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admin | Category: Medicine For Herpes | 26.09.2014
At the Alliance Institute for Integrative Medicine, we see you as a whole person, not just a collection of symptoms. Doctor of Pharmacology Sarah Erush, is the clinical manager of the pharmacy at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Doctors diagnosed her with acute pancreatitis, in which pancreatic enzymes begin digesting not just food, but the pancreas itself.
Doctors were able to control the girl's illness with standard therapies, Erush says, and she was discharged from the hospital after two weeks. About 50% of Americans use alternative medicine, and 10% use it on their children, notes Paul Offit, Children's Hospital's chief of infectious disease. Many consumers view alternative medicine industry as more altruistic and home-spun than Big Pharma. Combined with alternative therapy research at the National Cancer Institute, the NIH spends a total of $233 million a year on this research, which has included everything from herbal supplements to acupuncture and aromatherapy. Briggs notes that research conducted by her center and others shows real benefits to certain alternative therapies, which doctors describe as "complementary" if they are used in conjunction with conventional medicine. Proponents of alternative medicine say there are clear reasons for its popularity, including frustration with mainstream doctors and people's desire to have more control over their health.
Only about one-third of alternative therapies have safety and efficacy data behind them, critics note.
Many Americans see modern medicine as increasingly bureaucratic and impersonal, says Deepak Chopra, a physician and one of the best known advocates for mind-body healing.
Arthur Caplan, the director of medical ethics at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York, says alternative healers satisfy patients' needs for more personal attention.


Yet people who put their faith in alternative healers and supplements may be putting themselves at risk, Caplan says. In the best cases, Offit says, alternative remedies are ineffective but relatively harmless, functioning as expensive placebos that may appear to relieve symptoms such as pain, largely because people expect them to.
Tests have found heavy metals in ayurvedic medicines, used in India for thousands of years to treat a variety of conditions and also popular in the USA, Briggs says. Nissen says he's lost patients with serious cardiovascular disease because they opted to take alternative medicines instead of those he prescribed. Alternative medicine doctors sell patients on a variety of unproven therapies, such as chelation, a process of removing metals from the blood, Offit says. Although chelation has real medical uses - treating acute heavy metal poisoning - doctors also promote the intravenous treatments as an alternative remedy for everything from Alzheimer's disease to cancer. Apple founder Steve Jobs' faith in alternative medicine likely cost him his life, says Barrie Cassileth, chief of integrative medicine at New York's Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. And while many in the alternative medicine industry are cashing in, Offit says there are few people looking out for the desperate patients whose hopes - and bank accounts - are being exploited. Andrew Weil, one of the USA's best known advocates of holistic medicine, says he also favors closer regulation of supplements.
In 2011, the FDA sent Mercola a letter for marketing an alternative to mammography on his website - the Meditherm Med2000, a camera that measures skin temperature.
Yet Cassileth, author of The Complete Guide to Complementary Therapies in Cancer Care, says non-traditional approaches can have a place in medicine, when modern medicine has little to offer. As opposed to "alternative," Cassileth prefers the term "integrative" medicine, which subjects nonstandard therapies to scientific tests.


For example, doctors have had promising early results using acupuncture to restore salivary gland function in patients who receive radiation to the head and neck. Use our mobile site and iPhone apps to keep updated with what's going on around Cincinnati.
Parents now "routinely" bring children to her hospital with a variety of alternative remedies, hoping that nurses will administer them during a child's stay. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., who has long fought for stricter regulation of supplements, says the alternative medicine industry is "as tough as any industry I've seen lobby in Washington.
Last year, for example, The New England Journal of Medicine published a study showing that people with Parkinson's disease can improve their balance and stability by practicing Tai Chi, an ancient Chinese exercise system. Yet conventional doctors don't always follow the evidence, either, says Adriane Fugh-Berman, an associate professor of pharmacology at Georgetown University in Washington and author of a textbook on herbs and supplements. Doctors who call themselves "Lyme literate" often prescribe years of intravenous antibiotics, a therapy with no proven benefits but serious side effects, including infections and the risk of developing antibiotic resistance. And, according to the Infectious Disease Society of America, the infections don't require years of antibiotics or other risky therapies given by some alternative medicine practitioners.



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