Thursday, December 18, 2014

What to Do About Ebola?

Ebola is a deadly virus, but we are unlikely to face an epidemic in the U.S.  The initial symptoms are like those from other viruses (fever, headache, muscle ache, vomiting).  Half of the victims might bleed more readily.  Only someone with active fever is contagious, and there has to be close enough contact to exchange bodily fluids—that’s why health care workers are at primary risk.  Obviously, do not travel to African countries where the virus is active unless absolutely essential.  If you fly, you could take the extra precaution of wearing gloves.  In the very unlikely event that I would see an Ebola patient, I would treat with high dose intravenous vitamin C, colloidal silver, and perhaps rectal ozone.  These alternative treatments are safer and might be more effective than anti-viral and anti-biotics that in common use today.

 See Family Practice News,  August, 2014 issue, p. 8.



Thursday, December 11, 2014

Community-dwelling Dementia Patients Might have Firearms in Their Homes

A study of 500 mid-western dementia patients showed that more than 1 in 10 of them had firearms in their homes.  27% of elderly patients owned at least one gun, and if they owned one, they were likely to own more than one.  Those with impaired memory were more likely to have delusions, hallucinations, and most likely depression.  The authors of the study acknowledged that physicians have no right to take away a gun owned by a patient.  However, they suggested that doctors ask patients with psychiatric problems or dementia about gun ownership.  If that appears likely, the care-giver should be urged to remove the gun, unload it, and/or lock it away to avoid consequences such as suicide and tragic outbursts of anger.

See Family Practice News, August 2014 issue, p. 1,4.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Chronic Non-bacterial Prostatitis (CNBP) Commonly Fools Patients and Doctors Both

Dr. Frank Shallenburger has taken over Dr. Robert Rowen’s excellent newsletter, Second Opinion.  We will certainly miss Robert’s perceptive articles, but Frank is a superb replacement.  In his October, 2014 issue, Frank discussed CNBP, which can be the un-identified cause of erectile dysfunction, urinating frequently or urgently, an elevated PSA, or low back pain.  He suggests a therapeutic trial of cranberry powder, quercitin, and pygeum.  I will leave the details to him.  So what you should do is call 800-791-3445 and subscribe to Second Opinion ASAP.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Will the 20th Century be the Only Century in history in Which Cardiovascular Disease is the Leading Cause of Death?

The incidence of deaths from heart disease began to rise in the 1920’s, which corresponds to the introduction of processed foods.  Such deaths peaked in the 1960’s and then began a slow decline.  Heart attacks are still the leading cause of death and strokes are third, just behind cancer.  Most of the credit for reducing cardiovascular deaths goes to lifestyle changes.  Only 5% of the credit comes from drugs that have side effects and from surgery that can have complications.  Breakthrough treatments like EDTA chelation therapy will decrease these death rates and their horrendous cost substantially in the not-too-distant future, if we just wake up, smell the roses, and use common sense in treating these diseases.

See The Epidemic of the 20th Century: Coronary Heart Disease in the Am J Med, September, 2014 issue, p.807.



Thursday, November 20, 2014

A Chronic Lyme Disease Epidemic?

Did you know that the state of Ohio now requires an informed consent just to get tested for Lyme disease?  All such tests have false positives and false negatives.  Mainly, we need to rely on clinical judgment.  If acute Lyme is suspected, a 2-3 week course of antibiotics is surely indicated.  Beyond that, Lyme becomes an autoimmune problem that can affect several systems in the body.  Dr. David Minkoff has reported excellent improvements in several patients treated with ozone therapy.  Dr. Ty Vincent has used the LDA allergy treatment to neutralize the sensitivity to the Lyme organisms with outstanding results.  I have years of experience with LDA, so I prefer that approach.  For a limited time, I would be happy to discuss the treatment with anyone who has tested positive for Lyme.

Contact Terry Chappell, M.D. to set up a free phone consult at 419-358-4627 or email to



Tuesday, November 18, 2014

AP dateline 11/18/14

“Study lifts cloud over heart drugs Zetia, Vytorin,” said the headline.  Dr. Christopher Cannon of Harvard described the benefit of the drug combo: “This is the first time that something added to statins has been shown to be beneficial.”  Dr. Cannon is simply wrong.  Vytorin added to statins cut the risk of heart problems by 6% over 7 years.  The number needed to treat for 7 years.  The number needed to treat for 7 years was 5-6 patients.  The 2012 TACT study showed that chelation plus high dose multivitamins reduced the risk of cardiac events over 5 years by 26%.  In diabetic patients the reduction was 51%.  The number needed to treat for diabetes was 6!  All groups in TACT were continued on statin drugs.  IV chelation is much more effective than drugs.  Where are the headlines showing this?

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Running is the Best Medicine for Longevity

A multi-centered study published in the American College of Cardiology Journal followed 55,000 adults for 15 years found that those who ran 15 minutes a day, three days a week, were 45% less likely to die of a heart attack or stroke.  Those who ran only 1-2 times a week still had benefits, as did those who were overweight or continued to smoke.  Running only for 5 minutes a day can add 3 years to one’s life.  A vibrating power plate can produce quality fitness by using it 45 minutes a week.
See the Toledo Blade, August 25, 2014 in the Peach section.  Multiple studies have been published in scientific journals.


Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Bisphosphonates such as Fosamax Might Do More Harm than Good

A correspondence in the New England Journal of Medicine states that such drugs as Fosamax do prevent fractures of the hip and low back in women younger than 80 years of age, but they also can create atypical fractures in the upper leg.  The risk of these additional fractures increases with the duration of taking the drug.  In a separate Taiwan study, one out of 200 long-term users of the drug developed osteonecrosis if the jaw, which can be a devastating problem.  Taking the drug might do more harm than good, especially if it’s taken for the wrong indication or over many years.  In the same issue, deficiency in B12 is linked to osteoporosis.  My suggestion is that many women do better with optimal doses of vitamin D3, along with calcium, magnesium, regular exercise and maybe some natural progesterone and B12.


See NEJM, Sept. 4, 2014.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Be Careful of Body-building and other Mixed Herbal Supplements

A report in Hepatology  stated that there has been an increase in liver damage in both body-building and non body-building  related herbal supplements over the previous decade.  Often such supplements are poorly labeled and contain multiple ingredients.  The damage is characterized by jaundice and it can lead to liver transplants and rarely death.  The same problem can occur with regular acetaminophen (Tylenol).  Take such supplements only under a knowledgeable doctor’s care, and get regular blood tests if you do.

See Hepatology, August 25, 2014 issue.



Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Artificial Sweeteners Increase Blood Sugar!

A study published in Nature showed that popular sugar substitutes, such as Sweet n’ Low, Equal, and Splenda can increase the blood sugar and create problems for diabetics and those who are taking them to help lose weight.  Apparently, they disrupt the biofilm, which consists of the good bacteria in the gut.  This leads to an increased risk of insulin resistance and glucose intolerance.  It can actually cause diabetes to be expressed when the gene for the disease is lying dormant in the body.  The article did not mention the neurologic side effects seen by these substances on occasion.  Best advice is to avoid them altogether.

See Nature, Sept. 17, 2014 issue.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Depression and Poor Diet Leads to Heart Attacks in Women

We have known for some time that depression in women increases the risk of heart attacks.  Now it is evident that a diet deficient in fruits, vegetables, and fiber makes that association even more powerful.  If a woman has depression, even if treated fairly successfully, it is very important that extra attention is paid to a healthy diet.  Otherwise her risk of heart disease increases substantially.

See The American Journal of Medicine, Sept. 2014, p. 840-847.


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Nutrition is the Key

My friend and mentor, Derrick Lonsdale, at 89 years old, answers questions from the public on medical problems.  He recently told me that the vast majority of the answers he gives involves improved nutrition.  A recent editorial in The American Journal of Medicine called for a much greater emphasis on nutrition education in medical schools.  “…we need no more studies to show that we must take nutrition education seriously—immediately.  It is the low-hanging fruit of health care.  We have had the knowledge we need for some time:  what we need now is the will to put it into practice.”


See Eisenberg, Ornish, Weil, Willett, and others in the American Journal of Medicine, Sept. 2014, p. 804-805.


Thursday, October 16, 2014

Fish Consumption Cuts Heart Attacks

This fall I was program chairman for a medical meeting that highlighted a debate between an advocate of fish oil and one who preferred vegetable oils.  This is a hot topic in alternative medicine lately.  The fish oil advocates are supported by a meta-analysis of 408,305 subjects in the American Journal of Medicine that showed a 5% reduction in risk of heart attacks for every 100 gram serving of fish per week.  The benefit could have been even greater, in my opinion, if the patients had been monitored and treated for mercury toxicity, which can happen when one eats a lot of fish.  Put me in the corner of the fish advocates.

See  The American Journal of Medicine, Sept. 2014, p. 848-857.


Thursday, October 9, 2014

Disease Care for People with Multiple Chronic Conditions

The Department of HHS has called for a better approach to those with multiple chronic conditions.  One quarter of all adults have 2 or more chronic conditions. Two-thirds of Medicare patients have multiple medical problems, and 14% have 6 or more conditions.  Most of those problems are treated with one or more drugs, all with potential side effects and interactions.  No wonder that our current drug-based care model is impossible to manage efficiently!  A more natural approach using lifestyle modifications, nutrients, homeopathics and selected herbs avoids most of the problems with drugs and usually is significantly less expensive.  That approach makes a lot more sense to me.


See JAMA, Sept. 24, 2014, p. 1199-1200.


Tuesday, October 7, 2014

The Incidence of Diabetes has Doubled

The Center for Disease Control has reported that the incidence of Diabetes has doubled during the period 1990 to 2008.  The primary cause is the increased numbers of people who are overweight.  The transformation diet 360 is particularly good for people with blood sugar levels of 90 or above.  It reduces calories while adding small protein snacks so that participants do not get hungry, and they lose weight rapidly.  Fasting sugar levels of 90 or above increase the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, 90-126 are pre-diabetics, and 126 and higher are diabetics by definition.  Contact our office for more information.

 See JAMA, Sept. 24, 2014, p. 1218-12225.  Contact Celebration of Health Assoc. at


Thursday, October 2, 2014

Lasting Chronic Pain Relief in Ten Minutes or Less

Jonathan Wright’s newsletter, Nutrition and Healing, led off its June 2013 issue with a report on Dr. Steve Kaufman’s amazing techniques of pain neutralization.  Dr. Kaufman has discovered many techniques that relieve trigger points of pain rapidly with only a light touch of nearby soft tissue.  I have attended several of his seminars, and I can vouch for his teaching.  Most recently, he showed attendees how to relieve hot flashes and menstrual cramps with a few brief treatments for the great majority of patients without drugs or surgery.

For more information, google Dr. Kaufman for his website or contact our office at or 1-800-788-4627.


Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Children Damaged by Toxic Stress

The American Academy of Pediatrics has launched a campaign to deal with children who have been exposed to emotional abuse, neglect, caregiver wrongdoing, violence and other stressors.  There is no perfect screen and no specific intervention to offer.  It would seem helpful to me to teach stress coping skills in elementary school, where they could be most helpful.  Offering them to everyone might identify children at high risk and yield long-term benefit to those who need them.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Two Major Problems of Senior Patients are Often Missed

Balance problems that can lead to hip fractures and sleep apnea that can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and strokes.  I either of these problems is unaddressed, it can be fatal.  Don’t wait for your doctor to ask, make the inquiry yourself.  Ask if you are at risk, and if so, ask to be tested.  Treatment is available.

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Doctors Charged with Medicare Fraud

In the seventh national operation, involving 400 law enforcement officials from across the country, 90 individuals and 27 health care providers, including doctors, were charged with Medicare fraud.  Among other accusations, the most common alleged offense involved treatments and services.  I do not know how many integrative physicians were included in the operation, but I do know that some very good doctors have been charged in the past.  The problem is that there are no codes for many integrative procedures, but if you participate in Medicare, you are required to put down a code, even if it doesn’t fit.  If Medicare judges your code to be inaccurate, you are charged with fraud, which can lead to stiff fines and possible jail.  That is why integrative doctors like myself do not belong to Medicare.  It would be stupid to put yourself in such a terrible position.

See Family Practice News, June 15, 2014, P.4.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Stents Might be Causing Heart Attacks Rather than Preventing Them

Dr. Robert Rowen puts out an excellent newsletter.  I urge you to subscribe to it and read it.  In the July, 2014, issue he rightly raises his voice in anger because 4 million medicated stents have been surgically placed in U. S. patients in the last decade.  The studies supporting the use of these stents are woefully inadequate.  The drug coating on the stents may cause 4,500 new heart attacks each year, almost half of them fatal.  Bare metal stents might often be a safer choice.  Those who get the medicated ones are often treated with Coumadin (rat poison) for extended periods of time.  A few years back, I published a paper contending that EDTA chelation would be much safer and quite effective with or without a stent.  So far that has landed on deaf ears.

Call 800-791-3445 to subscribe to Second Opinion, Dr. Rowen’s newsletter.



Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Spinal Stenosis Responds Poorly to Steroid Injections

400 patients at 16 medical centers evaluated the effectiveness of epidural injections of steroids for treating spinal stenosis and published the results in the New England Journal of Medicine.  The study showed that patients injected with steroids along with local anesthetics had no less pain and no better function than those who received only local anesthetics.  Hundreds of thousands of injections of steroids are given each year for this problem with a great deal of pain and some potential risk.  Some insrance companies require the injections before they will approve surgery.  I find that prolotherapy and/or pain reduction techniques are safer, cheaper, and more effective for both the short and long run.  Ask your orthopedist about this study.  The findings were dramatic.

See The Blade, Toledo, section A, page 6, Monday, July 7, 2014.


Thursday, September 4, 2014

Interpersonal Relations Affect Blood Pressure and Life Expectancy

Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh have shown that spouses who argue frequently have higher blood pressure.  Those who have a lot of friends or who are surrounded by family with frequent contact have a lower risk of heart disease and are more likely to live longer.

 Google Rodlescia Sneed or Karen Mathews at the University of Pittsburgh for more info.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Annual Pelvic Exams are Found to be Unnecessary

The American College of Physicians published a controversial guideline this spring stating that annual pelvic exams are unnecessary in asymptomatic women who are not pregnant.  Visual inspection of the cervix and periodic pap smears are still recommended.  Many gynecologists disagree with the guideline because a number of abnormalities such as pelvic floor weakness, ovarian cysts, and uterine fibroids can be detected by the exam.  It would appear that women on hormone replacement therapy should still have annual exams.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Sugary Drinks Stimulate Adolescents’ Brains

Unpublished research presented at the ADA annual scientific meeting showed that sugary drinks stimulate the brains of adolescents such that they crave more and thus gain weight.  The sugar appeared to increase blood flow to the executive function and reward areas of the brain.  Addiction might result.  Care should be exercised until we know more.

See for more details.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Low Vitamin D3 Increases the Risk of Premature Death from All Causes

Dr. Cedric F. Garland and associates at the Univ. of California, San Diego, showed that patients with blood levels of vitamin D of 9 had double the risk of premature death compared to those whose levels were > 50 nannograms per milliliter.  He noted that there is little danger in taking vitamin D supplements, as long as levels are kept below 200.  Any doctor can measure this with a simple blood test.

See The Blade, Toledo, June 23, 2014, section D, p.1.


Thursday, August 14, 2014

Low Protein in the Diet Increases the Risk of Strokes

Those of 250,000 patients who had the highest portion of protein in their diet had a 20% decreased risk of stroke.  This is about an extra 3 ounce serving of various meats, chicken, fish or beans.  This finding might support a lower carb diet.  However, many older patients have decreased digestive enzymes, hydrochloric acid, and/or probiotics.  Thus they do not digest protein in the diet as needed.  A simple test by measuring amino acids in the urine can detect this problem, which might be of considerable help to the patient.              

The study by Dr. Xinfeng Liu was published in Neurology earlier this year.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Weight Loss Can Reduce Hot Flashes

The Women’s Health Initiative showed that synthetic estrogens and progestins, which were often prescribed for hot flashes, increase the risk of breast cancer and vascular disease.  Derivatives of the anti-depressant drug, Paxil, reduce the symptoms but can cause suicidal ideation and other side effects.  Bio-identical hormones are much safer than synthetic ones, but they also have not been studied as extensively.  Weight loss of an average of 19# in 40 women with severe hot flashes provided significant relief.  An anecdotal report implied that women who have hot flashes are much less likely to develop breast cancer.  So if they are not too bad, it might be best to put up with them.

 See Rebecca Thurston of the University of Pittsburgh.  Contact Campbell North at

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

More Bad News on Statins

Dr. Tim Marshall in the AAPS journal reports that there are 900 articles in the medical literature about the side effects of this group of drugs.  Out of every 10,000 people on statins, there are 307 extra patients with cataracts, 23 added patients with kidney failure, and 74 additional patients with liver failure.  The incidence of erectile dysfunction is 10X higher in statin users.  Other adverse events include the onset of diabetes, neuropathies, insomnia, memory loss, confusion, autoimmune problems and muscle disorders.  There are reports that there might be an increased risk of cancer and actually an increased incidence of cardiovascular disease in women, young people, and diabetics.  Red yeast rice is just one of several reasonable, natural alternatives.  Check with an integrative doctor.

See the Journal of American Physicians and Surgeons, vol. 19, No. 2, Summer, 2014, pp. 4245.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Phytoestrogens and Probiotics to Treat Asthma and Allergy?

A Harvard Study reported by Dr. Jessica Savage showed that phytoestrogens derived from flax seeds and soy products in the diet coupled with adequate amounts of probiotic bacteria in the gut can improve asthma and wheezing in both males and females.  This opens a new avenue for treating allergic problems.  More to come for this exciting development.
See Family Practice News, 3/15/2014, p. 23.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Do You Have Fibromyalgia?

Previous criteria to make the diagnosis of fibromyalgia have included a detailed listing of how many tender areas you have throughout the body out of a possible 18 points.  Dr. Andrew Gross of Univ. of California SF calls this “a complete waste of time”.  Instead, he has the patient fill out a questionnaire.  The most important factors are widespread pain lasting at least 3 months, fatigue, poor sleep, and no other disease causing the symptoms.  Rather than anti-depressants and pain medications, the usual treatment, I immediately check for yeast imbalance, food allergies, and insufficient digestive factors.  Herbal preparations, low dose naltrexone, amino acids, and Kaufman’s pain neutralization techniques can be very effective treatments without side effects.


See Family Practice News, January, 2014, p. 38.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Should You Use Anti-Depressants for PMS?

At a GYN meeting at Univ. of California at SF, Dr. Ellen Haller recommended calcium supplements for PMS, and anti-depressants if the natural approach does not work.  First of all, you want to include a healthy dose of magnesium and probiotics along with calcium.   Sometimes bio-identical hormonal replacement of natural progesterone is needed.  Homeopathic PMS drops can be very effective.  Anti-depressants are rarely needed to get good results.

 See Family Practice News, January, 2014,  p. 34-35.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Women Are at Risk of Heart Attacks and Strokes

A New York survey reported at the American Heart Association meeting in Dallas revealed that only 28% of 1013 women correctly identified heart disease as the number one killer of women.  Many of them considered an OB/GYN doctor to be their primary care physician.  All women, but especially those with any family history of heart disease or strokes or ones who smoke, should have a cholesterol panel.  Other good screening tests include a Calcium score CT scan, a carotid artery screen, and a Max Pulse test.  The former is available at many hospitals and the later two at our office.  If risk is identified, much can be done to prevent a cardiovascular event, which can be devastating.
See Family Practice News, January, 2014, p. 6-7

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Beta Blockers Losing Their Luster

The CAFÉ study showed that beta blockers have more side effects than benefits to the heart when used to control blood pressure.  They result in less protection of the kidneys, less avoidance of left ventricular hypertrophy, more insulin resistance, reduced exercise tolerance, weight gain, and more problems with withdrawal than other BP meds.  There was some benefit for these drugs to prevent strokes.  Many patients come to me for natural alternatives to BP meds.  My first choices are an herbal preparation with Rauwolfia in it and magnesium.  They are usually quite effective without side effects.

See Family Practice News, March 1, 2014, p. 26-27.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Nuts to the Diet

The 2013 American Heart Association diet recommendations advocate eating more fruits and veggies, whole grains, legumes, fish, poultry, and especially nuts because they contain good fats and protein.  Foods to avoid include sugar, sodium and red meat.  My impression of the evidence is that lean red meat is not bad to eat in moderation.  Otherwise, I can live with the recommendations, except for the fact that many people have low-grade food allergies that they are not aware of.  You can be allergic to healthy foods, including nuts.  Gluten is a common problem.  Generally speaking, the diet should be individualized.  An Elisa blood test for food allergies is a good place to start.

See J. Am. Coll. Cardiol., Jan 28, 2014.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

The Best Blood Pressure Predictor for Cardiovascular Disease is the Mid-BP

Investigators showed that even minor elevations of blood pressure in patients age 18-30 years was strongly associated with coronary artery calcification 25 years later.  Interestingly, the best predictor of future problems was the mid-BP, which is defined as the mean of the systolic and diastolic blood pressures.  This calculation is new, and might change the way we evaluate the risk of elevated blood pressure.
See Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults (CARDIA) study, reported in Family Practice News, Feb. 15, 2014, p. 18-19.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Too Much Sugar Caused a 40% Higher Risk of Cardiovascular Death

The National Health and Nutrition Examination  Survey (NHANES) showed that those who consumed 17-21% of their diet in sugar had a 40% higher risk of CV death than those who consumed less than 10% of their calories from sugar.  One-tenth of the population consumes greater than 25% of their diet in sugar, and they tripled their risk of CV death.  The numbers speak for themselves.  Healthy nutrition makes a big difference in your longevity, health, and quality of life.

See JAMA. Internal Medicine, 2014 online.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

What is the Best Treatment for Osteoarthritis of the Knee?

Several physician organizations have issued guidelines recently about the best non-surgical treatment for arthritis of the knee.  They all agree on weight loss, exercise, and education.  However, they disagree on the relative effectiveness of steroid shots, hyaluronic acid injections (Synvisc), non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, topical capsaicin, glucosamine, and acupuncture.  Unfortunately, they did not even mention the treatment that I have found to be the most effective, prolotherapy.  Prolo injections rebuild and strengthen the ligaments that support the joint, and can give long-lasting, if not permanent, relief of pain.
 Go to the web site,

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Does Treating Low Testosterone Increase the Risk of Heart Attacks?

Possibly.  The FDA has not yet reached a conclusion, but it is reviewing a couple of recent studies that have said, yes, it does, at least for men greater than 65 y.o. and in younger men with a history of heart problems.  The studies tested synthetic testosterone in patients who had low blood levels of testosterone.  Currently, such treatment is approved only when the low testosterone levels are associated with a medical condition.  There is no doubt that many men feel better if their testosterone levels are improved.  It is probable, in my opinion, that the risk might be lower if the bio-identical hormones were prescribed, but that has not been tested.  As usual, the benefits should outweigh the risks if testosterone is used.


See Family Practice News, Feb. 15, 2014, p. 12-13.


Tuesday, May 27, 2014

The New Cholesterol Guidelines Leave the Choice Up to You

The new American Heart Association guidelines for preventing cardiovascular events mandate that the doctor estimates your risk of having a heart attack or stroke in the next 10 years.  If that risk is greater than 7.5%, you are considered eligible for taking a statin drug.  A problem is that the risk calculators in common use, such as the Framingham Risk Calculator, consider only a few factors (age, sex, total cholesterol, HDL, and blood pressure).  According to researchers at Duke University, for men 60 years or older, 87% are now statin eligible, whereas only 30% were eligible under the old guidelines.  The good news is that doctors are now required to have a discussion with their patients explaining their overall cardiac risk, which might include other risk factors, such as obesity, stress, inactivity, and in my opinion, toxic metals.  Then the patient is supposed to decide whether he or she wants to take the drug or not.  The doctor is then required to accept the choice made by the patient.  This is a big change in guideline history.  Just say “no”; the choice is up to you.

See the Toledo Blade, March 20, 2014 issue, section A, page 4.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Multiple Shots Increase the Risk of Fever

One of the bits of advice I routinely give to parents of young children who are concerned about immunizations is to avoid getting more than one shot per day.  Too often multiple shots are given at once.  A study published online in JAMA pediatrics in the March 24, 2014 issue determined that the incidence of fever after a flu shot was in toddlers was 7.5%, with a pneumococcal shot was 9.5%, and with both at the same visit was 37.6%.  One has to assume that the risk of other complications is similarly increased with multiple shots at the same visit.

Reported in the Toledo Blade, March 31, 2014 edition, section D, page 1.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Prevent Tooth Decay with Xylitol

Xylitol is a natural sugar that is produced naturally in tiny amounts in the body.  It is also found in the food supply.  Remarkably, taking xylitol as a nutritional supplement has been shown to be a powerful, safe preventative for tooth decay.  Xylitol is much more effective much safer than fluoride treatments.  Chewing gum with xylitol in it restores a healthy balance of good bacteria that protects against cavities.  This is another little known treatment featured in Jonathan Wright’s Nutrition and Healing newsletter, May issue, 2012.  I highly recommend this excellent publication.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Hunger Leads to Anger

Ohio State University researchers have documented that when people are hungry, they are more likely to be irritable and angry, often linked to low blood sugar.  If you want to have a rational discussion with your spouse, it would be advisable to do it over a meal.  Even couples who insisted they had a good relationship were more likely to be grouchy when they were hungry.
See Brad Bushman’s report in the April 15, 2014 online issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, reported in the Toledo Blade, April 15, 2014, section B, page 3.


Tuesday, May 13, 2014

The Top 10 Over-used Tests and What Should be Done Instead

1.      Nuclear stress tests after heart surgery, yearly EKG’s or exercise tests.  Much better to do non-invasive functional or anatomical tests like Calcium score CT scans (once), CardioRisk, Max pulse, ICD, Heart Rate variability tests.

2.      PSA for prostate screening and annual pap tests.  The former is no better than a digital rectal exam, and pap tests every 3 years is fine for most women, unless they are taking hormones.

3.      PET scan for Alzheimer’s. Asking a few questions is certainly cheaper and probably more accurate.

4.      Any Xray or MRI for low back pain unless the problem is severe, related to an injury or persistent over months.

5.      Bone density in women under 65 or men under 70.  At that age, by all means, before that, a vitamin D3 blood test will suffice.

6.      Follow-up ultrasounds for small ovarian cysts, unless of course symptoms change.

7.      Colonoscopy after age 75—no, but before that, yes.

8.      Yearly physical exams are out, but targeted check-ups are helpful.


Read more in The Treatment Trap by Rosemary Gibson

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Statin Drugs Increase the Tendency for a Deadly Diet

An article published in JAMA on-line showed that patients who take statin drugs to lower their risk of cardiovascular disease tend to eat more food, more calories, and more junk food.  This caused them to gain weight and increase their incidence of hypertension and diabetes.  Apparently, a significant number of patients felt that taking the drugs allowed them to have looser lifestyle habits.  In fact, the lifestyle, which includes a healthy diet, is a much bigger factor than lowering the cholesterol or LDL numbers.

 See JAMA on line for Internal Medicine for April 17, 2014, cited in the Toledo Blade, April 25, 2014, section A, page 10.


Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Prevention of Breast Cancer

Commonly recognized risk factors for breast cancer include excessive radiation, first-degree relatives with diagnosed breast cancer, synthetic hormone replacement, early menarche or late menopause, no births, and no breast-feeding.  Other important factors are underwire bras, wearing bras for 12 hours or more in a day, excessive caffeine, and toxic metals, including aluminum found in deodorants.  Thermography can identify vascular patterns in which breast cancers are more likely to grow.  Abnormal thermograms can often be improved with a few nutritional supplements.

 See Dressed to Kill by Sydney Singer. Celebration of Health Association website  

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Protection Against Radiation Exposure

You can get low-grade radiation exposure from the environment, or you can be exposed to a higher degree with procedures like CT scans and mammograms, or you might have radiation therapy recommended for breast or other cancers.  Some degree of protection against the harmful effects of radiation might be obtained by taking Chlorella, miso broth, turmeric, seaweed, and/or holy basil before and after exposure.  You could also take a hot bath with a pound of Epsom salt or sea salt and a pound of baking soda, soaking until the water cools.  Afterwards, do not shower or rinse the salt off for at least 4 hours.

 From  Superfood Therapeutic Guide by Robin Murphy.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Staying Awake and Breathing Better

A negative ion generator, available at health food stores or over the internet for as little as $20, might help your breathing if you have asthma, allergies, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.  You can also get a portable device that might keep you awake while driving.


From  Superfood Therapeutic Guide by Robin Murphy.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Super Foods for Allergies

One of the first measures to take if you have prominent allergies is to check for and treat toxins.  Yeast toxins are generated when you have an overgrowth in the intestine.  A stool culture will help to make the diagnosis.  Heavy metals can be detected with a “challenge test”, using the same chelating agent that might be utilized for treatment.  Activated charcoal from the health food store removes toxins with a dose of 1 tsp or 3 capsules in 8 ounces of water.  Super foods that might help allergies include evening primrose oil, garlic, grape seed oil, horseradish, noni, and onions.  Olive leaf and holy basil are good immune boosters.

 See Superfood Therapeutic Guide by Robin Murphy. Celebrationof Health Association website  

Thursday, April 10, 2014

The Choosing Wisely Program

Nearly 60 medical organizations have endorsed a new program that has identified 120 tests and procedures that might be medically unnecessary and should be avoided.  Patients often come out of the ER with thousands of dollars of bills that might have been avoided.  I have seen families with an autistic child elsewhere rack up $25,000 charges in a couple of months.  Every test should have a purpose that leads to potential benefit for each individual patient.  The risks to testing such as mammograms, CT scans, MRI’s, and catherizations should be carefully weighed against the potential benefits.  Is the proposed test going to change the therapy for that patient?  We certainly do not want to spend so much on testing that we have nothing left for treatment.

See Family Practice News, 12/2013, p. 48.


Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Task Force Calls for True Preventive Medicine

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has called for more emphasis on preventive medicine that can make a difference in patients’ lives, including screening for cognitive impairment, mental and physical well-being, fall prevention, vision and hearing problems, and avoiding unintended harms from medical procedures and testing.  One could easily add side effects from drugs to the list.  At COHA, we have added the specific measures of toxic metals testing, breast thermography, balance testing, vascular screening (the CHAS score), and the 3-day intensive treatment for eye diseases.  We believe that true prevention is far more effective than vaccines and screening for diseases that are already present.

See Family Practice News, 12/2013, p. 40.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Walking Program Relieves Pain for Breast Cancer Patients

 A 6-week walking program relieved joint pain, fatigue, and stiffness for breast cancer patients on hormone therapy such as tamoxaphen.  Patients in the program gradually increased their time spent walking by 62 minutes per week.  Once again, exercise works better than almost any drug.


Thursday, March 27, 2014

Dramatic Changes in Fibromyalgia Guidelines

Multispecialty panels of physicians in Canada, Israel, and Germany have simultaneously made changes in the diagnosis and treatment of fibromyalgia.  Previous focusing on specific tender points and pain medications has not been successful.  Instead they recommend a diagnosis based on a cluster of symptoms.  The 3 medications currently approved to treat FM (Lyrica, Cymbalta, and Savella) are only mildly successful and can cause significant side effects.  Instead, new emphasis is placed on alternative therapies such as exercise, tai chi, guided imagery, acupuncture, spa therapy, naltrexone and hyperbaric oxygen.  This is a big step in the right direction.


Tuesday, March 25, 2014

New Guidelines for Weight Loss

The Obesity Society has issued new guidelines for the management of overweight and obesity to help doctors and patients achieve successful weight loss.  Body Mass Index and waist circumference appear to be the best indicators for cardiovascular risk, diabetes and all-cause mortality.  No one diet was recommended, but reduced calories and patient preference were important factors.  The guidelines did not discuss food allergies, HCG, or herbal reduction of cravings.  But they did include the one drug that is approved for weight loss (Orlistat, which blocks the absorption of fat) and bariatric surgery.  Support groups and counseling for 6-12 months are helpful for many patients.

See Family Practice News, December 13, 2013, p. 13.


Thursday, March 20, 2014

Risk Calculator Changes Cholesterol Guidelines

The American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association have radically changed the approach to cholesterol levels, which is good and not-so-good.  It is now recommended that everyone takes a questionnaire that estimates his or her 10-year and lifetime risk for having a heart attack or stroke.  Then the patient chooses the risk factors that he can modify to reduce the risk.  The good part is the recognition that there are many risk factors other than cholesterol for vascular disease.  The bad parts are that no one agrees on what should be on the risk factor list, and that this approach might greatly expand the number of people that are put on statin drugs with minimal benefit.

Google the Framingham Risk Analysis or go to the Chappell Heart Alzheimer’s Stroke Score (CHAS) score, which will soon appear on

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Is Testosterone Treatment for Men Safe?

There has been a flood of advertising about treatment of men with “low T”.  There is little doubt that some men feel better if their blood testosterone is low and they are treated with the hormone.  However, there might be a slight increase in the risk for heart attacks in patients that have been treated with synthetic testosterone.  With the limited evidence we have at this time, it would be advisable to first try natural approaches, such as supplements to raise nitric oxide.  If testosterone is prescribed, bio-identical hormone replacement might be preferable.

See JAMA, Nov. 6; 310: 1805.


Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Comparing the Impact of a Mediterranean Diet to Chelation Therapy in Diabetic Patients

One of the most publicized studies in 2013 was a 5-year Spanish clinical trial that compared the Mediterranean diet with or without extra olive oil and nuts to a low fat diet in diabetics and those with high risk factors for diabetes.  There was a slight reduction in cardiac events, but they had to treat 70 patients for 5 years to prevent one event. The TACT study of chelation therapy showed that you only had to treat 7 patients to prevent one cardiac event over 5 years.  According to chief investigator, Dr. Lamas, the impact of chelation therapy appears to be greater than any other single intervention to treat diabetes.

See the NEJM Journal Watch, year in review for 2013, the factoral analysis for TACT is in press to be published in the American Heart Journal.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Bacteria in the Digestive Tract Can Have a Huge Impact

The New England Journal of Medicine reports that we might be witnessing the birth of a revolution in our understanding of human health and disease.  Bacteria in our guts are being linked to cancer, autoimmunity, liver disease, asthma, autism, obesity, diabetes, heart disease, synthetizing important vitamins and amino acids, detoxification, and improving digestion.  Our bodies typically contain 13 trillion cells and 130 trillion bacterial cells, 20,000 genes and 5-8 million bacterial genes.  Alternative practitioners have been talking about the biofilm for years.  It is about time that physicians are finally paying attention.


See the New England Journal Watch, Year in Review for 2013.(subscription needed)

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Migraines in Children

Migraine headaches occur in 10.5% of children ages 10-15 years of age and 7% of 7 year olds.  Environmental triggers can include lack of sleep, dehydration, stress at school including bullying, and hormone imbalance.  Many drugs are available.  Often overlooked are food allergies and yeast problems, which are readily treatable.  The Kaufman techniques of pain neutralization might be particularly helpful.

See Family Practice News 1 Feb 2014, p. 15.



Thursday, February 27, 2014

Controlling Diabetes and Preventing Complications

You might have heard the advertisements lately about controlling diabetes while getting off the drugs used to treat it.  In the scientific literature, the Geisinger Health System in Pennsylvania reported that it saved 300 heart attacks, 140 strokes, and 160 cases of retinopathy for 25,000 patients over 3 years by treating them with a “bundle”.  This included measuring the HBA1C every 6 months and maintaining it at less than 7%, measuring the LDL and urine protein annually and keeping the former below 100, maintaining BP <140 and="" avoiding="" date="" flu="" keeping="" pneumococcal="" span="" style="mso-spacerun: yes;" to="" tobacco="" up="" use.="" vaccines=""> 
14.5% of patients complied with all points of the “bundle”.  The results were reported as “fabulous”.  Getting off oral drugs, if possible, is a laudable goal since some might even increase the risks for diabetes.  Monitoring the biomarkers is certainly useful.  But patients will get far better results if they also lose weight with a low carb diet, get regular exercise, take the natural products, berberine, chromium, and cinnamon, and especially take IV chelation.

See Family Practice News, Feb. 2014, p. 1, 32.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

What is the Lp(a) and Why Might it be Important for Me?

The Lp(a) was promoted by Linus Pauling as the most important sub fraction of the lipid panel.  If it is high, it increases the risk of heart attacks and strokes substantially.  Any lab can do the test.  Just ask your doctor if it is not included in your standard lipid panel.  Dr. Pauling advocated high dose vitamin C to reduce an elevated Lp(a).  I have found that intravenous chelation might be even more reliable.

See any of the many books by Linus Pauling.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

A Cheap and Easy Way to Reduce your Risk for Vascular Disease

Drink more water!  Increased water consumption might optimize blood viscosity, reduce gum disease, improve cardiac muscle efficiency, lower cholesterol, and improve kidney function.  A useful guideline is half your weight in ounces per day, although you might not need that much to see a noticeable benefit.

See the Townsend Letter, May, 2013, p. 40-41 for more information.


Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Do You Have Metabollic Syndrome? If so, Pay Attention!

In a nutshell, you have metabolic syndrome if you have 3 of the following 5 signs and symptoms:  Increased waist measurement (35 inches for women, 40 inches for men), BP > 130/80, fasting blood sugar >100, triglycerides >150, and HDL <50 .="" span="" style="mso-spacerun: yes;">  If you qualify, you have a substantially increased risk for heart attacks and strokes.  Most important for treatment is weight loss with a low carb diet.  Exercise helps, and chelation might lower your risk, according to the results of the TACT study.  Moderate changes can make a big difference.


See the Townsend Letter, May, 2013, p. 52-60 for more information.
Celebration of HealthAssociation website  

Thursday, February 13, 2014

New Stroke Guidelines for Women

The American Heart Association has published new stroke prevention guidelines for women. The include getting your blood pressure checked before taking birth control pills, consider taking BP meds for slight elevations when pregnant, and getting screened for atrial fibrillation if you are at least 75 years of age. Lifestyle suggestions are eat well, exercise regularly, don’t smoke, and don’t eat too much salt or drink too much alcohol. All of these make good sense. I would add getting screened for carotid plaque with a CardioRisk test and taking chelation if plaque is developing, especially if the family history is positive for heart attacks or strokes, and using bio-identical hormones instead of synthetic hormones if needed for menopause symptoms. Next CardioRisk screening will be in Bluffton COHA office on March 11th, you do not have to be a COHA patient. See American Heart Association/American Stroke Association Guidelines for Stroke Prevention in Women. Celebration of Health Association website

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

“Healthy Obesity” is a Myth

In the recent past, it was thought that people who were overweight but were OK with cholesterol, blood sugar and blood pressure were not at increased risk. However, a recent meta-analysis that followed these patients over a ten-year period showed that an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and mortality catches up with them, no doubt about it. If you are overweight, you should shed the excess pounds. It makes a big difference in your future health. See Family Practice News, December, 2013, p.25. Celebration of Health Association website

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Chelation Plus Multivitamins Halved Cardiac Events in Diabetic Patients

The TACT study showed even better results in patients who received both multivitamins and EDTA chelation therapy than previously reported with chelation treatment. There was a 34% reduction of a composite of cardiovascular risk, heart attack, and stroke in patients that had had a previous heart attack. Diabetic patients had a remarkable 51% reduction in risk with this therapy combination. Critics of the therapy are becoming less vocal as more and more details of the study are reported. In my experience of 30 years giving chelation in the office, the results are even better yet. See Family Practice News, December, 2013, p. 24-25. Or visit my website at Celebration of Health Association website

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Weight Loss Results in Reversal of Aging

Short telomeres are unique markers for accelerated aging. Many lifestyle factors, such as smoking, depression and lack of exercise are associated with shortening of telomeres. There are only a few activities that can lengthen telomeres, including raising HDL and reducing inflammatory markers such as CRP sensitive. If you are overweight and have elevated inflammatory markers, you can actually reverse the aging process, as documented by a lengthening of your telomeres. Weight loss by any technique from a healthy diet to Gastric bypass will increase your telomeres and help prevent many chronic degenerative diseases. See Family Practice News, December, 2013, p. 11-12 or go to to find an integrative physician. Celebration of Health Association website

Thursday, January 30, 2014

“Fibrofog” is More Likely Due to Yeast Toxins than a Prelude to Alzheimer’s Disease

Fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue patients often have mild to moderate cognitive dysfunction that they readily label as “brain fog”. The American College of Rheumatology has found that this is not a harbinger of Alzheimer’s disease, but they are mystified as to why it occurs. Any integrative physician or health food store proprietor will tell you that “brain fog” is due to yeast toxins and/or food allergies that often cause or make fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue worse. Treatment is available if the problem is recognized. See International College of Integrative Medicine to find an integrative physician who gets very good results for these conditions. Celebration of Health Association website

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Fibromyalgia Responds to Naltrexone and Hyperbaric Oxygen

Speakers at the American College of Rheumatology meeting were disappointed in the “inadequate” results of the FDA-approved drugs for fibromyalgia (Cymbalta, Lyrica, Savella) but were encouraged by results seen with low-dose naltrexone and hyperbaric oxygen treatments. These novel treatments are often available from alternative physicians. Sometimes oxygen generators can be combined with exercise to get similar results to hyperbaric treatments at a much reduced cost. Se Family Practice News, December, 2013 issue, p. 6 or contact International College of Integrative Medicine to find an integrative doctor near you. Celebration of Health Association website

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Computerized Risk Calculators are Overcalling the Actual Risk

Risk calculations recently released by the American Heart Association and others have created “confusion, dismay, and protest”, according to a panel at the AHA meeting in November, 2013. According to the new calculations, 33 million more Americans will be asked to take statin drugs when their risks for heart attacks are minimal. We can get a much better assessment of risk by asking if there is a strong family history, doing lab such as a CRP sensitive, Lp(a), homocysteine, and toxic metal screen. A cardiorisk test for arterial plaque, a calcium score with a CAT scan, and/or an ankle/brachial blood pressure test for peripheral circulation can tell us if plaque is developing. Lifestyle changes, nutritional support, and chelation if indicated can be much more effective than a massive use of statin drugs. See Family Practice News, December, 2013, page 1, 13 or contact International College of Integrative Medicine to find an integrative doctor near you. Celebration of Health Association website

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Innovative Treatments for Neuropathies

Neuropathies, whether peripheral or triggered by the central nervous system, can be very difficult to treat with conventional drugs and surgery. Steve Kaufman’s pain neutralization techniques can often be very helpful with his light touch procedure. Neural prolotherapy is a series of injections along cutaneous nerves with a simple sugar that often relieves neuropathic pain. Soft lasers can be equally effective. Low dose naltrexone is a very low dose of an oral preparation that is often helpful. Lately, reports suggesting that HCG, natural progesterone, or Oxytoxin are hormones that can possibly help with pain syndromes. Different patients respond to different approaches. Google the med to get more information about effectiveness and safety. Celebration of Health Association website

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Thermography Better than Mammograms if You are Taking Bio-Identical Hormones

The Women’s Health Study tells us that women who have been taking hormone replacement therapy, especially the natural kind, have denser breasts. This makes it more difficult to detect breast abnormalities by X-rays. Dense breasts are better followed with thermograms, which assesses the circulation patterns in the breast tissue. Blood flow and circulation are not affected by dense breasts. See and Celebration of Health Association website

Thursday, January 9, 2014

CDC States that Flu shots are Ineffective, but Take Them Anyway

According to Robert Rowen’s excellent newsletter, the Center for Disease Control tells us that flu shots are estimated to be about 9% effective in the elderly this year. But we should encourage everyone to take them anyway. Dr. R suggests 5000iu of vitamin D3 daily as a much better preventative. I agree. But homeopathics like mucococcinium and colds and flu drops also work well, and oral vitamin C is not bad either. If you are at high risk, a monthly IV of intravenous vitamin C, plus other nutrients would be great. We call it a Meyer’s cocktail. See Second Opinion, December 2013, p. 1. Celebration of Health Association website

Monday, January 6, 2014

An Integrative Approach Does Much Better than Drug Therapy for Type 2 Diabetes

Treating type 2 Diabetes with metformin appears OK but if you add a common second drug (usually a sulfonylurea) you increase the death rate from 14 per 1000 patient years to 45 per 1000 patient years, according to a British study. On the other hand if you treat diabetic patients with vascular disease with chelation therapy, as in the TACT study, you decrease cardiac events over a three-year period by 50%. It sure seems to me that doctors should be recommending chelation therapy for their diabetic patients, but they rarely do, probably as a result of a long-standing prejudice against alternative medicine. See Diabetes Care 2012;35:1364-1379 and JAMA 2013;309:1241-1250. Celebration of Health Association website