Is evaluating of complementary and alternative medicine equivalent to evaluating the absurd?

Greasley, Pete (2010) Is evaluating of complementary and alternative medicine equivalent to evaluating the absurd? Evaluation and the Health Professions, 33 (2). pp. 127-139. ISSN 1552-3918

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Abstract

Complementary and alternative therapies such as reflexology and acupuncture have been the subject of numerous evaluations, clinical trials, and systematic reviews, yet the empirical evidence in support of their efficacy remains equivocal. The empirical evaluation of a therapy would normally assume a plausible rationale regarding the mechanism of action. However, examination of the historical background and underlying principles for reflexology, iridology, acupuncture, auricular acupuncture, and some herbal medicines, reveals a rationale founded on the principle of analogical correspondences, which is a common basis for magical thinking and pseudoscientific beliefs such as astrology and chiromancy. Where this is the case, it is suggested that subjecting these therapies to empirical evaluation may be tantamount to evaluating the absurd.

Item Type: Journal Article
Journal or Publication Title: Evaluation and the Health Professions
Uncontrolled Keywords: /dk/atira/pure/subjectarea/asjc/2700/2719
Subjects:
Departments: Faculty of Health and Medicine > Health Research
ID Code: 72195
Deposited By: ep_importer_pure
Deposited On: 17 Dec 2014 09:21
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 19 Feb 2020 08:19
URI: https://eprints.lancs.ac.uk/id/eprint/72195

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