Alternative Medicine For Temporal Arthritis

Temporal arthritis, also referred to as giant cell arteritis or temporal arteritis, is caused from inflammation in the medium and large arteries that run along the head and that bring blood flow to the scalp. Though it only affects one in 1,000 people, the condition is severe and causes significant complications, sometimes fatal, if left untreated. Because of the numerous side effects that most traditional medications include, people often look for alternative treatments that are safe and natural. In the case of a severe condition like temporal arthritis, alternative treatments are best used in conjunction with traditional medicine.

Causes and Symptoms

Temporal arthritis is considered an autoimmune disorder, which occurs when an overactive immune system cannot differentiate between good and bad pathogens, causing it to attack certain cells or organs in the body. This disease affects people older than 50, usually women. Symptoms of temporal arthritis include headaches, scalp pain or tenderness, vision problems, pain when talking or chewing, fever, fatigue, shaking, sweating, weight loss and loss of appetite. Untreated temporal arthritis can lead to blindness, among other complications.

Conventional Treatment

According to the American Academy of Family Physicians, temporal arthritis is best treated with a high dosage of corticosteroids for two to three years. After this period, the patient will slowly be weaned off the drug. If symptoms recur, some patients need to stay on a low dosage of steroids permanently. Long-term steroid use may cause complications, including osteoporosis, infection susceptibility, hyperglycemia, high blood pressure, cataracts, psychiatric disorders, weight gain and more.

READ  Cure Melasma

Alternative Treatments

Caring Medical & Rehabilitation Services, a natural medicine clinic run by Dr. Ross Hauser and Marion Hauser states that conventional medicine does not address the root of the problem. Their website recommends making an appointment with a natural medicine doctor or dietitian to find out why the body is producing antibodies against itself. This can be done by testing for food allergies, inhalants, hormone levels and various infections, and then altering diet and lifestyle according to these test results and how your doctors see fit.

Expert Insight

The American Academy of Family Physicians states that 10 to 15 percent of non-treated or inadequately treated patients of temporal arthritis will experience blindness. Other complications include an increased chance of developing aortic aneurysms, which could be fatal, and an increased risk of stroke. The Mayo Clinic website recommends using steroids immediately to prevent these complications. Along with the use of steroids, home treatments should include eating a healthy diet and exercising regularly. This reduces the possibility of side effects from the steroids, such as thinning bones, high blood pressure, diabetes and weight gain.

Food and Supplements

The Mayo Clinic suggests a diet of fresh fruit and vegetables, whole grains and lean meats and fish. Diet can help prevent such problems as bone density loss, diabetes and high blood pressure.

American Academy of Family Physicians recommends taking calcium and vitamin D supplements to decrease the risk of complications from steroid use, such as osteoporosis and impaired wound healing.