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How Could Helminth Infections Actually Help Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Adam iHaveUC colitisFOR ANYBODY WHO ALREADY KNOWS about “Helminthic Therapy”, I’m guessing your first thoughts were somewhere along the lines of, “Oh HELL NO!”.  Could anybody blame you?  Of course not.

For crying out loud helminths are little parasitic worms.  And who wants to be messing with those right?  Disgusting, nasty, full on ridiculous…well maybe.  But the reality is that there is some pretty top notch research going on right now on this exact topic and this type of therapy has actually been around for quite some time.  If you do some of your own research, you’ll see that there have been studies on this topic/treatment for over ten years now.  So if you are new to this term and idea, why were you left in the dark up until now?  Well, research on these little buggers take time, money and some DAMN SMART SCIENTISTS.

Over the weekend, I started receiving some emails from followers of this site about some recent news articles that had surfaced surrounding some recent research.  And sure enough, that same day on my google news homepage there was a link to one of these exact articles.  It turns out that a rockstar in the microbiology and immunology research area is moving forward with a pretty incredible study that hit the wire recently. One of the lead researchers is named P’ng Loke, Ph.D., and he was involved in a study titled: “Therapeutic Helminth Infection of Macaques with Idiopathic Chronic Diarrhea Alters the Inflammatory Signature and Mucosal Microbiota of the Colon”.

The website which has this study as well as many others on various topics is: www.plospathogens.org

So, without trying to act like I know too much about this alternative treatment idea, I’ll try to boil down some of the facts/theories behind why people are spending so much time, effort, and money researching helminthic therapy:

  • Industrialized and developed nations have much higher occurrences of autoimmune disorders compared to less developed parts of the world
  • The people in these developed nations typically have a lower exposure to parasites (such as helminths) compared to people in undeveloped countries
  • Because of this much reduced exposure to these parasites in developed nations, this may be a/the reason for higher percentages of the population with autoimmune disorders such as ulcerative colitis, crohn’s disease, and many others autoimmune diseases

That is a very simplified view on this complex topic, but I would encourage all of you who are interested in it to research more.  Here are a few website links that you can look at and review:

  • Dr. P’ng Loke’s Lab homepage with lots of information about what his team is currently researching (it’s super fascinating!  and who know’s these guys might be the one who cracks the code to UC someday!!)

I’d also encourage everyone with UC who is interested in this topic to bring it up with your Gastro doctors the next time you meet with them.  Although they might not be as excited about the topic as you/I might be, I’m hoping that they at least read the current publications on colitis related science.  If they don’t…well, that’s always interesting to know as well, right?

Best of luck to all of you this week coming up.  For those of you who are going to be carving up the turkey, make sure you keep all your fingers.  If you haven’t already, feel free to press your luck with the Colitis Quiz.  The last I looked, there were only 3 people who scored 100% correct on the six questions, and since there were well over 100 of you who took it so far, I think that means I got a little to crazy with some more difficult than expected questions.  My bad you guys.  Next one won’t be so crazy, I promise.

Warm regards,

Adam Scheuer





helminth worms, helminthic therapy

83 Responses to How Could Helminth Infections Actually Help Inflammatory Bowel Disease

  1. Paul Willoughby November 19, 2012 at 5:04 am #

    Nice article, Adam. I’ve actually talked to a couple of my doctors about this. Some seem open to it and others say there is no proven efficacy and the companies carrying out the research are just doing it for money just like any other pharmaceutical company. We shall have to wait and see. A company called Coronado Bio sciences is trying to get whipworm therapy through human trials and eventually approval through the FDA.

    • Adam
      Adam November 20, 2012 at 11:22 pm #

      Hey Paul,

      That’s interesting about Coronado. That would for sure be a huge milestone for this type of treatment, and would probably allow the greater UC population to get much more patient data on the efficacy (quicker). I hope you and your family is doing well, and great to hear from you.

      -Adam

  2. bev November 19, 2012 at 5:20 pm #

    Thanks Adam!

    Yet another interesting possible treatment.

    Bev

    • Adam
      Adam November 20, 2012 at 11:24 pm #

      For sure Bev, I’m trying to some more research currently on this, for some crazy reason (well maybe not soo crazy) I’m pretty interested in this compared to other stuff that flies across the screen. If I get some more interesting news, you’ll be the first to know. Take care (up there:) Adam

  3. Maggie November 19, 2012 at 5:33 pm #

    I would actually be brave enough to try it but it’s expensive, like about $1000.00. I heard about it on another site and researched it a couple months ago. Sounds very plausible. If doctors could prescribe it, maybe the little buggers could be covered by insurance eventually.

    • Adam
      Adam November 20, 2012 at 11:25 pm #

      Hey Maggie,

      Yeah, its not a cheap fix for sure. I’ve seen it listed for as much as $10,000 from a German company yesterday. Yikes right? Well, I guess if you compare it to the out-of-pocket costs of treatments such as remicade, its not to expensive though…

      Happy holidays to you Maggie,

      Adam

  4. shelly in maine November 21, 2012 at 5:03 am #

    Very interesting…hopefully promising….but still gives me the heebie jeebies!! :-) I really dislike cooties! Hopefully there wouldn’t be an over population like when they introduced pigs to Hawaii and now they are crazy wildly overpopulated! Will you need a de-wormer like your dog?! :-)
    Hopefully the testing will continue. Definitely promising for c-diff. Still question its longevity…but I guess you just add more :-) the
    Q & A will be very interesting. I’m still hopeful in the continued research of gut flora/probiotics, etc and adding more strains to the probiotics.
    :-) Shelly

    • Adam
      Adam November 21, 2012 at 6:15 pm #

      I thought my father was the only one who used the “heebie jeebies” word:)))

      I’m for sure hoping to see some more research about probiotic strains in the future too Shelly! On a side note, i met a woman in San Francisco today who’s husband she says was put into remission directly from using VSL#3 They swear by it in her family, so tally another point for the probiotics team:)
      take care and have a great Thanksgiving up in ME!

      • shelly in maine November 21, 2012 at 7:04 pm #

        :-) thanks and back at ya!

  5. Didem November 28, 2012 at 12:37 am #

    Hmm I should take a look at those papers. I have a bit of an immunology background as well, maybe I’ll be able to understand something. One day one research is gonna fix everything so maybe it’s this one :)

  6. Graham from England
    Graham November 1, 2015 at 7:30 am #

    Well I wasn’t expecting that. Had a colonoscopy this morning and it turns out I’m undergoing Helminth therapy! A 3rd poor prep was not a surprise but I was informed of a Parasitic Hookworm infection. I cld see the little beggars clinging to my colon, apparently drinking my blood and eating my valuable mucus. Well how long has this been going on, I have no idea?

    I have a prescription for me and the family to rid myself of these worms as they can cause iron deficiency, b12 deficiency, weight loss and so on as a result. On the other hand (as I read frantically) there are benefits for auto immune diseases. I guess as long as I start taking iron tablets, b12 (already doing) then happy days and my over active immune system should be calmer!

    What to do, what to do?

    • noelgallagirl November 1, 2015 at 7:39 am #

      What? Really Graham??

      I wonder just how you contracted them? You were not even aware, either, I gather.

      This is indeed a surprise, I’ll wager! You must have been jaw on the floor. I would be for certain.

      Yes, what to do now? Did the doctor say how you may have contracted them?

  7. Graham from England
    Graham November 1, 2015 at 8:08 am #

    For real! Jaw on floor, only last night I was going to watch Monsters Inside Me but realised i’d already seen it.

    Not sure doc was a GI so did what all docs would do and gave out the pills.

    It can come from walking bear foot on human feces (patdon me if you are having breakfast). This can happen with some fertilisers that somehow contain human waste, also sandy loamy soils like grass dressing. There are more ways but I use both of the above (not knowingly) on my precious lawn.

    Had UC 1st for sure but as the previous 2 more recent preps were poor, they may not have spotted them. I wish I had asked where exactly they were residing. Sometimes with a poor prep they give up and only view part of it so maybe my lodgers were further up, or down even?

    • noelgallagirl November 1, 2015 at 8:49 am #

      Monsters Inside Me…that’s funny Graham!!.

      Wow, can you imagine if this is actually the root cause of the UC??? It would be so wonderful if it was and you can drug the nasty beggars away an\d be all better…

      Could this be?? Like you say, perhaps they simply were not spotted until this colonoscopy because of the bad preps of the previous ones…

      This is HUGE!!

      • noelgallagirl November 1, 2015 at 8:50 am #

        We need to delve into this more. Please keep us posted Graham.

        • Adam
          Adam November 1, 2015 at 10:43 pm #

          Yes indeed.
          Graham, either way and no matter what decisions you make, best of luck to you and your health. Been thinking bout you alot since reading these messages and hope you come to some happy conclusions with little stress to your olive oil filled head:)))

          Best to you,
          Adam

  8. Graham from England
    Graham November 1, 2015 at 8:58 am #

    Will do for sure. Must research a bit more and take a view on whether to keep them or not. The fact that IBD is rare in places where this parasite is rampant in humans tempts me to adopt the little fellas.

    • noelgallagirl November 1, 2015 at 9:01 am #

      I know. Good point.

      As long as you van really live WELL with them, what the heck?

    • shelly in maine November 1, 2015 at 10:01 am #

      Graham..hmmmmmmm…keep us posted. Maybe it comes down to numbers in the end that een too much of a good thing/good guys can always tip the scales…especially for us.
      Happy researching!

  9. Graham from England
    Graham November 1, 2015 at 10:38 am #

    It seems Whipworm is more effective than Hookworm for UC but interestingly Hookworm has great benefits for stopping or limiting the progression of MS. They charge big money for this treatment.

    I have another MRI soon as doc says there could be more damage, so plenty of time on this decision. Which is just as well!

    The new reading glasses will be useful…

  10. Graham from England
    Graham Lee November 2, 2015 at 11:07 am #

    It was a very creepy night, I saw a close up of my new friends (link below) and then imagined thousands of them crawling around inside me. I read the colonoscopy notes and its a heavy infestation throughout the colon. Some reports state they reside mainly in the small intestine so this could explain why they were undetected before, along with the poor preps that didn’t get very far. I also stopped taking EVOO 24hrs before in case this was causing the previous poor preps, so more worms may have been visible because guess what? I know it always comes back to EVOO with me but it turns out to be one of the top solutions for controlling parasites. Especially ozonated EVOO (more on that later no doubt) as well as garlic to name but a few remedies. Its becoming a thing of the past but many less industrialized populations practice regular anti worming strategies.

    I have decided to get them out of me, it may be hasty but it makes sense for the household to do this at the same time to ensure success. The Hookworm isn’t the best type for treating Colitis and although reported as beneficial for MS and CNS damage, I had Colitis first and Transverse Myelitis may not have occurred without a leaky gut in the first place. On reflection, I may well have experienced a number of parasite symptoms for so many years, I feel should not pass on the opportunity to see if this was indeed the route of my problems. I believe I owe it to my family not to perpetuate this infection, particularly as this is dangerous for the well being and development of children.

    Hasta la vista, maybe!

    http://scienceline.org/2010/12/hookworms-and-whipworms-our-immune-system%E2%80%99s-attachment-to-parasites/

    • noelgallagirl November 2, 2015 at 5:38 pm #

      You are very prudent and analytical Graham, which I think is excellent, and necessary in this case.

      I agree!! I agree with anything that you decide is right.

    • noelgallagirl November 2, 2015 at 5:40 pm #

      Oh, and yes, like I said before…could these little beggars be at the root of the UC?

      Also, for the benefit of the others in your household.

      You are the best!

      • shelly in maine November 2, 2015 at 5:44 pm #

        Or is it which came first….the chicken or the egg scenario?!

  11. shelly in maine November 2, 2015 at 5:27 pm #

    So Graham…Creepy, I must admit…as this whole discussion of worms and fecal transplant have always grossed me out!  Anyway, I was wondering, in my limited research if you acquired them through other means not just soil…meat, fish, etc?  Just curious…not sure if you can actually pinpoint and /or more than 1 source?
    What’s the plan of action or eviction?! :-)

  12. Graham from England
    Graham November 3, 2015 at 5:43 am #

    Well this is all very interesting indeed. After so many false dawns I am reluctant to say that parasites are the “tobacco- UC” smoking gun but who knows?

    Unfortunately, most doctors are not trained in the treatment of parasites. It is only when parasites are visually seen that western doctors will suspect them, which requires an especially terrible case, like mine.

    They reside mainly in the upper small intestine, endoscopy, colonoscopy and stool tests (unless specific) fail to spot them. Pill cam does apparently though good luck getting one of those. I have seen reports that the majority of Americans are believed to have parasite infections. We know that parasites are reported to have benefits for some IBD’s and autoimmune diseases but as Shelly pointed out this is a chicken and egg situation. We can and do coexist, there is clearly a relationship with our immunity so I believe that parasites could well improve an existing case as well as cause it in the first place.

    I searched for anti Helminth therapies and found my beloved EVOO mentioned many times. What startled me even more is that tobacco seems even more effective in controlling their numbers.

    As well as wide anecdotal reports there were 2 reported studies. Birds were discovered using the internals of cigarette butts in their nests. They were also found to have noticeably fewer parasites as a result.

    Bees that were found to have ingested pollen from tobacco plants as well as some other anthelmintic plants had 80% fewer parasites and greater health and life expectancy.

    Prior to the development of anthelmintic pharmaceuticals, people used to eat tobacco, pineapple, and honey to rid the body of worms. Not something we practice in the industrial parts of the world.

    Also interesting is that Anthelmintics drugs starve the worms by cutting off their ability to absorb glucose. Sugar anyone?

    This is ringing so many bells I can’t quite believe it. If I follow this hypothesis for my UC history then it would maybe explain everything. Presuming I had the parasite already, weight and parasites are low already due to smoking. Stopped smoking and for 2 weeks gained weight. As the parasites increase in numbers they take blood/vital nutrients, create an immune response and constipation/diahrea/bleeding and weight comes off again.

    I have a course of drugs for hookworm and its only 2 pills a day for 3 days. I have also began an iron tablet to compliment my B12 (which helped before I knew about this) to improve the likelihood of anaemia. I will soon see how this affects my situation.

    Here are some symptoms of parasitic infection.

    * Repeated diarrhea or constipation
    * Chronic, unexplained nausea, often accompanied by vomiting
    * Fatigue and weakness
    * Intestinal cramping
    * Unexplained dizziness
    * Foul-smelling gas
    * Indigestion
    * Bloating
    * Multiple food allergies
    * Loss of appetite
    * Itching around the anus, especially at night
    * Difficulty sleeping
    * Difficulty maintaining a healthy weight (over or underweight)
    * Itching on the soles of the feet, often accompanied by a rash
    * Coughing blood (severe cases)
    * Palpitations (hook worms)
    * Anemia
    * Facial swelling around the eyes (round worms)
    * Wheezing and coughing, followed by vomiting, stomach pain and bloating (suggesting round worms or thread worms)
    * Itching or tingling sensations on the scalp

    As diagnosing this is extremely difficult I would recommend trying a natural Anthelmintic treatment. If your symptoms improve then a specific stool test would be warranted.

    Some brief tips for avoiding them are to not walk bear foot outside. Choose carefully when eating out (easier said than done). Cooking your food and perhaps avoiding anything uncooked that could have been exposed to human or animal feces.

    Finally thank you Bev, it was your comments that swung me towards saying farewell to my nasty squatters despite some evidence to the contrary.

    • noelgallagirl November 3, 2015 at 6:48 am #

      This is the most interesting post I have read, I kid you not!

      It seems in researching that it is probable that you have found one of the causes of UC and not only that, but have explained the cause and effect of what tobacco has to do with all of this!

      Perhaps you should be a scientist??? I will say that if I were a teacher, and you were my student, that you would receive an A+ on this one!

      I appreciate the thanks, but it is really YOU who deserves the thanks. I just suggested…YOU solved!!

      What an excellent post, finding, and conclusion. ADAM…the site (you) should create a new area on this information!! How exciting this is, truly!!

  13. Graham from England
    Graham November 3, 2015 at 7:25 am #

    ☺️ I’ve had a B+ but never a A+ thank you Bev!

    Its very early days but all so plausible for at least some of our community. I have slanted the evidence found over the last 2 days to suit the theory and can it really be that simple, we shall see?

    Maybe the less educated immune systems of the west aren’t so able to deal with these hidden parasites. Thriving by being fed on sugar and the lack off natural plant foods nature designed to control them.

    Not sure if it has appeared yet but the pillcam link I posted shows just how difficult it is to diagnose them. I think at the very least people with a smoking/UC connection or EVOO related improvement should try a home anthelmintic cleanse.

    I will obviously be updating the smoking and EVOO pages soon and perhaps a new post if there are more concrete developments.

  14. Graham from England
    Graham November 6, 2015 at 12:31 am #

    Well I am jumping around the room this morning! It appears as though these critters have been causing my problems since day one. I remember when this started and I went to the docs with a burning ache along with a slight raised area slightly to the left of my belly button. This has always been around despite examinations finding proctitis or low sygmoid inflammation. I put this down to gas or inflammation in the descending colon. Looking at diagrams again the colon is closer to the hip and the pain/bump Is consistent with the small intestine where these blood suckers hide. I have found some explanations to why they can cause dysbiosis and some that possibily explain inflammation at our end.

    The mucas layer of the small intestine is unattached as is one of the two mucas layers in the large intestine. Parasites cleave mucins and disolve this layer. Logically the unattached mucas travels along the intestines and over a great distance. If this is damaged in any way its role would be altered as a result. It may effectively run out and more noticeably at the end of the colon where colitis often begins. This will create an immune response and inflammation. They also affect the balance of bacteria and increase food intolerances.
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3758667/?report=classic

    Encouragingly, I have just seen that Vit B12 deficiency can cause demyelination and my damaged areas are classically consistent with this. As are the symptoms I have been experiencing, told the neurologist only 2 weeks ago but he didn’t pick up on it. This is also consistent with the steady blood loss I experienced at the time of the attack. The colonoscopy (8 weeks before) revealed indeterminate colitis but the main blood loss was likely from my sneaky cohabitants.

    While worms can increase mucas at the inhabited site (hookworms for crohns) they clearly effect the balance elsewhere and this isn’t just my opinion. They can obviously help if your body can control their numbers but there are also serious hidden risk to our health.

    My 3 day course of Vermox may not clear this but I am feeling better. So far, I have more energy, a noticeable change in BM’s and less dilated veins.

    • noelgallagirl November 7, 2015 at 9:20 am #

      Graham!

      I’ll just bet that you are jumping around…for joy no doubt!!

      This is so cool that you have researched and deduced. You are a ‘scientist’ in the purest truest sense of the meaning. I wonder if the REAL scientists who are actually PAID to do this have found all of this out??

      Extremely interesting articles as well.

      Where do we go from here, do you think now?

  15. Graham from England
    Graham November 7, 2015 at 10:10 am #

    Thanks as always Bev. Yesterday was my best round of golf for a few months too so definitely on the up. Probably the pernicious enemia fading though I did tire towards the end. Even with injections (that I hope to recieve) it can take a month for normal levels to return.

    Hard to find parasites could explain UC for a percentage of us, ex smokers obviously. They could remain a mystery because lets face it, if there is blood in your stool the first thing they do is drive a camera through your no entry sign. If there is end of colon inflammation then its UC/proctitis and thats that. Or perhaps not always as many with UC seem to progress to a crohns diagnosis as other unexplained/hidden areas present.

    The low incidence of IBD in under developed areas may be due to parasites being suspected at the first sign of trouble. They also carry out the regular practice of parasite cleansing, oh and the lack if a sugary diet.

    So much of this slots in to place and not just for me personally. I’ve had over 10 colon cameras of different types and they were never seen before. I was only a few weeks in to smoking cessation (smoked 2 months) and no colitis was noted this time.

    • shelly in maine November 7, 2015 at 10:32 am #

      aaah Graham….we were essentially writing at the same time!!

    • noelgallagirl November 7, 2015 at 11:49 am #

      Golf! I am an avid golfer too. Just a useless fact!

      Anyway, I think that a lot of things, perhaps not just one, can contribute to a person’e UC. What I am saying is, it could be a combination of things. Heaven knows there are numerous harmful agents out there.

      Worms, antibiotics, illness, food borne illness, smoking cessation, pharmaceuticals.

      Yes Shelly. I agree. We are, in fact all different, not only in how we contracted UC, but in how we react to different treatments.

      A veritable cluster****. And the questions always remain. A solution does appear closer, though, with more knowledge.

      I am thinking that one of us, (perhaps Graham) with actual UC, may just be able to finally solve everything!

      B

      • Graham from England
        Graham November 7, 2015 at 1:43 pm #

        Adam was a golfer too, sand pits (cos animals defacate there) are a haven for parasites but that’s another can of you know worms. I got my first “itis” after having sand thrown in my face so who knows?

        Thanks to this age, we are all connected and I think you are right Bev, we will work through it to a point where the plain speaking truth and understanding prevails over the chaff. The fact that you have so much knowledge of all our stories is hugely important, therefore your interest in this particular theory encourages me greatly to persevere. The free thinkers explore the possibilities and as in history, surprisingly surpass the academics.

        • noelgallagirl November 7, 2015 at 4:01 pm #

          Could NOT have said it better Graham.

          It will happen.

  16. shelly in maine November 7, 2015 at 10:18 am #

    OK, sooo…leaky gut, bacterial imbalance, critters, other undetermined factors….still so individual to a certain degree. It is hard to imagine during colonoscopies and/or via stool samples more is not detected…seems as though much is there that hey are not even looking for so it goes “unseen”! So is it different perhaps for those with late onset colitis or like Bev or others where Accutane or some Med totally disrupted all those “perfect” balances and then the rest of us with a clear genetic predisposition/perfect storm….well…treatment similarities/differences…

  17. Graham from England
    Graham November 7, 2015 at 10:49 am #

    Yes Shelly they always say different causes and some are more prominent in one decade only to fade away in favour of something else.

    It sticks in my head the amount of times I have read that stool samples prove negative and unreliable. Despite the fact that this is the go to investigation when (rarely) suspected.

    Interestingly, pill cam is so often reported as a great tool for parasite detection. Is this due to the amount of times they find them, who knows? Believe it or not the camera is disposable but I guess they don’t like using it due to complications when stuck (surgery). Also why would you have this done when you have colitis, particularly as they often terminate communication before reaching the colon.

    On the down side I did see a small study (20 people with IBD) where antihelminth treatments were not as good as you would expect. Admittedly they were crohns and UC patients as well as a wide variety of parasites. The control group fared no better than placebo.

  18. shelly in maine November 7, 2015 at 5:48 pm #

    It feels like we’re all working in the same lab, similar, but not the same lab rats! We have already discovered and shared a wealth of info…some basics I think. Not 1 theory, but several since there are different causes, degrees, symptoms, varying and effecting factors…genes, environment, diet, food supply, general sickness, Wellness, etc, etc. So we must all keep pursuing our own individualmavenues to contribute the the complex IBD world and hopeful solution. Cure/prevention?? Treatments…natural! Then you have to look at pediatric… How much can the body withstand with modern Med or natural and one’s ability or inability to fight….

  19. shelly in maine November 8, 2015 at 5:16 am #

    Graham…as I was reading your post on evoo and thinking about it…it makes even more sense for Crohn’s given the location and the vitamin b12 deficiency(my Dad always had to have the b12 shots since he was a crohn’s guy)…more malabsorption for Crohn’s given the local??? Funny….my blood work has always come back fairly “normal” except for the low iron piece….only when i am truly bleeding. Also…just as an add…I’m not sure the pill cam is used here in the U.S. so much in our greedy world of profit margins!

  20. Graham from England
    Graham November 8, 2015 at 6:03 am #

    This could also explain why there is a higher incidence in offspring than siblings. Depending on when a parasite is recieved.

    Say a 20 year goes off to work in the multicultural city and enters a new environment. Recieves the parasite that does not infect his sibling due to less contact (than when a small child) but does infect his child and sometimes children.

    We need a pill cam or docs to start precautionary antihelminths.

    • shelly in maine November 8, 2015 at 8:45 am #

      Theory has flaws in my case…mom…some ibd mostly just constipation(heart disease on her side)/Dad…crohn’s for him and his only brother 10 yrs apart and on that side of family more incidences of IBD. 6 kids in my family..divorce I’m youngest lived w/Mom in Florida…I have most severe with UC and remember “issues” way back, but siblings only minor cases of 2 crohn’s/3? Mostly IBD. Guess I just am an outlier in the data!! ;)

  21. Graham from England
    Graham November 8, 2015 at 6:03 am #

    Why do vets always suspect parasites but not doctors?

    • noelgallagirl November 8, 2015 at 8:28 am #

      Hah!

      Yeah!!

      Why is that?

    • shelly in maine November 8, 2015 at 8:38 am #

      My 2 dogs had parasites a few years ago…they NEVER found them, but just kept mediating and making my dogs sicker…I finally said no more and stopped all meds and treated with probiotics and boiled chx/rice ESP. For the 1 I know has UC as well.

  22. Graham from England
    Graham November 8, 2015 at 6:10 am #

    Likely infecting spouse but very different DNA etc so not necessarily affected in the same way that persons child would be.

  23. Graham from England
    Graham November 10, 2015 at 1:11 pm #

    An update. So colonoscopy Sunday, no colitis but drugs for hookworm Monday and feeling very good by Friday, Saturday great and transverse myelitis symptoms non existent. Even the tingling and constant urination subsides. Sunday am heavy mucas then heavy bleed but felt ok till the evening.

    Started shaking, felt weak, dizzy, sick and breathless. I ate, took iron and b12 but no better. Then felt the worst ever and thought I was going to lose consciousness. Straight to A&E and was shaking uncontrollably. They took blood, ecg and couldn’t come up with anything, all ok. I stabilised and then felt like i had run a marathon and had a hard bang on the head. The run up was different to my previous episode but felt exactly the same afterwards, exhausted.

    It must have been the bleed that caused this both times as I was bleeding for a while the first time. I guess the worms detached and I just bled in to my intestine. The seemingly undetectable anemia must cause a crash, even with a comparatively small loss of blood. They even said it doesn’t suggest you have lost a significant amount.

    I feel pretty normal today though I did wake (as I have several times) gasping for breath like I was being suffocated. This must be the lack of oxygen in the blood and body. I now understand why I got thumping headaches at slight altitude.

    Saw the GP today and he said yep everything normal so you are holding your own. Probably just the transition. He also suggested the smoking must have been controlling the hookworm numbers, couldn’t get that in writing obviously.

    Helminth therapy is interesting but it could get bloody dangerous. Particularly as potentially serious complications can occur while everything presents as normal. Why is that? The studies are not long term ones so the benefits could decline over time. Though at least you wouldn’t forget you had them and should be easily removed.

    Fortunately no blood since so hopefully I can restore my reserves and recover/reverse as much as I can. Too early to say if the colitis is over though I have dropped to 2 spoons of EVOO to hopefully obtain a faster assessment. I know 2, though my mantra remains 3 before food etc.

    • noelgallagirl November 10, 2015 at 1:15 pm #

      Holy cow, Graham!

      Welcome back from the near dead!! That is really something.

      You really need to write a book, and I am not joking.

      Wow…

    • Adam
      Adam November 12, 2015 at 10:08 am #

      Holy creeepers, wow, Graham Graham the o oil man…wishing you the very best in the coming months and years. thx for the update:)
      –Adam

  24. Graham from England
    Graham November 10, 2015 at 2:06 pm #

    I was scared. It’s worth a new post but will wait to see how things improve. I started on 1000 daily units of b12 methylcobalamin today. It is supposed to be easily absorbed without the cyanide present in some other alternatives.

    Interesting though how what seemed a similarly significant event last time without B12/iron before and immediately after took 3 months to recover and this time a couple of days. All this time myself and the neurologist were convinced this was permanent damage. It does appear to be resolved by stopping the hidden blood loss and replenishing reserves quickly.

  25. shelly in maine November 11, 2015 at 5:28 am #

    Wow Graham…so many factors. It seems your scales may be more sensitive to imbalances due perhaps to all the other factors or? Glad you’re on the mend.

  26. Graham from England
    Graham November 12, 2015 at 11:20 am #

    Thanks all. Weight dropped over 7lb since colonoscopy but creeping up now so healing well I suspect. Had D yesterday but good now, steadily feeling better except for the occasional restriction in breathing. This is different to before when only breathless during exertion. Doc also requested a chest xray for me, hope the hookworms weren’t preventing asthma (which apparently they do).

    This is very bizarre subject indeed, mainly its effects on our immune system but the smoking, hidden anaemia. A tiny IBD subject that will gain presence I have no doubt. Crazy just so crazy.

  27. Graham from England
    Graham November 17, 2015 at 6:36 am #

    Here is an apparently rare case of hookworm. It clearly indicates the suprise and eventual conclusion that parasites are extremely difficult to find. It also states parasites should be suspected and investigated far more intensively in non endemic areas.

    I have pasted 2 paragraphs from the article and the link has it in full.

    Physical examination was unremarkable apart from signs of anemia. He was assessed by EGD, colonoscopy, along with transabdominal ultrasound and numerous blood tests. The results were normal, apart from the aforementioned anemia and eosinophilia. Stool test showed no ova or parasites.

    The diagnosis of hookworm infestation is normally based on the microscopical examination of feces to detect hookworm eggs. However in this case, stool microscopy failed to identify any eggs. This was also the case in some other instances of hookworm infections diagnosed by capsule endoscopy. It seems however that this is the first such endoscopically proven case reported in Europe. Capsule endoscopy provided us with a better insight into the processes taking place in this disease entity. In addition, this case underscores the importance of parasites as the cause of disease, even in non endemic areas.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3004043/

  28. Graham from England
    Graham November 22, 2015 at 3:11 am #

    At this stage it appears I have swapped Colitis for Inflammation in the small intestine. Trying a more Crohns diet and hope it will pass soon. Probably damage from when the hookworms left though they are reported to protect against Crohn’s disease as well as asthma. Neurological symptoms improving with almost no fatigue and breathing is best its been for a long time. B12 defficiency without a doubt. Parasites, can’t live with em, can’t live without em!

    • noelgallagirl November 22, 2015 at 8:09 am #

      Hahahaha!! Oh, how you can make me laugh Graham. Damned little parasites…

      So, you have inflammation in the small instead of the large? May I inquire as to how one knows that?

      I assume the symptoms are different?

  29. Graham from England
    Graham November 22, 2015 at 8:55 am #

    It is different. Components of blood, D and mucas the same but so strangely different.

    My colon was good and it wouldn’t flare within 4 weeks of quitting since EVOO. Blood began with pain from small intestine 6 days after the antihelminth drugs. Blood is separate not mixed as in my colitis and stool is dark which I understand suggests bleeding from small intestine. I also have intermittent pain from the area where they reside, all pretty mid central. It is improving though very slowly. With all this energy I have been working harder instead of perhaps resting and maximising the recovery.

  30. Graham from England
    Graham November 22, 2015 at 9:03 am #

    Also, I always get a tiny amount of blood to start with UC and not the large amount I had this time.

    • noelgallagirl November 22, 2015 at 9:04 am #

      You explained that great. I wasn’t sure what the difference was, or is.

      Thank you as always…now I have to re-read your post:)

  31. Graham from England
    Graham November 22, 2015 at 9:13 am #

    I’ve been wrong before obviously but I am certain this is what’s happening. Unfortunately I cannot find any reports of bleeding after taking these drugs. Probably for 2 reasons though. 1) They are distributed mostly in poor countries so little or no follow up. 2) I had no blood before taking them (cigarettes/EVOO) where as I imagine a significant number with this infection would have.

  32. Graham from England
    Graham December 2, 2015 at 6:42 am #

    The very short course of drugs, the GI discharge without a follow up and the total lack of advice would suggest that anthelminth drugs get rid of parasites quickly while resolving all related issues. This could not be further from the truth.

    Almost all of these treatments take place in poor countries and our doctors know little or nothing about them. There are not many stories out there regarding post antihelminth therapy.

    One I did find reported an escalation of GI symptoms as in my case. It was apparently down to the familiar story where our gut is cleansed to a degree then the bad guys move in. Counter measures are then taken. My bleeding and D was getting so bad I added 2 different PB’s and cigarettes to the existing demulcent food diet.

    4 days of improvements led me to believe it was the PB’s so I quit smoking for the day. Things declined quickly so unfortunately the cigarettes seem to be required more than ever. I believe they are reducing the Th2 immune respsonse which is raised in the presence of parasites.

    I managed to find some 3rd world type studies and it looks like this will take many months. High Serum IgE and blood eosinophil levels across the treated groups fell but quite slowly and not not all to satisfactory levels. Some went back up which indicated reinfection could be a problem and not just in endemic areas.

    The point here is that if you suspect parasites or want to try a cleanse, your treatment/improvements will take a long time. This should be taken into account when assessing its effectiveness and any existing UC treatments should continue.

    I am waiting for my appointment at the hospital for tropical diseases.

    • noelgallagirl December 2, 2015 at 9:58 am #

      Graham, I am sorry that you appear to be a ‘test’ subject regarding all of this, but you are greatly helping all of us.

      What you are going through is going to bring about some sort of realization about UC, once again.

      Stay well, and if you have to smoke…then smoke!!

    • Adam
      Adam December 2, 2015 at 1:50 pm #

      Graham,

      Thinking of you buddy.
      And wishing you nothing but the best in the coming days and weeks ahead. Seriously brother man, rebound is coming your way:))

      Take care,
      A

    • shelly in maine December 2, 2015 at 5:14 pm #

      Graham…keep up the battle. It seems somewhat similar to the who gut microbial upset…perhaps location changes or maybe similar. Are there other natural remedies to balance all out. Have you thought to go at it with extreme probiotics/prebiotics, etc. I take the Rx strength vsl…900 billion per packet X 4! Increasing the evoo? Spices? Other? I have not done the research myself, but I’m sure you are looking at ALL angles! We are all pioneers…you get this avenue to help others.
      Healthy thoughts, Shelly

      • Graham from England
        Graham December 3, 2015 at 6:43 am #

        Hi Shelly,

        EVOO back to 3 and I will definitely keep up the PB’s. I will switch the high strength one when the D has gone completely. As well as the damage there is a large immune response underway implying a big “post treatment” allergy component. I’m sure it’s hives plus a big reaction to our newly adopted cat. I am maybe seeing why people are jumping to infect themselves with these things. Good job its not pollen season.

        Seeing the GI Tuesday, she has been good so far. Thanks all for the support and encouragement!

  33. Graham from England
    Graham December 2, 2015 at 10:16 am #

    Thanks Bev, I had a feeling it wouldn’t be my last cigarette but that’s fine. The raised hope has made me too impatient perhaps and definitely trying to run before I can walk. As you say hopefully this information will shed light in a dark area of UC.

  34. Graham from England
    Graham December 2, 2015 at 1:58 pm #

    Thank you Adam and apologies for hijacking this post!

  35. Graham from England
    Graham February 25, 2016 at 8:44 am #

    Just a little update. Following Mobendazole in November my tape, stool and blood test for parasites were clear. This does not mean I am clear as apparently the egg cycle may not have coincided with the tests. I still have minor abdominal discomfort and (to be frank) a slight irritation around ones bottom at bedtime which is a definite indication of parasites.

    I smoked for about 10 weeks and quit yet again a week ago, so far so good. I have upped my carb intake and also gained a few pounds now. It’s definitely different so maybe, just maybe I don’t have UC. My feeling is they are still about but less so and downstream so to speak. I have found that the big G (no not me), Ginger is great for parasites, as is apple cider vinegar, chopped garlic, EVOO and pumpkin seeds to name a few. So these are in as regularly as possible.

    This could be an interesting experiment for any of you who think you may have parasites and doesn’t actually want them. I know apparently people do, WTF! Pumpkin seeds dont kill them but do disable them temporarily. This can detach certain types and move them on. Pumpkin seed oil is best and available here in the UK. Also super healthy so a regular regimen for a week or so could give an indication should things improve or change noticeably. Parasites can also give you a nervousness so if you do try this, also watch out for a calmness that may come your way.

  36. Graham from England
    Graham February 25, 2016 at 10:16 am #

    The pumpkin oil should be before food

  37. Graham from England
    Graham Lee March 18, 2016 at 11:47 am #

    I think this study was too early to sumarise (after only 30 days) but they concluded UC patients treated with antihelminth therapy had increased inflammatory scores. It is what I found but once things eventually settle, they are better IMO. This should be taken into account if deciding to treat IBD with worms. If Helminth therapy doesn’t improve your symptoms, it will also make things worse when deciding to get rid of them.

    http://www.academia.edu/21010592/Impact_of_Treatment_of_Intestinal_Parasites_on_the_Activity_of_Ulcerative_Colitis

  38. Graham from England
    Graham Lee June 29, 2016 at 12:04 am #

    Just an update. Parasites were believed to be the cause of my history UC symptoms, though I did not necessarily buy that. 4 months of good BM’s etc are at an end and I have been bleeding for a couple of weeks.

    Fatigue and neurological symptoms that greatly improved after antihelminth drugs have also steadily returned.

    The only other viable explanation from UC is that the drugs killed the worms but not the eggs and so the whole process begins once more. Many treatments for a large infestation recommend a 2nd treatment to kill the adolescent worms before they can breed.

    Unfortunately the NHS is not great and in my experience a very 2nd class service. No doubt I will have to continue guiding my own health and pushing doctors in the direction I need to go.

    Back on the cigarettes though sticking to 5 so I don’t lose the very precious stone of weight gained over the last few months.

  39. Bev June 29, 2016 at 8:16 am #

    HI Graham!

    Long time since I’ve been on here!

    I hate hearing about bleeding and I feel for you. I got stuck taking an antibiotic that did not ‘agree’ with the UC about a month ago and had some problems myself…things are getting better…almost back to no symptoms again…I doubled up on the L-glutamine, surprisingly, and it seems to have worked. Doubling up on the probiotics did not seem to be helping, so I tried the L-glutamine and it helped much more. Must have had to ‘heal’ the old colon.

    I had forgotten about the pain of the cramping. It’s been about 7 years with no symptoms and I wasn’t sure if the pain had been that bad in the past, or if I’m just old now and can’t handle it as well…lol…what we UCers learn to live with is quite unbelievable if we really think about it.

    Anyway…I hear you on the medical part of things. Just a couple months ago, here in Canada, all of a sudden there is a push to treat bowel ‘diseases’ differently than what has been the norm. More natural treatments as well as no more prescribing of steroids. I have to wonder why this huge ‘movement’ (no pun intended) all of a sudden, and whether the harsh and dangerous drugs are coming back to haunt everyone, patients and doctors alike.

    Hang in there and keep at it until you find the ‘thing’ that works THIS time. I am finally there but I had to try hard this time.

    Cheers, Bev

  40. Graham from England
    Graham Lee June 29, 2016 at 11:36 am #

    I did wonder if you were doing less here, though even the Queen needs a well earned break!

    Antibiotics, or Russian roulette to an IBD’er. I hear you about ageing, sometimes it’s hard to evaluate if we feel bad from age, illness or both. What we go through indeed, it doesn’t get me too low for too long but I definitely have a very slight yet permanent depression. Fortunately this has been lifted slightly, I used my “gut feeling” and chose Brexit. A few financial concerns but when I am outside standing or walking, I feel pleasantly liberated.

    The new approach over there sounds very promising! You may have influenced that approach in an indirect way? It could be great if they or we are doing this together with medical professionals rather than on our own. Only this morning I read an article about worms (it’s all I read about these days) and they reported that people with IBD had been badly let down the world over and couldn’t be blamed for the wild and crazy things they do to help themselves. Don’t feel so wild and crazy now!

    Glad to hear you are back on track and always good to hear from you Bev.

    • Bev June 29, 2016 at 12:13 pm #

      Thank you very much Graham…for being so kind and, well, for being you.

      I like to think that Adam;s website (this one) has had something to do with the change in treatments for bowel problems. I think that new patients now go into their doctors well informed and properly ‘armed’ with the knowledge. It was not like that when I was diagnosed over 20 years ago! Thank goodness for the internet.

      Ah yes, Brexit. We have heard nothing but (except for of course the US’s presumptive Republican candidate Donald Trump) for quite some time. Nobody was expecting the UK to ‘separate’ here in Canada. It must be a different feeling for you and yours alright! We shall see how things go, I suppose. I know we will all definitely hear all about it!

      For now, enjoy your ‘freedom’!!!

      Thank you again…I want to hear when you are back on track Graham.

  41. Graham from England
    Graham Lee July 1, 2016 at 9:23 am #

    Thank you Bev and I agree with you entirely regarding this site and the information now available online. Even if people choose not to try anything other than medicine, it still helps hold doctors to account.

    I have managed to obtain Mobendazole over the counter today so it will be interesting to see what happens. The very charming pharmacist confirmed this drug kills worms but not eggs. I will take a 2 day course now and another to kill any adolescent worms in 2-3 weeks time.

    Last time my neurological symptoms improved in a short time (though could have been B12/iron). Sadly I started bleeding soon after and this is my only reservation as I am already bleeding. I have resumed smoking so hopefully no trips to A&E this time.

    In the continued absence of professional help and adequate medical attention,
    The experiments continue…..

    • Bev July 1, 2016 at 9:31 am #

      That’s great Graham. Keep on it. It’s what we do.

      That is correct about people with bowel problems in today’s world. Even if they DO choose pharmaceuticals, they are armed with the knowledge that we were not. And, yes, doctors can and should be held accountable for the choices that they give to their patients.

      I wish you all the very best with this time around. I know it is so important to stop the bleeding. It is the most worrisome symptom, especially psychologically.

      Cheers for now.

      • Adam
        Adam July 1, 2016 at 6:25 pm #

        Diii-frigerin to to big G,wishin u da best,
        -Adam

  42. Graham from England
    Graham Lee July 1, 2016 at 10:58 pm #

    Cheers Adam!

  43. Shelly From maine July 2, 2016 at 7:33 am #

    Hey all…keep going and battling. It seems if it’s not one thing it’s another. It all seems so cyclical, huh Graham? I feel like it’s hopefully still manageable, especially in your situation. I seem to go through a spring cycle with the iritis and then bleeding off and on, wisdom teeth, been cranking the Vsl #3 ds 4 packets. Maybe your critters need to do battle with a bombardment of all the good guys! There is a recent change with the Vsl #3 ds Rx discount availability…not sure if this applies to either you or Bev, but you can go on their website. Stay positive Graham and don’t forget to stay active…that will help your whole body-spirit.
    Best of health all, Shelly

  44. Graham from England
    Graham Lee July 3, 2016 at 12:45 am #

    Cyclical indeed Shelly and thankfully always manageable. It does feel cyclical with an immune system at centre which is yet to be unraveled or fully understood. 2 most recent flares came around the middle of June, a stressy time of year but also during hayfever season. Same time as you it appears?

    I am still uneasy about PB’s given my lack of previous success and often decline. I have been on digestive enzymes for a while now and think this could have been helpful in gaining the weight.

    I do exercise though only once a week so must do better there and will try and be more positive.

    Perhaps too early to say the antihelminths are working or even required this time but drank a whole bottle of red last night and feel very good this morning. And there I was for the first time recently considering quitting alcohol. The next day or two are usually very, very “uphill”.

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