Treatment of Ulcerative Colitis with Acupuncture Chinese Herbal Medicine
I treat many patients with digestive system issues. In fact, I love to treat digestive system disorders because Chinese Medicine is such an effective treatment for people who suffer from Crohns disease, IBS as well as Ulcerative Colitis. I am currently going to focus this article on the treatment of Ulcerative Colitis and Chinese Medicine.
Ulcerative Colitis is an inflammatory disorder of the large intestine (colon). This is a chronic condition that develops over time. Symptoms can include urgency to defecate, diarrhea and bloody stools. There are times when symptoms are present known as “attacks” and times of remission.
In Chinese Medicine, treatment for Ulcerative Colitis first begins with understanding the pathology of each individual person’s case. Once the pathology is diagnosed, treatment is specific to each individual case. Many people can come to me with a diagnosis of ulcerative colitis but they may have different treatment approaches because the root issue of their individual case is different. Therefore, I give a treatment protocol of Acupuncture and a Chinese herbal formula, which are tailored to each individual case. The aim of treatment is to help restore the gut’s ability to absorb nutrients properly and reduce inflammation. Ultimately, once the digestive system is restored back to help, symptoms are alleviated.
Steven (name change for patient’s anonymity) was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis and had symptoms for six years ago. He would go to the bathroom up to 12 times per day, even getting up in the middle of the night. He experienced loose stools that had blood and mucus. He also experienced very low energy and anxiety when he was not near a bathroom. Steven had gone to three gastroenterologists in order to help with his symptoms. He was prescribed steroids to help reduce the inflammation in the large intestine. At times this would help, but lately he complained that he had symptoms all the time.
After meeting with Steven, it was clear that his digestive system was extremely deficient. In Chinese Medicine, the spleen, which helps absorb nutrients into the blood stream, was weak. Therefore, he was not absorbing food properly. Fluid accumulated in his gut and would be excreted out in the form of loose stools. The spleen also hold’s blood in the blood vessel, so when the spleen is deficient, blood can show up in the stools. Mucus was a clear indication that he had pathological fluids that were not being properly distributed in his body. In treating Steven’s ulcerative colitis, he came in for weekly acupuncture treatments and he was prescribed an individualized Chinese herbal formula that he took daily. After just four treatments, his bowel movements were reduced by more than 50%. He went to the bathroom 3-4 xs per day and the blood in his stools had stopped. After 8 sessions, he had experienced no blood or mucus in his stools and bowel movements were reduced to 1-2 x per day and they were solid as opposed to loose. In three months time, his energy is “amazing”, he now exercises, he can eat almost anything he wants and he does not suffer anxiety. He is truly amazed that he feels normal. He now goes to see friends and has resumed dating. What is the most important thing after treatment is shifting or changing behaviors that led him to his digestive system getting weakened. We spoke about diet, exercise, sleep and stress management. Chinese Medicine offers a holistic approach to treating Ulcerative Colitis and the most important aspect of treatment is treating the root issue and not just covering up symptoms. Once people are better, giving them the knowledge to be aware and understand their own body so that they can make the right decisions in order to be healthier is what I call “a transformation in health”.
If you want more information or have specific questions, please call our office at 917.763.8560 to schedule a complimentary 20 minute phone consultation.