"Thirty years ago I developed ulcerative colitis. It was very severe, with bleeding, mucous and diarrhea. I was hospitalized, tested and treated with prednisone and a few other drugs. These produced very bad side effects, - mood changes, grotesque swelling and muscle weakness. After about a year of treatment, but continued symptoms, specialists advised me to have my lower bowel removed. I was not prepared to go through with this, and sought alternative means. I took up yoga and meditation seriously and later became vegetarian. The symptoms disappeared. The disease was in remission and I was able to come off the medications. In the years since then I experienced several flare-ups of the disease. Each time I was prescribed prednisone and it took several months before I became symptom free.
"Two and a half months ago I experienced a very severe flare up of the ulcerative colitis. My gastroenterologist again recommended a high dosage of prednisone and, in addition, I decided to try acupuncture.
"When I first came to Matthew Miller for acupuncture treatment, I had diarrhea ten times a day, large amounts of blood and mucous in my stool, painful abdominal cramps, low energy, and a persistent salty taste in my mouth. I was also taking 60 mg of prednisone a day, which made me weak and caused edema, fatigue and mental confusion. After the first acupuncture treatment there was a noticeable reduction in my pain and cramping. After less than 4 weeks in which I received a series of nine treatments, I went from ten episodes of diarrhea per day to only one or two. The blood and mucous in my stool were gone, as were the abdominal cramps, pain and salty taste in my mouth. This recovery was markedly different from what I had previously experienced taking prednisone alone. I was able to slowly go off the prednisone, so that the muscle weakness, fatigue and mental confusion improved.
"I intend to remain on a maintenance regime of four acupuncture treatments a year and hope never to have to resort to prednisone again."
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