I wrote my rheumatologist. He turned me down.
Meanwhile, while my "vitality and longevity" doctor was the one who first suggested I may be dealing with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), he repeatedly stated he wants nothing to do with treating my RA. "It's not my area."
As I bore down on a year under his care--a year in which I made significant progress in my blood lipids and other markers of general health (HDL from 44 to 70; LDL from 134 to 64; number of LDL particles ("more important than total quantity of LDL") went from 1942 to below 1000; LDL particle size went from 20.0 ("too small; too compact") to a "bigger, fluffier" 21.6; insulin went from 6.0 and higher down to less than 2.0; total testosterone went from a low of 441 to a healthier 758; total body fat went from 24.9% to 15.8%
I decided to see if I could find a doctor who would deal with all my issues--not only my lipids and testosterone and cancer risks, but my autoimmune problems as well.
And as I looked for a doctor who might prescribe and have experience with LDN, I found such a doctor in our area.
When I visited Dr. C--an MD but/and with a strong naturopathic orientation--I discovered he had been a rheumatologist.
"You're not a rheumatologist anymore?" I asked. "You mean you don't keep up on the field?"
"Right. I wouldn't want to pretend I was still qualified in the area."
Still, he obviously had experience with people just like me. That was a nice "bonus"!
Several things came out of my appointment with Dr. C:
- "LDN is a great therapy, but it won't cure your arthritis."
- "Your greatest threat from rheumatoid arthritis is not the pain and the potential damage to your joints--the things that you're worried about. The greatest threat is heart disease. It dramatically increases your risk of heart attack."
- "RA is a forest fire. You need to throw everything at it you can."
- "Though I am no fan of statin drugs, and normally I would try to have one of my patients use another modality to attack the blood lipid issues, in your case, because of your RA, I would strongly advise you to continue on the statins."
- "I know you are afraid of the plaquenil [hydrochloroquine], and I am not going to demand that you get back on; but I would like to appeal to you, in the strongest terms, that you try it again."
I pray the combination of medicines might actually stop the advance of the RA. It has been very painful recently.
While I'm on the subject, I should encourage you to take a look at a report that just came out from leaders in the field of LDN therapy. It's called The Faces of Low-Dose Naltrexone (PDF; 1.5MB). It was produced for the First International Low Dose Naltrexone Awareness Week coming up October 19-25th, 2009.
Amazing results for people with MS (multiple sclerosis), various forms of cancer, and much else.
--If you're seeing this post on Facebook, it is a reprint from my personal blog.