Two years ago, researchers Patricia Sohn and Cynthia Loveland Cook surveyed nurse practitioners (NPs) in Missouri and Oregon to assess their knowledge and use of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM). The results of their study, published in a 2002 Journal of Advanced Nursing, revealed that while respondents appeared to embrace CAM on a large scale, a much smaller number actually based that acceptance on formal education.
In review after review of clinical trials on complementary and alternative medicine (CAM), researchers have informed therapists that many of the studies out there are not of high enough quality to prove benefits of the modalities being examined. Furthermore, there’s an inadequate number of trials to move CAM speedily along on the road to universal acceptance. What’s the problem? And why do we need these trials anyway?