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Alternative Medicine and Multiple Sclerosis
by Allen C. Bowling [edit]

Alternative Medicine and Multiple Sclerosis
* 1 Stars!
Price: US$ 16.97, Available worldwide on
Check Availability from: Canada or from United Kingdom
ISBN: 1888799528


This book is written by the person who is generally against alternatives to medications. That is the reason why we would not recommend this book.

The Webmaster

From Book News, Inc.
Bowling (Rocky Mountain Multiple Sclerosis Center, Colorado) has studied complementary and alternative medicine for multiple sclerosis for years. Though most people who suffer the disease use such approaches as acupuncture and herbal medicine, he says little information is available because the purveyors of such medicine know little about the disease, and mainstream physicians know little about alternative therapies. He sets out what he has learned.Copyright 2004 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR

InsideMS, Summer 2001
"Rarely does a publication address an unmet need as thoroughly as Alternative Medicine and Multiple Sclerosis."

Book Info
Univ. of Colorado, Denver. Offers information on the relevance, safety, and effectiveness of various alternative therapies not typically considered in discussions of MS management. For consumers. Softcover. DNLM: Multiple Sclerosis--therapy.

About the Author
Allen C. Bowling, M.D., Ph.D., is Associate Medical Director at The Rocky Mountain Multiple Sclerosis Center, Englewood, Colorado. During the past few years he has focused specifically on CAM therapies as they apply to MS, and has lectured on this topic extensively to both patient and professional groups.

Product Description:
This is a single source for accurate and unbiased information on the many complementary and alternative medicines that can help manage some MS symptoms and promote general health. Readers will be able to: * find unconventional options for therapy; * learn of potentially dangerous interactions between alternative therapies and medical treatments; * identify therapies that are effective, low risk, and inexpensive; * recognize ineffective, dangerous, or costly alternative therapies. A section on Integrating Conventional and Unconventional Medicine links specific symptoms to potentially useful alternative therapies: If readers have, for example, spasticity or bladder problems, they can easily identify potentially useful alternative strategies. The book includes a glossary of popular supplements commonly used in MS care.Many general books deal with the general topic of alternative and complementary therapies, but most contain serious errors about their use in people with MS, and none specifically addresses the dangerous interactions that can occur between some therapies and the disease.

Alternative Medicine and Multiple Sclerosis by Bowling, December 30, 2003
Reviewer: Joseph S Maresca (Bronxville, New York USA) - See all my reviews

Multiple Sclerosis is a system that impacts the immune system
and the nervous system. There is a hereditary disposition to
the disease. The main damage involves lesions of the brain and
spinal cord. The disease may relapse and remit during various
phases. The drug Betaseron may be employed for MS to decrease
relapses in both length and severity. Alternative medicinal
protocols may be employed i.e. acupuncture, exercise,
biofeedback, chiropractic and massage therapy. Acupuncture has minor risks in the thoracic region for the lung and heart.
Propolis has been found to stimulate and suppress immune function.
A new area called Psychoneuroimmunology has developed which
impacts both the nervous system and the immune system.
Chelation therapy removes plaque from the blood vessels.
Chiropractic has been known to help MS sufferers because low
back pain is reduced with gentle manipulation.

Dental amalgum implications may be present in arthritis, lupus,
Parkinson's and brain tumor. Decreases in dietary fat may assist
MS sufferers. Gamma Linoleic Acid supresses excess immune
system activity. Enzyme therapy improves both digestion and
the breakdown of complex food groups. i.e. protein
Certain exercises i.e. horseback riding improves the pelvis.
This book is an excellent supplementary reference for MS
sufferers. It will complement any formal program of
pharmaceutical medicines in place.

Definition: A linoleic acid is a liquid unsaturated fatty acid
essential in animal nutrition. The chemical composition is:

18 30 2

Better than expected, January 19, 2003
Reviewer: merrymousies (Waterford, VA USA) - See all my reviews

After reading some of the reviews I hestitated on buying this. I had just been diagnosed with MS. I started taking the shots (and still am) but wanted to find other things that I could do. From the reviews I thought this would be an alternative medicine bashing book but its not. It states the facts as they are and shows pros and cons, leave a lot for the reader to consider. I found this to be a well-rounded book that had good info.

An excellent starting point, October 11, 2002
Reviewer: A reader
To explore alternative medicine is to take a journey into aspects of healing that are outside of patentable pharmacology. The journey is easier with a map, but the map is only a starting point. When considering alternative medicine, we need to make our own decisions about approaches to health that often have not been studied in the way that patentable drugs have been studied. Even so, the journey should begin by learning what has previously been reported on the subject.
Dr. Bowling's book is a fist-rate description of the terrain of alternative medicine. Unlike other MS-specific books about alternative medicine, his is based on a review of published literature rather than on personal experience, anecdote and fancy.

Part of Dr. Bowling's accomplishment is that he has managed to catalogue a diverse and hard-to-define area. More imortantly, it describes, in succint and easy-to-understand and language, the published research that is available on about 40 different areas of alternative medicine.

Don't buy the book thinking there is a cure for MS to be found in its pages. On the other hand, if you are looking for a starting point for understanding alternative medicine, then this book is a useful resource.

Alternative Medicine & MS, September 24, 2002
Reviewer: A Gavin (Arizona) - See all my reviews
It does discuss a variety of alternative treatments for MS, but pretty well dismisses them all as either 1) ineffective but harmless or 2) ineffective and dangerous.

A good resource, April 17, 2002
Reviewer: Kathleen (San Rafael, California United States) - See all my reviews
I don't agree with the reviews that state this book as not being helpful. Obviously a MD is careful about recommending alternative therapies (and to do it in writing goes even farther against their grain.) With that said, Dr. Bowling includes a multitude of options and resources that any proactive patient would find of value. And he states right up front that he supports a complementary approach that uses western practices along with the alternative therapies. He offers fact, theory and opinion on these therapies (he's ok with just about every one that doesn't involve infusions/IVs, chemicals and the like) And yes, he has a bias for the ABC&Rebif drugs (and there's nothing wrong with that... I've read a lot of books written by alternative practioners who don't have anything good to say about western options/drugs; so one needs to consider the source and take a proactive approach to his/her own healing.) Just the section on Vitamins, Minerals & Other NonHerbal Supplements is worth it (having that info whittled down to 23 pages versus some oversized volume on the topic was great.) If you've gotten this far (meaning you're interested enough in this title to be reading the reviews), I say Go For It; one can never have enough info and if this book gives you just one new piece of information... then that's one more than what you started with.

Good, October 13, 2001
Reviewer: A reader
This book was well-written and stayed on the subject very well

Helpful, October 1, 2001
Reviewer: Joan Marie Hart (Albuquerque, NM USA) - See all my reviews
This book fulfills its claims. I found useful its review of numerous alternative approaches to MS. Clearly western medicine has not figured out the perfect response to the disease. This book is a way to be imformed of developments in both traditional and alternative medicine. Part of the nature of the disease is that no single treatment works for everyone. This is a good book for an overview of what options exist and whether they seem to work.

Not Worth the Money, August 28, 2001
Reviewer: A reader
I was dxd about a year ago, and I decided not to try the ABC drugs. I use a completely holistic approach, using a modified Swank Diet, supplements, exercise, yoga, etc. I have been in remission for over a year. I know that R/R MS goes in remission naturally anyway, but I feel alternative therapies have a great deal to offer someone with MS. This book discounts most of them or simply says "not enough information" or "no real evidence to prove this therapy." I have a problem with Dr. Bowling discounting the Swank diet when so many MS patients have used it with success. He notes that the diet never went through a clinical trial; however, it is impossible to do a clinical trial on a diet because there cannot be a double blind study (you can't have a blind control group with a diet because they will know they are changing their diet, etc.). This is not a valid reason to discount the diet. Also, he says the ABC's have gone through clinical trials, and have been proven to work. Well, they offer about a 30% reduction in relapses, have severe side effects, and cost $1k a month. This does not seem that great to me. Also, I don't completely trust the results of a clinical trial done on the ABC's too because the group getting the drug may know they are getting something (i.e. the side effects of the drug are pretty severe and this will indicate to the group that they are not in the placebo group), and this in itself may lead to their decrease in relapses (sheer belief that they are taking something to help. Doctors today do not know how or why these drugs work (if they do). They don't even know what causes MS. The book doesn't offer much, in my opinion. It is very wishy-washy about whether any therapy works (except for the drugs, which he strongly advocates). I would advise one going to for a better treatment for chronic illness. Diet takes willpower and lots of people say to me that they cannot do it while they are stuffing their face with a doughnut, but I would think having MS would be enough motivation to change one's lifestyle, wouldn't you??

Allen C. Bowling (Biography)

Allen C. Bowling, M.D., Ph.D., is Associate Medical Director at The Rocky Mountain Multiple Sclerosis Center, Englewood, Colorado. During the past few years he has focused specifically on CAM therapies as they apply to MS, and has lectured on this topic extensively to both patient and professional groups. 


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