And finally, before agreeing to any type of surgical or medical therapy, Dr. Redwine suggests women find out whether long-term follow-up studies for pain reoccurrence as well as infertility have been carried out.
Alternative Treatments For Endometriosis
Dr. Redwine's ideas have been a major breakthrough for women in dispelling the antiquated and unscientific myths about endo perpetrated by the medical profession. However, Dr. Redwine's treatment involves aggressive and highly demanding surgery not easily available in Canada or the United States. Also, Dr. Redwine's surgery is not successful for everyone.
Before resorting to either powerful drugs or major surgery, I would urge women to return to their heritage as wise women and healers and explore the natural alternatives that assist the body in healing itself. If necessary, women can use medical drugs temporarily to buy the time to research and experiment with more natural methods.
There is no doubt that for some women, the symptoms of endometriosis, especially pain, can be alleviated through natural means. However, such approaches require time, patience and commitment. They are not as cut and dry as taking a pill or getting abnormal tissue cut out. There is no single panacea that works for all women with endo.
Some women understandably feel like their body has betrayed them. They do not feel like they can ever get better.
But in the wise woman tradition, according to Susun Weed, herbalist and author of HEALING WISE, the body is seen as "the perfect vehicle for your unique expression." The illness is seen as a friend, an ally for growth and transformation. Preferred healing methods are unconditional love and nourishment and herbs. The herbs used by the wise woman are simple, familiar, messy and fun.
Specific Natural Therapies For Endometriosis
In a natural approach to a chronic illness, it is necessary to be patient, to look at all aspects of the problem including emotional and spiritual issues as well as physical and mental aspects of the problem. It will probably be necessary to combine a number of different therapies and to allow sufficient time for them to work. Natural methods do not work as fast or tidily as drugs or surgery.
DIET: Some women have found that the pain completely disappears with a major change in diet. Several cases of remission of symptoms have been reported with a macrobiotic diet. However, it is important to know that long-term adherence to a strict macrobiotic diet can lead to vitamin-B-12 deficiency. For most women, I believe that diet change would only provide part of the solution.
YEAST: According to Mary Lou Ballweg, "There is a clear cut relationship between chronic candidiasis and severe endometriosis." That connection is well-detailed in the book OVERCOMING ENDOMETRIOSIS which devotes a whole chapter for the endometriosis-candidiasis link. If there is a history suggesting chronic yeast is present, especially prolonged antibiotics and hormone usage, then the yeast infection must be treated as the top priority. Candida is treated through diet, acidophilus and anti-yeast medications (natural or synthetic).
In treating yeast infections, diet is probably the most important element. The diet is a low carbohydrate diet with avoidance of sugars, bread with yeast, dairy, fermented foods, dried fruits, canned, processed and mouldy foods, especially over ripe foods.
Dr. Orian Truss, an internist from Birmingham, Alabama and author of The Missing Diagnosis, says, "I think it is very unquestionable that there is a very high association of endometriosis with chronic candidiasis. Naturally we cannot, at this time, be sure whether the yeast is causing the endo or whether some common factor predisposes to both." However, Dr. Truss believes that yeast overgrowth precedes endometriosis. "My own feeling is that the yeast is the cause of endometriosis because it is associated with so much evidence of interference in hormonal function in both men and women."
Dr. Truss has seen dramatic relief of endometriosis symptoms in women who have been treated with diet, anti-yeast medications and yeast desensitization shots.
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