Saturday, December 15, 2007
Homeopathy Mixup in France
The equivalent of the FDA in France (the AFFSAPS) revealed startling news this past November about a mislabeling of homeopathic remedies. Here are two short exerpts:
"AFSSAPS has been informed by Laboratoires Boiron of an inversion of the labelling of two homeopathic medicaments, The bottles labelled 'mother tincture of Gingko biloba' contain mother tincture of Equisetum arvense and vice versa."
"AFSSAPS has said that this mix-up does not pose any particular risk . . ."
Why does this mixup pose no risk, you might ask? Unlike mislabeling real drugs, homeopathic remedies are nothing but water (read following blog for details).
Consider this bit from the exchange between Lord Broers and Ms. Kate Chatfield of the Society of Homeopaths in England from the minutes of evidence to the Select Committee on Science and Technology.
Lord Broers: I have a simple, technical question about homeopathy and drugs. Is it possible to distinguish between homeopathic drugs after they have been diluted? Is there any means of distinguishing one from the other?
Ms. Chatfield: Only by the label.
Well, there you have it. There's no way to distinguish them because (I'll say it again) they're nothing but water!
Thanks to DC's Improbable Science for this gem.