The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog is intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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    Vibrational medicine: Results of scientific research

    Vibrational medicine is based on the premise that human beings are essentially “dynamic energy systems” (aka spirits), and the path to good health is found through maintaining a health balance and flow of energy through the body.

    According to About.com, promoting balance and flow of “subtle energy systems” can be achieved through diet, regulation of emotions, environment, and of course the intervention of a “certified” and “trained” practitioners who use acupuncture, aromatherapy, crystal healing, touch therapy, tuning forks, and more.

    On the Internet, proponents of vibrational medicine sound more like hucksters than scientists. However, here is an interesting study where a laser was used to excite the vibrational state of a microorganism in order to destroy it.

    It’s a variation on the vibrational medicine mantra.

    First, the details.

    • M13 bacteriophages (see photo) were exposed to very lower power femtosecond laser system.
    • Viruses that infect bacteria are called bacteriophages (eaters of bacteria).
    • The M13 bacteriophage — one of the simplest helical structures — attaches itself to the target cell’s DNA.
    • Under the right circumstances bacteriophages can cause or spread infection.
    • A femtosecond laser can produce a pulse of energy that is shorter than a nanosecond.

    And, the results

    • The M13 bacteriophage was inactivated by the femtosecond laser.

    The bottom line?
    The researchers concluded, “Our work demonstrates a new strategy for manipulating, controlling, and inactivating unwanted microorganisms. It suggests that … a laser optical system can be a general way to selectively alter the function of viruses and potentially other microorganisms through the property of their mechanical acoustic excitations.”

    Lot’s more research is needed, but it could be an alternative or complement to antimicrobial drugs and vaccines.

    It goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway. There is absolutely no proven correlation or association between what was achieved in this study and the typical routine followed by a practitioner of vibrational medicine.

    1/1/08 16:43 JR

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