Confusion over Homeopathic Medicine for Swine Flu H1N1 Clarified by the American Association of Homeopathic Pharmacists (AAHP)

Oct 28, 2009, 15:49 ET from American Association of Homeopathic Pharmacists

NEWTOWN SQUARE, Pa., Oct. 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Recent news articles regarding Swine Flu H1N1 have been widespread. The virulence of the strain among humans and its implications for pandemic disease in humans may lead to increased interest in homeopathic treatments for Swine Flu H1N1.

The American Association of Homeopathic Pharmacists (AAHP), representing the major manufacturers and distributors of homeopathic drugs, wishes to inform the public of its view of the sale of homeopathic medicines to prevent and/or treat Swine Flu H1N1.

There is no homeopathic literature, nor clinical trial, which adequately supports a homeopathic drug for use as PROPHYLAXIS (or for prevention) for Swine Flu H1N1. In addition, any product labeled for prophylaxis of flu is prescription in nature, according to U.S. Food and Drug Administration's drug labeling guidelines, and is an inappropriate use of any product sold over the counter (or as a non-prescription drug).

Homeopathic drugs have a long history of effectiveness in the reduction of SYMPTOMS for flu. Appropriate use of homeopathic medicines according to the principle of similars involves the matching of symptoms in the diseased state with those symptoms caused by a specific substance in its homeopathic drug proving. As such, homeopathic medicines are used principally for the treatment of presented symptoms and are less associated with the causative agent of those symptoms. Thus, of importance are the symptoms manifested in the individual as a result of the "flu" rather than the agent that caused the symptoms. Literature supports the use of several homeopathic medicines for relief of symptoms of fever, chills, cough, sore throat, headache, body aches and fatigue. Symptoms of diarrhea and vomiting may also be relieved using homeopathic medicines. Swine Flu H1N1 has been characterized by symptoms of mild onset, sometimes resulting in serious negative outcomes even under professional care.

Accordingly, the AAHP makes clear its position that marketers, including Web sites, selling homeopathic medicines as over-the-counter products for prophylaxis of infectious diseases, in general including Swine Flu H1N1, may be in violation of federal and state law.

When properly used by trained medical professionals, some homeopathic medicines have been shown to be useful against an epidemic disease. However, infectious diseases require medical intervention because an absolute confirmation of infection with a particular disease-causing organism requires laboratory testing. Infectious diseases may not be self-limiting and require medical diagnosis or monitoring. In light of the foregoing, it is inappropriate for a homeopathic drug product to be sold over the counter while being promoted in any way for PROPHYLAXIS of an infectious disease.

About the AAHP: Founded in 1923, the AAHP is a not-for-profit corporation of the State Commonwealth of Virginia, representing the interests of homeopathic manufacturers, distributors, and individual pharmacists in cooperative efforts with regulatory agencies and other organizations nationally. The AAHP functions as a trade association within the homeopathic pharmaceutical industry to represent the opinions and interests of homeopathic product manufacturers and distributors, the FDA, other regulatory agencies and other trade associations. In addition, the association promotes high standards in manufacturing and distributing, communicates regulatory changes to member companies through a regular newsletter, and promotes professional communications, education, and research within the homeopathic community.

SOURCE American Association of Homeopathic Pharmacists