Newsletter Archives > ChiroPlanet.com Monthly Health Newsletter: December 2010 Health Newsletter

December 2010 Health Newsletter


Current Articles

» Heart Health Nutritional Support
» Symptoms During Pregnancy With Few Adverse Effects
» It’s the Inflammation, Stupid!
» LIVE ~ LOVE ~ LAUGH
» Survival Tips for Standing in Line This Holiday Season
» Study: Starting with Chiropractic Saves 40% on Low Back Pain Care
» Low Dose Aspirin Reduces Cancer Risk
» Medical Errors Kill 15,000 Patients Per Month

Heart Health Nutritional Support
br logo nutriwest
Cardioplex:  Vitamins and phytochemically-rich herbs to help maintain a healthy heart
Core Level Heart:
Nutritional support of the cardiac muscles
Homocysteine Redux:  Nutritional support of the cardiac muscles

Pure
Calcium (citrate): Highly absorbable calcium; reduces the risk of osteoporosis, supports cardiovascular   and colon health
CoQ10:  Energy for cardiovascular health
l-Carnitine:  Cardiovascular and endurance support

Biotics
ADHS:  Supports normal cortisol levels
L-Carnitine HCL:  Plays a critical role in fat metabolism and eneygy productions, therefore supports healthy heart function.
Mg Zyme:  Magnesium support for proper cardiac support

PLEASE FEEL FREE TO CONTACT THE OFFICE REGARDING ADDITIONAL HEART HEALTH NUTRITIONAL SUPPORT OR ASK THE DOCTOR ON YOUR NEXT VISIT

Author: Clearwater Chiropractic & Acupuncture P.A.
Source: March 2010; Vol 2, No. 1
Copyright: Dr. Susan J. Aubuchon 2010


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Symptoms During Pregnancy With Few Adverse Effects

Targeted acupuncture may offer women with major depression a safe and effective alternative to antidepressant medication, new research suggests.

Investigators at Stanford University School of Medicine in California found that women with major depressive disorder treated with depression-specific acupuncture had a 63% response rate after 12 sessions compared with a 44.3% response rate in 2 combined control groups who were treated with either acupuncture not known to help alleviate depressive symptoms or Swedish massage.

"Pregnancy just by its nature can bring out some underlying psychiatric and emotional issues ... but treatment of depression during pregnancy is critically important so that a woman can maintain her sense of well being and take good care of herself, her fetus and, someday, her child," study coauthor Deirdre Lyell, MD, Stanford University School of Medicine, said in a statement.

Led by Rachel Manber, PhD, the study was published in the March issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Response Rates Significantly Higher

For the study, investigators randomized 150 women whose pregnancies were between 12 and 30 weeks of gestation and who met Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (Fourth Edition) criteria for major depressive disorder and who scored at least 14 on the 17-item Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression.

Of the 141 women who eventually entered the study, 52 received depression-specific acupuncture, 49 received control acupuncture, and 49 others received Swedish massage.

Treatments were provided twice a week for the first 4 weeks and then weekly thereafter for 4 additional weeks, with each session lasting about 25 minutes.

The investigators found that response rates were significantly higher in women who received depression-specific acupuncture than for either control group. Response rates in women randomized to the 2 control interventions did not differ significantly from each other at 37.5% for the control acupuncture group vs 50% for the massage group.

On the other hand, remission rates did not differ significantly between women who received depression-specific acupuncture at 34.8% and the combined control groups at 29.5%. They also did not differ between those assigned to the control acupuncture group at 27.5% or the massage group at 31.2%.

Thirty-three of the study participants discontinued treatment before the study endpoint, 30% of them for reasons related to the pregnancy. Some women in both acupuncture groups reported transient discomfort at the point of needle insertion, and 1 woman experienced bleeding at the needle site.

Significantly fewer women who received massage reported any adverse effects compared with the 2 acupuncture groups.

Clinically Meaningful

The study authors point out that the benefits observed with depression-specific acupuncture can be considered "clinically meaningful" when assessed in a broader context of depression studies.

Although there are no randomized controlled trials of antidepressants being used during pregnancy, 1 randomized controlled trial found that interpersonal psychotherapy produced a 52% reduction in Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression scores and a 19% remission rate after 16 weeks of therapy, to which the currently study compares very favorably.

According to the study, antidepressant use during pregnancy doubled between 1999 and 2003, but many women are reluctant to take these medications because of safety concerns. In fact, in this particular study, 94% of the women involved expressed reluctance to take an antidepressant because of their pregnancy.

"Because there’s this concern about medication among pregnant women and their physicians, it’s important to find an alternative," said Dr. Manber.

Results from this study therefore suggest that this standardized acupuncture protocol could be considered a "viable treatment option" for depression during pregnancy, the investigators conclude.

Michael Thase, MD, University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, cautions that findings from this study are preliminary, although they suggest that depression-specific acupuncture may have value in major depressive disorder in this patient population.

On the other hand, another study assessing depression-specific acupuncture in a broader population of men and women with major depressive disorder failed to find a significant effect from the modality, so evidence supporting acupuncture for the treatment of major depressive disorder is not consistent.

"Still there is reason to be cautious when prescribing antidepressants in pregnancy, and one has to weigh the pros and cons of using an antidepressant on an individual basis,” he told Medscape Psychiatry.

"If these promising findings are confirmed, it would be good to have another option to complement the focused forms of psychotherapy which are currently used for antenatal depression," he added.

The study was funded by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. The study authors and Dr. Thase have disclosed no relevant financial relationships.

Obstet Gynecol. 2010;115:511-520.

Author: Pam Harrison
Source: © 2010 Medscape, LLC
Copyright: Medscape Medical News 2010


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It’s the Inflammation, Stupid!

In the 1992 presidential campaign, Bill Clinton was a heavy underdog to popular incumbent George H. W. Bush. Bush was considered unbeatable due to foreign policy successes including the end of the Cold War and routing Saddam Hussein in the first Gulf War. But Bush’s approval ratings, which had been in the 90 percent range, began to dip as his campaign ignored the economic recession. Clinton’s campaign manager James Carville’s now famous campaign slogan, "It’s the economy stupid," helped turn the tide and Bill Clinton became the forty-second American president.

Just like George Bush’s 1992 presidential campaign, today’s medical community continues to promote the medical myths associated with cholesterol while ignoring the real cause of cardiovascular disease, inflammation.

Conventional opinion and current medical dogma holds that low cholesterol, especially low LDL cholesterol, reduces the risk and incidence of heart disease and stroke. This belief is so entrenched in the medical community that the FDA now approves drugs to prevent heart disease, as it did with Zetia and Vytorin, solely on the evidence that they lower LDL cholesterol levels. Zetia has never been proven to reduce heart attacks, strokes or death. Statin drugs help reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke for those who’ve already had a cardiac event (one percent over placebo) but fail to reduce death in women, the elderly, men over the age of 47, and in men without cardiovascular risk factors.

A 2006 study in The Archives of Internal Medicine looked at seven trials of statin use in nearly 43,000 patients, mostly middle-aged men without heart disease. In that review, statins didn’t lower mortality.

Nor did they in a study known as Prosper, published in The Lancet in 2002, which studied statin use in people seventy and older. Nor did they in a 2004 review in The Journal of the American Medical Association, which looked at thirteen studies of nearly 20,000 women, both healthy and with established heart disease.

Despite a growing voice of reason, which became even louder after the recently released Enhance study, the cholesterol zealots continue to view cardiovascular disease with tunnel vision. This myopic vision fuels the cholesterol drug war which rages on as each pharmaceutical company seeks to gain economic gain in the 40 billion dollar a year lipid lowering drug market.

In an attempt to take on the cholesterol Goliath, Pfizer’s Lipitor (10 billion dollars in sales annually), Merck and Schering-Plough combined their cholesterol lowering drugs, Zocor and Zetia, to form the "super drug" known as Vytorin. Vytorin’s goal was to lower LDL cholesterol more than either drug could alone. Zetia lowers blood cholesterol by blocking the absorption of dietary cholesterol from the intestines. Zetia used alone is modestly effective in lowering LDL cholesterol by approximately 17 percent. Zocor alone lowers LDL levels by 36 percent—similar to Lipitor.

The hope was that by lowering LDL to dramatically low levels, Vytorin would do a better job of slowing the accumulation of fatty plaques in the arteries. Vytorin did, in fact, reduce LDL—by a whopping 51 percent (similar to AstraZeneca’s Crestor).

However, the two-year "Enhance" trial failed to prove that Vytorin is better than Zocor alone for slowing plaque accumulation; instead atherosclerosis worsened in those taking Vytorin.

Merck and Schering-Plough suppressed this finding for twenty months.

The study results were not revealed until the two drug companies were pressured into doing so by an article in The New York Times and a Congressional inquiry. The marketers of Vytorin said they had nothing to hide. It’s hard to believe they weren’t just a little reluctant to publish their highly anticipated study. The news that Vytorin, which retails for $100 a month and did $2 billion in sales in 2007, was clinically inferior (perhaps even dangerous) to generic simvastatin (statin), costing less than $20 a month, obviously wasn’t what stockholders wanted to hear.

Merck and Schering-Plough are running full-page ads daily in the Times and Wall Street Journal, warning people not to be confused by a single study and to continue taking Vytorin. The advice was backed by the American Heart Association, which the Times reported receives nearly $2 million a year from Merck/Schering-Plough Pharmaceuticals.

Other LDL lowering drugs have bitten the dust in the last coupe of years as well.

Pfizer’s trial of its much-anticipated drug torcetrapib, which raised HDL, the good cholesterol, and lowered LDL, had to be stopped in 2006 because the drug caused heart attacks and strokes.

Estrogen replacement therapy, which is known to lower LDL cholesterol levels, failed to reduce the incidence of heart attack and stroke in clinical studies.

Ok, if cholesterol lowering isn’t the answer for everyone, why do statins help people with existing heart disease? Dr. James K. Liao of Brigham & Women’s Hospital in Cambridge, Massachusetts, has been investigating this question for over a decade. He suspects that statins have other biological effects. His research shows that statin drugs not only block cholesterol, but also an inflammation-generating enzyme known as rho-kinase.

When Liao reduced the rho-kinase levels in rats, they didn’t get heart disease. "Cholesterol lowering is not the reason for the benefit of statins," he concludes. Of course, there are dozens of inflammatory chemicals that play a role in triggering cardiovascular disease. Diet, health habits, our environment, even our personality may initiate inflammatory chemicals that perpetuate cardiovascular disease events.

Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, "People see only what they are prepared to see." As the evidence about inflammation and cardiovascular disease rises, will conventional medicine and the public at large be prepared to see that it’s not about lowering cholesterol but in reducing inflammation? Hopefully, "It’s the inflammation, stupid," will become a common slogan in the campaign to fight cardiovascular disease.

Rodger Murphree, D.C., has been in private practice since 1990. He is the founder of, and past clinic director for a large integrated medical practice, which was located on the campus of Brookwood Hospital in Birmingham, Alabama. He is the author of Treating and Beating Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Heart Disease What Your Doctor Won’t Tell You, and Treating and Beating Anxiety and Depression with Orthomolecular Medicine. He can be reached at www.treatingandbeating.com, by email at drrodgerm@yahoo.com or 1-205-879-2383.

References

1. Harriet Rosenberg and Danielle Allard "Evidence for Ca Women and statin use." Women and Health Protection June 2007.

2. Business Week magazine Lipitor cover story: "Do Cholesterol Drugs do any Good?" January 17, 2008.

3. TheHeart.org from Web MD www.theheart.org, see video blog of Eric J. Topol, MD, "Temple of the LDL Cholesterol."

4. "REPEAT/New Study Showed VYTORIN® Superior to Lipitor in Reducing LDL ‘’Bad’’ Cholesterol in Patients with Type II Diabetes at the Recommended Usual Starting Doses." Business Wire. June 12, 2006.

5. The International Network of Cholesterol Skeptics, www.thincs.org.

6. Rodger H. Murphree D.C., Heart Disease What Your Doctor Won’t Tell You. Harrison and Hampton Publishing Birmingham, AL. 2006.

Author: Dr. Rodger Murphree, D.C.
Source: TAC, Integrative Healthcare ,
Copyright: Volume 30, Issue 4 2010


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LIVE ~ LOVE ~ LAUGH

Shary’s corner
 

                       LIVE                        LOVE                          LAUGH
Every day can be filled with meaning.  Take a moment, just the amount of time you need to take a deep breath and exhale slowly, to ask yourself what is my dream, and how will I get there from here?
What can you stop doing or do differently to simplify your life and make it more meaningful?  What is truly important to you?  Do you give some time each week to your true priorities?
Why not fill your life with love and laughter whenever you can?  There is no greater gift than the gift of loving others.  There is nothing wrong with taking some time for self-care too.  Love your pet?  Love walking out in nature?  Make time for your passions and those things that add value to your life.  Your body, mind and soul will thank you.
Do you have a mission in life?
Dream it.
Think about it.
                      Talk about it.
                                                 Commit to it.

 

Author: Clearwater Chiropractic & Acupuncture
Source: March 2010; Vol. 2, No 1
Copyright: Dr. Susan J. Aubuchon 2010


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Survival Tips for Standing in Line This Holiday Season

The holiday season is here and with it comes lots of reasons for good cheer…but it can also bring added demands and stress for our bodies. Whether you're shopping for presents, waiting to pick up the perfect dessert or checking out a holiday performance, chances are you'll spend a good deal of time standing in line this season.  The American Chiropractic Association (ACA) offers the following tips to help you avoid muscle cramps, neck stiffness and back pain while waiting in line.  First, dress the part. If you're planning to spend the day shopping or strolling around town checking out the holiday displays, wear comfortable, supportive shoes—not high heels. It's also a good idea to dress in layers so that you will be comfortable going from outdoors to indoors, and vise-versa. And leave huge shoulder bags at home; bring only those items that are necessary for your day—wallet, keys, cell phone—and consider carrying a fanny pack or a backpack rather than a one-shoulder purse.  Once you're actually in line, there are several stretches that you can do to keep your legs from cramping and your back from aching. Start with your toes and work your way up:

  • Spread your toes out as wide as you can and hold for a few seconds and then bring them back to neutral.
  • Stand on one foot while you rotate the opposite ankle and then switch legs.
  • To stretch your calves, lean forward on your toes keeping your legs straight.
  • Bend your knees a little bit, just 5 to 10 degrees, and then straighten them.     
  • Tighten the muscles in your thighs and bottom and hold for 5 seconds and then release.
  • Tuck your butt underneath while sticking your bellybutton out then switch and stick your butt out. This pelvic tilt can be a very small movement, but it is great for taking the pressure off your lower back.    
  • Roll your shoulders backwards several times and then push your shoulder blades together to stretch out your chest.    
  • Open your hands as wide as you can and then gently close them.    
  • In addition to stretching, shift your weight and alter your stance every 3 to 5 minutes to give your body a postural break.

Author: American Chiropractic Association
Source: American Chiropractic Association. November 03, 2010.
Copyright: American Chiropractic Association 2010


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Study: Starting with Chiropractic Saves 40% on Low Back Pain Care

A new study finds that low back pain care initiated with a doctor of chiropractic (DC) saves 40 percent on health care costs when compared with care initiated through a medical doctor (MD), the American Chiropractic Association (ACA) announced today. The study, featuring data from 85,000 Blue Cross Blue Shield beneficiaries, concludes that insurance companies that restrict access to chiropractic care for low back pain treatment may inadvertently pay more for care than they would if they removed such restrictions. Low back pain is a significant public health problem. Up to 85 percent of Americans have back pain at some point in their lives. In addition to its negative effects on employee productivity, back pain treatment accounts for about $50 billion annually in health care costs—making it one of the top 10 most costly conditions treated in the United States. The study, “Cost of Care for Common Back Pain Conditions Initiated With Chiropractic Doctor vs. Medical Doctor/Doctor of Osteopathy as First Physician: Experience of One Tennessee-Based General Health Insurer,” which is available online and will also be published in the December 2010 issue of the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, looked at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee’s intermediate and large group fully insured population over a two-year span. The insured study population had open access to MDs and DCs through self-referral, and there were no limits applied to the number of MD/DC visits allowed and no differences in co-pays. Results show that paid costs for episodes of care initiated by a DC were almost 40 percent less than care initiated through an MD. After risk-adjusting each patient’s costs, researchers still found significant savings in the chiropractic group. They estimated that allowing DC-initiated episodes of care would have led to an annual cost savings of $2.3 million for BCBS of Tennessee. “As doctors of chiropractic, we know firsthand that our care often helps patients avoid or reduce more costly interventions such as drugs and surgery. This study supports what we see in our practices every day,” said ACA President Rick McMichael, DC. “It also demonstrates the value of chiropractic care at a critical time, when our nation is attempting to reform its health care system and contain runaway costs.”

Author: American Chiropractic Association
Source: American Chiropractic Association. November 16, 2010.
Copyright: American Chiropractic Association 2010


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Low Dose Aspirin Reduces Cancer Risk

British researchers have discovered long-term low dosage aspirin consumption appears to be successful in reducing the risk of many types of cancer. In their study reviewing more than 25,000 individuals from previous trials, cancer deaths during the trials were 21 percent lower and 25 percent lower after 5 years post trial in those taking low dosages of aspirin. The most significant cancer reduction for those taking low dose aspirin was that of gastrointestinal cancer where death rates were 54 percent lower after 5 years. Findings indicated the cancer benefits increased with duration of aspirin consumption. Although aspirin consumption has an associated risk of stomach bleeding, given these new findings researchers suggest healthy people could consume 75 mg of aspirin daily from the age of 40 to 45 through to 70 to 75 years of age. After 70 to 75, the increase risk of bleeding may become too great.

Author: ChiroPlanet.com
Source: The Lancet, Early Online Publication, 7 December 2010.
Copyright: ProfessionalPlanets.com LLC 2010


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Medical Errors Kill 15,000 Patients Per Month

The U.S. government has reported an estimated 15,000 elderly U.S. patients die each month in hospitals due to medical errors and unavoidable problems such as hospital infection spreads. In addition, an estimated 13.5 percent of hospitalized Medicare beneficiaries experienced adverse events during their hospital stays. According to the report, “Hospital care associated with adverse and temporary harm events cost Medicare an estimated $324 million in October 2008.” Clearly, mistakes and adverse events are occurring at an alarming rate and are also associated with an extreme financial cost. Unfortunately, it’s very difficult for the public to know the degree of medical errors made at different hospitals and which may be safer. Best bet - Do all that you can to become and remain healthy!

Author: ChiroPlanet.com
Source: Reuters. November 17, 2010.
Copyright: ProfessionalPlanets.com LLC 2010


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