Background: Upper respiratory tract infections (URTI) are very common and associated with considerable healthcare costs. We evaluated the clinical benefit of a homeopathic add-on therapy.
Patients and methods: In this randomized controlled multinational clinical trial, patients (age range 1-65 years) with feverish URTI received either on-demand symptomatic standard treatment (ST group: paracetamol, ambroxol, and/or oxymetazoline), or homeopathic medication (IFC group: Influcid®) for 7 days plus the same on-demand standard treatment. URTI symptoms were assessed using the Wisconsin Upper Respiratory Symptom Survey-21. Response at day 4, defined as absence of fever and absence or very mild degree of URTI symptoms, was the primary outcome measure.
Results: 523 patients (265 IFC group, 258 ST group) were randomized in 12 Ukrainian and 10 German centers. The responder rate on day 4 was 15.4% in the IFC group and 6.7% in the ST group (x0394;IFC-ST = 8.7%, 95% confidence interval 2.9-14.5%). The IFC group used less symptomatic medication, and symptoms were alleviated 1-2 days earlier. 3 and 8 adverse events (AEs) in the IFC and ST group, respectively, were assessed as possibly treatment-related; 2 out of the 3 AEs in the IFC group were possibly related to symptomatic therapy, 1 (vomiting) to IFC treatment.
Conclusion: The homeopathic treatment shortened URTI duration, reduced the use of symptomatic medication, and was well tolerated.
© 2015 S. Karger GmbH, Freiburg.