This, my final article on Cushing’s Syndrome, will look
at ways of treating the disease in a more natural, holistic way, using herbs and
nutritional supplements. Very briefly, I
will discuss homeopathic treatments, as well.
I will not give a detailed description of each herb or nutritional
supplement, but will simply put forth those that are used, along with where you
might obtain more information on them. As
always, please “consult your veterinarian” before starting any course of
The main prompting to end my series on Cushing’s
discussing the “natural” treatment is due to a friend’s 13-½ year old
golden “queen” being recently diagnosed with the disease.
Due to a myriad of other health issues, the decision to treat “Jinx”
holistically was the only course to follow !
I am told the approach and treatment for Jinx is simple.
At the advice of her holistic vet, she was switched to a more natural
kibble; that being, Wellness Senior Formula.
(See http://www.omhpet.com/ for the
ingredient list). In addition, three
herbal supplements are given.
Jinx has been on
this regime now for 6 weeks. Some of
her clinical sign have improved such as she has more muscle mass to her skull.
The skeleton appearance has diminished. She seems a bit more alert,
and her eyes are brighter. She doesn't seem as wobbly, and her rear is a
bit stronger. While she does still take large drinks of water at times,
her water consumption isn't nearly as great. Her last urine test showed
that while she was throwing a bit more protein (vet thinks renal insufficiency
associated with her age), her urine was not as dilute as the previous two tests.
She still carries the “barrel” look, but her coat is fuller.
At almost 14 years of age, we are all thankful for the improvements!
Long live the Queen!!
Some of the other reported nutritional supplements associated with the treatment of Cushing’s Syndrome are:
Phosphatidylserine--This is a safe nutritional supplement that naturally suppresses stress hormones (ACTH & cortisol). Clinical studies indicate that Phosphatidylserine (PS) may be effective for Cushing's (PDH & ADH), epilepsy, memory loss, mood and cognitive performance. Many dog owners have had good results using Phosphatidylserine (PS) together with conventional disease treatment. Phosphatidylserine is pronounced FOS-fuh-TIE-dil-sair-een). Phosphatidylserine comes from lecithin.
Bark—Controls cortisol and has general effects as an anti-anxiety and
is a well-known herb that has been used for centuries in
release of luteinizing hormone and prolactin. It also contains constituents that bind to dopamine (d1 and d2) receptors and seem to inhibit prolactin release.
Fish oils are natural sources of high concentrations of omega 3 oils. As studies increase, it becomes increasingly evident that Omega 3 oils from fish are one of the most powerful nutritional products, and help heal a large number of conditions. They are excellent at maintaining health, as well.
A “google search” will yield much information on PS,
Magnolia Bark, Chasteberry and the assorted Fish Oils.
veterinarians are now using Transfer
Factor, (a natural immune modulator/booster) in their practices for
their cancer cases and other chronic
cases, including Cushing’s Syndrome. (Click
on the Tranfer Factor link above to go to the reference page.)
Transfer Factor is a set of messaging molecules that convey immune
information within an individual's immune system. Nature also uses transfer
factor to carry immune information from one individual's immune system to
another individual. This in fact is how it got its name: by being the factor
that transferred immunity from one person to another.
In addition to
treating Cushing’s naturally and holistically, homeopathic treatments are also
used. An article written by Cheyanne
West, C-Hom. www.cheyannewest.com
states in part:
“Homeopathic remedies have been
effective when this condition is diagnosed in its early stages.
Homeopathic Pituitary - This remedy is historically made from the posterior lobe of the pituitary gland and is offered to aid in balancing the actions of the gland. It is given in low potencies (30c) over a long period of time and monitored closely.
Homeopathic Formic Acid has been very effective in early stages and has a history of restoring the health of the animal as well as restoring the coat. A potency of 6x has been most effective, given over a period of 1-2 months.
include a variety of herbs such as kelp, nettle, rosehips, wormwood, burdock,
milk thistle, garlic, clivers, clover, and apple cider vinegar. Herbs
should be given in tincture and monitored closely.”
The only book in which I've been able
to locate any homeopathic advice on Cushing's disease is that of British
homeopath George Macleod, Dogs: Homeopathic Remedies (1989, C.W. Daniel
"The main remedies to be
Corticotrophin (A.C.T.H.) 30c -
improves adrenal function and helps reduce excess fluid, which is sometimes
Cortisone 30c - which also assists
"in counteracting the affects of over production of the crude
(Dr. Macleod also stresses that the
over-use of steroid hormones can not only create a Cushing's symptom picture,
but also prevent the effective action of homeopathic remedies. "The use of
the potentised hormone along with remedies such as Nux Vomica and Thuja will
help overcome this.")
Thallium Acetas 30c
- which "has a trophic action on the skin and hair follicles and should
help restore a healthy coat." (End of Article Reference)
In closing, as
indicated throughout my previous articles, while Cushing’s Syndrome is a
serious illness, it is treatable! There
are many, many different drug therapies and treatment options available to help
keep your pet comfortable! My boy,
Boomer, is “LIVING” proof! Consult
your veterinarian should your dog (cat, or horse) exhibit any of the symptoms
listed in my previous articles. Discuss
the various treatments with him and do your “research”!!
In addition to the references listed throughout this article, please visit:
http://www.shirleys-wellness-cafe.com/ for a wealth of health information!
Also, a special thanks to Pat Quinn and her beloved, Jinx for allowing me to discuss Jinx’s holistic treatment protocol. Be well Jinx!!