A patient came in yesterday with an unrelenting dry cough. It has been keeping her up at night for the last few weeks. During my interview with her, she was coughing non-stop.
I asked her what helps her cough. "Nothing," she reported.
She had been referred for an X-ray by our supervising physician. The radiologist diagnosed her with atypical pneumonia. However, I think he was wrong.
Listening to her lungs revealed no fluid, cracks or other sounds.
The supervisor prescribed her 1000 mg of Vitamin C derived from rose hips along with Bactrim antibiotic.
As a student clinician, I don't argue much with my supervising physicians.
However, I am glad I was not there the week before when he prescribed her antibiotics and vitamin C. I would have argued. I know he was CYA [cover your ass] by prescribing antibiotics - but with no lab test to determine if it was viral or bacterial, I find that not good medicine. She did not have a fever either - which tells me it is more likely viral and not bacterial. Bacterial infections tend to run higher temperatures.
I must state that I was not there when he saw the patient the first time. She may have been looking horrid and needed to prescribe antiobiotics based on signs and symptoms.
So this visit, I was seeing her still coughing profusely and not much better. She had taken 3 days worth of the Bactrim along with the vitamin C.
After taking her case and reporting no improvement, I asked the physician if I could prescribe 500 mg N-Acetyl Cysteine twice per day and contrast hydrotherapy.
He supported my ideas and allowed me to issue this information to the patient.
Bacteria and viruses have a safe harbor in mucous. The immune fighting cells cannot get in there easily and attack. That is why it is essential to get it broken up and out - especially when in the lungs.
I chose N-Acetyl Cysteine as it is a natural mucolytic - meaning it helps bust up mucous. The patient had a very dry persistent cough which told me the mucous was tough and sticky. She would not get better until the mucous broke up and either got coughed up or absorbed.
I chose contrast hydrotherapy as it brings blood to and away from the lungs in high amounts. This brings a pumping action allowing the immune system to rush in along with the blood to bathe the infected area.
I foresee the patient's cough to either improve or disappear within 1 week following this protocol.
Since she is taking antibiotics, she will have to take probiotics such as acidophilus and bifido bacteria to restore her body with beneficial bacteria. If she does not take probiotics, her gut will be a haven for yeast, candida and pathological bacteria. So I must make a point to remember to suggest to the supervising physician to prescribe high dose probiotics - like 150 billion bacteria for 7 days.
Contrast local lung hydrotherapy works like this:
- Take a hot wet wrung out towel - as hot as the patient can stand - and place it directly onto the lung area.
- Cover it and the patient with a dry towel and blankets.
- After 3 minutes of a hot towel, place a wet wrung out well ice cold towel onto the now warm towel.
- Flip the towels over, remove the one towel and press down on the ice cold towel. This brings the ice cold towel in contact with the patient's chest causing them to gasssssp from the cold.
- Leave the ice cold towel in contact for 1 minute.
- Place a new hot wet wrung out towel onto the cold towel and flip over. Remove the now warmed cold towel.
- Repeat this three times a couple times a day every day until the lungs are clear of illness.
CAUTION: One cannot do this safely on a patient with asthma.
This works very well. I have done it over and over on patients, myself and friends with chronic cough or bronchitis.
It works especially well if the hot towels are used in conjunction with local peat foments. The peat works as a heat insulator allowing higher temperatures to penetrate deeper into the tissues thereby allowing improved healing. The peat is also high in humic and fulvic acids which help as anti-spasmodics, pain relief and drawing out toxins. Given that peat is made in an area with mineral springs and full of local flora, it contains numerous minerals and active plant compounds.
I use hydropacks for heating peat foments. I recommend heating the hydro-packs in a hydrocollator. If this is not realistic for your physician, a crock pot is another easy way of heating these packs as well. After heating the hydro-pack, I place it on top of the peat foment pad for 5 minutes on each side until hot- again, as hot as the patient can stand.
- Take a hot shower.
- Get the hot water as hot as you can tolerate. Let it run all over your skin and head.
- After 3 minutes of hot, turn the dial all the way over to cold.
- The cold blast is intense and will make you holler. I tend to visualize the tropics or a hot beach while the cold is hitting me.
- Do cold for 30 seconds and have it run all over you.
- You may find it easier to run your head under the cold first and then diving your body under the shower when you're ready.
- Repeat this 3 times - hot for 3 minutes, all the way cold for 30 seconds.
- End on COLD - very important.
- You can modify it by simply taking a hot shower and ending it with 30 seconds COLD.
Caution: Do not do this if asthmatic or have a condition where increased circulation may be dangerous. Ask your doctor about this before you do it. It is a strong treatment. I am not prescribing it - I am only offering information on how to do it.
Do this daily and you will likely not get sick anymore - and you may also see that you can cut back on your morning coffee! :)
I always end my showers with 30 seconds cold. I don't drink caffeinated drinks nor do I get sick much at all - and I'm barely sleeping, stressed out and eat like crap 1/2 the time due to medical school, work and being a dad of 2 little squirts.
Try the contrast shower and let me know how it works for you! And if you're wondering if it is safe for you, it may not be. Ask your doc.
Disclaimer: All information relating to medical and health conditions, products and treatments, is for informational purposes only. The information provided is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between a patient/site visitor and his/her physician.