Eastern Treatment

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New Member

Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 10/19/2008 12:23 AM (GMT -6)   
Greetings everyone,

I want to say that I found the forum a couple weeks ago and really appreciate the openness and honesty. It's nice to know there are others out there like me!

Anyway, I have been on and off Prednisone since I was diagnosed, usually a 40-30-20-10-off, each for one week. Seems like it worked longer the first couple times, but the last couple I basically flared as soon as I got off. I started to get scared of continuing to use Prednisone because of the long-term side effects, although I seem to handle it well (except for an occasional mood swing—that stuff is crazy!) I decided to try another approach.

I have gone to see a Korean doctor who does acupuncture and prescribes me herbal medicine. He is confident that the D should go away within 100 days. I'm on about day 30 right now, but honestly, I'm skeptical, and I range from 6–12 BMs a day. Has anyone had luck with acupuncture or Eastern medicine?

Elite Member

Date Joined May 2003
Total Posts : 30986
   Posted 10/19/2008 1:54 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi..welcome to the forum.

Well, you haven't given the mainstream med regimens a fair go as of yet.
No, I don't have experience regarding eastern treatments for UC.

Where in the colon is your UC...throughout or limited?

Your doc should have considered to have put you on 5-ASA meds before trying the pred...both oral and rectal.
There's a bit of wiggle room regarding the 5ASA meds, especially the rectal since you can increase for flares and taper to maintenance.

Are you bleeding with bms?

You could also consider to use probiotics as well as fibre supplements.

How is your diet in general?

Are you M or F? Some women do find that during periods, their symptoms do increase/worsen if they're flaring.

Welcome again,
*Heather* Status..Asacol 6 (3 twice daily); enemas every 4th night
~diagnosed January 1989 UC (proctosigmoiditis)
~Bentylol (dicyclomine) 20mg as needed
~Probiotic 4(Natural Factors Protec) bedtime + Primadophilus Reuteri Pearls occasionally
~multi-digestive enzymes as needed
~Ranitidine,Pariet (reflux);  Effexor XR 75mg(depression);  Pulmicort/Airomir (asthma)
~URSO for PSC (or PBC) 500mg X 2 daily (LFTs back to NORMAL!!)
My doc's logic.. "TREAT (FROM)BOTH ENDS"  worth it !!!

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 95
   Posted 10/19/2008 7:41 AM (GMT -6)   
Ambience, I have personally tried eastern treatment from a Korean doctor. I was sort of pushed into it because my mother is 1.) Korean, and 2.) Doesn't actually believe that this is a life long disease. It didn't work out too well for me, but I have read that some people have had success with acupuncture. The particular doctor I saw didn't really do much for me besides piss me off and make me want to leave right away.
http://asilentocean.blogspot.com/  -> My blog
Diagnosed 7/27/08
Prednisone 20mg/day 40mg/day and tapering again....

New Member

Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 10/19/2008 9:09 AM (GMT -6)   
quincy, thanks for the response. I have 'left-sided' UC. I actually was on Asacol for about a year, then switched to Lialda because my doc said it was essentially the same thing, but you have to take less pills. Neither of them really seem to do anything, but I keep taking 2 Lialda a day. I also did Cortizone enemas for a couple weeks, as well as mesalamine enemas for a little longer. Neither of those really seemed to help, and I stopped taking the mesalamine ones because I started getting major headaches. I figured that it was too much for my system combined with the oral meds (Lialda).

Usually there is blood in my BMs at some point during the day, usually earlier in the day. My BMs are usually more frequent in the morning and get less so as the day goes on.

My diet is kind of a mess, other than being a vegeterian. Every time I ask my doc, he says that food has nothing to do with it, but I find it hard to believe. I've been trying to limit myself to more whole foods, etc.

I am male.
30 yo
Dx 2006 'Left-Sided'
2.4g Lialda Daily (Don't think it does anything...maybe makes things worse)
1 Digestive Advantage (First heard about it on the forum...we'll see)

New Member

Date Joined Oct 2008
Total Posts : 3
   Posted 10/19/2008 9:12 AM (GMT -6)   
Apetro, thanks. I haven't been able to talk to anyone who has been helped with UC by Eastern medicine, although I've heard many good responses for other things (back pain, etc.) My doctor is nice, so we'll see...
30 yo
Dx 2006 'Left-Sided'
2.4g Lialda Daily (Don't think it does anything...maybe makes things worse)
1 Digestive Advantage (First heard about it on the forum...we'll see)

Elite Member

Date Joined Mar 2003
Total Posts : 10407
   Posted 10/19/2008 9:55 AM (GMT -6)   
Ambience, some of us who haven't been helped by Asacol/Lialda (mesalamine) have responded to Colazal (balsalazide.) Also, there are other medical options. Has your GI ever discussed trying Imuran (azathioprine) or 6-MP?

Some people find that when they're flaring, limiting the fiber in the diet is helpful. This might be something to consider trying, as some vegetarian diets can be high in insoluble fiber.

Welcome to HealingWell, and I hope you're soon feeling better.
Moderate to severe left-sided UC (21 cm) diagnosed 2001.
Avascular necrosis in both shoulders is my "forever" gift from Entocort.
Colazal,  Remicade, Nature's Way Primadophilus Reuteri. In remission since April, 2006.
Co-Moderator UC Forum
Please remember to consult your health care provider when making health-related decisions.

Mark & Megan
Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 89
   Posted 10/19/2008 11:58 AM (GMT -6)   
There are lots of valuable resources out there to try and find out if eastern options are good for you. I am big believer is learning about all our options. Below is a link to a webcast done by the medical professionals at Health Talk about Alternative Medicines and UC/CD. You really should listen, it is very informative, objective and well done.
Also, note that if you read the text in the above post about the eastern stuff I tried and didn't work for me, please don't get discouraged for yourself, I had a different UC diagnosis than you that was my entire colon, so that can be harder to treat than left side UC. 
Mark & Megan
7 yrs UC to 1 year J-Pouch
Surgery Photo & Journal below: http://ucstory.wordpress.com/
We are updating regularly it isn't just the surgery photos but info all about UC, Surgery and IBD!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 2855
   Posted 10/19/2008 2:19 PM (GMT -6)   
I tried accupuncture once and it had interesting effects but didn't help the UC at all. I actually got worse and stopped because it was expensive anyway. That was a long time ago.

The naturopathic doctor I'm seeing now does accupuncture but has not suggested it for me, but all else I have done with him has made me much better (my profile below). Perhaps that is something you would be interested in trying. He is middle eastern, Pakistan I think.
49 year old female attorney, diagnosed UC/pancolitis 1985, no surgery but much suffering.
Asacol/5ASA 6x400 mg maintenance for 20+ years; use prednisone & Rowasa for flares. 
August 2008 sought care of naturopathic doctor. Food sensitivity test showed gluten, other intolerances; started diet without gluten, soy, dairy, tomato etc. Replete probiotic first, now Forte pills. 
Achieved remission for the first time in many, many years!? Seemed so, but colonoscopy Oct. 6 proved not so, heavy inflammation in ascending colon & will be using Rowasa again. But I AM better.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 73
   Posted 10/21/2008 12:23 AM (GMT -6)   
I go for accupuncture every 2 weeks. I don't know if it really helps my UC (if it does its not dramatic), but it does help with my overall feeling of well being and stress level. I used to try different herb combinations from my accupuncturist and some seemed helpful to my overall health, especially a formula that was for boosting immune system. Now that I am on 6mp I don't take the immune system boost herbs anymore because I wonder if that is counter to the purpose of my 6mp immune suppressant.
- female 41, diagnosed ulcerative colitis Feb 2005
- just got off prednisone after a 5month taper from 80mg down to 0mg!!
- currently 6-MP/mercaptopurine/purinethol 75 mg, asacol/mesalamine 4800mg (4 pills x 3 times day), Canasa 1000mg nightly
- VSL#3, fiber supplements, multivitamin, chewable calcium, fish oil, biotin, sometimes iron pills

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