I am pleased to report that my health has improved considerably over the course of the last nine months. This began in the spring of 2013 when I started another series of Oral Systemic Balance treatments with Dr. Farrand Robson. As you may know OSB provided the foundation for my gradual recovery from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Before starting OSB in 2007 my health had been on a downward trajectory for over 25 years. I experienced about a 30% improvement in my health from this therapy then reached a plateau in improvements. Since that time I have not experienced any set backs in my health and I have continued to explore other therapies to augment my recovery. Although I no longer suffered from fatigue I still had slow muscle recovery, disturbed sleep and adverse reactions to stimulants.
I suspected that cardiovascular issues were holding me back from complete recovery. My blood pressure was very low lying down (80/40) and I often felt resistance when I tried to push my muscles. This is confirmed in many studies about CFS, which I wrote about in my post “Cardiovascular Irregularities in Chronic Fatigue Syndrome". http://fibrofriends.typepad.com/fibro_friends/cardiovascular-abnormalities/. A year ago I learned that Dr. Farrand Robson was making significant advancements in Oral Systemic Balance since he started working with a heart ultrasound machine. Robson had long suspected that the heart compensates for restrictions in the air passage or throat because he observed positive changes in the heart rate variability and EKG of his patients when treated with OSB appliances. Now working with a heart ultra sound equipment and technician he has discovered additional adjustments to the contours of his patient’s appliances that improve heart function and he is in a position to help patients like myself even more.
Beginning in the spring of 2013 I embarked on a new course of OSB during which my appliances were completely redesigned and readjusted according to findings on the heart monitoring equipment. To learn more about my experience go to my recent post “Oral Systemic Balance – The Second Chapter” http://fibrofriends.typepad.com/fibro_friends/oral_systemic_balance/. What is significant is that through working with me and other patients with CFS, Robson identified patterns of low cardiac output in the heart that correspond to particular anatomy in the upper palette of the mouth that he is able to reverse with additional contours to his appliances.
As a result of this latest round of Oral Systemic Balance treatments my recovery has moved to a whole new level. My blood pressure lying down is now 100/50. I no longer get that heavy, light headed feeling when I walk up stairs or a hill and my muscles are recovering more quickly from exertion. I am now able to play the piano every day, go on long walks and do a moderate amount of yoga without suffering any setbacks; and even more miraculously I am sleeping consistently better than I have in 20 years. I consider myself to be “healing” as there is still room for improvements and I continue to have monitoring of my physiology and adjustments of my appliance by Dr. Robson and his staff.
In addition to Oral Systemic Balance treatments I am doing several other therapies that helped me in the past and seem to be complementing my recovery. I am having Bowen Work or Feldenkrais session once a week to help with my muscle soreness. My therapists who have worked with me for many years are impressed with the improvements in my muscle tone and are able to be more effective in their treatments. Also after a break of several years I have resumed weekly LENS neurofeedback sessions. My brain map showed significant improvements since the last time I did LENS two year and a half years ago. And I have experienced an improvement in my digestion and tolerance of more foods with the simple addition of drinking a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar in water before each meal. More on that and LENS in upcoming posts!
My current thinking about Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and other related disorders including fibromyalgia and chronic Lyme disease, which I was diagnosed with at one time, is that these conditions are primarily cardiovascular. Although not diagnosed by mainstream cardiologists, specialists like Dr. Paul Cheney who uses heart ultra sound equipment to diagnose his CFS patients, see a condition of low cardiac output characterized by low blood flow, volume and pressure. Dr. Robson has established that this heart condition is a response of the autonomic nervous system to the anatomy of a compromised air passage. In CFS the body responds to the decrease in cardiac output by down regulating enzymatic processes of the body affecting adrenal and thyroid function, digestion, detoxification, brain function, etc. The body is essentially functioning in low gear to protect the heart. Anything that tries to stimulate these processes causes an agitation of the sympathetic nervous resulting in the precarious situation of CFS patients being both exhausted and agitated. Reversing this condition requires improving the anatomy of the air passage and also “resetting” the regulatory and protective function of the brain, which LENS is particularly effective at doing. This process is not a quick fix especially for those like myself who have been sick for many years. True recovery is a slow and gradual process. I am very grateful that I am on this path. Stay tuned for my future blog posts to hear how my recovery and my understanding of this complex health disorder progresses.