectional study of Canadian naturopathy, homeopathy, chiropractic and acupuncture clinic website claims relating to allergy and asthma. -
      Related Articles

      Selling falsehoods? A cross-sectional study of Canadian naturopathy, homeopathy, chiropractic and acupuncture clinic website claims relating to allergy and asthma.

      BMJ Open. 2016 Dec 16;6(12):e014028

      Authors: Murdoch B, Carr S, Caulfield T

      Abstract
      OBJECTIVE: To identify the frequency and qualitative characteristics of marketing claims made by Canadian chiropractors, naturopaths, homeopaths and acupuncturists relating to the diagnosis and treatment of allergy and asthma.
      DESIGN: Cross-sectional study.
      SETTING: Canada.
      DATA SET: 392 chiropractic, naturopathic, homeopathic and acupuncture clinic websites located in 10 of the largest metropolitan areas in Canada, as identified using 400 Google search results. Duplicates were not excluded from data analysis.
      MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Mention of allergy, sensitivity or asthma, claim of ability to diagnose allergy, sensitivity or asthma, claim of ability to treat allergy, sensitivity or asthma, and claim of allergy, sensitivity or asthma treatment efficacy. Tests and treatments promoted were noted as qualitative examples.
      RESULTS: Naturopath clinic websites have the highest rates of advertising at least one of diagnosis, treatment or efficacy for allergy or sensitivity (85%) and asthma (64%), followed by acupuncturists (68% and 53%, respectively), homeopaths (60% and 54%) and chiropractors (33% and 38%). Search results from Vancouver, British Columbia were most likely to advertise at least one of diagnosis, treatment or efficacy for allergy or sensitivity (72.5%) and asthma (62.5%), and results from London, Ontario were least likely (50% and 40%, respectively). Of the interventions advertised, few are scientifically supported; the majority lack evidence of efficacy, and some are potentially harmful.
      CONCLUSIONS: The majority of alternative healthcare clinics studied advertised interventions for allergy and asthma. Many offerings are unproven. A policy response may be warranted in order to safeguard the public interest.

      PMID: 27986744 [PubMed - in process]

    • Addition and Subtraction Theory of TCM Using Xiao-Chaihu-Decoction and Naturopathy in Predicting Survival Outcomes of Primary Liver Cancer Patients: A Prospective Cohort Study. -
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      Addition and Subtraction Theory of TCM Using Xiao-Chaihu-Decoction and Naturopathy in Predicting Survival Outcomes of Primary Liver Cancer Patients: A Prospective Cohort Study.

      Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2016;2016:4723530

      Authors: Dai M, Yang YW, Guo WH, Wang FL, Xiao GM, Li YM, Yang HZ

      Abstract
      To investigate the therapeutic effect of combined Xiao-Chaihu-Decoction and naturopathic medicine therapy on survival outcomes of patients' PLC. In XCHD group (n = 76), patients were treated with Xiao-Chaihu-Decoction in accordance with the addition and subtraction theory of TCM; in NM group (n = 89), patients were managed by naturopathic medicine; in combined group (n = 70), the same volume of Xiao-Chaihu-Decoction combined with naturopathic medicine procedures was applied. There were no evident statistical differences of age, gender, KPS score, body weight, smoking status, AFP levels, HbsAg status, TBIL levels, tumor diameters, and numbers among different groups, showing comparability among groups. No significant difference was found regarding the total remission rate and stability rate of tumors in patients treated by Xiao-Chaihu-Decoction and naturopathic medicine, except the combined therapy. KPS scores were significantly improved after treatment among groups. After treatment, 52.8% cases maintained a stable or slight increase in weight, of which 42.1%, 48.3%, and 70.0% cases maintained weight stably in the XCHD group, NM group, and combined treatment group, respectively. Xiao-Chaihu-Decoction associated with naturopathy may predict improved prognostic outcomes in PLC patients, along with improved remission and stability rates, increased KPS scores, and stable weight maintenance.

      PMID: 27843477 [PubMed - in process]

    • New Development in Traditional Chinese Medicine: Symbolism-Digit Therapy as a Special Naturopathic Treatment. -
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      New Development in Traditional Chinese Medicine: Symbolism-Digit Therapy as a Special Naturopathic Treatment.

      Am J Chin Med. 2016;44(7):1311-1323

      Authors: Li S, Xutian S

      Abstract
      Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) grew out of traditional Chinese culture. For example, the eight-diagram symbol is composed of the Yang and the Yin. According to oriental philosophy, everything in the universe has a two-sided property, namely an image (or symbol) and a number (or digit). This paper introduces the new concept and historical background of symbolism-digit therapy (SDT), which is a natural therapy for the treatment of various kinds of diseases. SDT is of TCM heritage, which can be traced back to the ancient publications such as Yi Jing, and this heritage has been incorporated into modern development and practices. The successful treatments using SDT presented in this paper use formulas and/or prescriptions in accordance with TCM. All materials presented in this paper come from first-hand clinical observations, which are supported by TCM theories. Effects of SDT treatments are straightforward and worthy of broader and deeper investigation. SDT and other relevant therapies motivate the further exploration of the essence of TCM to improve the understanding of TCM principles.

      PMID: 27785941 [PubMed - in process]

    • Differences between Practice Patterns of Conventional and Naturopathic GPs in Germany. -
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      Differences between Practice Patterns of Conventional and Naturopathic GPs in Germany.

      PLoS One. 2016;11(10):e0163519

      Authors: Laux G, Musselmann B, Kiel M, Szecsenyi J, Joos S

      Abstract
      BACKGROUND: Limited evidence exists whether practice patterns of general practitioners (GPs) who have additionally completed training in naturopathy are different from those of conventional GPs. We aimed to assess and compare practice patterns of GPs in conventional and naturopathic GPs.
      METHODS: Routine data from 41 GPs (31 with and 11 without additional qualification in NP, respectively) and 180,789 patients, drawn from the CONTinuous morbidity registration Epidemiologic NeTwork (CONTENT)-registry and collected between 2009 and 2014, were used. To assess practice patterns determinants of (non-)phytopharmaceutical prescriptions, referrals and hospitalizations were analyzed using mixed-effects Poisson regression models. As explanatory variables, the qualification of the GP in NM, the age group and sex of the patient, as well as bivariate interactions between these variables were considered.
      RESULTS: GPs additionally qualified in naturopathy exhibited higher rates of phytopharmaceutical prescriptions (p<0.034; independent effect) compared to conventional GPs. This association was not observed with respect to non-phytopharmaceutical prescriptions. However, interaction effects between qualification and age group as well as sex were present with respect to both phytopharmaceutical and non-phytopharmaceutical prescriptions (all p<0.001). No further independent association existed between qualification and either referral rates or hospitalization rates, but again interactions between qualification and age group and sex (only referrals) were statistically significant (all p<0.0001).
      CONCLUSION: The results show that the rate of phyto-pharmaceutical prescriptions are generally higher when the GP has an additional qualification in naturopathy. Further differences in practice patterns between conventional and naturopathy GPs could be subject to certain age groups and sex. However, the magnitude of these differences seem to be rather small.

      PMID: 27695071 [PubMed - in process]

    • Is adjunctive naturopathy associated with improved glycaemic control and a reduction in need for medications among type 2 Diabetes patients? A prospective cohort study from India. -
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      Is adjunctive naturopathy associated with improved glycaemic control and a reduction in need for medications among type 2 Diabetes patients? A prospective cohort study from India.

      BMC Complement Altern Med. 2016 Aug 17;16(1):290

      Authors: Bairy S, Kumar AM, Raju M, Achanta S, Naik B, Tripathy JP, Zachariah R

      Abstract
      BACKGROUND: With an estimated 65 million Diabetes Mellitus (DM) patients, India ranks second in the world in terms of DM burden. The emphasis of current medical practice has been on pharmacotherapy but, despite the best combination therapies, acheiving glycaemic control (reduction of blood sugar to desirable levels) is a challenge. 'Integrated Naturopathy and Yoga'(INY) is an alternative system of medicine that lays emphasis on the role of diet and physical exercise. We assessed the short term effect of INY as an adjunct to pharmacotherapy on glycaemic control among type 2 DM patients.
      METHODS: In this prospective cohort study with a 3 month follow-up, DM patients consecutively admitted to a hospital in India from May-October 2014 for either 15 or 30 days were offered INY - a package of vegetarian diet with no added oil, sugar and salt, yoga-based exercise, patient counselling and rest. A 'favourable outcome' was defined as glycaemic control (glycosylated hemoglobin (HbA1c) < 7 % or absolute reduction by 1 %) along with at least 50 % reduction in antidiabetes medication at 3 months relative to baseline. Compliance to diet was scored by self-report on a scale of 0-10 and categorized into poor (0-5), moderate (6-8) and excellent (9-10).
      RESULTS: Of 101 patients with 3-month follow-up data, 65(65 %) achieved a favourable outcome - with 19(19 %) stopping medication while sustaining glycemic control. Factors associated with favourable outcome were baseline HbA1c and compliance to diet, which showed a significant linear relationship with mean HbA1c reductions of 0.4 %, 1.1 % and 1.7 % in relation to poor, moderate and excellent dietary compliance respectively.
      CONCLUSION: INY, adjunctive to pharmacotherapy, was associated with a significant beneficial effect on glycaemic control and reduced the overall need for antidiabetes medications. These early results are promising. Further studies with long-term follow-up and using more rigorous randomized controlled trial designs are needed.

      PMID: 27534941 [PubMed - in process]

    • Effect Of Naturopathy Treatments And Yogic Practices On Cervical Spondylosis--A Case Report. -
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      Effect Of Naturopathy Treatments And Yogic Practices On Cervical Spondylosis--A Case Report.

      Indian J Physiol Pharmacol. 2015 Oct-Dec;59(4):442-5

      Authors: Rastogi R, Bendore P

      Abstract
      BACKGROUND: Cervical spondylosis is a degenerative disease of cervical spine. The conventional management offered in this condition focuses upon pain, muscle relaxation and restoration of movements. This approach however has not been found adequate in many cases.
      CASE CHARACTERISTICS: This is a case of cervical spondylosis treated with naturopathy and yogic practices in an OP set up. Earlier to this treatment, the patient was on conventional medicine.
      INTERVENTION: The patient was given naturopathy treatments in form of cold spinal pack followed by other procedures and some yogic practices consisting of asanas, pranayam and relaxation for 30 minutes for a period of one month with an improvement in symptoms.
      OUTCOME: The present case report showed encouraging effects of naturopathic and yogic intervention on cervical spondylosis.

      PMID: 27530013 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    • How fast can a naturopathic medicine cause skin burn? a case report of garlic burn. -
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      How fast can a naturopathic medicine cause skin burn? a case report of garlic burn.

      Ann Burns Fire Disasters. 2015 Sep 30;28(3):228-9

      Authors: Keles MK, Bayram Y, Durmus M

      Abstract
      This paper presents a case in which a chemical burn resulted from the use of garlic as a naturopathic medicine for knee pain.

      PMID: 27279812 [PubMed]

    • Christie Fleetwood, ND, RPh: The Essential Role of Pharmaceutical Knowledge in Naturopathic Practice. -
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      Christie Fleetwood, ND, RPh: The Essential Role of Pharmaceutical Knowledge in Naturopathic Practice.

      Altern Ther Health Med. 2016 May-Jun;22(3):72-7

      Authors: Fleetwood CF

      Abstract
      No Abstract Available.

      PMID: 27228274 [PubMed - in process]

    • Review of Naturopathy of Medical Mushroom, Ophiocordyceps Sinensis, in Sexual Dysfunction. -
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      Review of Naturopathy of Medical Mushroom, Ophiocordyceps Sinensis, in Sexual Dysfunction.

      Pharmacogn Rev. 2016 Jan-Jun;10(19):1-5

      Authors: Jiraungkoorskul K, Jiraungkoorskul W

      Abstract
      Sexual dysfunctions including desire, arousal, orgasm, and pain disorders are increasing worldwide due to etiological factors and aging. Several types of treatment are claimed in modern medicine, but they have serious side effects and higher costs. In fact, alternative approaches, such as the intake of plants, fungi, and insects, or their extracts, have also been practiced to enhance sexuality and ameliorate illness with notable successes. However, the scientific evidence related to the mechanisms and efficacy of these alternative medicines is both scarce and all too often unconvincing. Ophiocordyceps sinensis is an Ascomycetes fungus parasitic to Lepidoptera larvae, and has long been used as medicine to treat many illnesses and promote longevity in Chinese society. Previous investigations have shown that O. sinensis has many pharmacological activities. This review has focused on illustrating that O. sinensis can enhance libido and sexual performance, and can restore impaired reproductive functions, such as impotency or infertility, in both sexes.

      PMID: 27041868 [PubMed]

    • Effects of naturopathic medicines on Multiplate and ROTEM: a prospective experimental pilot study in healthy volunteers. -
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      Effects of naturopathic medicines on Multiplate and ROTEM: a prospective experimental pilot study in healthy volunteers.

      BMC Complement Altern Med. 2016 Feb 17;16:64

      Authors: Bagge A, Schött U, Kander T

      Abstract
      BACKGROUND: Of patients undergoing surgery, 22 to 57% have been reported to be using naturopathic medicines. Several of these medicines have been reported to increase bleeding or enhance the effect of other drugs that increase bleeding. The Swedish Medical Products Agency recommends cessation of the use of the naturopathic medicines echinacea, fish oil, ginkgo biloba, ginseng, St. John's wort, valeriana and garlic 2 weeks before surgery. The aim of this pilot study was to examine the effects of these 7 naturopathic medicines in healthy humans by utilising multiple electrode aggregometer (Multiplate) and viscoelastic rotational thromboelastometer (ROTEM) to obtain data for sample size calculation before a larger trial.
      METHODS: Thirty-five healthy volunteers ingested one of the listed naturopathic medicines for 7 days. Each naturopathic medicine was taken in a recommended standard dose by 5 volunteers. ROTEM clot initiation (CT), clot formation (CFT), α-angle (AA) and clot structure (MCF) were analysed with tissue factor activated (EXTEM) and native (NATEM) assays. The Multiplate platelet aggregation area under curve (AUC) was measured with adenosine diphosphate (ADP), collagen (COL) and arachidonic acid (ASPI) assays.
      RESULTS: Multiplate with ADP agonist decreased from 73 ± 8.7 AUC to 60 ± 5.9 AUC (P = 0.003, 95% confidence interval (CI) -19.2 to -7.6) after medication with fish oil, but fish oil had no effect on COL or ASPI reagents. None of the other naturopathic medicines had any effect on Multiplate aggregometry. ROTEM NATEM-CFT increased from 217 ± 32 s to 283 ± 20 (P = 0.009, 95% CI 26.8 to 107), and NATEM-AA decreased from 52 ± 3.9° to 44 ± 2.3° (P = 0.009, 95 % CI -12.0 to -3.2) after medication with fish oil. There were no significant changes in the other NATEM or EXTEM parameters. The other naturopathic medicines had no significant effects on ROTEM or Multiplate aggregometry.
      CONCLUSIONS: We have demonstrated that a recommended standard intake of 1260 mg Ω-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (fish oil) daily - but not echinacea, ginkgo biloba, ginseng, St. John's wort, valeriana or garlic - may decrease platelet aggregation and clot formation. A larger trial in this setting would be meaningful to perform.
      TRIAL REGISTRATION: Trial registration ISRCTN78027929. Registered 19 May 2015.

      PMID: 26887420 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    • Implementation of evidence-based practice: A naturopath perspective. -
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      Implementation of evidence-based practice: A naturopath perspective.

      Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2016 Feb;22:24-8

      Authors: Ooi SL, Rae J, Pak SC

      Abstract
      Evidence-based practice (EBP), an approach to clinical practice that places emphasis on the use of best available research evidence for decision-making, has been adopted broadly in clinical practice. As a patient-focused approach, EBP promotes the spirit of inquiry. It can also facilitate consistency of care across professional boundaries, and clarify the directions of research. However, over-emphasis on systematic reviews and randomised control trials as the "gold standard" for evidence is a major limitation of EBP as it is being practised today. There are also objections to EBP based on epistemological grounds. Complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) therapies often fare unfavourably under the scrutiny of EBP due to the lack of research and inherent differences in healing ideology. Naturopathy is a unique form of CAM, based on both traditional and scientific knowledge. We argue that there is no conflict between naturopathy and EBP. EBP can be adopted as a useful approach to assimilate scientific evidence in naturopathic practices. However, naturopaths need to reconcile tensions between traditional and scientific knowledge in their choice of treatment remedies, while adhering to the naturopathic principles of healing, to benefit the patients. They must also maintain their emphasis on clinical expertise, and also patient preferences and values, in clinical decision-making.

      PMID: 26850801 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    • Supportive but "worried": perceptions of naturopaths, homeopaths and Chinese medicine practitioners through a regulatory transition in Ontario, Canada. -
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      Supportive but "worried": perceptions of naturopaths, homeopaths and Chinese medicine practitioners through a regulatory transition in Ontario, Canada.

      BMC Complement Altern Med. 2015 Sep 07;15:312

      Authors: Ijaz N, Boon H, Welsh S, Meads A

      Abstract
      BACKGROUND: In line with recent World Health Organization recommendations, many jurisdictions are taking steps to regulate practitioners of traditional, complementary and alternative medicine (TCAM). Previous studies have examined TCAM practitioners' generally-supportive views about professional regulation; however, little research has been conducted on TCAM practitioners' experiences and perspectives amidst an active regulatory process. In 2006 and 2007, the province of Ontario, Canada announced it would grant self-regulatory status to three TCAM practitioner groups--homeopaths, naturopaths and Chinese medicine practitioners/acupuncturists.
      METHODS: In 2011 and 2012, part-way through each group's regulatory process, we surveyed all practitioners from these three groups (n=1047) that could be identified from public registries and professional associations. The data presented here are derived from the sub-sample of homeopaths (n=234), naturopaths (n=273) and Chinese medicine practitioners/acupuncturists (n=181) who provided answers to an open-ended question about their opinions of the regulatory process at the end of the survey. An inductive, thematic analysis of qualitative survey responses was conducted.
      RESULTS: Survey responses affirmed a pro-regulatory stance across all groups, but revealed considerable 'worry' amongst practitioners as to how the regulations might be implemented. Four primary 'worry-related' themes emerged: a) regulation's potential administrative and financial burden on practitioners; b) scope-related concerns; c) implementation of fair registration standards; and d) whether regulation might erode the groups' distinctive worldviews. Some occupationally-specific concerns appeared related to each group's particular stage of professionalization. Other 'worries' may be related to the relative marginality of TCAM practitioner groups within biomedically-dominant national health care systems, and the possibility that inter-professional hierarchies may be emerging between particular TCAM groups. Specific concerns around overlapping practice scopes between TCAM and other professions raised questions about the implementation of non-monopolistic regulatory models such as Ontario's.
      CONCLUSIONS: Overall, this study will help inform regulators and TCAM practitioner groups to navigate the unique challenge of regulating health care providers long excluded from national health care systems, who frequently work from within paradigms distinct from mainstream biomedicine.

      PMID: 26347222 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    • Naturopathic Oncology Modified Delphi Panel. -
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      Naturopathic Oncology Modified Delphi Panel.

      Integr Cancer Ther. 2016 Mar;15(1):69-79

      Authors: Hill J, Hodsdon W, Schor J, McKinney N, Rubin D, Seely D, Parmar G, Birdsall T, Alschuler L, Lamson D, Birdsall S, Zwickey H

      Abstract
      UNLABELLED: Naturopathic oncology is a relatively new and emerging field capable of providing professional integrative or alternative services to cancer patients. Foundational research is critical to identify topics in the clinical and research development of naturopathic oncology for future growth of the field.
      STUDY DESIGN: This study implements a modified Delphi protocol to develop expert consensus regarding ethics, philosophy, and research development in naturopathic oncology.
      METHODS: The modified protocol implements a nomination process to select a panel of 8 physicians and to assist in question formulation. The protocol includes an in-person discussion of 6 questions with multiple iterations to maintain the concept of the Delphi methodology as well as a postdiscussion consensus survey.
      RESULTS: The protocol identified, ranked, and established consensus for numerous themes per question. Underlying key topics include integration with conventional medicine, evidence-based medicine, patient education, patient safety, and additional training requirements for naturopathic oncologists.
      CONCLUSIONS: The systematic nomination and questioning of a panel of experts provides a foundational and educational resource to assist in clarification of clinical ethics, philosophy, and research development in the emerging field of naturopathic oncology.

      PMID: 26209468 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    • Effects of naturopathy and yoga intervention on CD4 count of the individuals receiving antiretroviral therapy-report from a human immunodeficiency virus sanatorium, Pune. -
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      Effects of naturopathy and yoga intervention on CD4 count of the individuals receiving antiretroviral therapy-report from a human immunodeficiency virus sanatorium, Pune.

      Int J Yoga. 2015 Jul-Dec;8(2):122-7

      Authors: Joseph B, Nair PM, Nanda A

      Abstract
      BACKGROUND: Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection is one of the most debilitating conditions which have affected nearly 32 million people across the globe. Antiretroviral therapy (ART) is the standard care given to the HIV positive individuals. But the patient adherence to ART is found to be very less as per previous studies. Complementary and alternative medicine is becoming a pillar in the rehabilitative efforts for many living with HIV/AIDS.
      AIM: To evaluate the effect of naturopathy and yoga intervention on CD4 counts of HIV patients.
      METHODS: Ninety-six patients prediagnosed as HIV positive were enrolled after obtaining written consent and treated with naturopathy and yoga interventions like hydrotherapy, diet therapy, mud therapy, counseling, etc., for various durations at National Institute of Naturopathy Sanatorium. They were grouped into four groups (G1: 1-7 days, G2: 8-15 days, G3: 16-30 days, G4: >30 days) based on duration of stay. CD4 count of each individual was recorded pre- and post-stay.
      RESULTS: All analyses were conducted using R package version 3.01. Dependent sample t-tests were conducted to examine the significance at 95% confidence interval. Of the 96 patients, male patients constitute 55.2% and female patients 44.8% with mean age 34.74 received 1-180 days (mean 28.75, standard deviation: 14.16) treatment. Significant increase in the CD4 count was observed in two out of the four groups (G2: P = 0.052, and G4: P = 0.00038, respectively).
      CONCLUSION: An increasing trend in the CD4 count was observed that was proportional to the length of the stay of participants at the HIV sanatorium. This indicates the possibility of lifestyle changes can bring positive outcomes in people living with HIV/AIDS when used as an adjuvant with ART care. The lack of control group is a major limitation of this study. No attempt was made to study the subjective changes in the quality of life, viral load, etc., However, larger controlled studies are warranted for conclusive results.

      PMID: 26170591 [PubMed]

    • Mainstreaming of Ayurveda, Yoga, Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, and Homeopathy with the health care delivery system in India. -
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      Mainstreaming of Ayurveda, Yoga, Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, and Homeopathy with the health care delivery system in India.

      J Tradit Complement Med. 2015 Apr;5(2):116-8

      Authors: Shrivastava SR, Shrivastava PS, Ramasamy J

      Abstract
      India has a population of 1.21 billion people and there is a high degree of socio-cultural, linguistic, and demographic heterogeneity. There is a limited number of health care professionals, especially doctors, per head of population. The National Rural Health Mission has decided to mainstream the Ayurveda, Yoga, Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, and Homeopathy (AYUSH) system of indigenous medicine to help meet the challenge of this shortage of health care professionals and to strengthen the delivery system of the health care service. Multiple interventions have been implemented to ensure a systematic merger; however, the anticipated results have not been achieved as a result of multiple challenges and barriers. To ensure the accessibility and availability of health care services to all, policy-makers need to implement strategies to facilitate the mainstreaming of the AYUSH system and to support this system with stringent monitoring mechanisms.

      PMID: 26151021 [PubMed]

    • Can naturopathy provide answers to the escalating health care costs in India? -
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      Can naturopathy provide answers to the escalating health care costs in India?

      J Tradit Complement Med. 2015 Apr;5(2):63-5

      Authors: Tripathy JP

      Abstract
      There are substantial areas of overlap between naturopathy and public health, which include a focus on health rather than disease, a preventive approach, and an emphasis on health promotion and health education. Public health can look to naturopathy for answers to the emergence of chronic disease through natural therapies, many of which can take the role of primordial and primary prevention of several diseases. Some selected naturopathic therapies include nutrition, hydrotherapy, fasting therapy, yoga, behavioral therapy, and health promotion. We must reorient our focus on prevention and wellness to make a true impact on escalating health care costs. With the National Health Policy in India emphasizing the need for integrating the Indian Systems of Medicines with modern medicine, now is the right time for naturopathy and public health to come together to provide a holistic health care system.

      PMID: 26151012 [PubMed]

    • Perception of naturopathy for female patients with metastatic gynecological cancer: A qualitative study. -
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      Perception of naturopathy for female patients with metastatic gynecological cancer: A qualitative study.

      Palliat Support Care. 2015 Dec;13(6):1663-8

      Authors: Legenne M, Chirac A, Ruer M, Reix F, Filbet M

      Abstract
      OBJECTIVE: Women with gynecological cancer have been reported as very high users of complementary medicine. The goal of our study was to explore the perceptions of patients with an advanced gynecological cancer who use naturopathy as complementary medicine. We were looking more specifically at patients' opinions on the effect of naturopathy on their quality of life and its relation to conventional oncological treatments.
      METHOD: This pilot qualitative study used semistructured interviews, and data were analyzed using grounded theory and qualitative methods. The main criterion for inclusion in the study was the use of naturopathy as a treatment complementary to conventional cancer treatment for gynecological metastatic cancer on the oncology day care unit.
      RESULTS: Six patients were included until data saturation. They express the physical and psychological impact of treatments and disease. Usually, chemotherapy is perceived as something that may be curative or may at least lead to remission. Unlike conventional treatments, naturopathy is not perceived as drugs, and it is seen as a way to relieve symptoms, improve well-being, and as a way of enabling them to take an active decision-making role in their care journey. Patients want to have more information about naturopathy.
      SIGNIFICANCE OF RESULTS: This study suggests that patients are aware of the benefits of a specific cancer treatment as chemotherapy, but they resort to naturopathy for symptom control, and also to take a more active role during treatment.

      PMID: 26016778 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    • Efficacy of naturopathy and yoga in bronchial asthma. -
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      Efficacy of naturopathy and yoga in bronchial asthma.

      Indian J Physiol Pharmacol. 2014 Jul-Sep;58(3):233-9

      Authors: Rao YC, Kadam A, Jagannathan A, Babina N, Rao R, Nagendra HR

      Abstract
      The aim of the study was to test the efficacy of a one month in-patient naturopathy and yoga programme for patients with asthma. Retrospective data of 159 bronchial asthma patients, undergoing the naturopathy and yoga programme, was analyzed for Forced Vital Capacity, Forced Expiratory Volume at the end of 1 second, Maximum Voluntary Ventilation and Peak Expiratory Flow Rate on admission, 11th day, on discharge and once in three months for three years. The paired sample t test results showed significant increase in the Forced Vital Capacity and Forced Expiratory Volume from the date of admission up to 6th month (P < 0.0035) post Bonferroni correction. Maximum Voluntary Ventilation significantly increased from admission till the date of discharge (P < 0.0035) and Peak Expiratory Flow Rate significantly increased from admission till the 36th month of follow-up (P < 0.0035), post Bonferroni correction. This validated the beneficial effect of combining naturopathy and yoga for the management of bronchial asthma.

      PMID: 25906606 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    • The characteristics, experiences and perceptions of naturopathic and herbal medicine practitioners: results from a national survey in New Zealand. -
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      The characteristics, experiences and perceptions of naturopathic and herbal medicine practitioners: results from a national survey in New Zealand.

      BMC Complement Altern Med. 2015 Apr 10;15:114

      Authors: Cottingham P, Adams J, Vempati R, Dunn J, Sibbritt D

      Abstract
      BACKGROUND: Despite the popularity of naturopathic and herbal medicine in New Zealand there remains limited data on New Zealand-based naturopathic and herbal medicine practice. In response, this paper reports findings from the first national survey examining the characteristics, perceptions and experiences of New Zealand-based naturopaths and herbal medicine practitioners across multiple domains relating to their role and practice.
      METHODS: An online survey (covering 6 domains: demographics; practice characteristics; research; integrative practice; regulation and funding; contribution to national health objectives) was administered to naturopaths and herbal medicine practitioners. From a total of 338 naturopaths and herbal medicine practitioners, 107 responded providing a response rate of 32%. Data were statistically analysed using STATA.
      RESULTS: A majority of the naturopaths and herbal medicine practitioners surveyed were female (91%), and aged between 45 and 54 years. Most practiced part-time (64%), with practitioner caseloads averaging 8 new clients and over 20 follow-up clients per month. Our analysis shows that researched information impacts upon and is useful for naturopaths and herbal medicine practitioners to validate their practices. However, the sources of researched information utilised by New Zealand naturopaths and herbal medicine practitioners remain variable, with many sources beyond publications in peer-reviewed journals being utilised. Most naturopathic and herbal medicine practitioners (82%) supported registration, with statutory registration being favoured (75%). Integration with conventional care was considered desirable by the majority of naturopaths and herbal medicine practitioners surveyed (83%). Naturopaths and herbal medicine practitioners feel that they contribute to several key national health objectives, including: improved nutrition (93%); increased physical activity (85%); reducing incidence and impact of CVD (79%); reducing incidence and impact of cancer (68%).
      CONCLUSIONS: There is a need for greater understanding and communication between practitioners of conventional care and naturopathic and herbal medicine which could support informed, coordinated and effective health provision within the New Zealand health care system. There is a need for further in-depth research examining naturopaths and herbal medicine practitioners' perceptions and practices, to provide insights of benefit to all those practising and managing health services as well as those directing health policy in New Zealand.

      PMID: 25888473 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

    • Complementary medical health services: a cross sectional descriptive analysis of a Canadian naturopathic teaching clinic. -
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      Complementary medical health services: a cross sectional descriptive analysis of a Canadian naturopathic teaching clinic.

      BMC Complement Altern Med. 2015 Feb 28;15:37

      Authors: Kennedy DA, Bernhardt B, Snyder T, Bancu V, Cooley K

      Abstract
      BACKGROUND: Historically, alongside regulatory and jurisdictional differences in scope of practices, practice patterns of naturopathic doctors (NDs) have varied widely to promote holistic or whole-person treatment using a variety of therapies including: controlled substances, minor surgery, a variety of complementary therapies, as well as both novel and conventional assessments. However, little is known about the observed practice patterns of NDs, the services provided to their patients, or the type of conditions for which patients of NDs are seeking treatment. In order to address this gap, a cross-sectional descriptive analysis of the largest Canadian teaching clinic for NDs was undertaken to better understand the services provided to the community and increase the knowledge regarding the use of naturopathic medicine.
      METHODS: Data stemmed from two sources at the Toronto, Ontario clinic: a passive patient satisfaction survey, and the clinic's point-of-sale (POS) system. Data included patient demographics, postal codes, health services utilization, ICD-10 codes, therapies employed, along with other data relating to the financial transactions associated with the visit. Simple descriptive statistics and the Kruskal-Wallis test were used to compare different age-based groups and examine health services use between years. This study was approved by the Research Ethics Board of the Canadian College of Naturopathic Medicine.
      RESULTS: 13,412 patients were treated in 76,386 patient visits spanning three clinic years. Median age of patients was 37; females outnumbered males (2.6:1) in all age-based groups except the pediatric population. In the patient satisfaction survey, there were 1552 potential survey respondents; with 118 responses received (response rate: 7.6%). Obtaining health education, health prevention and help with chronic health conditions were the primary motivators for patient visits identified in the patient survey.
      CONCLUSION: The clinic attracts people from a wide area in the metropolitan Toronto and surrounding region with health concerns and diagnoses that are consistent with primary care, providing health education and addressing acute and chronic health conditions. Further explorations into health services delivery from the broader naturopathic or other complementary/alternative medical professions would provide greater context to these findings and expand understanding of the patients and type of care being provided by these health professionals.

      PMID: 25880763 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]



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