Research: STEINSBEKK and FONNEBO,

Listed in Issue 107

Abstract

STEINSBEKK and FONNEBO, Institutt for Samfunnsmedisin, Norges Teknisk-Naturvitenkapelige Universitet, Medisinsk – Teknisk Forskningssenter, 7489 Trondheim, Norway, aslak.steinsbekk@medisin.ntnu.nor, have surveyed the users of homeopathy in Norway.

Background

37% of the Norwegian population have been to a homeopath. This paper describes user complaints and characteristics and compares them with data from previous users and patients in general practice

Methodology

A survey was conducted among 1097 patients visiting 80 homeopaths in 1998. The results were compared to a similar survey conducted in 1985 and a survey of patients in general practice carried out in 1989.

Results

One in four of patients visiting a homeopath in 1998 were children below the age of ten, compared to one in ten in 1985 and one in eleven in the general practice study. Children saw homeopaths most often because of respiratory and skin complaints. Half of the patients in the 1998 study had used conventional medication for their complaint in the last month before they visited the homeopath. The reasons for seeing homeopaths were similar to those seen in general practice except for circulatory complaints.

Conclusion

There has been a substantial increase in the proportion of children who see homeopaths. The reasons that people visit homeopaths are similar to those found in general practice, and people commonly use homeopathy in a fashion complementary to conventional medical care.

References

Steinsbekk A, Fonnebo V. Users of Homeopathy in Norway. Tidsskrift for Den Norske Laegeforening 124 (15): 1950-1951, Aug 12 2004.

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