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  • Homeopathic InjectablesImportance of the parenteral administration of homeopathic and anthroposophic remedies> RISKS AND BENEFITS

    Dr. Wilfried StockD-76547 Sinzheim

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    Importance of the parenteral administration of homeopathic and anthroposophic remedies > RISKS AND BENEFITS

    remedy locally, directly to acupuncture pointsor trigger points. These treatment techniques are used mainly to treat injuries, various types of headache, muscular pain and tendon pain, and acute andchronic inflammatory processes [4].

    The main reason for injecting homeopathicsolutions into trigger points or into particularacupuncture points is that injecting the homeopathic remedy at that point markedlyintensifies the healing effect. In the case ofadministration at an acupuncture point, the penetration of the injection cannula produces a stimulus similar to that of anacupuncture needle.

    I ) M e t h o d o f a d m i n i s t r a t i o n f o r h o m e o p a t h i c i n j e c t a b l e s

    As already indicated above, subcutaneous andintravenous administrations were the first parenteral forms of administrations used inhomeopathy. They have been joined in the past50 years by others such as intramuscular,intracutaneous, intraarticular and periarticular forms of administration.These were among other things a result of theintroduction of new treatment techniques suchas homeosiniatry [3], neural therapy and biopuncture by J. Kersschot [4]. All these invasive techniques exploit the advantagegained by administering the homeopathic

    > I N T R O D U C T I O N

    Homeopathic injectables must be manufactured in accordance with the rules of the officialEuropean pharmacopoeia if they claim to be homeopathic. They are used therapeutically invarious special forms of treatment such as anthroposophic medicine, antihomotoxic medicine,combination homeopathy and classic homeopathy.

    More than 120 million ampoules of homeopathic or anthroposophic medicinal products are nowmanufactured and distributed in the EU every year. Over 90% of these products are produced byGerman homeopathic and anthroposophic manufacturers.

    The parenteral dosage form was first described in the specialist homeopathic literature in the 19thcentury [1]. Since then, homeopathic therapists have studied and made practical use of what wasat that time, a method of administration completely new to homeopathy [2].

    Bergmann [l.c., 2] expressly states that it is advantageous for the homeopathic remedy if it doesnot have to pass through the gastrointestinal tract where it is severely altered by the gastric andintestinal juices. In this authors view, potentized homeopathic remedies work best when appliedunchanged to the mucosa or - even better - injected under the skin or into the bloodstream.

    However, the same author mentions that not all cases of disease can be treated using parenteraladministration, and that it is up to the doctor to make the appropriate choice. He also recommendsusing the injection method only when the symptoms of the disease leave no doubt as to thechoice of the right similar and treatment via the internal (oral) route has failed to have any effect.The new method of administration does not in any way alter the homeopathic character of theremedy in question, the author continues. It also does not alter the validity of the Law of Similars,as is impressively demonstrated by specimen cases.

    In the same study the author also describes injections of high potencies (D 30 and D 300).The mother tincture was prepared by succussion with water instead of alcohol [l.c. 2, p. 67].The number of injections given depended on the course of the healing process.

    Homeopathic InjectablesHomeopathic Injectables

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    region of tissue, and this stimulant effect isalso supported by the pharmacological actionof the injected homoeopathic substance. The homeopathic substance may be a single-constituent preparation or a combinationpreparation containing several potentizedconstituents. This double stimulus - mechanical puncture and the stimulant effectof the homoeopathic solution - markedlyimproves any stimulating effect and speeds up healing.

    In a survey of 327 doctors conducted byHEEL, Baden-Baden, in 1999/2000 on thepractical use of homeopathic injectables, themost frequently cited advantages of theparenteral form of homeopathic medicinescompared to the oral dosage form wereas follows: faster onset of action (77.1%), better tolerability (38.5%), better control of treatment (57.2%) and the ability to administer the substance

    at the site of the disease (72.8%). It is interesting in this connection that 61.2%of the doctors surveyed said that the homeo-pathic injection can readily be combined withother types of treatment (e.g. physiotherapyand/or allopathic medication).

    5) Different forms of parenteral administration

    5 . 1 ) S u b c u t a n e o u s a d m i n i s t r a t i o n

    S.c. injection is the type of parenteral administration first described for homeopathicremedies in the literature [l.c., 1,2].

    This type of administration is still today themost important for therapeutic practice, as itis the one most frequently used in bothhomeopathy and anthroposophical medicine.

    A survey of medical prescribers was conductedin 1999/2000 by HEEL, Baden-Baden, on thefrequency with which parenteral administrationwas used. A total of 327 doctors in privatepractice participated: 227 doctors of generalmedicine and 8 ENT specialists, 17 internists,51 orthopaedists and 32 doctors in otherspecialties (more than one answer possible).The survey showed that 72.2% were givinghomeopathic injections s.c., followed by i.m.,i.v. and i.c. administration. The overwhelmingmajority (87.8%) had been using homeopathicinjectables for more than 5 years. Almost aquarter (24.8%) of the doctors surveyed hadbeen using homeopathic injectables for morethan 15 years. Of the 327 doctors who took

    I I ) T h e a d v a n t a g e s o f h o m e o p a t h i c i n j e c t a b l e s

    1) No change in the homeopathic substances

    Avoiding the gastrointestinal tract by meansof injection avoids any change in the homeopathic medicine through the action ofeither enzymes or the gastric juice. For thesame reason, it is well known that solid oralforms (tablets, globules or triturations) orliquid homeopathic remedies (dilutions) shouldbe held in the mouth for at least 30 seconds sothat the potentized active substances can bequickly absorbed through the oral mucosa andthe direct contact to the enzymes containingsaliva is as short as possible. The parenteralform of administration also adheres to thehomeopathic principles of the Law of Similars,since any falsification of symptoms isinvariably due to the incorrect use of ahomeopathic remedy, it is not a consequenceof the method of administration used(written communication from the Germanvice president of the LIGA MEDICORUMHOMEOPATHICA INTERNATIONALISdated 8.12.1990, Dr. med. H. Ptters) [10].

    2) No viral or microbial risks

    Since every substance for injection in the EUhas to meet the sterility requirements of theofficial pharmacopoeia as stated in theParenterals monograph of Pharm. Eur. 1997,a risk of infection from this dosage form canlargely be excluded [5, 6]. In accordancewith Method 11, HAB - 2001, the samerequirements also apply to homeopathic liquiddilutions for injection.

    3) Better patient compliance

    An injection is generally given only by thedoctor or therapist.

    It is relatively unusual for patients to injectthemselves with homeopathic injectables,although there are exceptions such as diabeticsand in anthroposophical medicine, wherepatients inject themselves with s.c. injections.

    4) Improved action through injection

    When giving injections into acupuncture pointsor into Heads zones (segmental therapy) thetherapist is exploiting the fact that eachsegment or each acupuncture point isconnected to a particular organ or a region oftissue via the appropriate meridian. Injectionhere, targets exactly the connected organ or

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    Importance of the parenteral administration of homeopathic and anthroposophic remedies > RISKS AND BENEFITS

    Intraarticular administration in particularnecessitates prior aseptic treatment of theaffected area of the joint into which thesubstance is to be administered. That is whythis type of administration is used mostly byspecialists such as orthopaedists, surgeons,rheumatologists, sports physicians and doctorsof general medicine [18].

    With the intraarticular form ofadministration, however, account mustbe taken of the residual risk arising solelyfrom manipulation; according to a recent study,this can lead to microtrauma and nonspecificinflammation of the synovial fluid [11] in thejoint cartilage, particularly if the injection isrepeated within a few weeks, although there isnot necessarily a direct connection with a sideeffect of the homeopathic remedy. For thisreason, the authors stipulate that strictdiagnosis is needed, plus impeccable asepticpreparation of the site of administration.On the other hand, they [l.c. 11] consider asingle intraarticular injection of a small volumeto be relatively risk-free, provided asepticconditions are maintained during manipulation.

    By contrast with intraarticular injection,periarticular injection given s.c. is virtuallyrisk-free, since the substance solution does notinfiltrate the sterile joint cavity but isadministered in the form of a wheal created atthe painful pressure points around the joint inquestion [12]. In this study 350 patients weretreated with the indicated homeopathiccombination product twice a week for12 weeks. Depending on the type of conditiondiagnosed, 2-8 ml of the injection solutionwas admin


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