Paul A. Goldberg MPH, DC, DACBN
Inflammatory Bowel Disease, (IBD), is a general term referring to inflammatory diseases of the intestines of (medically) unknown etiology (cause). It includes the major syndromes of Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis.
Few appreciate the extraordinary suffering people endure from chronic inflammation of the intestines/colon. Children and adults alike suffer from these syndromes, which often result in a lifetime of poor health, pain, life altering hardships and hopelessness.
Patients with IBD can have numerous signs and symptoms most frequently among them; bloody diarrhea, intestinal cramping, ulceration of the colon, anemia, fever, fistulas, etc. Both Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis start most frequently in people between the ages of 20 to 40, although no age is exempt.
THE MEDICAL SEARCH FOR CAUSES UNSUCCESSFUL
Medical investigation as to the causes of Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis has not proven fruitful. The major areas that have been investigated include genetic, infectious, immunologic and psychological factors:
Genetics: Some ethnic groups are more susceptible including Jewish people but no group is exempt.
Infection: The chronic inflammatory nature of IBD has led to an ongoing look for specific infectious agents, yet no single infectious agent has been implicated.
Immune Mechanism: Studies looking at associated abnormalities of cell mediated immunity all seem to revert to normal, when the disease is in a quiet state thus suggesting that they are part of a secondary phenomenon and not part of the etiological foundation of IBD.
Psychological Factors: Psychological features of patients with IBD have been looked at extensively. Patients suffering with IBD often exhibit anger, anxiety, depression and frustration. These emotions, however, are likely to be an outcome of having the disease rather than a fundamental cause of it. Negative emotions are an understandable outcome of people who have been afflicted (often in the prime of their lives) with an ailment that causes so much pain, disability, fatigue and uncertainty. Prolonged physical discomfort often brings about a depressed and anxious mental state. Exacerbations of IBD are commonly seen in emotionally stressful times.
As with other chronic conditions, there is a ready marketplace for overnight remedies promising quick relief from Inflammatory Bowel Disease. Most of these fall in the category of so-called natural "bowel cleansing" products and a host of so-called natural food and herbal supplements.
No amounts of colonics, enemas or "colon cleansers" will prove of benefit to the IBD sufferer. Addressing "treatments" to the bowel itself rather than to the body as a whole is counterproductive. "Colon cleansers", enemas and colonics do nothing to address the cause of the IBD and irritate the delicate lining of the bowel. All disturb the bowel flora and further stress the patient.
If the first thing the doctor does with the IBD patient is suggest a host of herbal or other nutrient supplements, the patient would be well advised to seek out a different practitioner who is oriented toward looking for etiological factors. ... We do not acquire IBD due to a lack of any specific herbal or food supplement, and we are therefore not going to get well from such either.
Related Health Issues With IBD
Patients with inflammatory bowel disease commonly develop other health issues due to the systemic effect bowel inflammation has on the rest of the body.
The following list includes some of the many problems associated with IBD in patients:
- Chronic fatigue
- Low back pain
- Neck pain
- Shoulder pain
- Hip pain
- Knee pain
- Ankle pains
- Heart disease
- Ankylosing spondylitis
- Generalized rheumatism
Many of these issues likely arise due to the increase in gut permeability that occurs with IBD. Tragically, many of the common prescription drugs used as anti-inflammatories actually increase gut permeability and thus worsen the patient's long-term condition. This lays the groundwork for allergic and rheumatological diseases particularly. Patients with arthritic problems are often observed to have GI (gastrointestinal) problems. The link between IBD and rheumatoid diseases is believed by many to be altered gut permeability. This must be addressed by seeking out specific causal factors in each patient and restoring good overall gastrointestinal and immune health.
The relationship between the gastrointestinal tract and the nervous system is an intimate one. The gastrointestinal tract is highly innervated, containing as many or more neurons as the spinal cord. Every attempt should be made to improve and balance neurological function. Acupressure, specific Chiropractic Care and Trigger Point Therapy techniques may all prove helpful if given in conjunction with a comprehensive program to address individual causal factors. Each person differs, however, and proper analysis is important.
Other measures to improve the nervous system that patients may use to advantage include Meditation, Hatha Yoga, Tai Chi and Biofeedback.
An irritated ulcerated intestine needs rest above all else. A properly supervised fast by a qualified, experienced, natural hygiene practitioner will frequently expedite the patient's recovery and in some cases is essential. During the fast, body functions are able to normalize; toxins and allergens are speedily removed; and the tissues have the opportunity to heal. The fast allows all the body tissues to rest and regain vitality.
Following the fast, the rested body is in a much better position to appropriate foodstuffs and build healthy tissues.
For patients unwilling or unable to fast, liquid diets of different types suitable to the needs of the particular patient may, in some cases, be used to advantage, under experienced supervision.
Breaking of the fast and the resumption of eating must be done carefully. Improper breaking of the fast (or liquid diet) may prove to be detrimental to the patient. The need for experienced supervision is important.
Functional Gastrointestinal Analysis
The doctor must be familiar with how to analyze the gut from a functional standpoint, not simply repeated colonoscopies to see how badly damaged the intestines have become followed by endless toxic pharmaceutical agents that carry numerous risks.
The bowel flora must be examined, allergies excluded, emotional issues addressed if present, fatty acid imbalances uncovered, carbohydrate sensitivities explored, etc., etc. There are numerous different factors at play in each person and therefore patients must be addressed as a world unto themselves.
Getting well from Inflammatory Bowel Disease requires a comprehensive approach. Some of the hygienic basics that the patient needs to keep in mind are the following:
* Sufficient rest and sleep.
* Chewing food very well and not overeating.
* Ingesting food only when there is emotional calm and real hunger present
* Avoiding exhaustion.
* Obtaining adequate sunshine and fresh air.
* Maintaining cordial relationships with friends and family.
* Having work that is rewarding.
* Avoidance of toxins such as coffee, tea, soft drinks, alcohol, junk foods, etc.
Patients must be patient. Each patient should set their sights on good health and not simply focus on their symptoms. For most people, it took years to evolve into a poor state of health. Hard work, determination, persistence and effort are needed factors along with the right professional guidance. Those who expect to make full recoveries in just a few days or weeks will likely be disappointed.
Our patients who have had the most success understand these things. They accept that, along with their genetic predisposition, they have evolved into poor health and that they must work hard and make changes to evolve into good health. They understand the need for patience although many are surprised at how rapidly they begin to improve once the factors behind their illness are addressed. They also understand that, once they are well, if they return to old poor habits, that their problems will return.
A good doctor analyzes each patient as an individual, his or her biochemistry and habits, makes recommendations and guides the patient along the way. It is often not an easy task for either the doctor or patient, but when done properly can allow the patient a return to good health to obtain a new lease on life something which drugs and surgeries that remove vital organs cannot.
I have watched patients who were unwilling to make the needed changes evolve further into poor health. I have also had the pleasure of seeing many patients make the needed efforts and evolve into vibrant health.
The following studies will illustrate successful cases where patients made the needed efforts and were successful in overcoming Ulcerative Colitis or Crohn’s Disease.
REGAINING GOOD HEALTH IS POSSIBLE!
Inflammatory Bowel Disease whether termed ulcerative colitis or Crohn's, need not lead to hopelessness and a life of misery.
Most patients with proper effort, under hygienic care, can improve greatly and often recover entirely. Endless steroids destroy health leading to diabetes, osteoporosis, adrenal exhaustion, premature aging and many other problems. The newer "biological drugs" such as Remicaide while sometimes temporarily relieving symptoms, frequently fail after a time and the patient has a full resumption of their symptoms and often they are left much worse than before and then are led to resort to intestinal surgery and removal. Others on Remicaide or other immunosuppressive drugs develop cancer, tuberculosis or other serious infectious issues. These tragic outcomes can usually be avoided if proper analysis and the right steps are taken in time.
Case Study: Ulcerative Colitis/Crohn's Disease
Patient came to the Goldberg Clinic from Chicago with medical diagnoses of Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis. The patient had previously been treated medically with Biological Drugs (Enbrel, Remicaide) and Prednisone as per his Gastroenterologist. At the Goldberg Clinic, a comprehensive case history, physical examination and functional laboratory work was performed and key underlying factors were identified. Based on the data collected, an individualized program was developed for the patient to follow. After 3 months of care, the patient is drug free and reports a 70% improvement in his symptoms.
Letter from patient one year later:
Hi Dr. Tener,
It has been such a long time since I've updated you on how I am doing. I guess the reason I haven't been in touch with you sooner is that I haven't needed to! This summer I was working in Santa Barbara and had a great time.
I had also mentioned to you a while back that I was hoping to get a job at Juilliard in NYC. I did end up getting that job and just moved here two weeks ago. I can honestly say that one of the biggest contributing factors to me getting better was working. When I am busy is when I seem to do best.
Thank you so much for the tools that you and Dr. Goldberg gave me. Now that I am getting settled I hope to continue to make progress. I finally feel like I have some control over my health and life. It's almost hard to remember how just one year ago I wasn't even able to leave my house.
Hope you are well!
Comments: “Real Healthcare is Self-Care”
At the Goldberg Clinic it is our goal to assist patients in getting well while at the same time teaching them how to stay well so that they can begin to take care of themselves in the future. We worked closely with Matt as we do with all of our patients to teach him the proper health promoting behaviors to maintain the improvements he's made and continue to build upon them over time.
No one should have to rely on doctors of any kind (including those at the Goldberg Clinic) for the rest of their lives. Real healthcare is self-care.
Case Study: Crohn's Disease | April 2017
Roberta came to the Goldberg Clinic in November 2016 after being hospitalized and diagnosed with Crohn's Disease by a Medical Gastroenterologist. Her lab work at the time showed a C-Reactive Protein of 123.5 (see below) which indicates a very high level of inflammation (normal <10.0). The Gastroenterologist recommended Immuno-Supressant drugs but Roberta declined.
After 6 months of care at the Goldberg Clinic, Roberta is asymptomatic, drug free and reports feeling well overall. Her C-Reactive Protein is now normal and her recent MRI (see below) from February 2017 shows a "resolution of colonic inflammation" and "no active inflammatory changes."
MRI Report February 2017
Case Study: Crohn's Disease
Patient came to the Goldberg Clinic with a medical diagnosis of Crohn's Disease. The patient had previously been treated medically with Prednisone as per her Gastroenterologist. At the Goldberg Clinic, a comprehensive case history, physical examination and functional laboratory work was performed and key underlying factors were identified. Based on the data collected, an individualized program was developed for the patient to follow. After 5 months of care, the patient is drug free and reports significant improvement in her symptoms.
Case Study: Ulcerative Colitis
The Goldberg Clinic changed my life, and I will be forever grateful!
It was one year ago (January 2015) that I had my initial visit at The Goldberg Clinic. After about five months of care I really started noticing my body healing and getting healthier. I could tell that the chemistry of my body changed. I am now blessed to be pregnant with my first child and I have had an immaculate pregnancy! No sickness, no pains, no aches, and I know that it is because I am drug-free and living healthfully!
Read the full letter from Suzanne and view her before/after lab work here.
Case Study: Crohn's Disease
Viriato came to the Goldberg Clinic in July 2016 with a Medical diagnosis of Crohn's Disease. His Gastroenterologist prescribed Remicaide, Entyvio and 6MP to suppress his symptoms but his condition gradually worsened over time. Viriato reports 80% overall improvement in his overall health since beginning care at the Goldberg Clinic.
Case Study: Ulcerative Colitis
Patient came to The Goldberg Clinic from Canada with a medical diagnosis of Ulcerative Colitis. The patient had previously been treated medically with Steroids as per her Gastroenterologist. After 6 months of care at The Goldberg Clinic, the patient is drug free and reports an 80% improvements in her symptoms.
HsCRP (a measure of systemic inflammation) dropped from 6.4 to 1.0 in just over 6 months (normal <3, ideal <1). The patient is drug free.