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The objective of this short communication is to demonstrate the feasibility and effectiveness of multiple placebos to individualise treatment when using classical Ayurveda for rheumatoid arthritis in well controlled, double-blind, placebo-controlled trials.
A total of 46 patients ≥18 years of age, with active rheumatoid arthritis as diagnosed using American College of Rheumatology criteria, were randomised to 1 of 3 outpatient treatment groups: methotrexate+placebo Ayurveda; Ayurveda+placebo methotrexate; and methotrexate+Ayurveda. The Ayurvedic doctor was free to choose from 148 formulations, which were in the form of 6 traditional dosage forms: decoctions, herbal powders, pills, herbal wines, herbal jams and herb-infused oils. Six placebos were also formulated, with each placebo representing a dosage form.
All appropriate institutional review board approvals were obtained. Formulations were …