Disease Modifying Drugs (DMDs) are a group of treatments for patients living with conditions such as chronic inflammation, arthritis or even multiple sclerosis. They work with different parts of the immune system to reduce the inflammation which starts in the brain and spinal cord nerve cells.
However, despite the potential benefits of DMDs, many patients are concerned about the risk of potential side effects. Plus, they can potentially be quite expensive giving patients further pause before starting down that path.
Inflammation: The Undiagnosed Problem
People suffering from degenerative condition may not always realize their body is experiencing inflammation. They may feel well, yet there can be silent activity in the body which can be seen on a brain scan.
An MRI scan could alternatively show that the patient has no new lesions in the brain and spinal cord, or fewer or smaller lesions.
The goal for those considering DMDs is called NEDA (no evidence of disease activity). This would mean being free of visible disease activity which could only be seen on a brain scan.
Side Effects of DMDs
DMDs are typically recommended as a method of reducing nerve cell damage build-up. Researchers have found that those treated with DMDs tend to have lower levels of disability compared to those who are not being treated with DMDs.
Specifically in the case of MS, DMDs have been shown to slow the progress of the disease, but in most instances the effectiveness of the DMDs diminish over the long term. They also carry serious risks of side effects.
Common side effects of DMDs include stomach pains, dizziness, depression, suicidal thoughts, fatigue, fever, chills, muscle aches, changes in vision, sudden weight gain, muscle weakness, irregular heartbeat, jaundice, persistent nausea, intolerance to cold or heat, swelling of the extremities, trouble breathing and numbness in the hands, ankles or feet.
Could Alternative Medicine Offer Better Results Than DMDs?
Complementary medicines are treatments used in combination with conventional medicines and DMDs, while alternative medicines are natural treatments used in place of DMDs.
Exercise, acupuncture and taking Vitamin D, for instances are treatments which are often used in combination with DMD’s.
Some alternative medicine treatments which could benefit inflammation symptoms might include the following:
The Wahls Protocol Diet
A healthy diet can help those with inflammation feel their best; the Wahls Protocol was named for Terry Wahls, MD, the doctor who created the protocol after being diagnosed with MS.
The Wahls Protocol is a version of the Paleo diet—lots of meat and fish, vegetables (particularly green leafy ones), brightly colored fruit, especially berries, and fat from animal and plant sources, particularly omega-3 fatty acids
The Wahls Protocol does not include dairy and eggs, grains, beans, nightshade vegetables and sugar. And while the protocol teaches a change in eating habits, many choose to combine the protocol with important nutritional supplements for various reasons.
Supplements like high dose Biotin and NAD+
High dose Biotin is Vitamin B7, which helps convert food to energy.
Biotin also supports nerve health and can support the production of myelin.
MS develops when the immune system targets and damages myelin, and Biotin helps the body produce more myelin.
Although Biotin is available over the counter, it is generally a much lower dosage than you would find in Myetin—which also contains NAD+.
NAD+ is nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide which is a co-enzyme found in all living cells. NAD+ turns nutrients into energy, and, when taken alone, will have a positive effect on cellular DNA repair as well as energy metabolism.
When you pair high dose Biotin and NAD+, Biotin drives effective fatty acid synthesis, and the combo decrease pain and fatigue which are critical factors for those with inflammation.