Thursday, July 16, 2009

Conventional Doctors Exagerate the Risks of Taking Supplements

Two articles in Prescriber’s Letter recently were good examples of how conventional doctors abandon logic when they write about nutritional supplements. The first was talking about lithium orotate, which is used in very low doses as an adjunct to help with anxiety and depression. It concluded that lithium orotate is dangerous because there was one report that a patient developed mild signs of toxicity after taking 18 pills a day. The recommended dose is 2-3 pills a day, and it is very safe at that dosage. Next, an article correctly pointed out that specific supplements can increase the risk of bleeding (gingko), sedation (valerian, kava), and hypertension (ephedra). Therefore, all nutritional supplements should be avoid for two weeks prior to surgery. Instead of a blanket prohibiton, maybe physicians should take a few minutes to learn the effects of nutritional supplements, some of which can improve recovery after surgery (vitamin C, Body Mend homeopathic) without any risk whatsoever.

See Prescriber’s Letter (click here, subscription required) February, 2009, p. 9, 10.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

New Uses for Medications to Treat Addictions

There are several controlled drugs (Subutex, Suboxone, methadone) that are approved as substitutes for more addicting drugs such as heroin and morphine. These drugs have lower abuse potential and cause much fewer problems with overdose or withdrawal. They are used in drug-addiction clinics. Recently, these drugs have been used in their own right for pain relief. I would suggest Naltrexone instead. Naltrexone counter-acts narcotic drugs. In much lower doses than usually prescribed for drug overdoses, Naltrexone has been found to be helpful in various autoimmune and neurologic conditions. It is not approved by the FDA for this use, but you can find lots of information on the internet that documents its use. Sometimes, it is dramatically useful and it is very safe at the low dose recommended.

See Prescriber’s Letter (click here-subscription required), January, 2009, p. 4.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Using the Wrong Inhalor Can Increase the Risk of Severe Asthma Attacks and Death

New warnings have been issued about taking long acting bronchodilators like Serevent alone for asthma. Inhaled steroids for inflammation must be used with these drugs for moderate or severe asthma or alone for milder forms. Without controlling the inflammation the long acting bronchodilators can be risky. Short acting bronchodilators like Pro-Air are acceptable. Better yet, control the inflammation by treating allergies or with acupuncture, and you might not need to take an inhalors. However, often it is necessary to treat food and chemical allergies in addition to the pollen, dust and mold allergies treated by most allergists. Only integrative physicians use these advanced techniques.
Go to International College of Integrative Medicine (click here) or American Academy of Environmental Medicine (click here) for an integrative doc who might be able to help.

See Prescriber’s Letter,(subsciption required, click here) January, 2009, P. 5.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Can Statin Drugs Cause Diabetes?

A new concern about the routine use of statin drugs like Lipitor and Crestor is a possible link to developing diabetes. This concern came out of the Jupiter Trial. Previously, there has been concern that statins might worsen control of known diabetic patients. This is not yet proven, but it is another reason to use Red yeast, a natural product, instead of the prescriptions meds to help control cholesterol if needed. Regardless of whether a prescription or a natural statin is used, it is imperative to supplement with at least 60 mg of Coenzyme Q 10, because this important nutrient is depleted in the process.

See Prescriber’s Letter (click here-subscription required), January, 2009, p. 5