[Complementary and alternative medicine--time for research and regulation].

Author: [Article in Hebrew]
Halevy J.
Conference/Journal: Harefuah.
Date published: 2011 Aug
Other: Volume ID: 150 , Issue ID: 8 , Pages: 655-6, 688 , Word Count: 222

The usage of complementary and alternative medicine [CAM] is increasing in popularity in the modern world. In this issue of Harefuah, seven articles relate to various aspects of CAM: the use of various modalities of CAM in four community clinics in Northern Israel, an assessment of the needs and expectations of patients on chemotherapy from the integration of CAM in palliative oncological care, a description of a series of quality research studies relating to CAM in hemato-oncological disorders and autoimmune diseases and a discussion of ethical dilemmas and issues relating to Jewish law. Other authors review the history of clinical studies with an emphasis on mind-body connection and the placebo effect. The conclusion that may be derived about CAM from this compilation of articles is that, despite the ltack of scientific evidence to support the paradigm underlying most CAM modalities and the scarcity of evidence to support its efficacy, the increasing popularity of CAM should lead us to expand research into CAM and to teach our medical students about CAM. We should do so for the sake of proper doctor-patient relationships and to prevent improper use of CAM by the general public. The diversity of CAM modalities and the heterogeneity of training patterns among those who practice CAM call for the prompt regulation of training and licensing of all CAM practitioners.

PMID: 21939117