The majority of people trust their doctors and the treatments that they administer on a daily basis. It is generally believed that the health care we receive is based on sound scientific evidence. In fact a poll was conducted in California to determine whether they believed that treatments were in fact science based. Approximately eight hundred people took part in the survey. Sixty five percent of those surveyed stated that they believed that the majority of the health care they received was science based.
This is far from the truth!
In 2007 a panel of experts concluded that in reality significantly less than fifty per cent of the medical procedures performed by doctors and the decisions taken with regard to drugs and surgical procedures are actually ‘adequately investigated’ and are proven to be effective.
The bulk of the procedures and treatments are actually based purely on guesswork and theory. Much of the treatment also relies on tradition. Many health professionals also rely heavily on the information given out by drug companies and medical device suppliers.
There are a high number of unexpected injuries or deaths each year as a result of complications arising from drugs. It is not unusual for a drug to be put onto the market without full and proper tests being carried out. Many of the guidelines relating to drugs and medical procedures are prepared by the manufacturers themselves. There can quite obviously be a conflict of interest in cases like these given the immense amounts of money involved in bringing a new drug to market.
New drugs etc have to be approved by the FDA. The tests themselves that are carried out to establish the validityy of the claims made by the manufacturers are themselves often flawed. This results in a number of drugs reaching the market that have not been monitored adequately and are subsequently later found to have safety issues of some kind.
The FDA requirement with regard to effectiveness is that it is “by some measure better than nothing”. This is hardly a confidence builder from the point of view of the patients who are often led to believe that the drugs they are taking are actually capable of curing their condition.
Under the circumstances it is quite understandable that more and more people are moving away from putting their trust in prescribed medicines and are instead relying on home remedies.
The information in the above is based on an article previously published in ‘discovermagazine’ the full article can be read here (http://discovermagazine.com/2010/nov/11-the-problem-with-medicine-dont-know-if-most-works