Low Dose Naltrexone (LDN)
We have answers
I was recently able to participate in a discussion on Low Dose Naltrexone that I thought was worth sharing. Let me first say that I am a big skeptic on things that seem to “fix” everything. What I have found with most products that have multiple uses is that those products tend to be really good at one thing but show little to no benefit for anything else.
First, let me introduce you to Naltrexone. Naltrexone has been used for years for patients that are addicted to alcohol or pain killers. It has been proven to be safe and effective for this purpose for many years. The normal milligram strength for this purpose is ~ 50 mg. (Low dose Naltrexone is any strength below 5 mg). Naltrexone works by interfering with the same receptors that alcohol and pain killer use.
When I reviewed Low Dose Naltrexone (LDN) several years ago I found that there was a little evidence to use this product for Multiple Sclerosis and Fibromyalgia. Since I am always skeptical about putting any chemicals into the body, I was reluctant to recommend this for anyone with the evidence that was available. I have listened to several pharmacists and physicians that are having success after success using LDN. A few of the physicians in the area are now providing a prescription of LDN for various reasons. The results that I am hearing are impressive to say the least. In my opinion, a trial of LDN is acceptable if the other treatment options have failed and there is evidence that LDN may help.
So far there is evidence that LDN may be used for the following conditions:
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder – Nervenarzt. 2015 Mar;86(3):346-51. doi: 10.1007/s00115-014-4015-9. Cancer – Integr Cancer Ther. 2006 Mar;5(1):83-9. Crohn’s Disease – Am J Gastroenterol. 2007 Apr;102(4):820-8. Epub 2007 Jan 11. Fibromyalgia – Arthritis & Rheumatism Volume 65, Issue 2, pages 529–538, February 2013 Multiple Sclerosis – Multiple Sclerosis. 2008 Sep;14(8):1076-83. Inflammation and Chronic Pain – Clin Rheumatol. 2014; 33(4): 451–459. AIDS/HIV – Journal of AIDS and HIV Research Vol. 3(10), pp. 180-188, October 2011 Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) – Journal of Neuroimmune Pharmacology June 2013, Volume 8, Issue 3, pp 470-476 Autism – Expert Opin Pharmacother. 2012 Aug;13(11):1615-29. doi: 10.1517/14656566.2012.674110. Epub 2012 May 3. Lyme Disease Itching (chronic) – J Am Acad Dermatol. 2007 Jun;56(6):979-88. Epub 2007 Feb 22.
There are other articles that I have found but these are the ones that I share with physicians when they ask about LDN. I recently had the opportunity to recommend this treatment option for a man with fibromyalgia. He has tried Lyrica, Neurontin (Gabapentin), and Cymbalta to control the pain that he is having. It will take between 6 and 9 weeks to see the results. So I will try and keep you posted on his progress.
As you can see we are involved in a number of different medical problems. I would welcome any question that you may have. How about scheduling a time to talk about your specific needs?
Have you had experience taking LDN? Are you struggling with one of the conditions that LDN might provide relief? Let me know, I am here to help.