To compare the effectiveness of Homeopathy and Conventional therapy in Acute Otitis Media (AOM).
A randomized placebo-controlled parallel group pilot study of homeopathic vs conventional treatment for AOM was conducted in Jaipur, India. Patients were randomized by a computer generated random number list to receive either individualized homeopathic medicines in fifty millesimal (LM) potencies, or conventional treatment including analgesics, antipyretics and anti-inflammatory drugs. Patients who did not improve were prescribed antibiotics at the 3rd day. Outcomes were assessed by the Acute Otitis Media-Severity of Symptoms (AOM-SOS) Scale and Tympanic Membrane Examination over 21 days.
81 patients were included, 80 completed follow-up: 41 for conventional and 40 for homeopathic treatment. In the Conventional group, all 40 (100%) patients were cured, in the Homeopathy group, 38 (95%) patients were cured while 02 (5%) patients were lost to the last two follow-up. By the 3rd day of treatment, 4 patients were cured in Homeopathy group but in Conventional group only one patient was cured. In the Conventional group antibiotics were prescribed in 39 (97.5%), no antibiotics were required in the Homeopathy group. 85% of patients were prescribed six homeopathic medicines.
Individualized homeopathy is an effective conventional treatment in AOM, there were no significant differences between groups in the main outcome. Symptomatic improvement was quicker in the Homeopathy group, and there was a large difference in antibiotic requirements, favouring homeopathy. Further work on a larger scale should be conducted.