Friday, 12 December 2008

News on latest Homeopathy submission

A while ago a submitted a comment to the journal Homeopathy, discussing a paper published in the journal by Rutten and Stolper, claiming to find a number of serious flaws in the Shang et al. meta-analysis that appeared in the Lancet in 2005. I had a slightly cryptic e-mail back from the journal last week:

Dear Dr Wilson,

Thank you for sending us this article. We have sent the article to the authors for comment.

We will be in touch again shortly.

I assume that means that the comment will be published, with a reply by the authors. I'll be interested in what they have to say, because at this point some of the errors in their paper seem to be indefensible.

2 comments:

Niall Anderson said...

It will be very interesting to read their response (even if it doesn't appear in the journal, presumably the editor will send it to you...) given the clear errors they made in the paper. Embarassing for the journal, too, in that they allowed this through to publication. I would imagine that the response will be the written equivalent of spluttering, hand-waving and head-shaking, though.

Paul Wilson said...

The last time I got a comment published in Homeopathy, there was a response from the authors, but I didn't get to see it until it was published. I'm not sure whether this is the way journals usually go about this sort of thing.

It would be surprising if they acknowledged any errors, though to be fair, the same applies for comments and replies in proper scientific journals.

The journal doesn't seem to be particularly embarrassed at some of the dreadful papers they published in their "memory of water" issue, so I wouldn't imagine they would be embarrassed this time either...