In a comment on a BMJ paper critical of alternative medicine (the author submitted a fictional abstract to a conference then criticized the program committee for not rejecting it), a retired chemist named Joe Magrath said:
The scientific literature tells us that acupuncture, cupping and reflexology are all nonsense.
I haven’t looked into it but I’ll take his word for it.
Around the time Magrath said that, James Fallows said this:
During our years in Malaysia in the 1980s, and more recently in China, my wife and I became unlikely converts to a lot of Asian medical practices. I had serious back pain cured by an acupuncturist (who used needles the size of aluminum baseball bats) in Kuala Lumpur. In her book, my wife describes how the gruesome-seeming therapy of fire-cupping, applied in an all-night massage parlor in the city of Yueyang, snapped her out of a serious bout of the flu. Sure, she had big red welts on her back for the next ten days, but her fever was gone!
Which do you believe?