Healing Magnetic Therapy’s Quality Scientific Evidence Ignored by Conservative Medical Researchers

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A January 2006 medical journal article generated a rash of negative press against magnetic therapy. Yet quality medical studies and reviews contradict the authors’ stance. These authors also neglect to mention that many common conventional medical procedures and surgeries have not been studied to the degree to which they expect magnetic therapy to submit.

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The recent January 2006 issue of the British Medical Journal suggested patients be advised that magnetic therapy has no proved benefits. They argued that only blinded randomized controlled trials can prove medical benefit, and that it is difficult to study magnets in a blinded fashion.

"The article obscures an important truth about research and real world healing," says Brian B. Carter, MS, LAc, an acupuncturist and professor at the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine in San Diego. "If we were to apply this standard to all medicines, we'd also have to point out that many common surgeries and medical procedures also have no proved health benefit. Few of them have been studied in randomized controlled trials, and they cost at least as much as magnetic healing does. But no one complains about that. This exemplifies the double standard the medical establishment applies to alternative medicine."

A randomized controlled trial of arthroscopic knee surgery for osteoarthritis found it to be no more efficacious than placebo, yet this surgery is performed on more than 600,000 people per year. This study appeared in the New England Journal of Medicine in July 2002.

The British Medical Journal article is at odds with the results of more than 300 favorable studies of powerful magnetic therapy for diseases including arthritis, fibromyalgia, migraine, multiple sclerosis, pain, sinusitis, and insomnia. Abstracts of these studies are available for free at The FeelGood Store (http://www.feelgoodstore.com/Products/Magnetics/AdvancedBiomagneticsDB.aspx). What’s more, an expert review of 18 high quality randomized controlled trials of magnetic therapy for pain concluded that the weight of the evidence favors magnetic pain relief. This review was published in June 2005 in the Journal of Alternative & Complementary Medicine.

"The authors of the BMJ study forget that consumers are shrewd," says Carter. "If magnets don't work, they'll demand a refund or spread negative word of mouth. Plus, recent research continues to explain close relationship between nerves, the brain, and the immune system. The same neurovasculoimmune mechanisms that make acupuncture work explain how magnets heal the body. Nerves work via electricity and magnetic fields affect the flow of electricity."

About The FeelGood Store:

The FeelGood Store has been providing customers with superior pain relief, beauty, fitness, and wellness products via mail order and the internet since 1993. A variety of magnetic products including bracelets and joint supports is available at http://www.feelgoodstore.com/Categories/Magnetic%20Therapy/1038.aspx.

About Brian Carter, MS, LAc:

Brian Carter is a California licensed acupuncturist and herbalist. He teaches in the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine's masters program and is the author of Powerful Body, Peaceful Mind. His complete bio is available at http://www.pulsemed.org/briancarterbio.htm.

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