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AIBU to not get how Infacol get away with it?

(127 Posts)
ICBINEG Mon 01-Oct-12 15:50:56

I mean compare this

with this


noblegiraffe Tue 02-Oct-12 14:57:25

One of the studies I was looking at the other day (so haven't got link) said that in the placebo group 29% of respondents reported an improvement in colic symptoms. That's nearly 1 in 3 parents satisfied from giving a placebo. Even if infacol is no better than placebo, I'd take those odds.

ICBINEG Tue 02-Oct-12 15:01:41

noble hmmm well one possibility is that people simply under-reported crying more after giving the treatment. Which might be nice for the parents but isn't really that much help to the screaming baby....

also if there are treatments that do EVEN BETTER than the placebo, wouldn't you rather spend your money (or given that the most effective treatment is free - not spend your money) on them?

ICBINEG Tue 02-Oct-12 15:02:16

grey sorry that the medical definition of colic doesn't meet with your approval...

BeattieBow Tue 02-Oct-12 15:03:02

I don't see why you are bothered tbh - if it helps stop the whole evenings of crying that I have gone through, then so what? I'm willing to do practically anything not to be walking my screaming baby around until 2am night after night.

Most of us aren't stupid we do go into this with our eyes open.

noblegiraffe Tue 02-Oct-12 15:16:03

hmmm well one possibility is that people simply under-reported crying more after giving the treatment.

That is a possibility, although you'd hope that a well-designed trial would make that less likely.

From my own experience, I know that we had some dreadful evenings before giving infacol, then some peaceful ones. Then we stopped the infacol and the crying started again, only to improve once infacol recommenced. I know I wasn't personally under-reporting, I was acutely aware of the difference!

Placebo or otherwise, you'd have found it quite difficult to prise it from my hands in the early days.

ICBINEG Tue 02-Oct-12 15:32:58

noble on the topic of well designed trials I thought you would like to know that the original 'clinical trial' to which infacol's advertising refers shows no placebo effect whatsoever (ie. the control group saw no improvement in crying at all). The mind boggles. I mean I actually don't know how you could screw up a trial that badly....

All the trials I have found involve asking people to rate the level and frequency of crying. Some are at the time and some are after the fact unbelievably.....

Ben Goldache would cry....

noblegiraffe Tue 02-Oct-12 15:37:06

All the trials I have found involve asking people to rate the level and frequency of crying.

But how else could you do it? Obviously this should be rated at the time rather than after the fact, but sometimes clinical trials just have to work with this sort of qualitative data and treat it with caution in the analysis.

ICBINEG Tue 02-Oct-12 15:38:50

beattie I care about this because the medicine market is flooded with products that claim to treat without any evidence of efficacy. Okay when it is colic and it will pass with little in the way of lasting harm then maybe it doesn't matter so much, but in general the world would be a much better place if you were not allowed to sell as medicines, substances that had not been shown to work against the things you claim that they had.

I mean it's just lying to get money....or erm fraud as it is also known.

I have no problem with buying bottled hope when there are no real alternatives...but in this case there are. To take money from hassled parents for a remedy that works less well than one they could have for free seems morally dubious...

ICBINEG Tue 02-Oct-12 15:39:49

Well you could use a tape recorder....that would seem to remove at least some subjectivity...

Longtalljosie Tue 02-Oct-12 15:42:49

He probably wouldn't - and neither would Ben Goldacre.

Where is this "medical definition of colic", then? Because I'm working from a book written by an obstetrician.

MrsKeithRichards Tue 02-Oct-12 15:53:13

<head explodes>

To summarize, it's the name you have issue with?

It helps with wind, wind makes babies cry, colic is a term used to describe extensive crying in babies, infacol might stop that crying.

Here's a thought, don't use it.

CandiStaton Tue 02-Oct-12 16:04:39

I believe, the medical definition of colic, is a baby that shows intense crying/fussing for more than 3 hours a day, at least 3 days a week for at least 3 weeks

there is no one cause, and often a cause cant be identified i.e. NO ONE KNOWS

sometimes trapped wind does cause colic (as defined above) and infacol relieves the symptoms

CandiStaton Tue 02-Oct-12 16:07:24

as for random memes there are many many cultures where this is the only way that health information gets passed; and many are age old and very valid, even without clinical trials to back them up

CandiStaton Tue 02-Oct-12 16:08:21

i would get your point, if the manufacturers were claiming that all colic is caused by trapped wind/ infacol cures all cases of colic....but they arent

Youcanringmybell Tue 02-Oct-12 16:16:47


My dd is nearly 7 years old and suffers with trapped wind....I give her a high dose of infacol because she is too young for windeeze and it does seem to work after about 10 minutes...

Interesting evidence though.

noblegiraffe Tue 02-Oct-12 16:36:35

ICB apart from tape recorders not all recording at the same volume, the necessity of using them consistently and presumably hiring one person to listen to all of them, how many parents do you think would sign up for a trial which involved them being recorded hour after hour, night after night while they dealt with their screaming baby?


Longtalljosie Tue 02-Oct-12 16:58:56

Yes, that's exactly what I believe Candi

ICBINEG Tue 02-Oct-12 19:28:19

long well you need a better book if it doesn't have an up to date definition of colic....

you are probably right about BG not giving a crap...he already wrote all about how trials done the way the infacol trial was done are flawed and give nonsensical no need to go there again. It's just depressing.

MKR I have a problem with them stating it is clinically proven effective against colic when it has in fact been clinically proven to be ineffective against colic.

goosegooseduck Tue 02-Oct-12 19:44:53

why dont you cite an up to date definition?

Longtalljosie Tue 02-Oct-12 20:11:38

With the best will in the world, ICB, you're talking nonsense. You're acting like colic is a well-understood complaint whereas the point is it's not understood, and is a vague term with a number of possible resolutions. It could, in fact, be reflux or wind or over-stimulation. A lot of doctors think it is over-stimulation.

It's not a matter of BG not caring about Infacol. But were he in general practice, he may well suggest a surfactant - at least to try to eliminate wind as a potential solution. A lot of medicine and science is a process of elimination. Things frequently are not black and white.

MrSunshine Tue 02-Oct-12 20:16:29

There is no up to date definition of colic. It still means crying periods of defined duration, thats all.

ICBINEG Wed 03-Oct-12 13:47:46

Have I gone insane? The definition is long repeated periods of inconsolable crying in an otherwise healthy infant.

How is that not a definition? It doesn't give a cause...but that doesn't stop it being a definition. I mean isn't that the same as say 'meningitis'? It has a symptom based definition that doesn't specify the cause....that doesn't mean there is no definition surely?

If you claim to treat colic then you are claiming to reduce the duration or frequency of long repeated periods of inconsolable crying. If the clinical data says that your product does not in fact do this any better than placebo then you should not be able to claim that it does.

Honest to god this isn't rocket science....

ICBINEG Wed 03-Oct-12 13:51:53

long it simply doesn't matter if colic is complex or if it's causes are fully understood....either infacol reduces colic in babies more than a placebo or it doesn't. And it doesn't. So how come they claim it does?

The evidence that infacol helps with wind is just another nail in coffin of the idea that wind is in any major way associated with colic. Because if infacol does help with wind but doesnt help with colic then how the hell CAN wind be a major factor in colic?

MrSunshine Wed 03-Oct-12 14:06:40

you said up to date definition of colic, your implication being it had somehow changed. It hasn't. Try reading the posts, both your own and others.

ICBINEG Thu 04-Oct-12 10:13:17

well people had been saying they thought colic was wind....

I mentioned there was in fact a medical definition and it wasn't to do with wind...

long said "Where is this "medical definition of colic", then? Because I'm working from a book written by an obstetrician."

hence I replied that s/he might need a better book if it didn't have and up to date definition.

In context of the thread I think it is clear that 'up to date' meant moving on from the whole windy/colicky interchangeable mess.

Is that okay with you?

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