The pharmacies in London, UK, and Singapore carry homeopathic medicine including arsenic and aconite. Each preparation has a statement of “A homeopathic medical product without approved therapeutic indications.”
In contrast, similar preparations are found in health food stores in Canada with “endorsement” from Health Canada, and with drug identification numbers. Homeopathic medicines are used by both naturopaths and homeopaths and some are self-medicated.
Because of the extreme dilution active ingredients are not measurable, and therefore the homeopathic medicines are supposedly without side effect and “without approved therapeutic indications.” However, there has been a report of a homeopathic medicine containing aconite resulting in cardiac complication.
Health Canada should consider raising its regulation standards to match those of the British and Singaporian health authorities, as well as those of the US FDA.
—H.C. George Wong, MD
Above is the information needed to cite this article in your paper or presentation. The International Committee
of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE) recommends the following citation style, which is the now nearly universally
accepted citation style for scientific papers:
Halpern SD, Ubel PA, Caplan AL, Marion DW, Palmer AM, Schiding JK, et al. Solid-organ transplantation in HIV-infected patients. N Engl J Med. 2002;347:284-7.
About the ICMJE and citation styles
The ICMJE is small group of editors of general medical journals who first met informally in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 1978 to establish guidelines for the format of manuscripts submitted to their journals. The group became known as the Vancouver Group. Its requirements for manuscripts, including formats for bibliographic references developed by the U.S. National Library of Medicine (NLM), were first published in 1979. The Vancouver Group expanded and evolved into the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ICMJE), which meets annually. The ICMJE created the Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals to help authors and editors create and distribute accurate, clear, easily accessible reports of biomedical studies.
An alternate version of ICMJE style is to additionally list the month an issue number, but since most journals use continuous pagination, the shorter form provides sufficient information to locate the reference. The NLM now lists all authors.
BCMJ standard citation style is a slight modification of the ICMJE/NLM style, as follows:
- Only the first three authors are listed, followed by "et al."
- There is no period after the journal name.
- Page numbers are not abbreviated.
For more information on the ICMJE Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals, visit www.icmje.org