Homeopathic and functional medicine provide safe, effective, holistic treatments for inflammatory bowel diseases such as Crohn’s disease and Ulcerative Colitis. To give readers a flavor of how I combine these treatments, I will briefly discuss a case of Crohn’s disease in a young man that was successfully treated with homeopathic and functional medicine.
A number of years ago I saw a teenage boy diagnosed with Crohn’s disease who was not responding well to the usual medications. Stronger immunosuppressive medications were advised by his gastroenterologist but the boy’s mother was concerned about side effects and brought him in to see me. He appeared thin, malnourished, and was having several bloody, mucus filled stools a day. I placed him on an elimination diet which consisted of eliminating five food groups: gluten, dairy, corn, soy and eggs. As part of a functional medicine workup, I also had him complete a three day comprehensive stool analysis which showed an imbalance of “gut” bacteria, a term we call “dysbiosis.” After treating him with a number of herbal remedies, gut support supplements, and replacing certain vitamin and mineral deficiencies, there was an approximate 60% improvement in his gastrointestinal symptoms.
However, it wasn’t until I prescribed the correct constitutional homeopathic remedy that this young man’s symptoms really began to improve. In homeopathy we treat people not diseases, therefore I can have two people with the same “disease” and give them two completely different homeopathic remedies. The mental and emotional symptoms are just as important as the physical symptoms in the selection of the correct homeopathic remedy. The remedy acts as a “catalyst” to stimulate the immune system, bringing it back into balance.
After much questioning, I discovered that this young man had an intense fear of dying from his disease and that this deep fear was limiting his ability to function well both academically and socially. Other fears and anxieties were explored and when I gave him a homeopathic remedy that addressed these fears as well as his physical gastrointestinal symptoms, this young man began to improve. His fears lessened, his anxieties were alleviated and his abdominal pain and bloody diarrhea completely resolved. Six weeks later during one of his follow-ups, this young man walked into my office looking like a new person! He had filled out and gained 15 pounds and he was happy and doing better in school. His mother was elated and thanked me profusely for helping her son heal without having to resort to potentially harmful medications.
This young man needed the remedy twice over the next few months for mild relapses that occurred after days of heavy sports activity. Now three years later, he continues to do well and has not needed to repeat the remedy again.