Welcome to the LDN Radio Show brought to you by the LDN Research Trust. I'm your host Linda Elsegood. I have an exciting lineup of guest speakers who are LDN experts in their field. We will be discussing low dose naltrexone and its many uses in autoimmune diseases, cancers, etc. Thank you for joining us .
Linda Elsegood: Today we're joined by Sandi from the US who takes LDN for multiple sclerosis. Thanks for joining us today Sandi.
Sandi: I thank you for having me. I love LDN. I want everybody to know about it.
Linda Elsegood: So when did you first notice your MS symptoms? How long ago was that?
Sandi: I was diagnosed in January of 84. And totally paralyzed by that fall and with a lot of help from God I got back to being fairly normal and I walked without aids until 2016 when I had to have back surgery. And so I yeah I'm doing the impossible which people think I shouldn't be doing. So I'm pretty thrilled that I've not being completely wiped out with the stupid disease because it's a horrid horrid disease that I want no one to have.
Linda Elsegood: Exactly. So can you tell us what was your life like before you started LDN?
Sandi: Immediately before. Okay with the MS I also have a disease called interstitial cystitis which is also called painful bladder disease and so my life before LDN I would literally have to go to the bathroom every 20 minutes to two hours when the interstitials kicked in, and with the MS I was had overactive bladder terribly bad. And so I couldn't go more than an hour or two without having to go to the bathroom and that was day and night. And so with LDN once I started that my bladder has been nearly normal, which is absolutely amazing. Before LDN I couldn't drink my coffee because it's a diuretic and so it would go right through me. But now with LDN I'm so totally normal like you go five six hours during the day without having to use the restroom or I sleep eight hours through the night. Eight to ten hours through the night without having to get up. It's amazing absolutely amazing the difference that it made.
Sandi: And then something I didn't realize and I had been keeping track of it because it was something odd. I started going to the bathroom in the other direction too, having bowel movements, and before LDN I was perpetually constipated. I sometimes didn't go to the bathroom for five six days at a time. But in 16 after I started taking LDN I started going to the bathroom. What's this? Why? You know it's different and after I looked into it and started studying it a little bit I went well, of course the LDN has got me regulated that way, too. Which is an absolute miracle because being constipated for back then, what was it 25 years, that's a long time, and so it totally reshapes my whole life. I love it, I love it, I love it.
Linda Elsegood: So apart from the bowel and the bladder problems prior to LDN what were your other symptoms?
Sandi: With the MS or yes well, I have abnormal feeling below my waist. I can feel that it's abnormal. Fortunately, MS has not affected my brain. I'm still very cognitive and the neurologists agree with that. I have balance problems and I can't walk far, but I can walk. So I have abnormal feeling just throughout my body. My hands when I was first diagnosed were impacted but they are no longer a problem and my arms were never impacted. So those are good things. My eyesight was never changed with the MS but the drug that I took for interstitial cystitis has given me macular degeneration, and so I have lost the central vision in one of my eyes, but that that was the drug that caused that. And the fatigue, that's the big one, as most of us with MS have extreme extreme fatigue, and that is something that I have not found anything that helps with that. Get down.
Linda Elsegood: Didn't the LDN help with the fatigue?
Sandi: Not that I noticed, no. I wish I wish that it did but no. I found nothing that really helps with the fatigue.
Linda Elsegood: Have you looked into diet?
Sandi: I tried a diet when I was first diagnosed and on that diet I lost so much weight I weighed under 100 pounds and I'm five foot almost five six, and so diets don't work for me. I wish they did, and they're extremely complicated, so I have troubles eating, as it is so to go on a diet. I can't do. It doesn't work for me.
Linda Elsegood: Okay so just prior to starting LDN if you had to rate your quality of life on a score of one to ten and ten being the best what would it have been?
Sandi: Before? Yes. Probably a three. Okay and now, well I I get more I get more complicated as I go along. This past March I broke my butt, I just fell onto the floor and I got to sacrum fractures and spent 28 days in the hospital and so without that my quality of life would be an eight. I was working part-time. I was doing really well, until I got COVID in 21. Spent 21 days in the hospital and lost my dad to it in 21. But I was coming back from that and then I fell and broke my butt and so prior to all that, I would say that my quality of life was about an eight. Right now I'm more six seven-ish just because of the healing that's still taking place in my butt.
Linda Elsegood: Has LDN helped with the pain at all do you think?
Sandi: I think that it has because there were a couple times within that hospital state that I did not have my LDN and I think once I started back on my dosage the pain lessened. It didn't go away because obviously it's two fractures, but it I think that it did help, and I think that it does help I'm not nearly in the amount of pain that I used to be in before LDN because I've always had hip pain, and there's a spot in my butt, they never really knew what was going on, and that's why I had back surgery. But that has always kind of been there, but after the LDN it definitely diminished. So I think it does help.
Linda Elsegood: And did you recover from the back surgery okay?
Sandi: I did. The back what was happening was there was a nerve that was hitting something. was hitting on a nerve. and I would just be standing at work and it would drop me. and nobody quite knew what it was and then they found out that my S1 disc was problematic and so they went in and fixed it and it stopped that.
Linda Elsegood: And what caused your fall your last fall where you fractured two of your bones?
Sandi: These fractures that I just had in March, I had just come off of my fourth colonoscopy in a year, and my legs just gave out and I just basically squatted to the ground, but fractured both sides of my sacrum. Yeah don't do it. I like to tell people bust your butt doing the things you love, just don't bust your butt the way I did. It's not worth it at all.
Linda Elsegood: Yeah sounds terrible.
Sandi: It is. Yeah I I recommend nobody else do it.
Linda Elsegood: Yeah. It's not good. So how did you know initially that you had MS?
Sandi: Well, I was back in college and all of a sudden my butt went numb. It was like I had sat too long and I went to the doctor at that point and said my butt's numb. He said oit might be MS. Well that cleared up, and then I had taken a terrible fall when I was hot potting in Yellowstone Park, and I kind of fell down the mountain. I gotta admit I was partying. Yeah. So we thought that was it. But then I was working for a theater company and we were loading up the bus from the second story loading dock and I fell out of that loading dock and ended up with terrible terrible headaches that sent me to the neural neurologist for the first time. And so they diagnosed MS at that time.
Linda Elsegood: So you've got an expert faller one way or another.
Sandi: Yeah exactly. No it was kind of just an odd way to go around getting diagnosed
Linda Elsegood: But were you on any treatments at that time? Anyway treatments? Treatment? Did they offer you any help?
Sandi: Oh yeah, no in 1984 they really didn't. I took some steroids, not for very long, but they didn't have any treatments ,and so after the recovery from the total paralysis where I learned to crawl, then walk with crutches, then walk with the cane and then walk independently, I was pretty normal, other than my bladder and my bowel. I mean I walked very stiffly; it was an abnormal walk, but a lot of people didn't know and so I walked like that until my back really gave out.
Linda Elsegood: You very lucky with not having cognitive problems.
Sandi: Very lucky. Yeah, yeah that that that to me would be the worst, yeah, I like being able to think and respond and obviously talk. I'm very very grateful because it could be a whole lot worse. I have to have to all the credit to God because he's the one that's done it. I'm very blessed. Very very blessed, because at the beginning the doctors had said you will never walk again and they guaranteed that I wouldn't walk without aids and I did. I walked without aids for 25 years. That's a long long time isn't it?
Linda Elsegood: It is. Yes. It is. Are you able to do any exercise or are you having to be very very careful right now?
Sandi: Right now, and I've got people in praying about this, is there's kind of a fear of walking, just because I don't want to fall again, and so I have planned that I will start going again to the YMCA and rebuild my muscle. It's not like me to be scared of walking, but I have been. But I am just now getting back to overcoming that.
Linda Elsegood: Well that's good.
Sandi: I'm going to get back to me, get back to, yeah. (laughter) I do live alone so, I'm totally on my own. As I said, my dad had passed from COVID last year and he lived next door to me, so. So, this whole year has been a total relearning curve. But as I said God and LDN are my two staples that I will never quit never.
Linda Elsegood: You've done remarkably well, absolutely remarkable well. What an inspiration.
Sandi: But I hope I hope I am because it's a mindset; you can't you can't give in to the negativity. And I love my doctor that had prescribed LDN. I think that I found out about LDN on my MS websites back in 15 or so, but I am her first patient that she's put on it, and she puts anybody with the autoimmune disease on it now. And because of me. Because it has worked so well for me, she now readily prescribes it.
Linda Elsegood: Which makes me happy, because you've been on it's a long time. So she's been able to see that it hasn't done you any harm, and you'll continue to improve, so that's amazing.
Sandi: Oh yeah, no side effects whatsoever. And I love my dreams. I keep saying that if I could totally remember them all the time I could write sitcoms. They are so funny yeah. I I absolutely love the weird dreams.
Linda Elsegood: I feel robbed now I never had any dreams.
Sandi: You haven't? That's the one side effect that I do have from it. Like I said, I think they're crazy. I love them.
Linda Elsegood: So the doctor that prescribed the LDN for you, was that your own doctor or did you have to go looking for an LDN doctor?
Sandi: No she was my own primary care physician.
Linda Elsegood: That's good.
Sandi: Yeah and like I said, she is sold on it now She's absolutely sold on it that she will prescribe it for other people that come to her. So that's a good thing when I tell people about LDN, here in my community, at least so I can tell them you know, Dr. McIntyre will prescribe it for you if you want to try it, she will do it.
Linda Elsegood: Did it take her a long while to decide to just prescribe it for you?
Sandi: It didn't. My doctor knows that I do a lot of research in all areas of MS and autoimmune diseases mainly. And so she knew that I knew what I was talking about. She has been very supportive of me because I have gone around the world with stem cells for adult stem cell therapy. And so she knows that I do my research. She knows I'm not just slinging it at her going let's try this. She knows. So she was very good about prescribing it readily, easily because she knew I really looked into it. It wasn't just a spur of the moment thing.
Linda Elsegood: And how did you get on with the stem cells?
Sandi: I have some friends who I call my stem cell gurus who matched me up with different places, and the progress and the promising results of them. And so that's the other thing I like. I like adult stem cells. My last ones I had were in 19, and I went to Chicago and Mexico and those stem cells have totally eliminated my problem with heat intolerance. I used to have to have the air conditioning blowing full blast in the summer. This summer I've turned my air conditioning on maybe four times the whole summer and we've had a record hot summer in Montana. So yeah that's another thing I'm sold on, stem cells, and yeah I like those. My ones from Israel I found I walked totally normal, but only for nine weeks until they've they wore off. So you have to keep getting them to keep them working, but it proved to me that they work. There's going to be time that I go get more and I think they work well with the LDN. I think they're in a similar league for me that they're promising in all sorts of areas.
Linda Elsegood: Well, we wish you all the success with your healing. We hope that you’re back up on your feet soon.
Sandi: Thank you. The one thing I will say, and I follow LDN groups, I'm on several of them obviously, but the one thing that it has not helped me with at all are dry eyes, and I see people saying that they get help from that. But for me that is something that it has never helped. Which I wish it would but it has not. Okay. Everybody's different, so.
Linda Elsegood: Exactly.
Sandi: May I ask what you take it for?
Linda Elsegood: MS.
Sandi: You do. Okay. You too. What's your story?
Linda Elsegood: Oh you'll have to listen to it. You'll have to Google me and listen to it.
Linda Elsegood: Any questions or comments you may have please email me Linda l-i-n-d-a at ldnrt.org I look forward to hearing from you. Thank you for joining us today we really appreciated your company. Until next time stay safe and keep well