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Complementary and Alternative Therapies For Lupus



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Complementary and Alternative Therapies For Lupus

  1. 1. Complementary and Alternative Therapies for Lupus Swamy Venuturupalli, MD, F.A.C.R Attending Physician, Cedars Sinai Medical Center Asst. Clinical Professor of Medicine, UCLA. 8737 Beverly Blvd, Los Angeles, CA. 90048
  2. 2. Definition <ul><li>Complementary and Alternative medicine includes all those types of medicine that, when mentioned by a patient, elicit a blank look from their physicians, and cause the physician to leave the room in a hurry. </li></ul>
  3. 3. NCCAM Definition <ul><li>Complementary and alternative medicine, as defined by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM), is a group of diverse medical and health care systems, practices, and products that are not presently considered to be part of conventional medicine. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Classification of Alternative medical modalities qi gong, reiki, and therapeutic touch Energy therapies involve the use of energy fields. They are of two types: biofield therapies, and biomagnetic based therapies Energy Therapies chiropractic, massage therapy or osteopathic manipulations Based on manipulation and/or movement of one or more parts of the body Manipulative and Body-Based Methods dietary supplements, herbal products and neutraceuticals Biologically based therapies in CAM use substances found in nature, such as herbs, foods, and vitamins Biologically Based Therapies meditation, prayer, mental healing, and therapies that use creative outlets such as art, music, or dance Mind-body medicine uses a variety of techniques designed to enhance the mind's capacity to affect bodily function and symptoms Mind-Body Interventions Homeopathy, Ayurvedic medicine and Traditional Chinese Medicine. Alternative medical systems are built upon complete systems of theory and practice. Alternative Medical Systems
  5. 5. Usage <ul><li>4 out of 10 Americans used CAM for chronic conditions </li></ul><ul><li>629 million visits with $27 billion being spent in year </li></ul><ul><li>Estimated that 60-90% of patients with Arthritis have used CAM. </li></ul>
  6. 6. CAM usage in SLE <ul><li>About 65% of SLE patients have been reported to have used CAM in some studies </li></ul><ul><li>Lupus patients who use CAM tend to be younger and better educated </li></ul><ul><li>They seem to report poorer self-rated health status, and less satisfaction with healthcare. However, when objective measures of disease activity are looked at, these patients are not sicker. </li></ul>
  7. 7. CAM therapies used by lupus patients <ul><li>Relaxation techniques </li></ul><ul><li>Massage therapy </li></ul><ul><li>Herbal medicine </li></ul><ul><li>Lifestyle diets </li></ul><ul><li>Self-help groups </li></ul><ul><li>Imagery </li></ul><ul><li>Folk remedies </li></ul><ul><li>Spiritual healing </li></ul><ul><li>Chiropractic </li></ul><ul><li>Megavitamin therapy </li></ul><ul><li>Homeopathy </li></ul><ul><li>Energy healing </li></ul><ul><li>Acupuncture </li></ul><ul><li>Hypnosis </li></ul><ul><li>Copper bracelets/magnets </li></ul>
  8. 8. Topics of discussion <ul><li>Appeal of alternative approaches </li></ul><ul><li>Difference between approaches </li></ul><ul><li>How does one choose- Role of Science </li></ul><ul><li>CAM therapies that have some clinical trial data for use in lupus patients </li></ul><ul><li>Other therapies </li></ul><ul><li>How does one choose- the way forward </li></ul><ul><li>Resources </li></ul>
  9. 9. Appeal of Alternative therapies <ul><li>Recent research has shown the following reasons associated with seeking alternative therapies </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Offer hope </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lifestyle choice </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Psychological distress </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Difference between approaches <ul><li>Case 1: Ms. A who has SLE </li></ul><ul><li>Naturopath’s opinion </li></ul><ul><li>Traditional Chinese medicine </li></ul><ul><li>Rheumatologist’s opinion </li></ul>
  11. 11. How does one choose-the role of science <ul><li>1992- establishment of office of alternative medicine </li></ul><ul><li>The Randomized Controlled Trial- Gold standard of measurement </li></ul><ul><li>Criticism of this approach </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Only western medicine can be tested using this approach </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What about experience gained over thousands of years? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How do you deal with thousands of therapies out there which have no scientific data, but are popular or have shown benefit in someone you know? </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Evidence Based Medicine <ul><li>Grades of evidence </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Case reports </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Case series </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Case controlled studies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cohort studies </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Randomized controlled trials </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Nutritional studies <ul><li>Protein and caloric restriction has beneficial effects </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Severe caloric restriction delays the onset of glomerulonephritis in rats </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Protein restriction especially of casein, phenylalanine, and tryptophan have a beneficial effect on lupus in rats </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>diets rich in saturated fats and omega-6 fatty acids, and L-canavarine (alfalfa) have a deleterious effect on lupus in mice </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Diets deficient in zinc were found to be beneficial in lupus rats </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>No human studies to date have confirmed these findings </li></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Nutritional studies <ul><li>Vitamin E has been advocated for lupus patients since the 1940’s. </li></ul><ul><li>Several positive studies have been reported </li></ul><ul><li>A closer look at the literature shows several negative studies as well </li></ul><ul><li>A recent meta-analysis of literature showed that high dose vitamin over 400IU per day was associated with a higher mortality and higher incidence of heart attacks and strokes. </li></ul>
  15. 15. Nutritional studies <ul><li>Vitamin A has been reported to have beneficial effects in SLE </li></ul><ul><li>3 patients with skin lesions were given vitamin A in high doses. In 1 week all lesions cleared up </li></ul><ul><li>Other researchers have reported an improvement in immune function parameters with vitamin A supplementation </li></ul><ul><li>Caution advised to patients using vitamin A from animal sources as these are fat soluble and can accumulate and cause toxicity </li></ul>
  16. 16. Nutritional studies <ul><li>Selenium supplementation has been reported to be beneficial in lupus mice. </li></ul><ul><li>No human studies </li></ul><ul><li>Caution advised as excess selenium can cause diarrhea, vomiting, hair loss, skin lesions and nervous system dysfunction </li></ul>
  17. 17. Omega 3 fatty acids
  18. 23. Omega-3 in lupus <ul><li>Majority of mice studies show that fish oils retard the development of lupus in mice. </li></ul><ul><li>Human studies show only modest results </li></ul><ul><li>In 1 RCT, 8/17 lupus patients given 6-8 grams of fish oil per day improved compared with 2/17 given placebo </li></ul><ul><li>In 2 other uncontrolled studies, patients given large doses of fish oil, did not show any improvements in DNA, immune complexes, or renal parameters </li></ul><ul><li>In a double blind study of 26 lupus patients who were followed for 2 years, there was no improvement in renal parameters or DNA antibodies. However, lipids did improve in the treated group. </li></ul><ul><li>In a small uncontrolled study of 9 patients with lupus, 30 grams of flax seed oil seem to confer some beneficial effects on renal parameters and atherogenesis. </li></ul>
  19. 25. HERBS <ul><li>Considered to be safe because they are natural </li></ul><ul><li>Not regulated- are you getting what your supposed to be getting? </li></ul><ul><li>In traditional systems of medicine, these are given as part of a multi-modality treatment </li></ul>
  20. 26. Clinical data <ul><li>Encouraging data in Arthritis (not lupus) was found for: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Gamma Linolenic Acid (GLA) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Evening primrose </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Borage seed oil </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Black currant seeds </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Devils claw </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Phytodolor </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Willow bark extract. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Additional data for Trypterigium Wilfordii Hook F. (thunder god vine) </li></ul>
  21. 27. Tripterygium Wifordii Hook F (TWHf) <ul><li>Herb known as “thunder god vine” </li></ul><ul><li>Used for over 2000 years in Chinese medicine </li></ul><ul><li>Thousands of patients have reportedly been successfully treated in China. </li></ul><ul><li>Been used in 5 open trials- total of 249 patients with lupus </li></ul><ul><li>Improved fever, rash, fatigue, lymphadenopathy and laboratory abnormalities </li></ul><ul><li>Some serious side effects such as gastrointestinal upset, infertility, and suppression of lymphocyte proliferation. A young man reportedly died from cardiac toxicity, and teratogenicity has also been reported. </li></ul>
  22. 28. Herbs- conclusions <ul><li>Phytomedicines are multi-component systems, thus defining potential mechanisms of action is not easy. </li></ul><ul><li>They have weaker pharmacological effects on the inflammatory mediator pathway, thus ADR’s are low. </li></ul><ul><li>They cannot compete with synthetic drugs in severe cases of pain, but they have a role in: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>mild to moderate chronic pain </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>As a replacement for more toxic drugs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>More data on side effects and interactions needed: from pts and PCP’s. </li></ul></ul>
  23. 29. DHEA <ul><li>Naturally occurring adrenal steroid that is secreted mainly as DHEA-sulfate </li></ul><ul><li>Works as a substrate for androgens and estrogens. </li></ul><ul><li>Also has immunomodulatory effects, primarily upregulation of IL-2 and downregulation of IL- 6 </li></ul>
  24. 30. DHEA <ul><li>Van Vollenhoven RF, Engleman EG, McGuire JL. Dehydroepiandrosterone in systemic lupus erythematosus. Results of a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized clinical trial. Arthritis Rheum 1995; 38:1826-31. </li></ul><ul><li>Petri MA, Lahita RG, Van Vollenhoven RF, et al. Effects of prasterone on corticosteroid requirements of women with systemic lupus erythematosus: a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial. Arthritis Rheum 2002; 46:1820-9. </li></ul><ul><li>Chang DM, Lan JL, Lin HY, Luo SF. Dehydroepiandrosterone treatment of women with mild-to-moderate systemic lupus erythematosus: a multicenter randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Arthritis Rheum 2002; 46:2924-7. </li></ul>
  25. 31. Dehydroepiandrosterone treatment of women with mild-to-moderate systemic lupus erythematosus: a multicenter randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. <ul><li>Large RCT, multi-center. </li></ul><ul><li>200mg prasterone per day </li></ul><ul><li>381 women enrolled </li></ul><ul><li>86/147 in the prasterone group v/s 65/146 in placebo group had either stabilization or improvement in their disease </li></ul><ul><li>Muscle aches and oral ulcers were less frequent in the prasterone group </li></ul><ul><li>The lipid profile improved significantly and complement levels decreased </li></ul><ul><li>Acne and hirsutism were the most frequent side effects, but these were not severe </li></ul><ul><li>In my practice I use it for symptoms of severe fatigue and for cognitive difficulties </li></ul>Arthritis Rheum 2002; 46:2924-7
  26. 32. Stress and Lupus <ul><li>Hard to define- major stress and minor stress. </li></ul><ul><li>Psychological anxiety, high demand of self and job, poor control of life, poor social support- these are surrogates that are used to measure stress in scientific studies. </li></ul><ul><li>There is a connection between stress and hormones- e.g. cortisol </li></ul><ul><li>Stress has not been shown to cause lupus in multiple studies </li></ul><ul><li>Stress can exacerbate lupus- shown in multiple studies </li></ul><ul><li>Stress usually causes a worsening in the quality of life of lupus patients </li></ul><ul><li>Psychosocial factors can affect disease activity and quality of life but not cause organ damage </li></ul><ul><li>Coping with stress is associated with improvement in quality of life. </li></ul>Neuroimmunomodulation 2006;13:283–293
  27. 33. Psychosocial factors that might positively affect adaptation <ul><li>Self-efficacy: A belief that one can perform specific behaviors to achieve specific health related goals </li></ul><ul><li>Optimism: A stable tendency to believe that one will experience good rather than bad outcomes </li></ul><ul><li>Acceptance: Acceptance that one has a chronic disease that may not completely get better </li></ul>
  28. 34. Psychosocial interventions <ul><li>Patient education </li></ul><ul><li>Coping skills training </li></ul><ul><li>Relapse prevention: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Identification of early signs of relapse </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Rehearsal of cognitive and behavioral skills for coping </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Provision of self-rewards for effective performance of coping responses </li></ul></ul>
  29. 35. The Effects of Daily Stress and Stressful Life Events on the Clinical Symptomatology of Patients With Lupus Erythematosus <ul><li>46 patients with lupus were followed for 6 months. They kept a daily diary of events and had measurements of their lupus activity through complement and DNA levels </li></ul><ul><li>High intensity stressful events were not associated with an increase in symptomatology </li></ul><ul><li>On the other hand, daily stress was associated with worse symptoms and when objective measures were performed, a worsening of disease activity was noted. </li></ul>Psychosomatic Medicine 66:788-794 (2004)
  30. 37. Fatigue in systemic lupus erythematosus: a r and omized controlled trial of exercise <ul><li>93 patients with lupus were randomly assigned to a graded exercise program, relaxation program or usual care </li></ul><ul><li>16/33 in the exercise group were “very much better”, compared with 8/29 in relaxation group and 5/32 in the usual care group. </li></ul><ul><li>These results were statistically significant </li></ul>Tench, CM. Rheumatology, 2003 -
  31. 38. Acupuncture <ul><li>What is Acupuncture? </li></ul><ul><li>Qi and meridians- 12 primary and 8 extra-ordinary meridians. </li></ul><ul><li>Practitioners may use heat, pressure, friction, suction or electric stimulation and lasers. </li></ul><ul><li>Concept of Te qi or Te chi. </li></ul><ul><li>Problems with a control group for acupuncture trials. </li></ul><ul><li>Modern Acupuncture- incorporates pain mechanisms by way of nervous, endocrine and immune mechanisms rather than meridians. </li></ul>
  32. 39. Treatment of systemic lupus erythematosus by acupuncture. A preliminary report of 25 cases. <ul><li>Acupuncture cannot alter the course of the disease, though for some patients, certain symptoms can be helped. </li></ul>Feng, SF. Chin Med J (Engl). 1985 Mar;98(3):171-6.
  33. 40. CAM therapies used by lupus patients <ul><li>Relaxation techniques </li></ul><ul><li>Massage therapy </li></ul><ul><li>Herbal medicine </li></ul><ul><li>Lifestyle diets </li></ul><ul><li>Self-help groups </li></ul><ul><li>Imagery </li></ul><ul><li>Folk remedies </li></ul><ul><li>Spiritual healing </li></ul><ul><li>Chiropractic </li></ul><ul><li>Megavitamin therapy </li></ul><ul><li>Homeopathy </li></ul><ul><li>Energy healing </li></ul><ul><li>Acupuncture </li></ul><ul><li>Hypnosis </li></ul><ul><li>Copper bracelets/magnets </li></ul>
  34. 41. Conclusions- Choosing the right practitioner <ul><ul><li>Get an accurate diagnosis </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Ask your doctor. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Get information. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Check references. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Check qualifications. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consider the cost. </li></ul></ul>
  35. 42. Conclusions- Danger signs about a practitioner <ul><li>promises you can be &quot;cured.&quot; </li></ul><ul><li>tells you to stop or decrease prescription medications. </li></ul><ul><li>advises a severely restricted diet </li></ul><ul><li>insists you pay in advance for a series of expensive treatments </li></ul><ul><li>cannot show you a license or a certificate from an approved school or organization in his or her specialty </li></ul><ul><li>advises you to keep the treatment a secret from your doctor, or anyone else </li></ul>
  36. 43. Resources for more information <ul><li>Arthritis foundation: </li></ul><ul><li>National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine: </li></ul><ul><li>The arthritis foundation’s guide to alternative therapies </li></ul><ul><li>Johns Hopkins review of alternative therapies for arthritis </li></ul>