Adverse drug reactions to anthroposophic and homeopathic solutions for injection: a systematic evaluation of German pharmacovigilance databasesMiek C. Jong, Mats U. Jong and Erik W. Baars
Purpose Medicinal solutions for injection are frequently applied in anthroposophic medicine and homeopathy. Despite their extensive use,
there is little data published on the safety of these products. Therefore, we investigated the safety of anthroposophic and homeopathic solutions
for injection through a systematic evaluation of adverse drug reactions (ADRs).
Methods ADRs were extracted from the pharmacovigilance databases of eight German manufacturers. Analysed ADRs included case
reports in humans only, (spontaneous) case reports from post-marketing surveillance, literature and clinical/safety trials.
Results Between 2000 and 2009, in total, 303 million ampoules for injection were sold, and 486 case reports were identified,
corresponding to a total number of 1180 ADRs. Of all case reports, 71.8% (349/486) included ADRs that were listed (e.g. stated in package
leaflet), and 9.5% (46/486) of the reports were classified as serious. The most frequently reported ADRs were pruritus, followed by angioedema,
diarrhoea and erythema. A total of 27.3% (322/1180) were localized reactions for example; application or injection site erythema,
pain, swelling and inflammation. The overall reporting rate of ADRs associated with injections was less than 4 per 1 million sold ampoules
and classified as very rare.
Conclusions Our systematic evaluation demonstrated that the reporting rate of ADRs associated with anthroposophic and homeopathic
solutions for injection is very low. Most reported ADRs were listed, and one quarter consisted of local reactions. These findings suggest
a low risk profile for solutions for injection as therapeutically applied in anthroposophic medicine and homeopathy. Copyright © 2012 John
Wiley & Sons, Ltd.