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  • © 2019

Alternative Medicine

A Critical Assessment of 150 Modalities

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  • Offers a guide for lay people through the maze of alternative medicine

  • Written by an expert who has thoroughly researched the subject for the last 25 years

  • Comprehensive coverage of a full range of alternative modalities and their critical points

Buying options

eBook
USD 19.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • ISBN: 978-3-030-12601-8
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
Softcover Book
USD 29.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)

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Table of contents (11 chapters)

  1. Front Matter

    Pages i-xiv
  2. Introduction

    • Edzard Ernst
    Pages 1-6
  3. Why Evidence?

    • Edzard Ernst
    Pages 7-12
  4. Ethical Problems in Alternative Medicine

    • Edzard Ernst
    Pages 37-46
  5. Other Issues

    • Edzard Ernst
    Pages 47-59
  6. Diagnostic Techniques

    • Edzard Ernst
    Pages 61-74
  7. Medicines and Oral Treatments

    • Edzard Ernst
    Pages 75-147
  8. Physical Therapies

    • Edzard Ernst
    Pages 149-211
  9. Other Therapies

    • Edzard Ernst
    Pages 213-255
  10. Umbrella Terms

    • Edzard Ernst
    Pages 257-302
  11. Back Matter

    Pages 303-312

About this book

Alternative medicine (AM) is hugely popular; about 40% of the US general population have used at least one type of alternative treatment in the past year, and in Germany this figure is around 70%. The money spent on AM is considerable: the global market is expected to reach nearly US $ 200 billion by 2025, with most of these funds coming directly out of consumers’ pockets.

The reasons for this popularity are complex, but misinformation is certainly a prominent factor. The media seem to have an insatiable appetite for the subject and often report uncritically on it. Misinformation about AM on the Internet (currently about 50 million websites are focused on AM) is much more the rule than the exception.

Consumers are thus being bombarded with misinformation on AM, and they are ill-protected from such misinformation and therefore prone to making wrong, unwise or dangerous therapeutic decisions, endangering their health and wasting their money.

This book is a reference text aimed at guiding consumers through the maze of AM. The concept of the book is straightforward. It has two main parts. The first, short section provides essential background on AM, explaining in simple terms what is (and what is not) good, reliable evidence, and addressing other relevant issues like, for instance, the placebo response, informed consent, integrative medicine, etc.

The second and main part consists of 150 short chapters, topically grouped and each dedicated to one single alternative therapeutic or diagnostic method. In each of them, seven critical points are raised. These points relate to issues that are important for consumers’ decisions whether it is worth trying the method in question. Restricting the discussion to just seven points means that issues must be prioritized to those themes which are most relevant in the context of each given modality.


Keywords

  • Complementary Medicine
  • Integrative Health
  • Consumer Guide to alternative medicine
  • Natural Medicine
  • Patient choice
  • Treatment options for patients
  • Selecting the right treatment
  • Alternative diagnostics
  • Alternative therapy

Reviews

“The purpose is to provide a quick overview and assessment of many popular alternative medicine therapies. The author's deliberate choice of brevity makes the book easy to read … .” (Paul Joseph Ratte, Doody's Book Reviews, October 25, 2019)

“He has distilled his lifetime of knowledge into a handy, practical, easily accessible reference. … He wrote this book for confused consumers who have been inundated with conflicting information, for those who ‘are looking for the facts, trust in science, and prefer critical assessment to commercial promotion’. He has done them a great service.” (Harriet Hall, Sciene-Based Medicine, September 17, 2019)

Authors and Affiliations

  • Cambridge, UK

    Edzard Ernst

About the author

Edzard Ernst has researched all aspects of alternative medicine for 25 years. He and his team have published well over 1000 peer-reviewed papers and many books on the subject, including More Harm than Good? - The Moral Maze of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (2018) and Homeopathy - The Undiluted Facts (2016) with Springer. His work has been awarded more than a dozen prizes, including the John Maddox Prize 2016. He retired about six years ago and is emeritus professor of the University of Exeter. He continues to play an active role in the public debate on alternative medicine.

Bibliographic Information

Buying options

eBook
USD 19.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • ISBN: 978-3-030-12601-8
  • Instant PDF download
  • Readable on all devices
  • Own it forever
  • Exclusive offer for individuals only
  • Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout
Softcover Book
USD 29.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)