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Perm J. 2019;23. pii: 18-074. doi: 10.7812/TPP/18-074.

Prolonged Survival in a Patient with Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis Receiving Acupuncture and DHEA-Promoting Herbs with Conventional Management: A Case Report.

Author information

1
Department of Naturopathic and Chinese Medicine, National University of Natural Medicine, Portland, OR.
2
National University of Natural Medicine, Portland, OR.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

Idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) is a lethal, chronic, degenerative disease most commonly affecting the elderly population. The pathologic finding of this restrictive lung condition is excessive deposition of fibrotic tissue in the alveolar interstitium. Conventional therapies minimally alter the course of disease, and mean survival time from diagnosis is only 2 to 4 years.

CASE PRESENTATION:

A 65-year-old man, diagnosed with IPF in 2007, was being monitored by a conventional pulmonologist while being treated with weekly acupuncture targeting a Chinese medicine diagnosis of spleen dampness and lung qi weakness and with botanical medicine targeting the stimulation of adrenal dehydroepiandrosterone secretion. He survived for 10 years after diagnosis.

DISCUSSION:

Studies exist linking dehydroepiandrosterone with IPF disease activity as well as acupuncture with antifibrotic activity. Larger clinical studies are needed to substantiate the link between acupuncture and/or dehydroepiandrosterone-stimulating herbs for the treatment of IPF.

PMID:
30624191
DOI:
10.7812/TPP/18-074

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