Pattern diagnosis is an integral aspect of Chinese medicine (CM). CM differentiates biomedical diseases into patterns, based upon the patient's symptoms and signs. Pattern identification (PI) is used to diagnose, direct the treatment principle and determine the treatment protocol. Most CM research has used fixed formula treatments for Western-defined diseases with outcomes measured using objective biomedical markers. This article presents an innovative method used in a randomised controlled pilot study using acupuncture for participants with hepatitis C virus.
This systematic review aims to estimate the prevalence of use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) by physicians in the UK. Five databases were searched for surveys monitoring the prevalence of use of CAM, which were published between 1 January 1995 and 7 December 2011. In total, 14 papers that reported 13 separate surveys met our inclusion criteria. Most were of poor methodological quality. The average prevalence of use of CAM across all surveys was 20.6% (range 12.1-32%).
Acupuncture in Medicine: Journal of the British Medical Acupuncture Society
BACKGROUND: In trials, 'therapist intensive' complex interventions are typically delivered over time, during which a relationship between the practitioner and participant may develop. Such relationships are sometimes criticised as obscuring any 'true' treatment effect. Limiting interactions is one strategy that might be used to try to control for the effect of a therapeutic relationship.
OBJECTIVE: To analyze organization and therapeutic procedures administered in tertiary outpatient pain clinics in Croatia. METHODS: Data about organization of pain clinics, its personnel, equipment, continuing medical education, therapeutic procedures, research activities and relations with pharmaceutical industry were collected using questionnaires. RESULTS: Twenty-two Croatian pain clinics were included in the study. Most of the pain clinics employ exclusively anesthesiologists and nurses.
INTRODUCTION: The aim of this systematic review is to summarise and critically evaluate the evidence for the effectiveness of reiki. METHODS: We searched the literature using 23 databases from their respective inceptions through to November 2007 (search again 23 January 2008) without language restrictions. Methodological quality was assessed using the Jadad score. RESULTS: The searches identified 205 potentially relevant studies. Nine randomised clinical trials (RCTs) met our inclusion criteria.
A survey of the attitudes and practices of general practitioners in Northern Ireland regarding contraception and abortion was carried out in 1994 and 1995 with a randomized sample of 154 physicians. The vast majority of doctors who received requests for contraceptives from their patients fulfilled those request (94%). Overall, 13% of the doctors said a married patient had requested an abortion in the past three months, and 34% had had a similar request from an unmarried patient.
OBJECTIVE: To assess prescribing practice of Primary Health Care (PHC) workers in church owned health care facilities using WHO drug use indicators. DESIGN: A cross-sectional study in which twenty primary health care facilities were randomly selected. Prescribing indicators were obtained by analysing outpatient records retrospectively for the past 14 months between January 1997 and February 1998. This period was chosen because of compete records of outpatient attendances. Patient care and facility indicators were recorded prospectively during the study period.
The BEACH (Bettering the Evaluation and Care of Health) program, a continuous national study of general practice, began in April 1998 and is now in its eighth year. More than 7500 GPs have participated to date (about one-third of the total workforce) and data are available for about 750,000 encounters. The following overview is designed to disseminate key findings from BEACH, to publicize the annual report, and as a public expression of gratitude to the GP participants without whose generous contribution this study would not be possible.
BACKGROUND: As information is disseminated about best practices, variations in patterns of care should diminish over time. OBJECTIVE: To test the hypotheses that differences in rates of a surgical procedure are associated with type of insurance in an era of evolving practice guidelines and that insurance and site differences diminish with time as consensus guidelines disseminate among the medical community. METHODS: We use lymph node dissection among women with ductal carcinoma in situ (DCIS) as an example of a procedure with uncertain benefit.
Cost-sharing rules for paying physicians have been advanced as a way of generating incentives for the provision of quality care, while recognizing their potential negative effects on production efficiency. However, the optimal sharing rate typically depends on the degree to which the physician acts in the interest of the patient, what we identify as the physician's altruism. Since the degree of altruism is likely to vary across physicians, and to be private information, the standard rules for setting the cost-sharing rate are unlikely to be optimal.