Author revises summary of scientific evidence about complementary and alternative medicine

Posted 08 November 2023

Thomas J. Wheeler, PhD, a retired associate professor from the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at the University of Louisville School of Medicine, has published a 60-page revision of his Overview of Complementary and Alternative Medicine on the website of the Kentucky Council Against Health Fraud. The material was originally developed as the first in a series of handouts for an elective course that offered medical students a scientific look at alternative medicine. The topics addressed include:

  • general aspects
  • the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health and its predecessors
  • common themes in alternative medicine
  • adverse effects
  • integrative medicine
  • functional medicine
  • regulatory agencies involved in health claims
  • organizations and websites promoting critical examination of alternative claims
  • legal and ethical issues
  • fraud and quackery
  • antivaccination efforts
  • antifluoridation efforts
  • critical thinking in evaluation of medical claims: philosophical issues
  • nature of science
  • scientific activities and methods
  • skepticism and open-mindedness
  • reviews of complementary and alternative medicine for different conditions
  • glossary of complementary and alternative medical claims and practices

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