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Multiweek resting EEG cordance change patterns from repeated olfactory activation with two constitutionally salient homeopathic remedies in healthy young adults

Bell IR, Howerter A, Jackson N, Brooks AJ, Schwartz GE. Multi-week resting EEG cordance change patterns from repeated olfactory activation with two constitutionallysalient homeopathic remedies in healthy young adults. J Alternative and Complementary Medicine 2012, 18(5):445–453.

OBJECTIVES: Electroencephalography (EEG) offers psychophysiologic tools to improve sensitivity for detecting objective effects in complementary and alternative medicine. This current investigation extended prior clinical research studies to evaluate effects of one of two different homeopathic remedies on resting EEG cordance after an olfactory activation protocol on healthy young adults with remedy-relevant, self-perceived characteristics.


Ninety-seven (7) young adults (N=97, mean age 19 years, 55% women) with good self-rated global health and screened for homeopathic constitutional types consistent with one of two remedies (either Sulphur or Pulsatilla) underwent three weekly laboratory sessions. At each visit, subjects had 5-minute resting, eyes-closed EEG recordings before and after a placebo-controlled olfactory activation task with their constitutionally relevant verum remedy. One remedy potency (6c, 12c, or 30c) used per week, was presented in a randomized order over the 3 sessions. Prefrontal resting EEG cordance values at Fp1 and Fp2 were computed from artifact-free 2-minute EEG samples from the presniffing and postsniffing rest periods. Cordance derives from an algorithm that incorporates absolute and relative EEG values.


The data showed significant two-way oscillatory interactions of remedy by time for ß, α, θ, and δ cordance, controlling for gender and chemical sensitivity.


EEG cordance provided a minimally invasive technique for assessing objective nonlinear physiologic effects of two different homeopathic remedies salient to the individuals who received them. Time factors modulated the direction of effects. Given previous evidence of correlations between cordance and single-photon emission computed tomography, these findings encourage additional neuroimaging research on nonlinear psychophysiologic effects of specific homeopathic remedies.