What is a Nosode?
Nosodes are homeopathic preparations made from bodily tissues and fluids (including faeces, blood, pus, discharges, and saliva) taken from patients suffering from a disease (e.g. measles, anthrax, tuberculosis)1. Once the starting material is obtained, it is sterilized and serially diluted, just like any other homeopathic remedy, often to the point where no active ingredient remains2. As with other homeopathic remedies, nosodes are taken orally and are used for a wide variety of conditions. We are concerned by the use of nosodes to prevent infectious disease, a procedure known as “homeoprophylaxis”.
There are several homeoprophylaxis programs that are being promoted by complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) providers as a replacement for the recommended vaccination schedule3. These programs include nosodes purported to provide immunity from measles, polio, pertussis, mumps, chicken pox, and other serious childhood illnesses. There are even programs offered to certify naturopaths and homeopaths to supervise the administration of the products4. They are unaffiliated with any educational institution and are based on anecdote and magical thinking. Homeoprophylaxis proponents often reference 5-6 weak studies to support their claims, but none of these were double-blind, randomised, controlled trials and most were published before 1970 and never replicated.
- Little, D. (2007). Nosodes in homeopathy. http://www.simillimum.com/education/little-library/constitution-temperaments-and-miasms/nih/article.php . Accessed Feb. 23 2013. ↩
- Ingraham, P. (2011). The power of Avogadro compels you. http://saveyourself.ca/articles/the-power-of-avogadro-compels-you.php . Accessed Feb. 23 2013. ↩
- Birch, K (N.D.). Homeopathy for free and healthy children. http://vaccinefree.wordpress.com/homeopathicvaccine/ . Accessed Feb. 23 2013. ↩
- Birch, K (N.D.). HP Supervision. http://vaccinefree.wordpress.com/hp-supervision/ . Accessed Feb. 15 2013. ↩