Voorbeeld Meta-analyse naar werking Homeopathie (Mathie et al. 2014)

De meest recente indicatie-onafhankelijke meta-analyse van individuele homeopathie is die van  Mathie en collega’s in 2014: 

– Beperking tot 32 studies 

– Geïndividualiseerde klassieke homeopathie 

– Kwaliteitscontrole van de afzonderlijke documenten aan de hand van een beoordeling van het risico van vooringenomenheid door een Cochrane Collaboration tool. 

Kleine, specifieke effecten van homeopathische behandeling zijn evident. De kwaliteit van de bewijs laat geen sluitende verklaringen toe. Meer hoogwaardige RCT’s naar “klassieke” homeopathie zijn nodig om betrouwbare uitspraken te kunnen doen. 

Randomised placebo-controlled trials of individualised homeopathic treatment: systematic review and meta-analysis 

Mathie, R.T., Lloyd, S.M., Legg, L.A., Clausen, J., Moss, S., Davidson, J.R.T., Ford, I. 



A rigorous and focused systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of individualised homeopathic treatment has not previously been undertaken. We tested the hypothesis that the outcome of an individualised homeopathic treatment approach using homeopathic medicines is distinguishable from that of placebos. 


The review’s methods, including literature search strategy, data extraction, assessment of risk of bias and statistical analysis, were strictly protocol-based. Judgment in seven assessment domains enabled a trial’s risk of bias to be designated as low, unclear or high. A trial was judged to comprise ‘reliable evidence’ if its risk of bias was low or was unclear in one specified domain. ‘Effect size’ was reported as odds ratio (OR), with arithmetic transformation for continuous data carried out as required; OR > 1 signified an effect favouring homeopathy. 


Thirty-two eligible RCTs studied 24 different medical conditions in total. Twelve trials were classed ‘uncertain risk of bias’, three of which displayed relatively minor uncertainty and were designated reliable evidence; 20 trials were classed ‘high risk of bias’. Twenty-two trials had extractable data and were subjected to meta-analysis; OR = 1.53 (95% confidence interval (CI) 1.22 to 1.91). For the three trials with reliable evidence, sensitivity analysis revealed OR = 1.98 (95% CI 1.16 to 3.38). 


Medicines prescribed in individualised homeopathy may have small, specific treatment effects. Findings are consistent with sub-group data available in a previous ‘global’ systematic review. The low or unclear overall quality of the evidence prompts caution in interpreting the findings. New high-quality RCT research is necessary to enable more decisive interpretation.