Mayo Clinic Proceedings reports this systematic review. But as I said before I see little point in this sort of exercise. Research and meta-analyze homeopathy ‘till you’re blue in the face and you’ll settle nothing. It’s not going to stop the woo-pushers. Medpundit quotes a spokesperson for the Society of Homeopaths as saying: It has been established beyond doubt and accepted by many researchers, that the placebo-controlled randomised controlled trial is not a fitting research tool with which to test homeopathy.
Despite the findings of a systematic review in Lancet a year and a half ago that homeopathy is useless it continues to be promoted uncritically by medical schools and the American Medical Student Association.
Some mainstream woo-pushers, not wanting to seem totally shameless, try to give woo the trappings of evidence based medicine. Here’s the recipe: test an implausible claim and throw in a little chance variation. Combine that with a massive dose of publication bias and voilà!—evidence based woo!
I’d pay more attention to some of those “positive” woo studies if either there was a plausible mechanism or the empiric evidence was strong. For me the strength of the proof required is inversely proportional to the plausibility of the claim. I’d be much more interested in these clinical “studies” on homeopathy if the folks at MIT would come up with a mechanism by which water has memory.