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Complementary & Alternative Medicine
Index Of Alternative Therapies And Modalities
When deciding to begin a complementary therapy or to see a complementary practitioner, first speak with your primary health care provider.
Before engaging in any complementary medical technique, you should be aware that many of these techniques have not been evaluated in scientific studies. Often, only limited information is available about their safety and effectiveness. Each state and each discipline has its own rules about whether practitioners are required to be professionally licensed. If you plan to visit a practitioner, it is recommended that you choose one who is licensed by a recognized national organization and who abides by the organization's standards. It is always best to speak with your primary health care provider before starting any new therapeutic technique.
Kirlian photography is a diagnostic technique that makes use of a high-voltage, high-frequency electric field. This electric field interacts with an object (for example, a part of the human body) that is "photographed." The photographic plate, may be used to make a diagnosis. The technique was developed by a Russian couple based on the theories of Rudolf Steiner.
In modern times, Kirlian photography can produce a colored image, which is believed by some to reflect a person's aura.
Kirlian photography is also known as coronal discharge photography, gas discharge visualization (GDV), aura photography or spark electrography. This technique is not commonly practiced.
In Kirlian photography, high-frequency currents are applied to the human body, and the subsequent electromagnetic discharge is visualized on a photographic plate. It is suggested that these images are caused by a process of high-voltage coronal discharge. Coronal discharge refers to the observation of discharge patterns around circular objects on the film. (These spark patterns along the edge of objects resemble the outer corona of the sun during an eclipse.) Different colors or shadings may appear around photographed objects, depending on the type of film used. It is asserted that every organism or substance radiates and absorbs energy differently and exhibits unique geometrical frequency and radiation characteristics.
Scientists have studied Kirlian photography for the following use:
Preliminary research suggests that Kirlian photography may be more reliable than chance but less reliable than conventional diagnostic tests. Further research is necessary before a firm conclusion can be drawn.
Kirlian photography has been suggested for several uses, based on tradition or on scientific theories. However, these uses have not been thoroughly studied in humans, and there is limited scientific evidence about safety or effectiveness. Some of these suggested uses are for conditions that are potentially life-threatening. Consult with a health care provider before using Kirlian photography for any use.
Evaluation of revascularization of the leg
Recording aura and bodily responses to stressors
Scientific studies have not thoroughly tested the safety of Kirlian photography. Kirlian photography should not be used in people with pacemakers or implanted cardiac defibrillators. Caution may be warranted in people with heart disease or who are pregnant. Kirlian photography is unproven as a diagnostic or therapeutic technique, and it should not be relied on as the sole source of medical information or treatment.
Kirlian photography has been suggested as a diagnostic technique but has not been proven safe or effective. Speak with a qualified health care provider if you are considering Kirlian photography.
The information in this monograph was prepared by the professional staff at Natural Standard, based on thorough systematic review of scientific evidence. The material was reviewed by the Faculty of the Harvard Medical School with final editing approved by Natural Standard.
- Natural Standard: An organization that produces scientifically based reviews of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) topics
- National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM): A division of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services dedicated to research
Selected Scientific Studies: Kirlian Photography
Natural Standard has reviewed all of the currently available medical literature to prepare the professional monograph from which this version was created.
Some of the more recent studies are listed below:
- Adamenko VM, Evangelopoulou T, Yfantopoulos J. Kirlian photography: a tool in the diagnosing of psychopathology. J Biol Photogr 1988;56(3):85-88.
- Anon. Kirlian photography: a tool in the diagnosing of psychopathology. J Biol Photogr 1989;57(3):66-67.
- Bundzen PV, Korotkov KG, Unestahl LE. Altered states of consciousness: review of experimental data obtained with a multiple techniques approach. J Altern Complement Med 2002; 8(2):153-165.
- Duerden T. An aura of confusion: part 2. The aided eye: "imaging the aura?" Complement Ther Nurs Midwifery 2004;10(2):116-123.
- Hakimi R. Kirlian photography, holistic blood diagnosis, capillarity tests. Cancer diagnosis of a different kind. MMW Fortschr Med 2003; 145(23):49-50
- Treugut H, Koppen M, Nickolay B, et al. [Kirlian photography: accidental or person-specific pattern?] (in German). Forsch Komplementarmed Klass Naturheilkd 2000;7(1):12-16.
Last updated May 01, 2008
health care,cancer,coronal,human body