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What Doctors Aren’t Telling You About Steroid Creams – Janelle’s Incredible Story

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When Janelle Norman started to experience red, patchy rashes on her hands and feet at age 24, she had no idea about the frightening road that lay ahead of her. It would soon become a battle for her health only imagined in her wildest nightmare, one that would teach her about a failing medical system and the depths of her own strength.

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The outbreak of eczema at age 24 didn’t come as too much of a surprise, Janelle explains, having previously endured small, random outbreaks of eczema in her early childhood.

“My eczema showed up when I was fairly young, probably 3 or so. My mom, being a nurse, was pretty knowledgeable and tried to do what she could. I believe she used hydrocortisone a little bit, but used another product called ‘goose grease’ as well. I grew out of that stage in my early childhood.”

After seeing her doctor, Janelle was ordered to use a steroid cream once again, which eliminated the outbreak for a short while. Two weeks later, however, the rash had resurfaced, but this time with increased severity.

Janelle saw a repeating pattern taking place, that is, her eczema would clear up briefly whenever she applied the steroid cream, but would return with renewed force as soon as she stopped.

Concerned, Janelle asked her dermatologist to conduct allergy testing to see if there were any particular irritants that might be contributing to her outbreaks. He assured Janelle that she was likely hypersensitive to many foods, and that avoiding these triggers would prove to be difficult. Instead, he prescribed her a new cream.

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When asked about any potential long-term side effects from using the cream, Janelle’s doctor answered, “I use this [product] on babies.”

Janelle’s Worsening Condition

But the steroid cream was showing poor results, as Janelle watched her body slowly succumb to the spread of a relentless disease. By this time, her thighs, arms, shoulders, and collarbone area were engulfed by a red, itchy rash.

In addition to her skin problems, Janelle was developing sensitivities to certain foods, including various fruits and spices. This prompted her to switch dermatologists to get a second opinion on her condition.

Lo and behold, her doctor found she was allergic to an array of plants native to her hometown Kamloops, a small city located in the semi-arid region of central British Columbia.

While her new dermatologist did his best to try and gain control over the situation, Janelle was beginning to realize that her eczema was now running the show. Whenever she tried to wean herself off of the creams, a vicious retaliation of eczema would always proceed her abandon.

Not to mention, Janelle’s asthma was now acting up, creating an unwelcome dependence on her steroid inhaler.

The Answer She Was Looking For

In what seemed like a universal dump of bad luck, Janelle’s new dermatologist revealed that he would be moving his practice across the

Janelle and her boyfriend, Jason.

Janelle and her ex-boyfriend, Jason.

country, leaving Janelle in critical condition.

Her eczema had become the focal point of her existence, she said, affecting her sleep, career, and overall quality of life.

“I was now having lots of trouble sleeping due to the itching, having trouble finding comfortable clothing, and it was affecting my social life. I was having constant allergic reactions to almost everything I was eating… eventually I had to quit my dream job, I produced and sold over 400 paintings since 2009, an absolute dream career that was taken away from me because of my eczema.

“I was desperately searching for answers on the internet like I had become obsessed with [it]… No matter where I turned it seemed like nothing was going to help me.”

But then one day while searching for information on ‘incurable eczema’, Janelle came across the answer to her torment she’d been waiting for: “Have you tried everything to cure your eczema except stopping your steroid creams? You might have steroid addicted skin.”

This was a moment of revelation for Janelle.

“I all of sudden knew that this was the answer I had been looking for for the past few years. My skin had become hooked on the topical steroid creams, and it was inducing the condition to worsen and slowly damage the systems in my body.”

Finally, Janelle had found information on her mystery condition. For the first time in years, she felt relief.  “The mystery was solved!” she thought.

The Worst Yet To Come

But there was a catch to the ‘light at the end of the tunnel,’ a catch perhaps more frightening than the disease itself.

“Almost immediately after quitting the creams, one goes through a massive withdrawal process in order to detoxify and heal the body. I saw pictures on [the forum] of horrible injuries to the face and limbs of people that looked like they had been burned. Some were mild and some were terrifying.”

Janelle figured her withdrawal symptoms wouldn’t be as bad as the more severe cases considering she had only been using the creams heavily for a few years. Unfortunately, no doctor had any answers for her. She was alone in her decision to move forward, but knew there was no other option.

“I felt very passed down through the medical system. I decided that if I was going to get any better I was taking my life into my own hands and trusting my gut. Even though I would go through hell I was determined to get my life back. It was time to quit the steroids. I came back home, and threw all the creams in the garbage on January 5, 2014.”

When Withdrawal Symptoms Became Life Threatening

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Janelle during the peak of her steroid cream withdrawal symptoms. Notice the intense swelling and inflammation around her eyes.

“Never could I have prepared for what would take place over the next few weeks” Janelle says.

“The skin on my face started to split open all over… and my neck did the same. It was utterly horrific. It was like I was being set on fire and my skin was bursting open…”

Janelle’s mother arrived from out of town to find her daughter in serious condition. Her face had become infected from the large cracks in her skin, and fluid was now oozing out of the lesions, signalling it was due time to get Janelle to a hospital.

When she arrived in the emergency room, Janelle was met with a roomful of curious stares from both patients and nurses. The staff thought she was a chemical burn victim at first, Janelle explains.

Furthermore, the ER doctor was becoming frustrated because Janelle and her loved ones were refusing steroid shots meant to subdue inflammation. He had never even heard of steroid cream withdrawal before.

“He didn’t understand what I meant when I said I was addicted to the steroids.”

The Road To Recovery

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When doctors first saw Janelle during the worst of her steroid cream withdrawal, their first thoughts were that she must have experienced a critical chemical burn.

After receiving antibiotic therapy to treat her infection, Janelle spent the rest of her healing phase at home.

The next few weeks proved extremely difficult for Janelle. The initial flare-up had deemed her face unrecognizable. Janelle explains how she basically “lived in her bathtub” due to the excruciating pain she was experiencing.

In the months that followed, Janelle faced many small flare-ups, the stress of which seemed to be causing her hair to fall out.

“My skin started to ooze fluid… I would soak through countless changes of clothes and the ooze was a terrible smell of burned raw skin. It was like I had been thrown into the most intense battleground for my health ever.”

Day by day, she patiently waited for her body to heal, with hope for the day she would see her recovery.

Janelle’s Passion To Spread Awareness About Steroid Cream Withdrawal

Like so many others going through steroid cream withdrawal, Janelle’s road to recovery doesn’t have a fixed happy ending. One year after her steroid cream cessation, Janelle is still dealing with withdrawal symptoms, though her most severe side effects have subdued. Many people experience random outbreaks for years to follow, an agonizing path that sees many people giving up and returning to the creams.

Today, Janelle finds herself passionate about speaking about steroid cream withdrawal, with the hope of helping others who may be experiencing the same thing, or even better, stopping people from using the creams in the first place.291895_10150881939615114_821014403_n

“One year ago I jumped into the most intense journey I would ever take… the last 365 days have been a true test of willpower, strength, courage, humility, and hope,” she wrote to her friends and family on her Facebook page. 

“I [was] hesitant to share my photos of what happened throughout 2014, but I feel the public should know how seriously horrific the [side-]effects of hydrocortisone and topical steroid creams can be.

I need to spread the word – because our dermatologists are NOT telling anyone about this. In fact very few of them even understand that it is a problem. There are few medical facilities that understand or acknowledge TSA/TSW, because the symptoms present themselves kind of on the sly.

She urges anyone who may be experiencing symptoms of steroid cream withdrawal to visit itsan.org, a non-profit organization aimed at providing people with information and resources about SCW.

I feel like if my skin condition was given proper care in the beginning (like further testing and exploration into the cause of my eczema) I may have been able to avoid [all of this]… Even when I had asked the first dermatologist to allergy test me, he had said to stick to the creams because my allergies would have been impossible to track down and address all together… So basically, he was treating the symptom with a bandaid for years… a bandaid that almost killed me.”

We have the power to stop this suffering from happening to more people, so please, share this story with your family and friends and get the word out about the dangers of steroid creams. This extends to people taking oral steroid medication and people using steroid inhalers for asthma as well. It is imperative to be asking your doctor about any and every side effect with any recommended medication, because as we’ve seen, the consequences can be fatal.

Have you or anyone you know experienced steroid cream withdrawal? Please share your story or thoughts with us in the comment section below!

See also: How A Mother Cured Her Daughter’s Eczema With A Raw Diet

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Thousands Gather To Mark The 33rd Anniversary of the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act

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Government’s gift to Pharma of liability-free vaccines puts children’s health at risk states Children’s Health Defense (CHD) Chairman, Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.

Washington, DC – Thousands of advocates for children’s health will gather Thursday at the Vaccine Injury Epidemic (VIE) Event on the National Mall to mark the 33rd anniversary of National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act (NCVIA). The rally on Nov. 14th will spotlight the devastating impact NCVIA has had upon the state of children’s health. While children continue to be injured by vaccines daily, vaccine makers cannot be held accountable, thereby eliminating incentive for vaccine safety.

In his remarks, RFK, Jr. will address the ramifications of NCVIA and honor those whose lives have been impacted by vaccine injury and death. “It’s time to call out Congress, the CDC, and drug companies for allowing industry profits to trump children’s health,” said Kennedy. “There is no crisis more urgent than the epidemics of chronic health conditions among our nation’s children.”

Following NCVIA’s passage creating the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (NVICP), the childhood vaccine market sparked a gold rush for Pharma as more vaccines for routine childhood illnesses were developed. Coterminous with the burgeoning vaccine schedule, chronic health conditions in children rose from 12% to 54%. As vaccine industry profits grew to $50 billion annually, so did diagnoses of asthmaautismADHDallergiesanxietydepressiondiabetesobsessive-compulsive disorder and auto-immune diseases.  Here are the facts:

  • An HHS-funded study found only 1% of vaccine injuries are reported.
  • Despite NVICP’s high burden of proof and two out of three claims dismissed, over $4.2 billion has been paid for claims of vaccine injury or death.
  • The vaccine-injured find NVICP to be a years-long, litigious program with no jury, discovery and precedent. While medical bills mount, the injured are up against DOJ lawyers and HHS “Special Masters” that act as judges.
  • The Department of Justice and the NVICP are accused of fraud and obstruction of justice in the Autism Omnibus Proceeding.
  • The Institute of Medicine reports that the vaccine schedule as recommended has never been studied for long-term health effects despite independent research suggesting that unvaccinated children are healthier.
  • Modern medicine acknowledges that not everyone responds the same to vaccination and the “one size fits all” vaccine policy is not science based.

Children’s Health Defense’s created these six steps to vaccine safety. RFK, Jr. interviews are available upon request.

Sign up for free news and updates from Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and the Children’s Health Defense. CHD is planning many strategies, including legal, in an effort to defend the health of our children and obtain justice for those already injured. Your support is essential to CHD’s successful mission.

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Awareness

How To Clear Seriously Blocked Sinuses Naturally In 1 Minute

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Three simple steps you can take to clear blocked sinuses that seem to work for many people.

  • Reflect On:

    Are you healthy? What natural things do you do when "flu season" comes around to give your immune system a boost?

Having clogged sinuses isn’t fun. You can’t breath, you can’t smell, your head hurts, and your voice sounds funny. Finding relief when you have clogged sinuses is usually like finding a million dollars on the ground — it’s amazing!

The causes for nasal congestion can range greatly, and you don’t have to be sick to be congested. Many people will experience congestion from allergies, temperatures, dust, smoking, spicy food, and air particles.

Recently I was at Contact in the Desert in California and I found myself having clogged sinuses from the blowing sand and dry air. Within two days, I couldn’t breathe at all out of one side of my nose and my sinuses got blocked up, causing my face and head to hurt. I needed a solution.

After trying to blow my nose over and over again, I turned to the internet for relief. Sure enough, Google came through.

I found a video by Dr. Adam that quickly and easily explained how to clear sinuses in about one minute using just your fingers — and no, they don’t have to go in your nose. Sure enough, I had relief from the pain the blockage was causing, and I could breathe!

Some might be wondering why I didn’t take sinus or cold medication to get relief. The answer is simple: I don’t like taking medication for anything unless I absolutely have to. I know many of you are on the same page and like to do things naturally. Many cold medications just mask symptoms and come with negative side effects that are worth avoiding if possible.

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How to Clear Your Sinuses Fast!

You simply need to sit down and get your hands ready for the following steps. The video below offers a visual demonstration, so I recommend checking that out too.

1. While sitting with your head and body on about a 45 degree angle, turn your head sideways and rub your sternocleidomastoid muscle downward four or five times. You can find the muscle right beneath your ear running down your neck to your collarbone. See image. Do this on both sides of your neck to help relax your neck.

2. Take your index fingers, locate the hard, bony part of the upper sides of your nose, and move downward toward the soft part on the side of your nose where the bone ends. Begin massaging this area in a circular motion with as much pressure as you can for about 20 seconds. Once completed, rub the muscles from the side of your nose down and toward your cheekbones to relax them.

3. Take your index fingers and run them under the inside orbit bone above your eyes until you find a notch in the bone called the super orbital notch. It is usually just above the centre of the eye. Massage that notch in a circular motion with as much pressure as you can handle for about 20 seconds. Once done, massage your forward with both hands starting in the centre of your forehead and pulling outwards towards your temples.

That’s it! Once you have gone through this process you should notice a lot of relief in your sinuses and should be able to blow your nose quite easily. You may have to repeat this process again, but play with it and see what works for you.

Below is a video from Dr. Adam explaining the entire process. I have also included another helpful method that worked well for me as well.

Alternative Method

This method is simpler but may not be as effective for everyone. As always, do what works best for you.

1. Push your tongue flat into the roof of your mouth, with decent pressure, for one second.

2. Then, take your thumb and press the area right between your eyebrows above your nose for one second.

3. Alternate between steps one and two over and over again for about 20-30 seconds. Note: You are not pressing the points at the same time, simply alternating between them.

Repeat this process as necessary to help clear your sinuses.

Prevention

If you’ve had blocked sinuses, you probably don’t want it to happen often, so prevention is the key! Here are a few ways you can avoid blocked sinuses.

Eat a well-balanced diet – Eating healthy foods promotes good health. What you put into your body to digest is what determines your health. If you want your immune system working well, take care with quality food and keep your gut performing well.

Get regular exercise – Regular exercise also helps improve overall health and the immune system.

Quit smoking – It goes without saying, but cigarettes are not good for us and the smoke can irritate sinuses.

Use a humidifier – If you find your house dry, use a humidifier to help dampen the air. You can also hop in a warm shower and breathe in the steam. It’s best to use a chlorine filter on your shower head so you aren’t breathing in toxic chemicals from chlorine.

Cut out antibiotics – Antibiotics don’t do anything for viral infections, which is usually why people get clogged sinuses when they are sick. Antibiotics wreak havoc on your health. Only take them when they are absolutely necessary!

Keep a clean home – Dust and poor air quality can also cause blocked sinuses. Vacuum and wipe down surfaces of your home regularly. Decrease clutter and areas where dust can collect and stay.

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Alternative News

Cannabis Might Reverse Heart Failure, University of Hawaii Study Finds

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    New research is showing that TRPV1, a cannabinoid receptor found abundantly in the heart may be key in slowing down and potentially even reversing heart failure.

  • Reflect On:

    With so many medical applications and the potential to treat and even cure a wide variety of diseases, why has there been such a lack of research, funding and clinical trials when it comes to medical marijuana?

Cannabis could potentially slow and even reverse heart failure via TRPV1, a cannabinoid receptor. This is according to research led by a team at the University of Hawaiʻi John A. Burns School of Medicine (JABSOM).  Alexander Stokes, a JABSOM assistant professor in cell and molecular biology, said “the potential medical benefits of using cannabis-based therapies for the treatment of heart disease are promising.”

TRPV1 is showing long-term effective reversal of heart failure when the substance is administered orally. The key here is orally, this doesn’t mean that you can smoke cannabis and it will be good for your heart, in fact, it may very well have a negative effect if you do that. “TRPV1 has primarily been studied as a pain receptor,” said Stokes. “The receptors are abundant in the heart, and we are excited to show that if we inhibit its function with oral doses of drugs, we can reverse some effects of heart failure.”

The findings were published in the journal Channels.

A Big Topic Right Now

The topic of medical marijuana is a big one right now, especially in Canada where it was recently legalized. For years, there’s been a negative stigma attached to the substance, and when one dives deep into the subject it’s quite easy to see why. Cannabis, often called marijuana, has potential to treat and possibly even cure a wide range of diseases, but because of prohibition, the studies examining the medicinal aspects of the herb have been very limited. This is very unfortunate, for a number of reasons, and also very suspicious.

If we look at cancer, for example, multiple studies have clearly shown its potential to completely destroy cancer cells, many in vitro studies have clearly demonstrated this potential, without question. They’re not hard to find and have been published in abundance. Here is a video of Dr. Christina Sanchez, a molecular biologist at Compultense University in Madrid, Spain, explaining how THC (the main psychoactive constituent of the cannabis plant) can completely kill cancer cells. THC is simply one constituent of cannabis. It has been shown to be effective for multiple diseases as well, while other diseases are better treated with CBD, another constituent within cannabis. This begs the question, why have there been no, or at least so few, clinical trials set up as a result?

This hasn’t stopped people taking matters into their own hands though. There are numerous examples all over the internet of people claiming that cannabis oil, for example, cured their cancer. But from a scientific perspective this isn’t evidence, it’s simply anecdotal and as a result of a lack of research we cannot officially say cannabis kills cancer. We can only say that it has tremendous potential and that a lot more research is needed.

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Pharma vs Cannabis

When a pharmaceutical drug shows even less than half of the potential that marijuana has shown, clinical trials are set up right away. Just imagine if the same resources that are poured into conventional cancer treatments were given to medical marijuana’s potential to treat cancer, among a wide range of other diseases. If that were to happen, we would know much more. But the lack of research continues. Is it because if scientists were to discover what strain, method of delivery and all of the other factors that require more research that are needed to treat disease, cannabis could become an effective treatment for cancer? What would happen to conventional treatments? Would people have to pay for their treatment if it was disclosed how to, for example, make cannabis oil in the right way for a specific cancer? Maybe this has something to do with it?

Big pharma would lose billions. It’s definitely something to think about.

What’s happening right now with the legalization of marijuana is that components of it are allowed to be studied. It seems that drugs will be developed to synthesize certain components of the plant, and the drugs themselves can then be patented. This is how big pharma will ultimately make money off of medical marijuana.

The Challenge With Government Control Of Cannabis

It’s great to see people with Parkinson’s, Dementia, Alzheimer’s disease, Epilepsy, cancer and more have tremendous success with medical marijuana. What’s unfortunate is that mainstream medical marijuana will be in the hands of big pharma, it already is. We will not know how it’s grown, how it’s been manipulated, and what’s been changed. It’s simply being used for profit, because at the end of the day that’s what it’s all about in our current infrastructure. We have a sick care industry, not a health care industry.

A free, open and caring society, a health care industry that truly cares about health could use multiple natural substances to completely wipe out the need for any pharmaceutical drug. There are massive amounts of foods, herbs and plants that, if studied in full, could completely eliminate our dependence on the corporation.

“The medical profession is being bought by the pharmaceutical industry, not only in terms of the practice of medicine, but also in terms of teaching and research. The academic institutions of this country are allowing themselves to be the paid agents of the pharmaceutical industry. I think it’s disgraceful.”

– Arnold Seymour Relman (1923-2014), Harvard professor of medicine and former Editor-in-Chief of The New England Medical Journal  (source)

Important Thoughts To Consider About Cannabis

The other side of the coin is that heavy cannabis use, although not lethal, can be dangerous and potentially damaging to young brains that are not fully developed, and perhaps to those who use it on a regular basis in ways we do not yet understand.

It’s not as harmful as alcohol abuse or smoking cigarettes, but there is still a lot that we don’t know. Legalization in Canada at least have led to the idea that it’s completely safe and beneficial for everybody. This is also, most likely, not true.  We need to get past the idea that it’s something healthy for everybody, and even healthy to smoke cannabis on a regular basis. But when it comes to the medicinal aspects of cannabis, for several diseases, there is a very serious discussion to be had here as it’s again, already helping many people around the world with their cancer, with their epilepsy, etc.

With many people losing trust in the medical industry, it’s easy to see why they are turning to growing their own cannabis, testing doses, and methods of delivery, etc. For some, it’s a shot in the dark but worth a try.

We are not advocating that it’s healthy to use cannabis recreationally and that it will not have any negative effects, we are simply stating that it’s a head scratcher how such a potent medical plant that clearly has multiple medical applications has been ignored and prohibited from research and professionally treating many diseases with it.

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