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Polymyalgia Rheumatica

Posted by Walt Thompson on Wednesday, 30 July 2014 in Your Questions Answered - NEW! 0 Comments

Polymyalgia Rheumatica


Dear Dr. Thompson,


I need advice regarding the treatment of Polymylagia Rheumatica. Thank you. 


I am a Vegan except when we are guests at a friend's house or eating out. Even then, we choose the healthiest food.


I have been under a lot of stress in the past few months. We sold a home to live nearer our children and spent 2 months looking for a home to buy in the new area. Bought a home prior to the holidays last year.


Meanwhile, I had a root canal that “leaked” and had to be cleaned out by a Dentist.  The pain did not subside and I kept calling his office thinking I should be on antibiotics.  He kept telling me it would heal and he did not recommend antibiotics. This continue for 9 months and the reason I didn't get a 2nd opinion is my husband underwent bypass surgery and we had 3 family members develop Cancer and go into Hospice. Needless to say I was helping in the care of all. My health deteriorated and my mouth was so painful I had to go to ER. The result was 2 months of heavy antibiotic therapy, as infection had destroyed bone. I had to have a bone graft and am now awaiting the time I can have an implant. My thinking is the infection for so many months resulted in the Polymylagia Rheumatica. I am not sure what to do to heal my body. I need help and guidance with this disabling health issue. Can you help me? Thank you.

***I do not want to take the Predisone ordered by my MD even though she says this is the only treatment option for Polymylagia Rheumatica.


Dear M.S.


I am sorry for the difficulty you are experiencing. It is very possible, as you suspect, that the stress you have experienced during the past few months has caused or contributed to your present condition. It is not uncommon for some of the many forms of stress to result in illnesses such as you are describing. Viruses and other infections may also be a cause or contributing factor.


It is true that corticosteroids are often effective in relieving some or all of the symptoms. It is also true that they, like most medications, do come with side effects--some of which may be as bad as or worse than the disease process. Corticosteroids are, however, comparatively safe when used in appropriate doses for a limited period of time.


While natural life-style practices are advised, and may often give excellent symptom relief and healing, in case they are not sufficiently effective corticosteroids used in conjunction with the life-style factors may be advisable for a time.


I must add that Polymyalgia Rheumatica is often accompanied by inflammatory changes in some of the arteries, including the artery to the eye. Should there be any sign of sudden visual change it would be advisable to notify your health-care provider at once. Prompt administration of corticosteroids are sometimes necessary to prevent sudden blindness in this disease.


I believe you are wise to continue a careful diet of mostly unrefined foods of plant origin. It is important to obtain good quality and a good variety of these choice foods so that all essential elements are included. If you are not taking a vitamin B12 supplement, I would recommend that you do that. Try to eat sufficient food to maintain normal weight. As a rule I believe whole foods are the best way to obtain the healing benefits of food, but there are times when juicing may be beneficial for a short period of time.


Exercise is really important. This should be done nearly every day and include a wide variety of activities. Walking is something most people can do that usually carries minimal risk and can be done almost anywhere. It is important, however that you also exercise all of your muscles and joints, especially those that are causing the most pain and trouble. Start out gradually, and build up progressively with longer times and increasing intensity. Keep the painful muscles exercised regularly, beginning slowly and progressing as permitted by the pain. An hour or two of exercise each day may work wonders, starting slowly and increasing gradually.

Massage and physical therapy with stretching and range of motion exercises may be helpful when done by family or friends, or by professional therapists.


Water is still an excellent, safe and effective medicine—inside and outside of the body. Be sure to drink sufficient amounts of clean, fresh, water each day to keep your urine color light yellow or clear most of the time. Water is clearly better than any other drink when one is seeking optimal benefit.

Water used in alternating hot and cold treatments may also be very effective. You may wish to try this one or more times daily using the bathroom shower. Sometimes a warm tub bath, too, may relax the muscles and result in some measure of pain relief.


Don’t forget to obtain some sunlight every day. Both the heat and the light of the sun contribute to health


Ample quantities of clean, fresh air also contribute to healing one of many diseases. It is difficult to exercise vigorously without also breathing fast and deep. The two things go well together.


Temperance is important—use all good things wisely, and avoid all bad things.


Everyone needs the Lord. While we are sometimes content to stumble along in our walk with the Lord, complaining and feeling sorry for ourselves when trials come, God is faithful.


Unfortunately, all too often we try to carry all or most of our burdens alone, forgetting that Jesus wants to be near and lift the load for us. So it is important for each one of us to stay close to Him in frequent (continuous) prayer and thanksgiving. It is crucial that we spend much time in meditation, prayer, and in reading the Holy Scriptures. God does not permit the devil to place any burden upon us that we, with the Lord’s help cannot carry. He only permits those trials and vicissitudes that may benefit us in our walk with Him each day.


If you do not already belong to a prayer circle with friends and family who regularly petition the Lord for one another’s need, please consider forming or joining one.


I would recommend that you very diligently apply all of these remedies. If after a couple weeks you are not significantly better, you may wish to add the recommended cortisone for a while as well.


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