What happens when Tamiflu, the leading anti-viral drug, no longer works?
The New York Times reported on January 8th, 2009 that “Last winter, about 11 percent of the throat swabs from patients with the most common type of flu that were sent to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for genetic typing showed a Tamiflu-resistant strain. This season, 99 percent do.”
Some vaccines may provide effective protection, if it’s a good vaccine and is made prior to, or very early on in an epidemic. We saw the results of the last vaccine hastily created during the last swine flu epidemic: people became sick, or died from the vaccine.
While proponents of alternative therapies are generally negative about vaccines, if a disease is lethal enough, most would probably revisit their thoughts on the subject of vaccines. However, because s virus can mutate so fast, immunization may not be as effective as one would hope. If it were, we would probably have an effective HIV vaccine by now. Aside from that, it would take months (and billions of dollars) to make enough vaccines to inoculate the entire US population , while it takes only a matter of days for the virus to make a complete trip around the world. As you can imagine, time would be of the essence.
A good alternative to an anti-viral drug is Homeopathic Remedies. According to Jacob I. Mirman, MD, author of Demystifying Homeopathy, homeopathic remedies never have an issue with resistance. This is because the remedies do not have any direct effect on the virus. They just modify our body’s response to it by enabling our defense mechanism to a better recognition of what needs to be fought off.
Note that homeopathic remedies, or herbal remedies, do not “over stimulate” the immune system: they enhance and/or help to balance the immune system. One thing you do not want to do is over stimulate your immune system, especially if your immune system is already compromised by an existing health condition such as Lupus. In fact, researchers in Hong Kong reported that the H5N1 (bird flu) virus might have provoked an excessive immune reaction, explaining why it was deadly even to the young and healthy.
Homeopaths believe that the best medicine for any person is the one that uses the smallest dose to produce the greatest healing response. Homeopathic remedies can be used safely for any age group for treating flu, including babies and the elderly.
Homeopathy is not a new medicine. It is based on the law of similars: Like attracts like. The law of similars says that a substance that can cause a certain pattern of symptoms in a healthy person can cure those same symptoms in a sick person. The principle of vaccination is based on the same law.
Will Homeopathic remedies work in case of an epidemic? They already have worked, and a number of times throughout history. The National Center for Homeopathy cites one of the earliest tests of the homeopathic system was in the treatment of Typhus Fever in the 1813 epidemic. Samuel Hahnemann, the founder of homeopathy, was able to treat 180 cases of Typhus—losing but two. This, at a time when the conventional treatments were having a mortality rate of over 30%.
Homeopathy continued to be effective in the 1854 a Cholera Epidemic, and the Influenza Pandemic of 1918. The Journal of the American Institute for Homeopathy, May 1921, had a long article about the use of homeopathy in the flu epidemic. Dr. T. A McCann, from Dayton, Ohio, at the 77th Annual Convention of the American Institute of Homeopathy in Washington, D.C., reported that 24,000 cases of flu treated allopathically had a mortality rate of 28.2% while 26,000 cases of flu treated homeopathically had a mortality rate of 1.05%. (“The Homeopathic Treatment of Influenza,” by Sandra Perko, 1999, Benchmark Homeopathic Publications.)
Homeopathy has been very effective in treating many of the epidemics during the 19th and early 20th centuries. In the end, Homeopathy may end up being the most reliable method of saving lives in the next epidemic.