SHINGLES AND GENITAL HERPES
by John H. Olwin, MD, member of NOHA's Professional Advisory Board
Despite extensive study of the various aspects of viral disease and many reports of the use of acyclovir (Zovirax), a common antiviral drug, the clinical course of the viral disease shingles -- herpes zoster -- has been little altered in recent years. This distressing disease affects as many as three to five persons per thousand in the general population and six to ten persons per thousand over sixty. The virus that causes herpes zoster is the same one that causes chicken pox. Stored in the quiescent state in the nerve root ganglia after recovery from the childhood disease, it is activated to shingles in the adult by cancer, mental or emotional stress, local irradiation, trauma, syphilis, or chemotherapy, or often for no apparent reason. Shingles is one of the most painful afflictions of the elderly and modern therapeutic measures have offered little relief.
Some fifty years ago my aunt was treated by her physician for a severe case of shingles by the transfer of 10 milliliters (2 l/2 teaspoonfuls) of her own blood from her arm vein to her gluteal (buttock) muscle group -- an auto-hemo-transfer. The results were dramatic. .Her pain was lessened in twenty-four hours and was completely gone forty-eight hours after the blood transfer.
As a surgeon I don't see many cases of shingles, but over the years, twelve of my patients developed shingles and three more of them genital herpes caused by the herpes simplex virus -- a first cousin to the herpes zoster virus. (The simplex is also responsible for fever sores on the lips). After contacting the patients' internists, I made the blood transfer in all fifteen of them. Ten of the shingles patients and all of those with genital herpes responded favorably, becoming free of pain within days of the treatment. Two of the former had gone more than seven weeks between the appearance of the clinical signs of the shingles (pain and vesicles) and the blood transfer; they were the only ones not responding favorably to the treatment.
A cooperating immunologist has determined that in two of these cases, there was an elevation of six immune factors within an hour of the blood transfer. We hope in the future to assay for these and other such factors in order to explain the observed clinical effects of this simple procedure. The possible influence that it might have on the treatment of viral disease in general is mind-boggling.
[Editor's note: When this article was first printed over eight years ago in 1994, Dr. Olwin kindly offered this following treatment. Many readers responded and were helped at that time. However, since that time, Dr. Olwin has totally retired, and has moved to the southwest US. He is presently in his nineties and can no longer offer this treatment.]
Our request to the readers of NOHA NEWS is to ask anyone they know who may develop shingles or genital herpes to call our office. We will discuss the matter with them and, if they choose, will administer the treatment. The latter is almost painless and, when administered within seven weeks of the appearance of the lesions, has been most gratifying both to the patient and to us.
There will be no charge for the treatment. Those who can afford to will be asked to make a donation to an established research foundation to support continuing work on this project. Those who cannot will be treated just as those who do. The donation is totally deductible.
Article from NOHA NEWS, Vol. XIX, No. 3, Summer 1994, page 4.