Incidence of asthma has risen at an alarming rate in the past several decades. It is now the most common chronic disease of childhood in the developed world. The World Health Organization estimates that 235 million people suffer worldwide. Other estimates are even higher.
Why the upswing?
We don't know for certain. Urban environments are strongly associated with risk of asthma, and people are moving into these areas in increasing numbers worldwide. Evidence has shown that environmental chemicals both inside and outside the home are also associated with asthma. According to a European study, weekly use of common cleaning sprays in the hone increased the risk of asthma by 49%.
What to do?
To address the asthma crisis from a public health standpoint, we need to remove environmental causes of asthma. Such sustaining factors are what Homeopathy's founder Samuel Hahnemann called "obstacles to cure." But eliminating them will be costly, logistically difficult and extremely time-consuming to achieve on a society-wide basis.
In the meantime, therapies that can effectively treat non-responders as well as safely decrease use of asthma medications could be very helpful. In fact, development of such therapies has been repeatedly called for in medical research literature. A study published in the October 2012 Journal of Homeopathy found that homeopathy could fit the bill.
Homeopathy for asthma!
In this observational study, 30 children, aged 7 to 15 years, were diagnosed with asthma by a pulmonologist and referred to pediatricians at the Homeopathic Clinic of the National Research Center in Cairo. Here, they were treated with individual Homeopathy for six months, as an adjunct to their conventional treatment. All children had been using standard medications (bronchodilator and/or corticosteroid inhalers) regularly in the year before the study, without any change in their asthma severity (meaning their asthma was not getting better or worse).
When the study began, 23% of the children were troubled with symptoms throughout the day and 30% had symptoms daily. After six months of Homeopathic treatment, no child had symptoms throughout the day and only 7% had symptoms daily. Quite an improvement!
Also, after the six months of Homeopathic treatment, not a single child was using their inhaler throughout the day and only 6% used inhalers even once a day. All told, 90% of children reduced their inhaler use. Equally dramatic results were seen in the use of oral corticosteroids, which have the most serious risks of all medications used to control asthma. When the study began, 90% of children were using rounds of oral corticosteroids more than twice a year. After Homeopathic treatment, only 10% of children were using medications more than twice a year.
This study adds to a growing evidence base for the Homeopathic treatment of asthma. All observational studies had strongly positive results.