Homans Exchange Theory



HOMEOPATHY THEORY. The German physician Christian Friedrich Samuel Hahne-mann (1755-1843) developed this unconventional/alternative approach to drug therapy for treating physical and mental disorders that goes back to the Greek physician Hippocrates (c. 460-377 B.C.). The controversial method employed in homeopathy theory is based on the practice of administering a drug (that produces a particular pattern of symptoms/disorders in a healthy person) by giving it in an extremely dilute form over time to treat maladies (characterized by similar symptoms/disorders in the healthy individual). In this "like-for-like" or "like-cures-like" form of therapy, one is typically given successive dilutions of the drug where the therapeutic solution eventually contains no ingredients of the original active substance at all. Through such a substance-dilution process, the drugs/solutions are considered to have therapeutic benefits for the recipient or patient. The principles of homeopathy theory are diametrically opposed to those of allopathy theory, which is a more "orthodox" pharmacological and therapeutic approach for physical and mental disorders, that involves the use of drugs having effects that are opposite to those of the disorder, rather than the use of drugs having effects that are similar to those of the disorder, as in homeopathy theory. Many of Hahnemann's drugs were herbal in origin, and homeopathists today continue to emphasize natural remedies for many physical and mental disorders. See also PLACEBO EFFECT; PYGMALION EFFECT.

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