False Claims for Acupuncture

The principles of science-based medicine include using all available scientific evidence to assess the safety, efficacy, and risk vs benefit of any medical intervention. Further, treatments supported by rigorous evidence should be preferred over those with less scientific support, and there should be a lower boundary of plausibility and evidence below which it is unethical to recommend treatments. Finally, the ethics of patient autonomy require transparency and honesty. Patients cannot make informed decisions and cannot protect their autonomy if they are lied to.

There are regulations about what kinds of claims can be made for medical products and services, but they vary from country to country, and generally are fairly loose. Even when regulations exist, enforcement is largely inadequate. This leaves consumers fending for themselves when it comes to important medical decisions involving complex and technical scientific data.

This is an endemic and significant problem in the arena of “alternative”


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