Reeling It In

SO.

Reread the last post just now and I feel like it was a little too angry-faced. Or frustrated/sad-faced? A fury in real time, that’s what it was. It just goes to show ya, we UC people have colitis for a reason 🙂 emotions! oh, you guys slay me. or tear my innards into tiny pieces, rather.

Thankfully I have bounced back after that hard reality check. I’m dwelling (mostly) in the happy land of acceptance as I know I’m in for the long haul. I believe it might take a year or more to fully get rid of the Candida. I have been on the Candida diet for just shy of two months now. I am on my 4th week of Diflucan 200mgs a day. In case you were wondering, when people talk about “getting out the big guns” they are actually talking about Diflucan, 200mgs a day, for over a months time. Pray that my liver sustains me.

Last week I went to visit my gyno and wasn’t that a h0000t. Not really.

She said I still… STILL?!… have a very serious yeast infection and prescribed me some antifungal cream. I mentioned my diet to her; she laughed and said it won’t help me at all but I could stay on it if I wanted to. Um, thank you lady. Worst advice ever. “Oh you have a systemic yeast problem? go ahead and feed it sugar every single day. you’ll only be miserable until the day you die. more cream?? 🙂 ”

She sneered at my probiotic treatment too. Like, seriously… get real, physicians. Please just get real for one second. But do I say anything? No, no. I’m not about to try to reeducate my doctors, A) because I look like I’m 12 and nobody be takin’ advice from a 12 year old, especially nobody’s who spent a good portion of their life in med school. and B) I don’t have that kinda time. When you’re freezing your butt off in the freezing cold office with barely anything on, you prioritize. This time I wanted to make it out with a diagnosis and some kinda help. done and done. I go back in 6 weeks to repeat the process.

My colitis has MUCH improved, I am happy to report. Mostly formed stools, very little blood, and while I still have urgency and cramping… I only have to go maybe 3-5 times, depending on the day. That’s darn good without prednisone. I attribute this to the strict diet, and also to the candida-inhibiting drugs. I also started taking Low-Dose Naltrexone again. 4mgs at night. I think that has helped as well. Hopefully as I continue down this path I can steadily improve, now that I know what is causing this nonsense in my body.

And here’s the thing with all this. I’m considering dumping the wormies. *GASP* I know, but I don’t feel like they have “worked” for me, at least for a decent amount of time, and if anything they are lowing my immune system capabilities, which I kinda absolutely need to help fight the candida.

I’ve always believed that given the right tools, the body can heal itself. That is what God made it to do. Get a cut, and the body heals it. Break a bone, the body reforms it. Given the right application of nutrients, bacteria, and emotion, the body can heal from an autoimmune disease. So why did I choose worms after all this time?

Truth is, all along I have known that these worms did not offer a cure,  just a relief of symptoms. For years, I have been on horribly strict diets,  drug therapies, taking up to 60-something supplement pills a day… exploring emotional healing techniques and alternative medicines. It’s been a long hard road and I will admit it, I wanted something easy for once. E-A-S-Y. And throwing back a few hundred worm eggs is so freakin’ easy. I  mean you saw me right? I was even playing worm pong for cryin’ out loud. I wanted to get worm happy and stay that way forever.

So because of my childlike faith I was willing to compromise my knowledge about how the body heals and give this a try, thinking that maybe the worms would be a step in a “healing” direction. I thought maybe they would heal my gut enough and then I could heal it more in another way… And I recant, people.

I recant! I was a forefront-er on this ride out into the Wild West and even though I did a bunch of research and read a bunch of people’s experiences I was unaware of the following things until now (9 months later):

  • Whipworm can cause allergies to become worse, or even create new ones. Food, materials, fragrances, whathaveyou. Allergies come in all sorts. I am not experiencing this currently, but just to warn you, faithful readers. It could happen to you, at a theater near you, in a neighborhood that is yours… creepy creepy.
  • As time goes on, usually one must increase their dosage of whips in order for them to still be effective. Not cost efficient. Or, as time goes on, they stop being effective altogether.
  • If you lose the worms accidentally or on purpose, people are reporting that their colitis has come back worse than ever, and that the places where the worms were previously “attached” had the worst ulcerations.
  • Therefore, Hookworm is actually a better option for treating ulcerative colitis. Even though they reside primarily in the small intestine, they have a systemic effect on the body. They also help minimize existing allergies, so no worries there. They are pretty cool if ya like worms.
  • And as always, the long term effects are unknown.

So right now I’m at a crossroads. give it up? or stick with it? Maybe try some hookworm instead? I wanted this to work, I really did… but is this another “failed experiment: lesson learned” kinda thing? Anyone is welcome to weigh in on the 20 questions…just looking for some insight. readygetsetgo!

P.S. I’ll keep you posted on my decision and the “why’s” of it 🙂

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14 responses to “Reeling It In

  1. First of all….. “Oh you have a systemic yeast problem? go ahead and feed it sugar every single day. you’ll only be miserable until the day you die. more cream?? :)” ….. best quote EVER!!! My Dr. pretty much says the same crap to me every time I go and see her!

    Second, I’m psyched your doing Low-Dose Naltrexone… heard so many praises about it via Dr. Cowan of course!

    Third, I love you and am praying for you all the time! Even if you do stop the whip worms you should still blog about your UC because you are so knowledgeable and witty! I know you are helping others with UC through their similar struggles with a little laughter. 😉

    Em ❤

  2. I’ve been on whipworm for two months. No improvements yet but I know it is early. I am considering LDN too… Have been for awhile but didn’t want to introduce too many things at once. As far as stopping your whipworm, I’m not sure what to tell you. Only you can make that decision. I can tell you that I have literally tried everything …. I mean all the medications out there … And they have made me worse. So, really hoping the wormies work! I was following you to see if they helped… : (

    • Hi Debbie! Don’t worry, each journey with UC is individual and just because my experiment with WW hasn’t been ideal, it doesn’t mean that they won’t work for you! I hope you start seeing some improvement soon, maybe in the next month or so. Keep me posted! 🙂

  3. Life does keep getting in the way.
    You sound like an amazing woman to me.

  4. The Diflucan will quite likely be preventing the whipworms doing their best for you. It might be worth keeping them to see what happens when you’re able to stop taking this drug.

    • I was wondering about that. But I also think that the worms might be hindering my clearing out of yeast. Why do you think that the diflucan might be slowing the worms down though?

  5. hi jenna — i had 55 hookworm and then did 2000 whipworm eggs. while the HW were dominant, i felt great. fewer allergies, better sleep, comfy in my brain. then when the WW started to lay their eggs, and after i did a top-off dose of WW, my health spiraled out of control: horrible allergies to everything, endless diarrhea, insomnia, then incredible constipation, irritability, anxiety, depression. it was a nightmare. so i decided to kill all the worms (including the poor, innocent hookworms!) and start over again.

    the bright side has been fecal transplants. i began those in an effort to get my bowels moving after a course of levaquin, and not only did they help with this, but i have had NO ulcerative colitis symptoms ever since. my gut is really happy. so…..

    i don’t have any new hooks yet, but for me, the best approach might be modest amounts of HW for their immune-modulating capabilities and fecal transplants to create the optimal ecology in the gut. i spent thousands of dollars on probiotics and they never made my gut feel as good as 4 fecal transplants.

    glad to read your blog and find out you’re healing up. great news! and keep us all posted, please. 🙂

    regards,

    TC

  6. I had a diflucan resistant yeast infection when breastfeeding. One month of diflucan and nothing. One day of gentian violet cleared it right up. It sounds like the diflucan is not working for you. I would think about stopping it as it’s not good to take for a long time. You might want to try a gentian violet suppository and then some greek yogurt and take it as a suppository for a few days. What is your vitamin D level? Get it up to snuff ASAP! Also see an immunologist if you can’t shake the yeast. I have my doubts that whipworm will suppress your anti-yeast immunity. For what it’s worth, I have a family member who has immunodeficiency and is vulnerable to oral thrush that is thriving on hookworm. Ask your gyno to send a vaginal culture for normal flora to see if you have that. Also ask what they are diagnosing your yeast infection on. Is it clinical symptoms, or some kind of lab test and if so, is it a smear or culture? Do you also have bacterial vaginosis or any other organisms present? Try some sacc boulardii too, it helps boost your immunity at mucosal surfaces and is also anti-candida.

    • Thanks for the advice! I have pretty much given up on the diflucan as that is not working (plus it kills the liver), and also the vaginal cream she perscribed did nothing as well. I will look into the gentian violet for sure. I have done greek yogurt suppositories for days at a time… that only keeps it at bay at best. But if the violet helps I will repeat the process like you suggested. I’m getting my Vit-D checked this week too. In a few weeks I see my gyno again. She diagnosed my yeast by clinical symptoms, a smear, and a culture.. plus, it is so bad she could just plain see it. She is apparently going to test me for strep B, and see if any other bacteria is present. I’m afraid she will recommend antibiotics. if so, I won’t know what to do with that. I have been taking s. boulardii for at least a month now and hope to try a fecal trasnplant soon. Afain, thank you for your advice! Very much appreciated 🙂

  7. Dear Jenna,

    Very informative blog. I am concerned, however, that you may be convincing people to ingest parasites in a harmful manner. For example, in the veterinary world, an animal who is too ridden with parasites will most likely end up euthanized, or spend many months/years recovering from the infestation. Not to say the same is true for humans, as neither of us are doctors, but I feel that your ingestion of whipworms (Trichuris trichiura) can be extremely dangerous. In addition to whipworms you mention hookworms (hooks) (ancylostoma duodenale). Hooks can imbed themselves in your mucus membranes and cause other bodily damage not relating to your intestines. Whipworms have been known to infect livers. I certainly hope you are ingesting these parasites under doctor supervision and that they have a corrective action in place in the event that your internal organs are consumed by the parasite infestation. Best of luck to you and Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.

    P.S. anything from Thailand is usually not a good idea. Didn’t you see Hangover 2???

    • Hi Annabelle, thanks for your concern. I do appreciate it. I wonder, though, have you ever extensively researched helminthic therapy? I’ve done a lot of treatemtns, alternative and western alike, and I’ve done a lot of research… 6 years and counting. I would not have ingested the parasite (nor would my doctor have approved the treatment) if I was convinced that it could hurt my liver or cause other bodily damage. In fact, there are clinical trials happening with humans ingesting whipworm and there have been for years, under the supervision of medical doctors and researchers. Both the hookworm and the TT cannot reproduce or migrate in the body, as other parasites, and so they don’t pose a threat to “consume” my intestines as one might suppose. I pick the number of organisms I want to ingest. You’re right, though, there are very real concerns with this therapy and the purpose of this blog is not to convince people to try HT, but rather to chronical my own experience and to be a reference for people who are already interested in the therapy. It did not work for me and I will be killing mine soon (if lab results show that they are even in there). So you can bet that will be recorded in here too. Regardless, I don’t think that these little guys taken in theraputic doses are as dangerous as you think. Also, I didn’t get mine from a random in Thailand. Missed the Hangover 2 reference, sorry! that movie isn’t my style… hehe. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours as well!

  8. the hookworm we are using is Necator Americanus – and not ancylostoma duodenale! It’s a much safer organism!

  9. I’ve had UC for 17 years. It was always brought under control by returning to smoking and then later by using EVOO morning, noon and night (on an empty stomach). 2 years ago I had a mystery attack later confirmed as Transverse Myelitis. This was after 14 months of not smoking and refusing to start, I bled steadily. I very recently discovered I’ve had Hookworm all these years, long story but I know.

    The smoking and EVOO controlled their numbers. The steady bloodloss from them caused a pernicious anemia and b12 deficiency which produced the TM.

    I think the on off smoking and EVOO increased the colony while at the same time controlled the UC. Hence why after 10 cameras they were eventually seen throughout my colon. Usually stool tests are negative and they are only discovered reliably with pillcam.

    They raise the Th2 immune response and can cause inflammation anywhere in the GI tract. Though they do appear to reduce inflammation in the small intestine. Smoking reduces Th2 so balance is good until you quit.

    My TM symptoms have resolved 80% though only through personal B12, iron and folic acid supplements. This is very recent so not over yet. I have a referral to the hospital for tropical diseases. This has not been pretty and the GI said this has caused my UC etc.

    I guess if you know you have them the danger is not so bad but thought this should be shared.

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