Mistakes in Cholera Statistics

Posted on November 27, 2007. Filed under: Mistakes in Cholera Statistics | Tags: , , , , , , |

Thanks to laughingmysocksoff, I am able to give more complete statistics of the 1854 cholera epidemic. It seems I only recounted part of the homeopathic success!

In the London Cholera epidemic of 1854, of the 61 cases of cholera treated [at the London Homeopathic Hospital], 10 died, a percentage of 16.4; of the 331 cases of choleraic and simple diarrhoea treated, 1 died. The neighbouring Middlesex Hospital received 231 cases of cholera and 47 cases of choleraic diarrhea. Of the cholera patients treated 123 died, a fatality rate of 53.2 per cent., among the victims being one of the nurses.

Morrell, P and Cazelet, S. The History of the London Homeopathic Hospital

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10 Responses to “Mistakes in Cholera Statistics”

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And treating cholera with fluid replacement (oral rehydration therapy) results in a mortality of approximately 1%. Now which seems more likely, the homeopathic patients did better because they recieved some agent in non exiestent amounts? Or perhaps they did better because they were given more clean water to drink

And if conventionalmedicine is no better now than it was then, as you imply in your previous post, why does the current conventional treatment lead to a mortality of 1% when the old conventional treatment led to mortality of about 50% – similar to no treatment at all.

That’s the thing about conventional medicine. They learn from their mistakes and replace poor or ineffective treatments with effective ones. A much better philosophy, in my opinion, than to dogmatically stick to whatever some revered figure in the past said, when all the evidence shows that he was wrong.

Sorry to be repetitive, I posted this on another blog, but I think it is relevant here:

This information on iatrogenic effects is about 4 years old, but I doubt it has decreased;

Shocking statistical evidence is cited by Gary Null PhD, Carolyn Dean MD ND, Martin Feldman MD, Debora Rasio MD and Dorothy Smith PhD in their recent paper Death by Medicine – October 2003, released by the Nutrition Institute of America.

“A definitive review and close reading of medical peer-review journals, and government health statistics shows that American medicine frequently causes more harm than good. The number of people having in-hospital, adverse drug reactions (ADR) to prescribed medicine is 2.2 million. Dr. Richard Besser, of the CDC, in 1995, said the number of unnecessary antibiotics prescribed annually for viral infections was 20 million. Dr. Besser, in 2003, now refers to tens of millions of unnecessary antibiotics. The number of unnecessary medical and surgical procedures performed annually is 7.5 million. The number of people exposed to unnecessary hospitalization annually is 8.9 million. The total number of iatrogenic deaths shown in the following table is 783,936. It is evident that the American medical system is the leading cause of death and injury in the United States.

“I was completely shocked, amazed, and dismayed when I first added up all the statistics on medical death and saw how much allopathic medicine has betrayed us.”—Carolyn Dean, MD

For a good explanation of why this is a misinterpretation of iatriogenic effects see the following post:

http://forums.randi.org/showpost.php?p=3188252&postcount=135

In the argument about the treatment of Cholera with Homeopathy vs. the conventional methods of the time, I agree that hydrating therapy would have prevented a lot of unnecessary deaths. However essential hydrating therapy is in cases of cholera and acute/severe diarrhea, Homeopathy has demonstrated a statistically significant decrease in the duration the “normal” period of diarrhea, even when using hydrating therapy.
Please refer to the study conducted by Jennifer Jacobs, et.al. published in Pediatrics, 1994:93:719-725 “The Treatment of Acute Childhood Diarrhea with Homeopathic Medicine: A randomized Clinical Trial in Nicaragua”

wewillfixit…….even though the following statement is out of context from your post, you really can’t be serious!!

“You are assuming that iatrogenic death and disability are something to be avoided, but they are not.”

I am completely serious. If a therapy saves more lives than it kills, it is worth using and better than doing nothing (eg using homeopathy). Look at the example of blood thinners given in the post I linked to. Do you think we should stop using blood thinners because they are a cause of iatrogenic mortality? Should we stop performing all life saving surgery on people who would otherwise have died because there is a very samall chance they might die from post surgical infection?

Goodscience, obviously it would be better to avoid all treatment-related adverse effects.
But imagine this:
There is an illness which if untreated will kill 50% of people.
Treatment A will cure 95% of people, but kill 5%.
Is it better to give treatment A & cut deaths by 90%, or not?

Imagine treating a disease where 95% were cured and NONE died.

Well, good science, that is why real medicine is continually doing research to produce treatments with fewer side effects, to get nearer to this ideal.

I’m sure you would like to “imagine” that homeopathy can do this. But you would have to have a very good imagination.

Ha ha ha, you are a nutter


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