couldn't find a 'private message icon' on your post, so thought I'd reply on the board.
I suffered from severe fatigue for over 10 years and saw an acupuncturist, a reiki practitioner, a massage therapist, an aromatherapist and had 'counselling'. Unfortunately for me, none of it helped.
Visiting the US in 2001 was the start of the answer. I was ill in Florida and saw a Dr who said he thought I may have a systemic illness such as rheumatoid arthritis. Once I was back in the UK I saw a physician who diagnosed a severe bradycardia (very slow heart rate) and sent me to a cardiologist. The cardiologist didn't have a clue and told me I was suffering anxiety attacks (I thought that increased your heart rate..) My condition worsened and I decided to find a cardio who specialised in arrythmias (abnormal heart rhythms) and I found Professor Camm in London in 2002. I saw him and he looked at my ECG before saying he'd never seen that type of rhythm before. Three months of research later he was able to tell me that I have a very, very rare sudden cardiac death syndrome and needed an ICD and medication (they're much more common in the US, no-one had heard of them in the UK soemthing Professor Camm is working hard to overcome!)
I've had my ICD almost two years and it hasn't fired once (yet!) However I do live with a lot of restrictions on activity and diet. Caffeine, alcohol, even chocolate trigger a dangerous rhythm, but the ICD should save my life even if something happens.
I'm afraid I lost faith in complementary health when I realised that not one of the practitioners picked up a major abnormality in my heart function. However I do see a chiropractor who is very good, and I still have acupuncture for back pain that's probably stress related.
As my heart is so sensitive to drugs I avoid all herbal/over the counter remedies unless I know exactly what's in them and how they affect my heart. A cup of coffee can make me feel lousy for hours while my heart misfires!
I'd love to have massage, but haven't found a masseur willing to treat me with my ICD/heart problem!
The strange thing I experienced with Reiki though was that when the practitioner had her hands over the heart chakra I had a choking sensation and grabbed her hands telling her to stop - very unlike me. So I know reiki is definately doing something with the body's energies. Not being able to predict the effects keeps me away though.
Its very hard living with this condition - I can see it as a gift from God, but also the uncertainty, repeated surgeries and reliance on a piece of technology that could go (fatally) wrong isn't great. But without the ICD I would have to live a very, very quiet life and be unable to work.
I try and see my heart problem as having been the result of 'wrestling with an angel'
I'm always open to new ideas though, did you have anything specific in mind as a suggestion?
Sorry to have only now seen this thread you started. My first thought would be to find a local, licensed naturopathic doctor, who may be more common in the U.K. than in the U.S. In any case, you'd want to consult with somebody who actually went through medical school with a concentration of study in neutracueticals as an alternative to drug therapies.
Since I'm not a medical doctor, all I can do is mention nutrients that have research support for various aspects of heart function. You could confirm this by doing a medline search, which involves Googling for
Then type in keywords, such as
This will bring up all the research papers published in peer reviewed medical journals the world over. You will click on the author listing, and that will bring up the abstract, where you can read about the study with its results and conclusions. You could also take these abstracts to your doctor if you're not comfortable looking for a naturopath.
So here are some nutrients you might use in your keyword search on pubmed:
Anti-ace peptides (blood pressure)
Celery seed extract (blood pressure)
Thank you for that w.c. As I said in my post, I know that my heart is very sensitive to adrenaline related substances in foodstuffs. It would make sense if it also responded positively to substances that calm the heart -other than betablockers!
I stopped taking fish oil when I saw the research about increasing the risk of a cardiac related event in vulnerable people.
Re: the risk of fish oil for those with previous vulnerabilities, this would be another good reason for consulting with a licensed naturopath who could help address any nutrient deficiencies that may underly your symptoms, which then might make fish oil safe and effective.
I've resolved high blood pressure with this approach, and was able to avoid drug therapy.
A Google search would probably show you whether or not there's a naturopath in you area.
Here's another cautionary note, with explanation, re: Omega 3 fatty acid supplementation for those who suffer from congestive heart failure or angina:
And here, again, is a study showing improvement for those with congestive heart failure when taking a supplement containing the amino acids Taurine, Carnitine, and Coenzyme Q-10:
And Hawthorn berry by itself is showing great promise in the treatment of congestive heart failure:
This guy could probably stand to read some of those articles . . . or go on the Atkins diet.
What a shame!
There's a fine book out now that may benefit many suffering from heart disease, written by two board-certified cardiologists:
"Reverse Heart Disease Now."
My father has followed their protocol and hasn't had a single episode of congestive heart failure in two years, with a significant increase in ejection fraction which his cardiologist cannot explain, except to say "Keep doing whatever it is you're doing." The doctor took him off all drug medications as well.
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