Published on February 18th, 2011 | by Dr L1
Homeopathic Nosodes and the Vaccine Question
I am frequently asked my opinion on the use of homeopathic nosode instead of serum vaccines. It is a conversation that is always a little complicated and I generally can only speak for myself and my clinical experience with the use of homeopathy.
I have raised 4 children who have not been vaccinated and I have always felt that it was the best decision I ever made for the betterment of their health. My children had experienced most of the childhood diseases before I realized that I might have a homeopathic option, and so my experience with this subject has been clinical through my practice and my patients over the past 25 years. In my research I have discovered that my clinical experience modeled other homeopaths experience. I have many parents in my office, who after much research, have chosen this alternate route to protecting their children. Here is a little information on the subject and I will leave it to you to make the best decision for your family and children.
The medicines used in homeopathy are of two classes. One type are from the natural world of plants, minerals, and animal products. The second type, nosodes, are homeopathic remedies made from the specific products of a particular disease. This can be tissue containing the actual disease agents or tissue affected by those agents. Sometimes the nosode is made from vaccines containing the organisms.
In this sense, nosodes are a homeopathic remedy, that like a vaccine, is meant to have preventive properties on a short term basis. The nosode is prepared in a diluted and potentized form just like all other homeopathic medicine.
There is no potential for an animal or a child to become infected with a given disease agent from a nosode because of the pharmaceutical process that occurs which dilutes and inactivates any viable organisms. Nosodes seem to work most effectively, homeopathically, when they are given near or at the time of exposure. For instance, giving a Parvovirus Nosode immediately before and after a potential exposure would provide the best protection from the nosode.
Of course safety is one of the significant differences between vaccines and homeopathic nosodes. Vaccines act by imposing a significant assault an the human immune system, particularly infants and children, which can have severe side effect. Homeopathics do not assault the immune system.
There is far too little research on homeopathic nosodes. For common childhood illnesses such as Pertussinum (whooping cough) Morbilinum (mumps), research does not clearly indicate that homeopathic preparations have not been shown to raise antibody levels.
This does not mean they do not work. There is substantial evidence suggesting that homeopathic medicines do act to prevent diseases.
Two studies have been published from Brazil, both involving meningitis. Both studies indicated that the homeopathic treatments were about 95% effective as a preventative. This is a protection that compares well with best claims vaccines.
In a recently published work, Dr. Isaac Golden, a well known Australian homeopath, conducted a 20 year study from 1985 – 2004 of homeopathic program for long-term treatment of various childhood diseases. He found about a 90% effective rate.
These are well known studies, and a tiny sample of research on the topic. For the interested a more comprehensive list that reaches back over two centuries can be found by clicking here.
So Does Homeopathy Work
The question of whether homeopathy works is worth some discussion. With respect to nosodes, the research discussed above is plenty of proof for some and not enough for other.
The issue is probably more in question in the US, where the medical landscape is so dominated by drug based medicine, than in countries where homeopathy is a widely practiced and accepted. While the drug centric allopathic medical establishment will never admit to homeopathy working, there is little doubt it does.
As put by Dr Andrew Wiel in his book Health and Healing, “That homeopathy works is abundantly clear from many testimonials by both patients and doctors. I have described my own experience with it and mentioned some historical successes. I could list many more.”
An interesting 2006 report from Europe notes that in Europe then about, “30,000 specialized medical doctors and around 100,000 practitioners practice homeopathic medicine.”
The report goes to say that, “In France, a 1996 study of 130,000 prescriptions suggested significant benefits and savings as a result of homeopathic treatment. This survey also noted that the number of paid sick leave days by patients under the care of homeopathic physicians were 3.5 times less than patients under the care of general practitioners.”
I would agree with the assessment of Dr Wiel, the documented successes of homeopathy are abundant.
The Nosodes for the classic childhood viral diseases can be used as a prophylaxis or preventive when used during and epidemic and when repeated over a span of a few weeks. The homeopathic principles must be followed and a “similar” is chosen (Pertussinum nosode for whooping cough). The medicines can also be used to lessen the symptoms of the disease and shorten its course in individuals suffering with the illness. Studies have shown that the best value is in short term prevention, and best used when given prior to or immediately after exposure.
As parents we have a responsibility to our children to provide an optimal environment for growth and development. This must occur on the physical, mental and emotional level. I encourage optimal nutritional both diet and supplement along with adequate rest, exercise and limited stress. When these elements are combined with a homeopathic nosode for Influenza, mumps, chickenpox, measles or whooping cough the outcome will be a healthy child with a healthy immune system.
As I mentioned earlier, my four children have not been vaccinated. We had a summer that whooping cough dominated the memories for all of my children.
It occurred during the first few years of my practice as a homeopath, and the vaccine nosodes were not as readily available, my youngest was 2 and the second grade student brought the virus home from school. The children each contracted it one after the other and I treated the symptoms with the fitting homeopathic acute. They all had symptoms, none to extreme and they individually responded well to acute remedies to address their individual symptoms.
I have always been amazed as a homeopath that even though we are a family, each member needs a different remedy even if the symptoms look the same.