Conditions with overall positive evidence for homeopathy

Listed below are 48 medical conditions in which positive conclusions for homeopathy may be derived from systematic reviews and/or randomised controlled trials (RCTs).

Replicated Research:

Allergic asthma [19, 20]
Arsenic toxicity [21–24]
Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) [25, 26]
Blood coagulation [27, 28]
Childhood diarrhoea [29–32]
Common cold [33, 34]
Depression [35, 36]
Female infertility [37–39]
Insomnia [40–42]
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) [43, 44]
Low back pain [45–47]
Muscle soreness [48–55]
Osteoarthritis [56–58]
Otitis media (acute) [59, 60]
Post-operative bruising [61, 62]
Post-operative pain [63–67]
Sinusitis [68–72]
Upper respiratory tract infection (URTI) [73–76]
Vertigo [77, 78]

Non-replicated research: singleton RCTs:

Aphthous ulcer [79]
Brain injury [80]
Breast cancer ***
Bronchitis [81]
Chronic fatigue syndrome [82]
Immune function [83]
Nocturnal enuresis [84]
Non-allergic rhinitis [85]
Oral lichen planus [86]
Perennial allergic rhinitis [87]
Plantar fasciitis [88]
Post-operative oedema [89]
Post-operative wound healing [90]
Postpartum bleeding [91]
Postpartum lactation [92]
Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) [93]
Psoriasis [94]
Radiodermatitis [95]
Renal failure [96]
Respiratory insufficiency [97]
Seborrhoeic dermatitis [98]
Sepsis [99]
Snoring [100]
Stomatitis [101]
Tonsillitis [102]
Tracheal secretions [103]
Uraemic pruritus [104]
Varicose veins [105]
Xerostomia (Dry mouth) [106]

[ ] A full list of references for the trials of all these conditions is available at The Faculty of Homeopathy, in the research section, available at Cited January 2014.

***  Laboratory experiments show homeopathic medicines kill breast cancer cells but not healthy breast tissue. Frenkel M. et al. Cytotoxic effects of ultra-diluted remedies on breast cancer cells. Int J Oncol, 2010; 36: 395-403
You can also find this at  cited January 2014.

This evidence can be viewed in more detail at the British Homeopathic Association, cited January 2014.

For more complete details of research in homeopathy, visit the research section of the Faculty of Homeopathy website, which also identifies groups of RCTs that were negative or non-conclusive.


Bristol patient outcome study

One of the most comprehensive patient outcome surveys was an analysis of over 23,000 outpatient consultations at the Bristol Homeopathic Hospital from November 1997 to October 2003. This represented over 6,500 individual patients whose outcome was recorded at follow-up. More than 70% of these follow-up patients recorded clinical improvement following homeopathic treatment.

Clinical condition                                    

% follow-up patients showing clinical improvement

Asthma (under 16s)


Chronic fatigue syndrome


Crohn’s disease/ulcerative colitis




Eczema (under 16s)




Irritable bowel syndrome


Menopausal syndrome


Rheumatoid arthritis


Many of the patients in the analysis had previously received mainstream medical intervention at the secondary care level and had either failed to respond satisfactorily or had been unable to tolerate the medication prescribed.

This table is taken from the website of the British Homeopathic Association, at cited January 2014.


Clinical trials in homeopathy

In recent years there has been pressure on homeopathy to conduct rigorous research. Randomised Controlled Trials (RCT’s) are considered the ‘gold standard’ of research methods for determining whether a treatment is effective or not. In these trials, the effects of two or more treatments are compared under highly controlled conditions. Usually, remedies are compared to placebo and the trial evaluates changes to one specific illness or condition, e.g. ear infection

Up to the end of 2011, 156 randomised controlled trials had been conducted in homeopathy and been reported in 164 full papers in peer-reviewed journals. This represents research in 89 different medical conditions.

 (Faculty of Homeopathy, @ cited Jan 2014)

Trial results:

  • 46% of these proved positive (patients given the homeopathic remedy improved significantly compared to those given the placebo)
  • 6% proved negative (there was no improvement compared to placebo)
  • 49% of these were non-conclusive

These results indicate that homeopathic remedies compare favourably in Randomised Controlled Trials (RCTs).


Comparing homeopathy and conventional medicine

Research studies comparing homeopathic treatment and conventional care have generated some interesting results.
For example it has been found that:

Treatment by a homeopath is more effective than conventional treatment for acute ear infections in children:

This study published in the International Journal of Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics concluded that homeopathy should be the first line treatment for acute ear infections in children. The group of 103 children who received individualised homeopathic treatment had faster pain relief during the initial infection and fewer ear infections over the following year, compared with the children who received conventional treatment.

(Friese K-H, et al. Homeopathic treatment of otitis media in children: comparisons with conventional therapy. Int J Clin Pharmacol Ther, 1997; 35: 296-301.  ttp:// )

Homeopathic medicines are superior to a standard pain killer for relieving pain in osteoarthritis:

In this double-blind* trial 65 sufferers of Osteoarthritis (OA) were split into 2 groups were given either a homoeopathic medicine or Acetaminophen, a commonly prescribed drug for pain relief in OA. Researchers found that homoeopathy provided a level of pain relief that was superior to Acetaminophen, and produced no adverse reactions. To minimise bias, neither the researchers nor the participants knew what treatment each person was given

(Shealy C.N., Thomlinson P.R., Cox R.H., and Bormeyer V. Osteoarthritis Pain: A Comparison of Homoeopathy and Acetaminophen. American Journal of Pain Management, 1998; 8 (3): 89-91. )

Treatment by a homeopath is just as effective as fluoxetine (Prozac) for acute moderate-severe depression:

This double-blind* randomised controlled trial carried out in Brazil involved 91 patients – half received fluoxetine and half received individualised treatment by a homeopath. To minimise bias, neither the researchers nor the participants knew what treatment each person was given. The trial showed homeopathic medicines to be as effective in relieving depression as fluoxetine. Furthermore, the fluoxetine caused troublesome side-effects, where the homeopathic medicines did not.

(Adler UC, et al. Homeopathic Individualized Q-potencies versus Fluoxetine for Moderate to Severe Depression: Double-blind, Randomized Non-inferiority Trial. eCAM, 2009 )


Data courtesy of  the society of Homeopaths, available at Cited January 2012


Pragmatic trials in homeopathy

While RCT’s may be the best way to evaluate pharmaceutical drugs, there are better ways to evaluate the effectiveness of homeopathic remedies. Pragmatic Trials are better suited to homeopathy because they are a better reflection of what happens in practice. In RCT’s the same treatment is given to all the people in the trial, all of whom have the same illness. But in homeopathy, remedies are chosen according to several symptoms, as well as the individual way that people express their symptoms. For example, 3 women with PMT could be given 3 different remedies because although they all have breast tenderness, bloating, headaches and constipation before their periods, their moods are very different – one woman is irritable, one is tearful and the other wants to be left alone.

In pragmatic trials, individualised remedies can be given to the people in the trial, which is what would happen in practice.


Positive evidence for further conditions:

Some of the evidence for Homeopathic treatment of particular conditions is available below. This list is not exhaustive. Data courtesy of the Faculty of Homeopathy

Allergies and upper respiratory tract infections
Evidence: Systematic review
Bornhoft G, Wolf U, Ammon K, et al. Effectiveness, safety and cost-effectiveness of homeopathy in general practice – summarized health technology assessment. Forsch Komplementarmed 2006; 13 (2): 19-29

Ankle sprain
Evidence: Unrefuted RCT
Zell J, Connert WD, Mau J, Feuerstake G. Treatment of acute sprains of the ankle. Controlled double-blind trial to test the effectiveness of a homeopathic ointment. Fortschr Med 1988; 106: 96-100

Bowel inactivity after surgery (post-operative ileus)
Evidence: Systematic review
Barnes J, Resch K-L, Ernst E. Homeopathy for postoperative ileus? A meta-analysis. J Clin Gastroenterol 1997; 25: 628-33

Evidence: Unrefuted RCT
Diefenbach M, Schilken J, Steiner G, Becker HJ. Homeopathic therapy in respiratory tract diseases. Evaluation of a clinical study in 258 patients. Z Allgemeinmed 1997; 73: 308-14

Childhood diarrhoea
Evidence: Systematic review
Jacobs J, Jonas WB, Jimenez-Perez M, Crothers D. Homeopathy for childhood diarrhea: combined results and metaanalysis from three randomized, controlled clinical trials. Pediatr Infect Dis J 2003; 22: 229-34

Chronic Fatigue
Evidence: Unrefuted RCT
Weatherley-Jones E, Nicholl JP, Thomas KJ, et al. A randomized, controlled, triple-blind trial of the efficacy of homeopathic treatment for chronic fatigue syndrome. J Psychosom Res 2004; 56: 189-97

Ear infections (acute otitis media)
Evidence: Unrefuted RCT
Jacobs J, Springer DA, Crothers D. Homeopathic treatment of acute otitis media in children: a preliminary randomized placebo-controlled trial. Pediatr Infect Dis J 2001; 20: 177-83

Evidence: Several RCTs
Fisher P. An experimental double-blind clinical trial method in homoeopathy. Use of a limited range of remedies to treat fibrositis. BrHomeopath J 1986; 75: 142-7
Bell I, Lewis D, Brooks A, et al. Improved clinical status in fibromyalgia patients treated with individualized homeopathic remedies versus placebo. Rheumatology 2004; 43: 577-82
Relton C, Smith C, Raw J, Walters C, Adebajo AO, Thomas KJ. Healthcare provided by a homeopath as an adjunct to usual care for Fibromyalgia (FMS): results of a pilot Randomised Controlled Trial. Homeopathy, 2009; 98: 77-82.

Hay fever (seasonal allergic rhinitis)
Evidence: Systematic reviews
Wiesenauer M, Ludtke R. A meta-analysis of the homeopathic treatment of pollinosis with Galphimia glauca. Forsch Komplementarmed Klass Naturheilkd 1996; 3: 230-6
Taylor MA, Reilly D, Llewellyn-Jones RH, et al. Randomised controlled trials of homoeopathy versus placebo in perennial allergic rhinitis with overview of four trial series. Br Med J 2000; 321: 471-6
Bellavite P, Ortolani R, Pontarollo F, et al. Immunology and homeopathy. 4. Clinical studies – Part 2. eCAM 2006; 3: 397-409.

Influenza treatment
Evidence: Systematic review
Vickers A, Smith C. Homoeopathic Oscillococcinum for preventing and treating influenza and influenza-like syndromes (Cochrane Review). In: The Cochrane Library. Chichester, UK: John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. 2006

Evidence: Two or more RCTs
Shealy CN, Thomlinson RP, Cox RH, Borgmeyer RN. Osteoarthritic pain: a comparison of homeopathy and acetaminophen. Am J Pain Manage 1998; 8: 89-91
van Haselen RA, Fisher PAG. A randomized controlled trial comparing topical piroxicam gel with a homeopathic gel in osteoarthritis of the knee. Rheumatology 2000; 39: 714-9

Premenstrual syndrome
Evidence: Unrefuted RCT
Yakir M, Kreitler S, Brzezinski A, et al. Effects of homeopathic treatment in women with premenstrual syndrome: a pilot study. Br Homeopath J 2001; 90: 148-53

Rheumatic diseases
Evidence: Systematic review
Jonas WB, Linde K, Ramirez G. Homeopathy and rheumatic disease – Complementary and alternative therapies for rheumatic diseases II. Rheum Dis Clin North Am 2000; 26: 117-23

Evidence: Two or more RCTs
Friese K-H, Zabalotnyi DI. Homeopathy in acute rhinosinusitis. A double-blind, placebo controlled study shows the effectiveness and tolerability of a homeopathic combination remedy. HNO 2007; 55: 271-7
Zabolotnyi DI, Kneis KC, Richardson A, et al. Efficacy of a complex homeopathic medication (Sinfrontal) in patients with acute maxillary sinusitis: a prospective, randomized, doubleblind, placebo-controlled, multicenter clinical trial. Explore (NY) 2007; 3: 98-109

Evidence: Systematic review
Schneider B, Klein P, Weiser M. Treatment of vertigo with a homeopathic complex remedy compared with usual treatments: a meta-analysis of clinical trials. Arzneimittelforschung 2005; 55: 23-9

Further information on research into homeopathy is available on the research page of the Society of Homeopaths website:


Patent laws and clinical trials

Homeopathy has a long-established history of over 200 years, and those who have consulted homeopaths have seen its benefits.
At the beginning of the 20th century, patenting began, and medicines started to become profitable. Drug companies formed and began to compete for business. They started making synthetic copies of natural products in order to own patents on these substances, so they could charge for their use.

Homeopathic remedies cannot be patented because the use of natural substances for medicine is not a new application. Indeed plants have been used as healing substances since time immemorial. For this reason, homeopathic remedies never entered the big pharma profit war, and they have never enjoyed the advertising and marketing budgets that pharmaceutical giants have been able to give their own products.

New natural substances are constantly being added to the Materia Medica of homeopathic remedies, but they – like the original remedies – cannot be patented, and they remain exactly as nature made them.

Nowadays, the harmful side-effects of many pharmaceutical drugs have become evident. This is why there has been an increased demand for gentle treatments such as homeopathy.