Monday, August 25, 2008

No, I didn't think so. Nor am I turned on by people killing Rhinoceros for their horn.

I was shocked a few weeks ago to see a television show refer to the use of rhino horn in Chinese medicine as bogus. I'm not shocked to hear that it is bogus, just that it would be called such by a television network with a reputation for shilling quack health products. In fact I saw two new scamish looking devices on the same station this week that I hope to post about soon.

Rhino horn is mostly keratin, the same as your fingernails. So a great market exists for someone to grind up their fingernails and start selling I Can't Believe It's Not Rhino on eBay.

Rhino horn is used to treat fever. I could only find one study, on rats, that showed a positive effect. You'd think if it was such a good remedy for fever, so good that it's worth hunting and killing a rhino for, that there would be some better evidence by now. It can't be that hard. Bunch of people with a fever, divide them into three groups, aspirin, horn or placebo depending on group and tot up the results.

Hopefully calling a scam a scam and a quack a quack will one day become the norm instead of the exception.

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