Even those not necessarily grossed out by the sight of a cockroach, would certainly not like to consume it or any dead parts of it. The unfortunate unsuspecting victims happen to be those resorting to homeopathic medicines, the efficacy and ingredients of which found themselves under the scanner after a hepatologist and columnist Dr. Cyriac Abby Philips highlighted what goes on inside a cough syrup.

"Ok, so homeopaths prescribe this cough syrup very frequently for kids and adults alike, made by SBL," he wrote on his official Twitter handle Dr. Liver Doc while adding that the medicine in question contains "Blatta Orientalis", which is nothing but parts of a dead cockroach mixed with ginger and alcohol.

The doctor further questions the reasoning and defense often put up by practicing homeopaths. "Now, homeopaths would argue, there is no cockroach there because we diluted the life out of it. But then it's just alcohol and ginger for cough? Does that make any sense?"

Exposed: Homeopathy and its quackery

Dr. Philips, who's often taken to debunking myths and highlights flaws in alternative systems of medicine, questions further in the post, "Remind me why people love homeopathy? Why is this absolute nonsense disguised as medicine existing?"

Have you been consuming alcohol

Many a Watsapp jokes among "spirited groups" have stressed the medicinal benefits of alcohol. But when any system of medicine or its treatment finds itself being compared to a regular bottle of 12-year-old scotch, it is a cause for concern. And a cause for scanners from drug safety agencies.

Continues Dr. Philips in a separate post, but furnishing images, data, research, and lab reports wherever possible. "A Chivas Regal 12-year-old blended whiskey containing 40% alcohol costs Rs 3300 for 1000 ml. That is Rs 330 for 100 ml, expensive. It's available only in authorised licensed shops, airports, and government-run outlets. This homeopathy medicine called Sativol prescribed by Homeopaths very frequently for treating "tiredness and fatigue" also contains 40% alcohol. It is 65 rupees for 100 ml after discount and can be ordered from your home through online pharmacies."

[representational Image]Reuters

The post continues the sarcastic comparison as to how the alcohol is the same quality, cheaper and comes home directly. Worst part? It's available to students, senior citizens and those with co-morbidities alike and it masquerades as a harmless medicine believed to be with no side effects.

Questions the doctor, "What will it take to ban these alcohol masquerading as medicines? Who will take this step? This is really worrying. Looks like homeopathy is just rival business against the real alcohol lobby and homeopaths are glorified bartenders."

The most commonly prescribed homeopathic drugs

In the reports testing the commonly prescribed homeopathic drugs at different dilutions to see if they contained advertised active compounds or other active compounds dilutions, they were found to contain metals, alcohol and steroids.

A brand with instant recall value among Indian patrons of the system of medicine. The findings suggest that it contained alcohol in all medicines at all dilutions. "Labelled active metal not identified. But impurities of lead identified in most (part of alcohol processing) medicines.

Have you been consuming a cockroach?

Those who've often resorted to homeopathy for minor coughs or even a bronchial infection must be aware, if not knowledgeable, of the term "blatta orientalis." Homeopathy medicine is often resorted to by homeopathic practitioners.

The drug, which is extracted from cockroaches, was invented accidentally when an asthma patient consumed tea contaminated by the insect and was relieved. The medicine is believed to be effective in treating asthma, chronic bronchitis and bronchiolitis.

Homeopathy medicine.Pixabay

Severe liver injuries, due to homeopathy

Homeopathic formulations have often been mocked for being "ineffective placebo." However, avoiding modern medicine in order to escape its side effects and resorting to homeopathy could cause a liver injury, sometimes severe too. A retrospective review of records from January 2019 to February 2022 identified nine patients with liver injuries attributed to homeopathic formulations. The study conducted on records of 456 patients under treatment for liver-related ailments, was done by researchers from Rajagiri Hospital in Aluva, Kerala.


Speaking to International Business Times, Dr Philips said: "Homeopathy is a pre-scientific era artefact and quackery that remains regulated on paper and never on the ground. Majority of Homeopathic formulations are diluted ingredients in alcohol base, some going up to 90%. Homeopaths are not supposed to use these concentrated formulations called "mother tinctures," but they do so to provide some effect (which usually end up being bad) in the patient because their classical ultra-diluted formulations make no sense. The question is not about regulating Homeopathy, it is about stopping complete public funding of Homeopathy and removing Homeopathic formulations from pharmacy shelves from across the country. That is the kind of regulation Homeopathy deserves because it never was and never will be a real healthcare practice. It is not medicine, but an extreme form of quackery."