A lot of us with fibromyalgia get lumps and bumps under our skin called lipomas. They're basically "harmless" tumors made of fatty tissue, and while they're not dangerous just because they're there, I put quotes around the word "harmless" because -- in spite of what some doctors will tell you -- they can be painful. The tumors themselves don't hurt, but sometimes they interfere with a nerve and cause a whole lot of pain.
I first talked about lipomas here back in March, and that blog is still getting a lot of attention 10 months later. A recent comment there had some information that I just had to follow up on. It's from a woman whose dog has lipomas, and she started doing research after her vet said nothing could be done about them. She wrote:
"Knowing not to take any doctors word for anything as a sufferer of FMS, CFS and CFIDS for many years without diagnosis and treatment, I go searching. In fact, I somehow asked a Vet on About.com! I was fishing, not expecting anything, but I got an answer in about 15 minutes! This vetrinarian said to try Essiac tea (E-Tea). I tried it and the lipomas did shrink after about 6 weeks. Unfortunately, I stopped the e-tea and they are back to the same or larger size. I gave her 2 capsules with her food a day. I am restarting the E-tea again." ~Valetudinarian
What is Essiac?
Essiac is an herbal blend often made into a tea. In alternative medicine, it's sometimes used to shrink tumors, cancerous or otherwise. While there seems to be a lot of anecdotal evidence of effectiveness, there's not a lot of scientific evidence behind it. The NIH says we don't yet know enough to recommend for or against it.
However, a 2007 study shuggests that Essiac is an antioxidant, immune modulator and detoxifier. It also may help break up blood clots. All the research isn't positive, though -- one study shows that Essiac may actually stimulate the growth of breast cancer cells.
Essiac proponents claim the herbs can also lower pain and inflammation levels and boost your energy. It hasn't been studied specifically for lipomas or as a treatment for fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue syndrome, although it sounds like it should be.
If you have lipomas or want to see if Essiac helps with other fibromyalgia symptoms, be sure to do your research -- remember, nothing is perfect and anything we put in our bodies can have a negative effect. Here's an article to help you get started:
- Essiac as an Alternative Cancer Treatment, by About.com Cancer Guide Lisa Fayed.
And here's the original lipoma blog and the 50+ comments left so far:
Do you have experience with lipomas, painful or otherwise? (My lower back is full of them!) What has helped? Have you used Essiac, for tumors or other health issues? Share your experience by leaving a comment!
Learn more or join the conversation!
- Getting Started With Supplements
- Acupuncture as Fibromyalgia Treatment
- Your Diet for Managing Symptoms
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