Author Topic: Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis  (Read 13047 times)

Offline jaemom

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Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
« on: December 26, 2007, 08:41:39 PM »
My mom was diagnosed over a month ago with IPF.  She is seeing one of the best pulmonary specialists in her state.  She has never smoked, and nothing in her history suggests why she has developed this condition (hence the term idiopathic). For those unfamiliar with it, I'll try to give a brief explanation.  The lungs develop scar tissue for various reasons, and makes it hard for the lungs to pass oxygen to the blood.  I have done a lot of research already looking for a natural solution.  I have found very little in the way of alternative medicine that even mentions this illness.  While there are currently many drug trials in progress to see what could help people with this disease, there is little actual treatments at this point.  They have tried corticosteroids with my mom (prednisone) already.  It didn't work.  She is on oxygen therapy.  I've have seen mentioned that this may be an auto-immune condition.  Her doctor has said it could be some lung irritant.  She has coughing issues with mucus, but never expels it.  He has ruled out mold and asbestos among many other things.

Here are the things I am currently looking to try. 
Aloe vera juice (for scarring)
Apple Cider Vinegar (possibly inhaling it) I read it could help break up calcified deposits in her lungs almost immediately
vitamin B3
Indian pennyworth (an herb someone recommended that would help repair the capillaries in the lungs)
and an enzyme called serrapeptase that is found in Vitalzym (I read several good things about this systemic enzyme, but most of it was from the company itself or someone selling it.)

I have been hard pressed to find anything of use during my research.  I have literally spent hours researching this disease generally and specifically things I thought would help it.  Does anyone have any input or experience with any of the above?  Or does anyone know of any contraindications with any of the above?  Does anyone have any other suggestions for me?  I appreciate any help.  My mom is 63 years old.  Even on oxygen she has a hard time doing anything, even going to the restroom wears her out.  I'll keep you posted on anything we try and how or if it works. 
Wife to J (10 yrs)
Mom to B (9), G (7), G (2), and B (1)

Offline jaemom

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Re: Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
« Reply #1 on: December 27, 2007, 03:31:42 PM »
bump, anyone?  Surely someone has a theory on how to treat this!    :-\  I'm open to any/all suggestions.    ???
Wife to J (10 yrs)
Mom to B (9), G (7), G (2), and B (1)

Offline SC

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Re: Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2007, 03:37:03 AM »
I haven't specifically studied IPF, but here's a post I made about my methods of research:
http://www.welltellme.com/discuss/index.php/topic,12858.msg126767.html#msg126767

In your circumstance, I would think understanding the disease pathology is paramount. In other words, I would go to web sites of research hospitals and look for published studies dealing with her condition, the causes, the progression, symptoms, effective treatments, etc.

As I studied that information, I would also do a detailed anatomy study on the pulmonary system, learning how a healthy one should function and various things that could impair that function. Since you mentioned that this could be an autoimmune disruption, I would watch for key words like: immune system, inflammation, allergic response, mucus, etc.

You aren't likely to find any (or many) web sites that specifically deal with how to treat IPF naturally. So, your task will be to determine what things would improve her condition and match herbs to those things. That's why I suggested the types of research that will take you to medical and not natural web sites initially. You will be looking for herbs that will naturally afford you the benefits that medical science is trying to effect with pharmaceuticals (and you said their methods aren't working well).

Why would we try to use herbal treatments where prescription medications have failed? This is because herbs (foods, tonics, etc.) are packaged by nature and possess untold helps (enzymes, trace nutrients, etc.) that enable the body to more readily assimilate their benefits. Prescription medications vary in their effectiveness, depending on the ability of the body (in its weakened condition) to respond to their helps. This is also true of herbal preparations, but herbal preparations don't leave the patient dealing with the added burden of toxic side effects and trying to clear itself of those (that is a general statement and not true of every instance).

If you are correct in the autoimmune nature of her condition, it is likely that herbal support will help her there. Initially, I would offer these things in addition to what her doctor is doing and watch for improvement (not as a replacement for her current treatment). I would also look for herbs that sooth irritated tissues, clear mucus and assist healing (Mullein?  ??? http://potterswheelschool.blogspot.com/2007/12/mullein.html). Since upping her fluid intake will likely assist in this, I would also look for nutrient dense fluids like a joint healing broth (made from bones http://www.nacd.org/more_information/health/vealbroth.html), a good vegetable stock (http://www.nacd.org/more_information/health/potato.html), possibly some dandelion tea, and some of the Mama's Red Raspberry brew from Bulk Herb Store. All of these are packed with nutrients. In this way, your mother's body will be receiving good support in a form that is easily assimilated while you look for other helps. Additionally, these foods aren't likely to cause her any further allergic response. Don't be intimidated by the list of ingredients, just use as many as you can find, making sure they are organic (she doesn't need a chemical soup).

Those are just the places I would start. Blessings in your tender care of her.
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Offline jaemom

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Re: Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2007, 04:58:09 AM »
Thank you, SC, for your reply and advice.  I have spent much time on researching this disease.  I definitely have a much better understanding of how the lungs work!  :)  I'm still so new to herbs and natural medicine.  I've found many things I've thought could help, but I don't know which is best.  It definitely doesn't help that I'm living 10 hours away from her and cannot physically take care of her myself.   :(  It's funny that you really told me everything I've already been doing.  I think I just needed confirmation that I'm on the right path.  There's so much medical research being done that seems to be going no where.  I appreciate the links for the nutrition and the suggestions for teas and such.  At this point, her current treatment is limited to oxygen therapy.  So anything I find and try, if it works, will receive full credit.   ;)  Thank you again, for your help. 
Wife to J (10 yrs)
Mom to B (9), G (7), G (2), and B (1)

Offline anna1974

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Re: Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
« Reply #4 on: May 20, 2010, 02:07:44 AM »
I would be in contact with you jeamom, and it is very important for me to know your mom situation after 3 years, please if you still are around leave me a message.

Offline 6psnapod

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Re: Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
« Reply #5 on: May 25, 2010, 10:55:29 AM »
I would be interested too, as I lost my father to PF  some 30 years ago and I have read that they now believe it can be hereditary.

It is a horrible horrible disease where one slowly suffocates and suffers miserably. My father coughed every second of every minute of every day for months. He also lost all his teeth to the steroids they filled his body with (this was 30 years ago).

At that time they told us there were 3 theories as to possible causes: working around chickens, an infection that was never properly treated that had lain dormant and I can't remember the last one.

I read of one individual who had a lung transplant and  beat the disease.

6ps

Offline kmwhitt

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Re: Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2011, 07:34:06 PM »
I have a dear friend that was recently diagnosed and wanted to know if the original poster found any successful treatments.  Please respond.  Thanks...   :)

Offline mykidsmom

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Re: Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
« Reply #7 on: June 13, 2011, 04:12:23 AM »

For those who are still struggling with this/future issues, I would highly recommend you look into homeopathy for it.  There is a thread here on WTM about h-pathy and it would be worth the read.  Most of what you find on the web about h-pathy is garbage so it will require getting some good books to understand.  There are a few good scientific articles on it that are pretty easy to understand (I may have linked to them on the that thread).  But worth it for any serious disease. 
For I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I've committed unto him against that day.

Offline healthybratt

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Re: Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2011, 06:36:28 AM »
http://www.naturaltherapypages.com.au/article/natural_treatments_for_pulmonary_fibrosis

Quote
As with all health issues, eating a healthy balanced diet of natural whole foods is always beneficial. In particular watch out for foods that may cause inflammation such as fatty, fried foods or sugary, processed foods. Adding essential fatty acids to your diet could also be beneficial, in particular omega 3s, which have been shown to decrease inflammation in auto-immune diseases.

Since pulmonary fibrosis is sometimes an auto-immune disease, look for other treatments that have had some success in treating other auto-immune diseases. A naturopath may be able to help, and will also help with diet.

Quote
From a nutritional therapy standpoint, we can offer good suggestions to help Pulmonary Fibrosis; being an auto-immune disorder, and as such will definitely respond to the correct type of supplements. Read Factors Involved In Auto-Immune Disorders And Effective, Natural Treatment Protocols will give some grounding in the subject, and an understanding as to why we suggest certain nutritional supplements and what part they each play in eating away at the causes of Pulmonary Fibrosis.   more...

http://www.drkaslow.com/html/immune_restoration.html

http://www.westonaprice.org/know-your-fats/526-skinny-on-fats

http://tcmdiscovery.com/2007/12-27/20071227112737.html
  My favorite herb book!!