A comparison of the effectiveness of two homoeopathic dosage forms of Momordica charantia in the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus in patients on metformin
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It was reported by the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) Diabetes Atlas, in 2003, that a prevalence figure of 3.4% exists for the 24 million South Africans between the ages of 20 and 79, with an expected increase to 3.9% by 2025. Considering that patients with diabetes are at increased risk of cardiovascular disease, blindness, amputation and renal failure it is therefore not surprising that the costs associated with diabetes are estimated to increase worldwide. It is clear that according to the current trends in dietary and exercise practices, South Africa will be affected by the rise in obesity and subsequent diabetes mellitus. It is critical that a concerted effort involving all parties concerned be made to combat this rapidly increasing problem (Rheeder, 2006:20). AIM The purpose of this double-blind, randomized clinical trial was to compare the effectiveness of Momordica charantia homoeopathic mother tincture as compared to Momordica charantia 6CH, in the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus in patients on Metformin. METHODOLOGY Thirty patients were recruited and were selected for the study on the basis of inclusion and exclusion criteria. These participants were then randomly and equally divided into two groups. Each participant attended a total of four consultations with the researcher, over a two month period, at the Durban University of Technology (DUT) Homoeopathic Day Clinic. At the commencement of the first consultation, each participant received the subject information letter (Appendix A) for perusal and the informed consent form (Appendix B) to sign. Following this, the researcher took a full, detailed iv case history (Appendix F) and performed a physical examination (Appendix G) of each patient. Participants were required to have a Glycosylated haemoglobin (HbA1C) test performed following the first and fourth consultations. Participants were also required to complete daily Log Sheets (comprising self administered fasting blood glucose readings using issued Bayer Ascensia Elite Glucometers) for the entire duration of the study (8 weeks). SPSS version 18 was used to analyse the data. A p value < 0.05 was considered as statistically significant. The time effect was assessed for intra-group comparison whereas the time x group treatment effect was assessed for inter-group comparison. Means were calculated for both fasting blood glucose and glycosylated haemoglobin for the two respective groups and tabulated in order to describe the data obtained (Descriptive statistics). RESULTS Both groups reflected a statistically non significant decrease in fasting blood glucose levels with no significant differences between the two groups when comparing reduction in fasting blood glucose levels. Group 1 (Momordica charantia homoeopathic mother tincture) reflected a non significant increase in glycosylated haemoglobin (HbA1C) levels while Group 2 (Momordica charantia 6CH) reflected a statistically significant increase over time in HbA1C levels. There were no significant differences between the two groups when comparing reduction in HbA1C levels.