The Placebo effect is the biggest accusation that sceptics throw at homeopathy, its adherents, practitioners and patients alike. "It is the placebo effect, it cannot possibly be anything else"
Well, of course the placebo effect exists. But I would argue that it is far more prevalent in conventional medicine with its multi billion dollar advertising budget worldwide. You are told exactly what to expect before you take a pharmaceutical drug. Also, have you ever wondered why a lot of medicine seems to have a particular colour added to it? Why is Gaviscon pink? And why are some antibiotics green? Gaviscon is pink because the colour pink seems to suggest love, calm and peace. And green is well known for being an antiseptic colour, that is why hospital scrubs were always green until quite recently, so the placebo suggestion is there too.
If homeopathic remedies were only effective in a placebo way, why does homeopathy work on babies and animals? But more importantly why does homeopathy NOT work when the patient is given the WRONG remedy, i.e. not the similar remedy for their illness and constitutional make up? If it were only the placebo effect then surely ANY remedy would work!
A few months ago a friend of mine, also a homeopath was staying with while she attended a conference. She had to leave early on the second day with a horrendous migraine, nausea and later frequent bouts of vomiting. She was told to take a remedy, a remedy that I was convinced was not the right match for her acute condition. Since she was prescribed this remedy by a homeopath with far greater experience than me I kept my doubts to myself. She wasn't getting any better at all, she couldn't stand for the bed to be moved while she lay down on it and kept throwing up so she asked me to prescribe a different remedy. After a quick look at the repertory it was obvious what remedy she needed. I gave her the little white pill and after another episode of vomiting she was as right as rain, sitting outside in the garden and wanting to go for a walk. This was within twenty minutes of her feeling so ill that she was struggling to walk to the bathroom!
So once again, the suggestion that homeopathy is nothing but placebo does not hold true in this case and many, many others who me and my colleagues have treated successfully.