Debunking the drug store: Oscillococcinum and Homeocoksinum

For those of you who have been following the past couple of posts, I am currently working my way through part of a shelf in Shoppers Drug Mart and critically evaluating some of their products.  I’ve already covered Boiron’s “Stodal” cough syrup and found it to be a combination of folk remedies and wishful-thinking.  However, their big product is the flu-remedy Oscillcoccinum.  This is among the top ten over-the-counter medicines sold in France (not surprising given their love of homeopathy), so it isn’t a “fringe” alternative medicine by any means.  Oscillococcinum (“Oscillo” for short) and Homeocoksinum (its Canadian cousin) are the same medicine marketed by two different companies, so I’m going to deal with them together.
Read More »

Debunking the drug store: Stodal

For those of you who aren’t aware, I am on a mission to debunk at least a small part of Shoppers Drug Mart.  This time, it’s Boiron’s Stodal cough mixture.

I hadn’t heard of Stodal before.  Apparently it “relieves all types of coughs”, which seems like a pretty bold (and evidence-based claim).  This surprised me as it is produced by Boiron, a homeopathic manufacturer.  Now there are lots of perfectly good cough medicines out there, even if some of them taste like you’re drinking the products of a high school chemistry experiment.  So what does Boiron bring to the table?

Read More »