Is homeopathy placebo?
No. Placebo means an 'inactive' drug or a deceptive treatment given to appease the patient. The placebo effect does exist and does have the potential power to help people. By acknowledging this, it becomes clear that homeopathic remedies are not placebo. Let's look at a couple of examples:
1. Many patients come to a homeopath as a last resort. They have exhausted all possible options that mainstream medicine has to offer, without feeling any better. The homeopath takes the case and based on the totality of the patient's symptoms and background, a homeopathic remedy is prescribed. In the subsequent monthly follow up the patient reports no change. The patient is close to giving up all together. The homeopath re-studies the case, asks a few more questions, and then prescribes a different homeopathic remedy. In the second follow-up the patient spontaneously declares he is feeling much better. He describes how over the month he has been feeling an increasing sense of well being, has much more energy and the main complaint has decreased considerably. Hope is restored.
The above example is a common experience all homeopaths can attest to. If homeopathic medicines were merely placebo we should have seen improvement after the first prescription. We didn't see this because the first remedy was wrong, not because the second remedy was placebo. Furthermore, if homeopathy is placebo and has such a positive effect on patients, the mainstream medicine administered to the patient earlier should have had an even better chance of the placebo effect ...