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AN EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW

Why Case Reporting is Important in Homeopathy?


With

Prof. Dr. Chaturbhuja Nayak


By

Dr. Saurav Arora


Founder
An Exclusive Interview with Prof. Dr. C. Nayak – Why Case Reporting is Important in Homeopathy

Saurav Arora: Welcome to initiative to promote research in Homeopathy Sir. We would


like to know your first encounter with homeopathy and how you got interested in
homeopathic teaching and subsequently research?

Prof. C. Nayak: I was profoundly motivated to choose Homeopathy as my career, by my


brother-in-law Dr. Natabar Naik, a leading homeopathic practitioner of Orissa. After
completion of my D.H.M.S. course in Govt. Homoeopathic Medical College, Bhubaneswar,
I joined a homeopathic dispensary as Medical Officer (Homeopathy) under the Govt. of
Orissa. Honestly speaking, I found a little scope in this job to achieve my goal. Since I had
an aptitude for teaching, I joined as lecturer in Govt. Homoeopathic Medical College,
Bhubaneswar. After a short period of service, I got selected to study Dip. N.I.H. course at
National Institute of Homoeopathy, Kolkata. Here, I got an excellent exposure to
homeopathic education, research and practice, under the guidance of highly experienced
and reputed teachers. Huge data obtained from a large number of outdoor & indoor
patients of the institute as well as regular weekly case presentations & seminars
presented by the students generated a lot of interest how to improve teaching and
research in homoeopathy. After Dip. N.I.H. course, I resumed my job in the parent college
where I was subsequently promoted up to the post of Principal-cum-Superintendent.
During my student/teaching career, I got immense guidance from my teachers on how to
improve teaching for the practical benefit of the students in their future career. Since I
had a tremendous weakness towards literary activities including publications, I
published articles on various aspects of Homeopathy in medical/non-medical journals,
magazines, souvenirs and newspapers for the benefit of professionals as well as the
common man. For the promotion of research in Homeopathy, I took up research projects
funded by Govt. of Orissa and Govt. of India.

In 2004, I joined as a Director (later re-designated as Director General) of Central


Council for Research in Homoeopathy (CCRH) under Govt. of India, where my entire
attention was focused on various areas of research, like Drug Standardization, Drug
Proving, Clinical Research, Clinical Verification and Fundamental Research, as per the
mandate of the Council.

© IPRH | Jan 2018 | Available online at www.researchinhomeopathy.org


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An Exclusive Interview with Prof. Dr. C. Nayak – Why Case Reporting is Important in Homeopathy

SA: You have been in an active academics and homeopathic research for almost four
decades? What did you find more interesting and challenging- homeopathic research or
teaching?

CN: For me, both teaching and research in homeopathy were interesting as well as

challenging. In order to improve the quality of teaching and research, I took initiative to
organize seminars/CME programs in Govt. Homoeopathic Medical College,
Bhubaneswar, CCRH, Bakson Homoeopathic Medical College and Homoeopathy
University, Jaipur. While in CCRH, although more time and attention was given for
promotion of research, yet a large number of publications in the form of books and
monographs were made which aimed at improving the quality of teaching.

SA: For the majority of us, academic teaching and research seem to be directionally

opposite; is there any tangent between them?

CN: Sorry, I do not subscribe to the statement that teaching and research are

directionally opposite. Both the areas are inter-related, interdependent and


complementary to each other. High-quality teaching helps in preparing standard
protocols to conduct research while the outcomes of good research studies disseminated
through classroom lectures, make the teaching more interesting, practical and useful.
Each of the two areas has its own strengths and merits and both should be promoted in
private as well as public sector, to achieve excellence.

SA: Did you find any difficulty in converging academic teaching to homeopathic

research or vice versa?

CN: No, I did not find any difficulty in converging academic teaching to homeopathic

research or vice versa, while working in Homeopathic colleges as well as CCRH. Rather, I
tried to integrate both the areas with the help of my colleagues and experts from other
scientific organizations and accomplished this through publications, seminars,
workshops and CME programs. Being a member of the Central Council of Homoeopathy
(CCH) as well as member of its Education Committee/PG Education Committee &
© IPRH | Jan 2018 | Available online at www.researchinhomeopathy.org
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An Exclusive Interview with Prof. Dr. C. Nayak – Why Case Reporting is Important in Homeopathy

Director General of CCRH, helped me to work for integration of teaching and research,
with the support of my colleagues of CCH, CCRH and three homeopathic institutions at
Bhubaneswar, Greater Noida and Jaipur.

SA: You have always been a preacher and supporter of homeopathic research. Can you
briefly explain the need for evidence-based research in homeopathy?

CN: As you are aware, there is a growing criticism against homoeopathy by some

professionals, scientists of other medical and allied disciplines, pharmaceuticals,


organizations and media (particularly certain journals). The scepticism against
homoeopathy is mainly targeted at similia principle; method of preparation and quality
of medicines (dynamization, particularly highly diluted medicines) and clinical
effectiveness of homeopathy. To address such criticism and scepticism, there is a great
need of evidence-based research in homeopathy. Besides, evidence-based research is
required to further scientifically validate homeopathy, strengthen the concepts stated in
old homeopathic literature and to inculcate confidence in the minds of practitioners of
homeopathy, particularly the neophytes.

Secondly, there are some challenges/ weaknesses within our system of homeopathy,
such as various schools of thoughts (classical homeopathy, clinical homoeopathy,
complex homoeopathy, isopathy, tautopathy, etc.); low-quality medicines manufactured
by some industries; poor expertise, and sub-standard teaching/research etc.

Thirdly, there are some myths about homeopathy for which a part of population is
reluctant to get benefits of homeopathy.

Lastly, many peer-reviewed journals having high impact factor do not publish the
outcomes of research studies without sufficient evidence.

For all the aforesaid reasons, evidence-based research is the need of the hour.

© IPRH | Jan 2018 | Available online at www.researchinhomeopathy.org


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An Exclusive Interview with Prof. Dr. C. Nayak – Why Case Reporting is Important in Homeopathy

SA: We have been motivated to practice evidence-based homeopathy, but many of us


are not very clear about what this evidence could comprise of? Is it the statement of
patients, or reports or scales? Can you briefly put your views on the same?

CN: I am happy, your question covers the answer to a great extent. The evidence

include patients’ versions, laboratory reports relevant to their disease conditions as well
as different scales/questionnaires used for outcome assessment of the individual
patients/ research studies. Some of the scales/questionnaires are general in nature, i.e.
can be applicable to various diseases, to assess the scores (pre-/ post-treatment), e.g.
Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) for assessing intensity of pain etc., whereas some scales are
disease-specific, i.e. Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HDRS) for Depression;
International Prostate Symptom Score (IPSS) for Benign Hypertrophy of Prostate;
Sino-nasal Outcome Test (SNOT) for Chronic sinusitis; Conners’ Parent Rating Scale –
Revised (CPRS-R) for ADHD, etc.

Besides, to assess the quality of life in different disease conditions, the general
questionnaire developed by WHO, i.e. WHOQOL – BREF can be adopted. Whereas to
assess the quality of life in specific disease condition like Rheumatoid arthritis, Quality
of Life-Rheumatoid Arthritis (QOL-RA) scale can be adopted.

SA: We have abundant case records with us, but the reciprocally limited number of

publications? What according to you can be the reasons?

CN: The main reason for a limited number of publications despite abundant case

records is ill-maintained case records with no or fewer evidence (pre-& post-evidences).


Busy clinicians usually record case histories of the patients in such a way that they are
not suitable for publications. Secondly, although some clinicians have reliable evidence,
many of them do not show interest for publication. Thirdly, even if some of the clinicians
have both pieces of evidence and interest for publication, they do not write case reports
following standard international guidelines, as a result such manuscripts are rejected by
the journals.

© IPRH | Jan 2018 | Available online at www.researchinhomeopathy.org


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An Exclusive Interview with Prof. Dr. C. Nayak – Why Case Reporting is Important in Homeopathy

SA: According to you, why we must publish case reports and case series?

CN: The publications of case reports and case series are essential for the following

reasons:

 To present cases of unusual causation, a challenging differential diagnosis, a


novel insight into the pathogenesis of the problem, and puzzling clinical features.

 To describe improved or unique technical procedures for therapeutic as well as


general management of the patients.

 To present profile of a patient recorded following a standard case–recording


format, as per homoeopathic principles.

 To illustrate case-processing, according to the principles of Homoeopathy, which


includes analysis and evaluation of symptoms, miasmatic diagnosis, the totality of
symptoms etc.

 To demonstrate the unique method (repertorial/non-repertorial) adopted for


determining the similimum for the patient.

 To justify which potency, dosage & repetition schedule worked for the patient.

 To justify the first and subsequent prescriptions and present their responses.

 To make an original contribution to the literature.

 To stimulate further research and encourage authors for scholarly writing.

 To benefit the entire medical community and thereby the common man at large.

SA: Any recommended readings to learn more about case reporting and their

importance in homeopathy?

CN: While preparing such manuscripts, the authors should follow CARE guidelines

(drafted by CARE group consisting of 27 experts and published by 6 authors to develop,


disseminate, and implement systematic reporting guidelines for case reports) &
HOM-CASE guidelines (modified CARE guidelines for developing a criteria catalog
serving as a guideline for authors to improve the quality of reporting clinical case
reports in homoeopathy), for which yourself and Dr. RK Manchanda from India have
© IPRH | Jan 2018 | Available online at www.researchinhomeopathy.org
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An Exclusive Interview with Prof. Dr. C. Nayak – Why Case Reporting is Important in Homeopathy

also contributed. Besides, my article titled “Case Reporting In Homoeopathy: Why And
How?”, published in the Souvenir of XXIV National Homoeopathic Congress of Indian
Institute of Homoeopathic Physician at Nagpur in 2016, may also be referred. The
different ways of documenting case series published in various standard medical
journals including homeopathy, should be followed.

SA: Your mantra to publish a good case report?

CN: There is no special mantra for publishing a good case report, but I would suggest

that the homeopathic institutions, as well as clinicians, should develop standard case
recording formats for documenting the profiles of the patients including their
pre-/post-evidences, since there is no uniformity in such formats at inter-/intra-
university level, inter-/ intra college level. Some institutions have adopted the case
recording formats to document all types of cases, whereas some others have developed
disease-specific case recording formats. The Central Council of Homoeopathy, the
regulatory authority for ensuring quality education and practice in homoeopathy should
take initiative to recommend standard case recording format for documenting profiles
of the patients, in a scientific way.

Well-documented case reports/ case series adds to the acumen of physicians and benefit
the profession as well as patients at large. Such documents not only improve the
knowledge of the clinicians, teachers and students but also inculcate confidence in them
for dealing with similar cases in future.

SA: IPRH is thankful for your support and encouragement Sir.

Short Biodata with Contact Details

Prof. Dr. C. Nayak is currently the President of the Homoeopathy University, Jaipur
(Rajasthan); Chairman of the Homoeopathic Pharmacopoeia Committee, Govt. of India;
Chairman of Special Committee on Fundamental Research & member of Special
Committee on Clinical Research under Central Council for Research in Homoeopathy
(CCRH); member of Drug Technical Advisory Board (Homoeopathy), Govt. of India;
Chairman of Scientific Advisory Committee of Delhi Homoeopathy Anusandhan Parishad

© IPRH | Jan 2018 | Available online at www.researchinhomeopathy.org


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An Exclusive Interview with Prof. Dr. C. Nayak – Why Case Reporting is Important in Homeopathy

and Guide for P.G. & Ph.D. courses in Homeopathy. Formerly, he was the Director
General of CCRH, an autonomous organization of Ministry of AYUSH, member of
International Scientific Committee on Homoeopathic Investigations (ISCHI), member of
Education Committee & PG Education Committee of Central Council of Homoeopathy,
Director-Professor of Bakson Homoeopathic Medical College, Greater Noida and
Principal-cum-Superintendent of one pioneer Govt. Homoeopathic Medical College of
Odisha state. Last year, he was conferred with ‘Best Teacher Award’ by the CCRH,
sponsored by the Ministry of AYUSH, Govt. of India. Holding all these prestigious
positions, Dr.Nayak has been an instrumental personality in the development of
homoeopathic education and research in India. Dr. Nayak has always been supportive of
scientific and academic activities in Homoeopathy in the field of education and research.

If you are interested in receiving guidance from Dr. C. Nayak regarding publishing
case reports, you may contact him at drcbnayak@gmail.com

© IPRH | Jan 2018 | Available online at www.researchinhomeopathy.org


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