This review presents a critical evaluation of methodological quality in controlled trials on homeopathic treatment of influenza. First, a short summary on the prevalence, quality, and most commonly cited shortcomings of homeopathic controlled trials in general is presented to support the more specific points within influenza trials alone. To this end, three areas of the homeopathic literature are examined; large meta-analyses looking at study quality and results across research areas, reviews on research within specific diagnostic categories, and the available reviews and primary studies on influenza treatment trials. The specific methodological designs of homeopathic influenza treatment trials are then compared, on a point by point basis, to pharmaceutical trials on influenza antiviral drugs. The goal of the evaluation is to highlight frequently cited problems in homeopathic trial design, suggest possible improvement for future studies, and make specific recommendations for homeopathic influenza trials based on a comparison to standard antiviral trials.
Copyright 2009 The Faculty of Homeopathy. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.