Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Zeroing in on the Causes of Autism

Dr. Richard Soloman, Medical Director of Autism Services at Mercy Hospital in Toledo had an interesting article in the Blade in October, 2011. He pointed to recent research in twin studies that confirmed multiple genetic defects that cause dysfunctional webs of neurons. The expression of these genes, however, might depend on environmental insults, such as the mother taking antidepressant drugs during the year before delivery or her prenatal exposure to organophosphate pesticides. He believes that immunizations have been ruled out as a cause. While most of the studies that have been done have come to that conclusion, too many parents have reported that association for me to agree. It is also rewarding to see great improvements in autistic children who are treated with high-dose nutritional therapies. See the California Twin Study (click here) and the study by Stephanie Engel with the Mount Sinai Children’s Environmental Center (click here)

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Recent Concern About Taking Vitamins and Minerals is Very Misleading

Several articles have appeared in the scientific and popular press lately implying or stating that it may be harmful to take high dose or multivitamins. The studies cited are greatly misleading because they rely on faulty premises. They study the wrong type of nutrients, an inadequate dose, or they try to isolate a single nutrient, when it takes a combination of nutrients to work together to enhance the complex biochemical reactions in the body. Pharmaceutical companies love to promote false information about vitamins and minerals that might serve as competitors for their profitable drugs. While it may be true that the wrong type of vitamin E, folic acid or vitamin D or inappropriate iron or copper supplements might not be good for you, many nutrient therapies have excellent therapeutic effects. A knowledgeable physician or nutritionist can give you good guidance. See International College of Integrative Medicine(click here) or American College for Advancement in Medicine (click here) to find an integrative doctor.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Younger Doctors More Likely to be Concerned About Vaccines

At the annual meeting of the Infectious Diseases Society of America a study showed that recent medical school graduates were 15% less likely to say that vaccines were safe and effective. Younger docs were also more likely to say that children get more vaccines than are good for them. The authors concluded that these physicians had no experience with the devastating disease that the vaccines have helped to prevent. Another study showed that 21% of pediatricians refused to see families who declined vaccines on schedule. Perhaps an alternative conclusion is that younger docs are more likely themselves to have children who might be put at risk by getting too many vaccines close together. See Family Practice News (click here, subscription needed), 11/1/11 p.1-2

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Cranberry Extract Preferred Over Antibiotics to Prevent Recurrent Urinary Tract Infections

Short-term, antibiotics were more effective, but 90% of women who took antibiotics developed drug-resistant bacteria. Cranberry was less effective initially but resistance occurred in only 28% of the cases. Thus the use of cranberry or no prophylaxis at all were preferred by many women and their physicians. We like to use uva ursi in addition to cranberry to get higher effectiveness and much less resistance. See Archives Int. Med(click here). 2011;171:1270-1278.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Positive Lifestyle is Extremely Effective in Preventing Sudden Cardiac Death in Women

Harvard’s Nurses’ Health Study has come to the conclusion that women who do not smoke, maintain a healthy weight, exercise regularly, and follow a healthy diet have a 92% reduction in risk of a sudden heart attack compared to those who have none of the lifestyle factors. This translates to attribute 79% of sudden cardiac deaths in women stemming from unhealthy lifestyles. Similar findings have been found in men but not to this degree. See Stephanie Chiuve, JAMA (click here), 2011,;306:62-69/

Thursday, November 3, 2011

New Developments in Alzheimer ’s disease

A panel of blood tests that measure the amyloid burden has been developed in Australia. It shows promise as a predictor of Alzheimer’s dementia but it is not available yet. Right now, the best screening test might be a chelation challenge test for heavy metal accumulations. Most common culprits are high levels of aluminum, mercury and lead. Treatment of metal toxicity can show improvement. Antidepressants have also been tried, but they have not shown benefit. On the other hand, patients who have regular exercise and other positive lifestyle changes have been shown to have a lower incidence of Alzheimer’s and those afflicted have a much higher cognitive function. See Family Practice News (click here), August, 2011, pp. 2, 19, 52.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Osteoporosis Drugs Put Patients at Risk

225 million prescriptions have been filled for the bisphosphonate drugs since 1995 when Fosamax was introduced to treat osteopenia and osteoporosis. Now the FDA is wondering whether the drugs do more harm than good. Serious complications such as jaw necrosis, increased thigh bone fractures and cancer of the esophagus keep coming up. Lawyers have been aggressively advertising for clients who have been injured by these drugs. A safer approach would include minerals in proper balance, high dose vitamin D, exercise and perhaps strontium. An integrative physician would be the best guide. See the International College of Integrative Medicine (click here) or American College for Advancement in Medicine (click here) to find a knowledgeable doctor.