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What is the issue on alternative medicine?

Ok, so i have to do a project in which we have to research a societal issue that is science based for biology class. I have already picked alternative medicine, I just don’t know how exactly I can make this work.

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5 Responses to “What is the issue on alternative medicine?”

  1. Gary Y said :

    You can demonstrate that alternative medicine is not science or evidence based. It is based in anecdotes. You can demonstrate how anecdotes do not constitute valid evidence in science. If anything, anecdotes provide only a suggestion that something may be worthwhile investigating – or to form a hypothesis.

    The National Center of Complimentary and Alternative Medicines (NCCAM) have just spent 10 years and 2.5 billion dollars scientifically studying alternative medicines, only to find that virtually none of it works.

    The reason alternative medicines are alternative is because they have not been proven to work, or they have been proven not to work. Side effects, risks, safety, interactions and contradictions are mostly not established.

    Perhaps you could focus on the psychology of why people believe – homeopathy for example, which is preposterous nonsense and does not beat placebo. Belief systems, indoctrination, dogma, cognitive dissonance, scaremongering, etc etc.

  2. fretochose said :

    you could compare the records of so called “scientific” medicine to that of altmed.
    newsweek recently had an article documenting that properly prescribed pharmaceuticals are the 4th leading cause of death in the US.
    more than 100,000 people die in hospitals each from drug errors

    htere is your starting point

    good luck with the paper

  3. SkepDoc 3.0 said :

    Since by definition alternative medicine is NOT based on science, you can’t use that as a project for biology class

  4. Paddy 1969 said :

    You could use as your thesis statement the fact that more and more people are turning to alternative medicine as it is a safer, more viable treatment option for them, it is based on prevention as well as cures, and many of these alternative treatments have been around for hundreds of years,and some are plain folk remedies. You would want to cover everything from herbs to Chinese medicine ( within your page limit ). You would want to point out the wariness of many folks towards orthodox medicine, which is steeped in controversy courtesy of government/pharmaceutical industry conflict of interest concerns, the medical profession idealogy of scaremongering, and the yearly 106,000 deaths (U.S) attributed to harmful drug reactions in patients.

  5. William T said :

    You should talk about how fraud and scams like alternative medicine can only exist in a society that lacks science education. That when people understand even the most basic principles of science they stop believing in childish fantasies like alternative medicine.


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