A Christian Understanding of Hypnosis

By: Traci Patterson – Owner, Advanced Pathways Hypnosis

I am a Christian myself; I was a volunteer with Young Life for many years and served as Christ’s ambassador to youth from the foster care system too.  Then my journey took a turn and I was diagnosed with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS).  This turning point took my life in a different direction and introduced me to many things that I would have never experienced; good and bad.  Bad, being chronic pain and a debilitating illness.  Good, a new career path in the field of Hypnosis / Hypnotherapy, and helping others in the same way that I was helped.

After I got into remission with my Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS) via clinical hypnosis (that included a multi-therapeutic approach) I took the steps to gain my certifications and credentials in Hypnosis, and additional certifications in Pain Management and Cancer Care.  I already had a background in the healthcare industry, and with my experience as a chronic pain patient this was a natural transition for me.  I wanted to bring the information that helped me regain my life to those suffering needlessly as I had for so many years with chronic pain.

Then, an interesting thing happened after I announced that I was opening an office in the field of hypnosis.  I received emails from some in the church that felt that this was not a Christian way of treating chronic pain, others referred to hypnosis as mind control and a few felt it was perhaps witchcraft.  No one took the time to ask me questions.  Instead they made assumptions based upon misinformation, stage shows they had seen or Hollywood movies they had watched.

Since I started my practice as a hypnotist there are still some in the Christian religion that want to have nothing to do with me as a hypnotist / hypnotherapist. In light of this very narrow minded view of the church, I thought it was good that I write something about the truth of hypnosis and hypnotherapy (from a Christian’s point of view). That is the reason for this article.

Hypnosis has been present since the dawn of mankind as an ancient healing treatment. The popularity of its use has gone up and down, according to societal factors.  Early man used drums and chanting to create altered states. The Roman Empire, in particular, was especially keen on hypnotic states and their healing effects.  Christianity was spreading when the Roman Empire was about to collapse.  Many early Christian leaders frowned upon hypnotic practices and fulminated against it as white witchcraft. Many evangelical authors referred to hypnotists as “charmers” and “enchanters”.  They believed that hypnosis put the soul in jeopardy by putting it in a passive receptive state, thereby opening the door to morbid spiritual influences.

What made the early priests and rabbis take such a strong stand against hypnosis?  Part of the reason was because healing in hypnosis seemed to take place without God. Priests were afraid that people would no longer believe in the power of God.  The concern may not even have been religious.  It was a politics of numbers.  If more followers fell away from Christianity, the priests would lose their power.

Today, hypnosis is neither anti-religious nor pro-religious.  Most religious groups accept the proper and ethical use of hypnosis for helping people.  Hypnosis is steadily gaining recognition in the world as the means to help people be successful and experience abundance in their lives. The late Pope Pius gave his approval of hypnosis, stating that the use of hypnosis by health care professionals for diagnosis and treatment is permitted.  In the context of medical hypnosis, patients are in safe hands, and on the road to recovery.  Practitioners have an ethical code, and it is important to note that hypnotists have no mind control powers. They can’t read the future, can’t cast spells or talk to the dead.  Plus there are many studies that have been done on the efficacy of hypnosis by Stanford University, Harvard, Yale, Mayo Clinic, NIH and in Sweden.

There is also an irrefutable safeguard of hypnosis that keeps hypnotists from abusing the power.  Any suggestion or idea not in accordance with the patient’s beliefs, morals, wishes, principles, or desires will quickly and automatically be rejected.  No one can make anyone do anything they do not wish to do through hypnosis.  If the hypnotist gives a suggestion and the person absolutely does not want to accept that suggestion, then he will not do it.  No one can be hypnotized against his will.  As God’s creatures, humans have the freedom to choose and decide and act; free will.

When evangelical authors wrote that hypnosis opened the door to evil spirits, they did not fully understand the Word of God.  Jesus says that light and darkness cannot live together.  Christ is the light, so if you are saved, that means Christ lives within you.  If Christ lives in you, it means no demon or evil spirit can take residence.  The light of Christ drives out the darkness.  It is much like the case of the leper – those with faith in their therapists, who trust and believe that hypnotherapy can help/heal them will get well.  Those with faith well – placed can and will be healed, inside and out.  It is true that there are still some among us who are a little wary of hypnosis.  In actuality, hypnosis is a powerful and valuable tool God has given to man to heal the mind and body.  God created hypnosis for the good of man.  He has a purpose in allowing us the ability to alter our consciousness, even if it seems to take place without Him.  But nothing takes place without his knowledge and permission.  Hypnosis and faith in God can work hand in hand to turn lives around.

Jesus indicated by his teachings that we should help people to live life to the fullest and to relieve pain whenever possible.  Hypnosis is a means to help people live a better and more abundant life and is a means of reducing and/or eliminating pain.  This was the main treatment that helped me to get pain free and into remission with my CRPS (Complex Regional Pain Syndrome).

The Bible records several instances of hypnosis:  In the book of Acts, it mentions, “Peter fell into trance.” In the same book, there is also a reference to an apostle healing a person by gazing into his eyes. “This man was listening to Paul as he spoke, who when he had fixed his gaze upon him, and had seen that he had faith to be made well, said with a loud voice, ‘Stand upright on your feet.’ And he began to walk.”  There are also various hypnosis acts performed by Jesus to manifest miracles.

Hypnosis has been used in place of anesthesia in World War I, and is used in modern day to rid unwanted behavior, relieve headaches, relieve chronic pain, induce pain-free labor etc.

Often, patients seeking solutions experience lack of confidence / focus and have ongoing issues because of limiting beliefs or a multitude of misinformation.  In hypnosis, the subconscious mind directs millions of neurons to produce positive mental pictures.  A patient can hold and project the idea and image of health, wellness or ‘abundance’ within the mind, causing it to happen in reality.  This therapy is in accordance to Christian beliefs.  Jesus said, “I come so that you may experience life in abundance.”

In Proverbs 23:7 it states that as a person thinketh in his or her heart so is he/she.  This can be interpreted that whatever images or thoughts held in the mind becomes reality. Picture happy moments, experience it again in your mind. By thought, you make feelings present again. The use of positive imagery improves life and health.

The brain is the channel which God communicates with Christians.  By using hypnosis to overcome the ruinous effects of negative thinking, anger, discontent, health issues and selfishness, we can keep our minds pure for God.

Frequently, unhappiness and discontentment are caused by our reaction and thoughts to situations.  It is estimated that 75% of cancers and body pains are caused by unresolved emotions.  In the Bible, God calls us to experience a renewing of our minds.  As we change the way we view things via hypno-suggestions, the same positive changes are manifested in our lives.  We are able to let go of the bad habits we once clung to.  We attract the abundance we desire.  We dissolve our hurts and sorrow.

During the storm in the sea of Galilee, the apostles panicked. “Wake up, Jesus, don’t you care that we perish?” Jesus said, “Have no fear.  I am with you. Peace be with you.” And the disciples grew calm.  If you are a Christian in the midst of a crisis, God is present amidst your broken hopes and dreams and stress.  In life, when the harsh winds of illness or injury blow, when we experience sorrow or grief, realize that we can, too, experience peace in the midst of the storm. This peace comes from knowledge that He is with us to endure it all.

Through positive thinking and optimism; relaxation and imagery induced by hypnotism; life can get better.  The past is still there, but we can begin where we are.  I had an opportunity to experience this first hand with my journey with CRPS.  I utilized hypnosis to regain my life, and it allowed me to take the steps to do things that I would not be doing otherwise.  With hopeful expectations comes a new life.

In Christ, suffering is not removed. It is transformed into victory.  The setback experienced causes the patient to forge a closer bond with God.  In the years ahead, may those who discount hypnosis come to see its value as a gift from God to help/heal us and the means from which we can experience his blessings.

The proper use of hypnosis can help those suffering with chronic pain, CRPS, Fibromyalgia, Arachnoiditis, Migraines, PTSD, stress, anxiety, phobias, help break unwanted habits, and more!  Owner and Clinical Hypnotist – Advanced Pathways Hypnosis 8 Corporate Park, Suite 300, Irvine, CA 92606.

714) 717-6633  |  http://www.Info@AdvancedPathways.com http://www.AdvancedPathways.com

© Copyright Advanced Pathways Hypnosis. All Rights Reserved

A Search For Effective Treatment Options For Chronic Pain Patients

by:  Traci Patterson, Owner, Advanced Pathways Hypnosis

There are over 100 million Americans dealing with chronic pain today. They are searching for answers. They are holding onto hope that they will find a way to get better. They are trying to get to a doctor that will have an answer. Many patients are being misdiagnosed for years prior to getting a correct diagnosis.  Others are put on countless medications that typically are not working, having to endure numerous procedures because doctors don’t know what else to do. And then when all else fails, they are told they need either a Spinal Cord Stimulator or a Pain Pump. Then if those options fail, the doctors want to refer them on to somebody else because they are out of options and the patient(s) feels like they are left, in effect, holding the bag.

What will it take for the patients to get access to effective treatment options without being denied access to what they really need? The unfortunate facts are that the majority of chronic pain patients and cancer patients do not get sufficient relief from their pain medications. Therefore, the doctors continue to prescribe a cocktail of various medications hoping that it will do the trick. The patients then end up paying the ultimate price with side effects caused by the medications. Don’t get me wrong, I am not, in any way, stating that Pain Management doctors should not be prescribing medications. What I am stating is that they do not get to the area in the body that is responsible for sending out the pain signals, and this is why they are not effective. The insurance companies are willing to pay for prescription after prescription, and yet they do not want to reimburse for creams that are more effective or for a treatment that is non-drug related.

I just received an update from a leading pharmaceutical company with a press release about a new drug that they received approval from the US Patent Office. This is for a new proprietary drug for neuropathic pain and fibromyalgia. This means they are able to start double-blind studies and placebo studies on the medication.  The interesting part of the write-up is when they mention, “The market for such a medication worldwide runs into many billions of dollars.” This is prior to their comment about the drug’s ‘lack of serious side effects’, but yet there is no further comment as to any side effects discovered to date.

It’s great that they are looking at putting other options on the market for doctors to prescribe to their patients, but what about making other treatment options that are currently available accessible to patients? When will this happen?

Spinal Cord Stimulators are heavily pushed by pain management doctors and neurologists for chronic pain. I have spoken with several physicians off the record about the implantation and use of the Spinal Cord Stimulators.  During these conversations, I’ve been told that some doctors utilize them more than others because they can make more money, and it is easier than doing multiple blocks and going down the long treatment road with a chronic pain patient. Again, it comes down to reimbursement, unfortunately, and a push by Durable Medical Equipment (DME) companies.  The general cost for a Spinal Cord Stimulator, unit, surgery, etc., can be close to $100,000 (sometimes more) depending on the manufacturer, area, hospital, and other variables.

What about Calmare Therapy? The Calmare device uses a biophysical rather than a biochemical approach. A ‘no-pain’ message is transmitted to the nerves via disposable surface electrodes applied to the skin in the region of the patient’s pain. The perception of pain is cancelled when the no-pain message replaces that of pain, by using the same pathway through the surface electrodes in a non-invasive way. Maximum benefit is achieved through follow-up treatments. The patient may be able to go for extended periods of time between subsequent treatments while experiencing significant pain control and relief.

This particular treatment option has been around for several years. Calmare tried for quite some time to get name recognition and focused primarily on social media, word of mouth, etc. Insurance companies have refused to reimburse for their treatments even though they have been found to be effective.  Why?  One reason could be that they are not tied into the large DME companies and conglomerates.  It is an interesting way of looking at it. Calmare did get a helping hand on June 30, 2014 when a Judge in New York ruled in favor of Calmare, instructing Allstate Insurance Company to reimburse for personal injury claims that involved the use of Calmare Therapy. Calmare also got some great publicity from the daytime TV show ‘Doctors’ when they spoke about a ‘brand new treatment option for chronic pain and CRPS’ on an episode in the month of June, 2014.  Then later in 2014 when the Mayo Clinic finally did research on Calmare for Chemotherapy Induced Neuropathic Pain, and found this treatment to be effective.  Keep in mind their therapy has been around for several years, but because a New York University decided to utilize it, it is now considered new.  Generally the cost for this treatment is around $2,500 for 10 treatments.   Patients typically start with 10 treatments and then will have to do follow-up treatments to stay pain free if they have CRPS/RSD.

Ketamine Infusions are talked about widely with CRPS patients.  This is also a medication used for those with severe depression, irretractable pain, and other chronic pain conditions.  There definitely is some baggage that comes along with the treatments, but they are mostly effective. Patients have to undergo a screening process, meet certain guidelines, and then of course there is the financial burden. I believe it is approximately $50,000-$60,000 for the initial set of infusions, hospital stay, and then the first follow-up infusions at six months. Insurance will not reimburse for this. They have gone to court to in some states to try to get reimbursement, but it is very difficult. More and more patients are looking at this avenue because they are unaware of Calmare and the other options available. Ketamine infusions do come with some side effects, and I would urge anyone thinking of this option to please do their research first.

I also urge some research at this juncture because I am hearing more and more about the infusions being done out-patient instead of in-patient and they are not as effective if done this way.  Secondly, I have not seen any studies as of yet on the long-term use of Ketamine when used in high dosages.

Last, but absolutely not least on the list is clinical hypnosis. I know many people are going to start reaching for their mouse to click away, but please keep reading. I am referring very specifically to a specialist in hypnosis that has a strong background with chronic pain patients, CRPS, fibromyalgia, cancer pain, phantom limb pain, PTSD, stress, anxiety, etc. You should first determine whether the hypnotist/hypnotherapist has a certification in ‘Pain Management’, and are they familiar with the condition that you are diagnosed with.  A good program will be ‘multi-therapeutic’; meaning it will include hypnosis/hypnotherapy, biofeedback, light/sound therapy and other modalities.

I personally was diagnosed with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), and the final treatment that got me into remission was working with someone that had a background working with chronic pain patients using a multi-therapeutic approach.  He was credentialed in Pain Management and many other areas as well.  A one week commitment is what it takes.  Hypnosis for a week long intensive can run around $3,000 – $4,000, but can fluctuate depending on the geographic area that you are being treated.

This is a drug-free treatment option that can dramatically decrease your pain and in some patients they can even get into full remission.  At this time, it is not well-publicized as it is not backed by pharmaceutical companies or DME companies.  Yet there are many studies on the efficacy of this treatment by Stanford, Harvard, Yale, Mayo Clinic, NIH, etc.  Patients are given the tools be self-sufficient.  No side effects as it is drug-free, and no long-term follow-up needed.

If you are searching for answers for chronic pain, CRPS/RSD, fibromyalgia, chronic migraines or other health/wellness issues;  please take the time to consider some of the non-invasive treatment options in this article. Never give up on regaining you health, life and success!  Yes, it is possible… if I can do it, so can you!!!

For more information on CRPS, chronic pain or Traci’s journey, please feel free to contact the author, Traci Patterson.

Traci has a dynamic background from a perspective that few if any one other Hypnotist can offer. Her background as a chronic pain patient diagnosed with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), someone that utilized hypnosis to get into remission, trained under Mr. Ron Eslinger, and is now herself a practicing hypnotist is rare. She has patients that contact her from all over the United States and Internationally.  Traci is considered, ‘The CRPS Hypnotist’.

Traci@AdvancedPathways.com, or visit my website at www.AdvancedPathways.com.

Achieve Your Goals in 2015

by: Traci Patterson, Owner of Advanced Pathways Hypnosis

Ok, folks – January is heading to a close.  How close are you to achieving your goals that you set as a New Year’s Resolution?  Are you already making strides or getting frustrated?

How many times have you made those resolutions a reality?  How would you like to make it happen for you this year?  Or better yet, for those of you that have been dealing with a chronic pain condition and have been told you have limited options – are you ready to take control of the pain and regain your life?

Join me for private one on one session(s) that will allow you to learn how to make the changes you so desperately want to make in your life, health and wellbeing.  I offer individual sessions or a week long program geared towards helping those individuals with chronic pain, fibromyalgia, CRPS/RSD, chronic back pain, cluster headaches/chronic migraines, Arachnoiditis, PTSD, chronic stress/anxiety, and other health/wellness issues see fast relief and results.

At, Advanced Pathways Hypnosis, a week long program consists of:

  • Hypnotherapy
  • Neuroplasticity Training
  • Biofeedback
  • Light/Sound Therapy
  • Issue Solution Technique
  • EMT
  • and more.

Once you take the step into a week long program you can expect:

  • Significant decrease in pain, possibility of getting to zero pain or remission
  • Release of unwanted stress and anxiety
  • Empowerment
  • Gaining insight and knowledge about techniques and tools to utilize in your future:
    • Personal growth
    • Health
    • Relationships
    • And every other area of your life.
  • Control of your life
  • New perspective
  • and so much more!

Why? Because you deserve to have your life back, you have a right to live each and every day without the heavy burdens of living with chronic pain or a debilitating condition.

Yes, I know what it is like to live with the everyday burdens of chronic pain because I was diagnosed with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome in 2007. The final treatment protocol that helped me regain my life and get into remission was a very similar program! I continue to be 100% pain free and am honored to have the ability to help others to regain their lives just as I did.

Testimonial:

I went through a week of treatment with Traci in August, 2014, after being close to disabled for many years. The treatment worked wonders, partly because of the nature of the treatment, but also because of Traci’s customizing each client’s treatments to their own interest and goals.  I highly recommend this form of treatment, and highly recommend Traci as a Certified Hypnotist. She’s gone through her own personal journey of pain and recovery and truly understands. Thank you Traci, with all my heart!” ~ Colleen G.

Take the first step to achieving your goals. Call or email Traci at Advanced Pathways Hypnosis to obtain additional information.

714.717.6633   |   Traci@AdvancedPathways.com   |   http://www.AdvancedPathways.com

Ways to Choose Happiness

I love when I notice I’m smiling. You know those times when you are just at ease and a little smile comes across your face, that smile. The smile isn’t falsely constructed to please anyone else. Rather, it’s naturally powered by my inner bliss, which radiates and beams through my being.

After many years of dealing with chronic pain, working through all the issues that come up with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome (CRPS), the deep valleys, I can honestly say that I’m at a place in my life where I seem to have found greater peace and more bountiful joy. My eyes have a keen way of drinking in all the vibrant images and colors of life around me. My mind is free to dream. My heart sings. My spirit dances. My body feels all that is good.

I choose the path of hope and happiness.

It’s been 10 years since the day I started my journey with CRPS and have emerged on the other side. Now treating clients with chronic pain, CRPS, Fibromyalgia and cancer pain and working on my own spiritual journey, I recommend the following ways to choose happiness:

  1. Don’t attach your happiness to anything external. We run into problems when we make our happiness dependent on our relationships, jobs, finances, our health or on anticipated outcomes. Happiness is an inner experience that is yours to claim. Everything else is impermanent.
  2. Give freely. Give and share what you can, whenever you can. Give compliments, love, affection, help, resources, time, consideration, thoughtfulness, respect, empathy, etc. It feels delightful and karma will bring it back to you, threefold.
  3. Receive openly. Accept compliments, help and gifts. Embrace touch and praise. Absorb love and affection. Remember that the act of receiving allows other people the experience of giving.
  4. Appreciate life’s precious moments. Don’t be too busy or caught in your own “mind chatter” to notice the little bird out your window, the newborn baby in her mother’s arms in the elevator, the elderly couple holding hands, or the fuzzy ducks in the pond. Take time to notice all that is precious, tender and miraculous in life.
  5. Play & be silly. Remember how it was to play freely as a child. Shed self-consciousness, let go and have fun. I love playing with my kids; surprising them and reminding myself about the impish little girl inside me. Perhaps nothing makes my heart swell more than hysterical fits of laughter shared with my daughters.
  6. Consciously connect with sunlight. Be aware of the sunlight and mindful of feeling it on your face and body. Bask in its warmth and light. Feel your connection with this life-giving energy source.
  7. Be mindful of physical pleasures. Notice how soft your bed feels, how good your food tastes, how wonderful the warm sun feels on your skin… Enjoy and appreciate these fantastic sensations.
  8. Stay firmly rooted in the present moment. Unhappiness occurs when we obsess about the past or worry about the future. Peace and serenity are found in the present moment. Practice deep breathing, meditation and other mindfulness techniques to establish presence.
  9. Look for the good part. Practice gratitude to stay positive. See the goodness in yourself, in others and in the world around you.
  10. Be a duck. Let negative stuff roll off your back. Life’s too short to expend energy getting your feathers ruffled.
  11. Tend to your environment. Make your home and office comfortable and cheerful. Surround yourself with things that elicit positive emotions and make you smile.
  12. Take excellent care of yourself. Take care of your physical and mental health as if you were your own precious child whom you love very much.
  13. Set healthy boundaries for yourself. Set the limits you need at work and at home with regard to time, space, money, etc. Don’t over-schedule or over-commit.
  14. Surround yourself with people who make you feel alive. I so cherish my friends &/or family members who make me laugh with abandon. It’s with them that I choose to spend my time.
  15. Practice self-care. Everyday. Prioritize your wellness and practice meditation, go for a run, read a novel, tend to your garden or do anything that reboots your mind, body and spirit.
  16. Express yourself freely and openly. Find your voice and say what you need to say. Dare to show yourself via your writing, artwork, dance or other creative expression.
  17. Ensure you like yourself. Be kind. Have integrity. Be the person you have always wanted to be.

18, Be true to yourself. Be honest. Be real. Be vulnerable. Be brave.  Let your inner light be your guide.

“Happiness is not something you get in life, happiness is something that you bring to life. “ ~Wayne Dyer

If you would like more information on the author, Traci Patterson or Advanced Pathways Hypnosis please contact:

Traci@AdvancedPathways.com | 714.717.6633 |  www.AdvancedPathways.com

Arachnoiditis: Yes It Is A, True, Medical Condition

August 24, 2014:  Traci Patterson – Owner, Advanced Pathways Hypnosis

What is Arachnoiditis, History, Symptoms, Causes and Treatment Options

What is Arachnoiditis

Arachnoiditis is inflammation of the arachnoid, one of the membranes known as meninges that surround and protect the nerves of the central nervous system, including the brain and spinal cord which contains the cerebrospinal fluid. The arachnoid can become inflamed because of adverse reactions to chemicals, infection from bacteria or viruses, as the result of direct injury to the spine, chronic compression of spinal nerves, complications from spinal surgery or other invasive spinal procedures, or the accidental intrathecal injection of steroids intended for the epidural space.[1][2] Inflammation can sometimes lead to the formation of scar tissue and adhesion that can make the spinal nerves “stick” together. This can be extremely painful, especially in last stage adhesive arachnoiditis.

The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) divides arachnoiditis in the following way:

  • Adhesive Arachnoiditis
  • Arachnoiditis Ossificans
  • Neoplastic Arachnoiditis
  • Optochiacmatic Arachnoiditis
  •  
  • Postmyelographic Arachnoiditis
  • Rhinosinusogenic Cerebral Arachnoiditis
  • Spinal Ossifying Arachnoiditis
  • Cerebral Arachnoiditis  

History

There have been medical findings of typical lesions of spinal tuberculosis linked to arachnoiditis, in the spines of some Egyptian mummies dating back to over 5,000 years ago.  In the last two decades there has been an increase in the number a patients being referred for various treatments such as myelograms, ganglion blocks, sympathetic blocks, epidurals, other injections into the spine to help with pain or even laminectomies.  But, for some people these procedures can lead to a debilitating diagnosis of arachnoiditis. 

Symptoms 

Arachnoid inflammation can lead to many painful and debilitating symptoms. Chronic pain is common, including neuralgia.  Numbness and tingling of the extremities is frequent in patients due to spinal cord involvement. Bowel, bladder, and sexual functioning can be affected if the lower part of the spinal cord is affected. While arachnoiditis has no consistent pattern of symptoms, it frequently affects the nerves that supply the legs and lower back. Many sufferers find themselves unable to sit for long (or even short) periods of time, often due to severe pain as well as efferent neurological symptoms, such as difficulties controlling limbs. This is particularly problematic for patients who have trouble standing or walking for long periods, as wheelchairs don’t help them. Some sufferers benefit from relatively new inventions, such as the Segway or less expensive alternatives. Standing wheelchairs are also available, although often expensive and limited compared to these alternatives. However, standing endurance and vibration tolerance should be considered before selecting a motorized assistance device.

It is critical that patients realize that arachnoiditis symptoms vary greatly, and not all sufferers experience all symptoms. Consequently—while typically significantly life-altering—the outcome, especially with physical therapy, appropriate psychotherapy, and medication, may be better than many patients fear when they first hear the diagnosis.

Causes

The usual causes of spinal arachnoiditis are:

  1. Infections like tuberculosis, AIDS, fungus and meningococcus can lead to arachnoiditis, but this is NOT always the case.
  1. Dyes used for myelograms like pantopaque, metrizamide, omnipaque, etc.
  1. Blood entering the spinal sac, (i.e. from subarachnoid hemorrhage, epidural blood patches, bleeding from anticoagulants, etc.)
  1. Spinal surgery, (the most common cause today) is mostly from a tear in the dura which allows blood to enter the cerebrospinal fluid. The other direct cause if from a spinal cord or nerve root injury during surgery.
  1. Irritant compounds injected into the sac such as hypertonic saline, phenol, methotrexate, hyaluronidase, papain, etc.
  1. Preservatives contained in some medications injected into the spine such as polyethylene glycol, benzylic alcohol, para-aminobenzoic acid, etc.
  1. Traumatic injury to the spinal cord or the brain may result in bleeding into the cerebrospinal fluid, nerve tissue damage or avulsion. Even needle punctures causing paresthesia on the nerve roots or the spinal cord (from epidural, spinal anesthesia or other nerve blocks) may cause arachnoiditis.

Treatment Options

Unfortunately, there is no cure for arachnoiditis. 

Arachnoiditis is difficult to treat. Treatment is limited to alleviation of pain and other symptoms.  In the acute inflammatory phase, the administration of systemic and intraspinal corticosteroids may prevent the evolution into the chronic phase.  

Once the proliferative phase starts, any intervention may exacerbate that pain path mechanism.  Therefore, invasive procedures have to be selected if the risk/benefit ratio is favorable.  Surgical intervention generally has a poor outcome, and only provides temporary relief. Steriod injections, administered either intrathecally or epidurally have been linked as a cause of the disease, therefore they are generally discouraged as a treatment and may even worsen the condition.

Doctors have different views about this disease so seeking a second opinion may be wise.  A variety of new therapeutic agents and interventional modalities are being proposed mostly for the symptomatic treatment of arachnoiditis.  At this juncture it is critical to decrease pain levels and decrease the inflammation to increase the flow of cerebrospinal fluid.  This can be done via ketamine infusions and other medications to decrease inflammation.  The use of ketamine in an infusion does require the patient to undergo ‘boosts’ to keep their pain and inflammation under control.  Another ‘drug-free’ way to treat arachnoiditis is with hypnosis.  Yes, hypnosis is a very effective way to control pain, reduce inflammation, control stress/anxiety, improve sleep and other side effects of arachnoiditis.  (It is essential to see someone that holds a certification in pain management, in addition to a certified/credentialed in hypnosis.)

However, the most important therapy is prevention, since most of these cases are iatrogenically caused.  Education of physicians, nurses, and technicians regarding the numerous causes of this disease is an essential initial step, followed by the information to the public in general, and to patients with spinal disease in particular, so as to warn them against accepting questionably effective procedures in desperation to have their pain relieved and to procure competent and responsible physicians in their care.  Once an injurious event takes place, prompt action to define the precise diagnosis and to institute a treatment plan is urgent. There is no place for hesitation since there is only a short window of opportunity during which chances to reverse the process are feasible. Once the proliferative phase begins, there is only symptomatic treatment.

If you would like more information on ‘Drug-free’ treatment options for Arachnoiditis please contact, Traci, at Advanced Pathways Hypnosis.

714.717.6633   |   Traci@AdvancedPathways.com   |   http://www.AdvancedPathways.com

 

 

References

  1. PDR US-FDA 2010 DataSheet | Depo-Medrol | Pfizer
  2. DA Nelson, WM Landau | Intraspinal Steroids: History, Efficacy, Accidentality, and Controversy with review of United States Food & Drug Administration Reports | Neurosurgery/Psychiatry Review | 2001