This is a common scenario. My new patient came in very frustrated – she’s had MRI’s, nerve conduction testing, ultrasounds, CT scans, endoscopy, colonoscopy, circulation tests of various kinds, vials and vials of blood taken for tests, and 3 separate MD’s have all concluded that they have “no idea” why she is experiencing palpitations, generalized weakness, loss of muscle function in one leg. or stomach pain. She’s considered relatively healthy- less than 10 prescription medications which at her age is certainly below average.
I did a quick search on the Mayo Clinic webpage and 4 of her 6 prescriptions could cause her symptoms and commonly do. One of her over the counter medications is also a potential culprit. A few more questions revealed that her symptoms began shortly after the dosage of the 3 medications she takes for hypertension had been increased. I handed her a copy of my list and side effects with instructions to see her doctor about changing her medications.
He has never talked to her about diet, exercise or meditation and how those can be used to control hypertension. He probably doesn’t even know we have herbs that can be used for this purpose without these nasty side effects. I don’t yet know if she will chose to try to control her symptoms through diet, exercise and herbs but at least now she knows she has a choice.. Her doctors should have looked at her medications before spending thousands of dollars on testing that has proven to be completely unnecessary.
I hear this story all too often- the first time was my grandmother facing heart surgery (risky for her age and condition) to control her irregular heart beat. Worse she was dizzy and falling- the doctors were all sure surgery was the only option. On a whim my mom conducted a review of her medications and found she was taking more than 30. Most had side effects of palpitations and dizziness. Her doctors did not communicate and all were prescribing her different medications without knowing what she was taking- turns out she only really needed 3 of them. Her doctors were surprised when her heart problems and dizziness ceased as soon as she stopped taking so many drugs. I was surprised that they were so surprised- we expect drugs to have an effect so why is it that we are so surprised that those effects include side effects?
So my question is- Would you rather take a pill that may kill you or try a more natural approach that works with your body to regain balance and health? I realize many people opt to take a pill. It’s easy. Everybody does it (almost). And most throw out the drug pamphlet without ever reading it- assuming their doctor will have warned them about any potentially harmful side effects. Please don’t- for your own health. Read those side effects, know what they are and talk to your doctor if you experience them. Even better, come see us to try a more natural approach that works with your body using acupuncture, herbal medicine, massage, meditation, diet and exercise. The choice- and the option is yours.-Jenny-Marie Greenough, LAc, Dipl OM, RYT