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Bizarre Cures for MS: Fact or fiction?

                                            Image result for photos of bees on flowers

They represent spring and the ensuing summer months. Bees are often photographed on lovely flowers. Bees make honey. Honey is good, a natural sweetener.

But, can bees be the secret cure for multiple sclerosis?

Donna McGhee thinks so. 
There is even a name for be venom therapy.

Can Bee Stings Cure MS? 

It's called apitherapy. For patients losing faith in traditional medicine, the pain is worth the possibility.

By Tori Marlan
"Twice a week after dinner Donna McGhee would hunch over her knees on a kitchen chair and pull up her shirt, exposing her back. Sixteen bruises the size of pinpricks formed a vertical line along each side of her spine. She would bite on a dish towel and concentrate on remaining still, while her husband, Dee, knelt behind her, wiping her back with an alcohol swab. Using a syringe, he'd then inject honeybee venom under her skin into one of the tiny bruises.
The area around the needle would instantly turn white and begin to swell. As the venom coursed through her body, simultaneously burning and itching, Donna would clench down on the towel, wrinkling her face into a ball. Sometimes she'd let out a faint grunt, and Dee would ask, "You OK, baby?"
In my award winning young adult novel Abby, the main character's mother has just discovered that she has MS. Abigail has decided to do her class research on the disease.

            "The most interesting thing I read about, though, is all of the so-called “natural” remedies that exist for MS. Bee venom is supposed to slow the side effects of MS. Yeah, really! Like I would voluntarily allow a hive of bees to have their way with me!
            Another crazy one is electricity. There was a case of a lady who actually grabbed an electric fence during a lightening storm in order to experience a “natural shock” that would cleanse her of the disease and “restore order to her brain”.
            Then there are the food supplements and they don’t sound too terrible. Supposedly grape seed is a helpful addition to a diet, as well as green tea extract, pomegranate and acacia (whatever that is).  While I read this article I made a mental note to make sure Mom takes her vitamin B and calcium supplements.

            Of course exercise is REALLY important to help eliminate as much muscle “spasticity” as possible. As far as I can tell from what I read, Yoga seems to be a popular exercise choice for MS patients. Maybe Momma and I can take a Yoga class together. That sounds like fun. We can be “gurus”."

According to the story written about Donna McGhee, bee venom has been studied in regards to treating symptoms of multiple sclerosis. This is encouraging. Just the fact that the government has taken an active interest in researching apitherapy shows me that MS is no longer a disease to be shoved under the carpet.

"The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, the American Medical Association, and the National Multiple Sclerosis Society have neither approved nor disapproved bee venom as a treatment for multiple sclerosis. These organizations say the existing studies and literature are either insufficient or not scientifically sound. Since doctors are required to practice standard care--whatever scientific research has proved to be safe and effective--they tend to be less enthused than their patients about stories like Wagner's and more inclined to consider her recovery a result of either the placebo effect, which is largely psychological, or a spontaneous remission, which sometimes occurs without any intervention in multiple sclerosis patients.
Proponents of bee venom believe the medical establishment's skepticism is driven in part by profit. About 20 drugs on the market treat symptoms of multiple sclerosis, among them immunosuppressants to slow the progression of the disease, antiinflammatory drugs to shorten the duration of attacks, and interferon to reduce the frequency of attacks. In addition, there are drugs to alleviate fatigue, spasms, and tremors and to limit bladder dysfunction."

Most of bee venom research seems to occur abroad.

MS Drug's Epic Journey From Folklore to Lab

Research Into Ancient Chinese Fungus That Propagates Inside Insects Yields Potential Relief for Multiple Sclerosis

Does bee venom cure multiple sclerosis?

Last month, at the annual ACTRIMS (American Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis) conference, the full trial results for the Ocrelizumab PPMS drug trial were finally revealed. These results had been much anticipated by the MS community, as there are currently no proven effective treatments for Primary Progressive Multiple Sclerosis, and many previous PPMS drug trials have ended in failure.

Coincidentally, a few days before the conference, Ocrelizumab received “fast-track status” by the FDA (click here). The “Fast-Track” designation is given to drugs which promise to fill a prior unmet need, and generally shortens the approval process from 10 to 6 months. Since PPMS has no approved treatments, Ocrelizumab fits the requirements for the designation. Though fast-track designation means that Ocrelizumab will have an expedited approval process, it does not guarantee that the drug will ultimately be approved. 

Some may view this medical treatment as extreme, but isn't that what all medical treatment is? Extreme?

Doing her best to make a good grade in her English class, Abigail finds testimonials of MS patients actually grabbing hold of a metal fence during a thunder storm in hopes that electricity would strike, and course through the body with restorative effects.

In my own research I find no such documentation. In fact, being struck by lightening is not on my bucket list. Evidently I am taking the whole lightening cure too literally. 

Phil Parker, a graduate of osteopathy in Britain, has developed a procedure labelled Lightening Process. Trained in "at least two pseudosciences: cranial osteopathy andapplied kinesiology" , Parker's theory sounds good (in theory - chuckle chuckle - get it? In theory?), but there are too many unanswered questions and no definitive description of the Lightening Process to make me want to race off and be a guinea pig.

 But perhaps Parker is a genius who just stumbled upon a program that can treat physical and psychological disorders, and can also enhance business and sports performances. What are the odds? In any case, he claims to have about 115 people who are practicing LP trainers in eleven countries.

The Big Lightning Process Trial Begins – What Do You Think?

Phil Parker Lightning ProcessTM

The Phil Parker Lightning Process (LP) is a training program that claims to help people recover from chronic fatigue syndrome,multiple sclerosis, "resolve depression, anxiety, panic attacks, overeating, low self-esteem, guilt, OCD (obsessive compulsive disorder) and other areas of stuckness [sic]," and "enhance ... performance in business and sports." He says his program also helps people with bad backs, migraines, "or anything people want to get better at."* The first thing that should come to mind when hearing these amazing things is: if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

What is LP? Phil doesn't say exactly, but he tells us on his website that it is an amazing hodgepodge of "concepts from NLP, Hypnotherapy, Life Coaching and Osteopathy."* That's fine, but what concerns me is that those of us who would like to know more about LP and how it differs, say, from NLP, are not directed to any empirical studies. Instead, Phil recommends that we do three things. First, we should go to his online store and buy hisIntroduction to the Lightning ProcessTM Book. Next, Phil says, we should watch his videos and read the testimonials of many success stories. Unfortunately, we know that testimonials are no substitute for scientific studies. I could treat people with dog spit and find at least 50 subjects who will swear that I cured their cancer or eliminated their irritable bowel syndrome. What we need to see are well-designed scientific studies that eliminate self-deception and isolate in specific ways what counts as success due to the training methods. Finally, Phil recommends we find the nearest Phil Parker Lightning ProcessTM Practitioners and download their application form.


In my personal treatment for MS, I am open for any and every plausible suggestion. Just remember that Common Sense is an important component of any restorative health plan. We need to listen to our bodies and work with our own sensations in order to feel better.

That is why I practice yoga. Yoga has a calming for me. Restorative Yoga has been proven to improve balance and mobility.
Image result for yoga images

                                                            Image result for yoga images
There are numerous websites and instructional aids involving yoga. Here...I have done the leg work for you. You just need to click; so start clicking!

And this is just the tip of that ol' iceberg.  Yoga is a portable, non-threatening, method of movement. As my yoga instructor reminds us, "even one pose is considered a practice." She also urges us to listen to our bodies. If it hurts, don't do it.
Yoga isn't a drug and it's worth a try.

Just as Abigail's mother does, I take my daily vitamins, swallow a huge dose of Vitamin D once a week, and include an additional iron pill when my energy is really low (I have suffered from anemia in the past). I like my green tea and try to drink loads of water. Hydration is essential.

Above all, be interested in the many ways you can arm yourself against the MonSter. We all need an arsenal. I hope my suggestions help you stock up.
There is so much information out there. We would be rmeiss to not take that advantage and run (or walk, or crawl, or web search) with it. Check out of NMSS website for more direction.

During the month of March, I am personally donating one dollar from every book sale. So far, I am humbled and incredibly blessed to have the supportive following that I have discovered since the conception of this campaign. I will also be honored to mail that check at the end of the month. Every effort is a move toward a cure.

E-mail me to receive your copy of
Abby,     $15.00
I Have MS. What's Your super Power?      $12.00
BUNDLE THE TWO!             $25.00

I pay postage.

Thank you for your support.

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