Lupus and Hormone Replacement Therapy
Answered by: Susan Eagles
Question from: Debbie
Posted on: April 4, 1998

I am 48 years old and I have Lupus with antiphosphilipid syndrome, which causes a clotting problem. My disease is making it difficult for me to use Conventional drugs (e.g. H.R.T.) to relieve my P.M.T. and menopause symptoms, as they work in conflict with the clotting side of my disease. My friend has given me a bottle of Dong Quai capsules, each capsule contains 520 mg of powdered herbs of Angelica polymorpha. I am trying to find an alternative to conventional drugs and yet not upset the work my Drs. have done to get me into a form of remission. The drugs I take are: Coversyl (8mg; p.m.), Adalat Oros 60 (a.m.), Zantac (150mg; a.m. & p.m.), Warfarin (4/12mg; p.m.). My I.N.R. is to be kept steady at 3.5. Can you Please tell me if I can safely take this herb.

Will this product be safe for my use.

It is important that any additions or changes you make in your therapy are approved and monitored by a health care specialist. We offer the following information in support of your research and study.

Dong Quai (Angelica sinensis), the most popular women’s tonic in the Far East, has estrogenic properties, that is, it encourages the production and release of estrogen in the body. It would likely be contraindicated in clotting problems for the same reasons as Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT). Many of the herbal remedies for Premenstrual Tension (PMT) and menopausal symptoms are estrogenic. However, there are many herbs and diet recommendations that can help with specific symptoms. These can be found in Rosemary Gladstar’s "Herbal Healing for Women" (available at Richters) and Susun Weed’s "Menopausal Years" (Ash Tree Publishing, 1992).

A good general diet, low in fat, coffee and sugar and high in fruit, vegetables and oily fish will reduce the risk of clotting problems. Additionally, you may want to look into Hawthorne berries (Crataegus oxyacanthoides) which strengthen the heart.

Some herbs can strengthen the body to help it adjust to menopause naturally. Nettles (Urtica dioica) in nourishing the adrenal glands, can reduce depression, fatigue, irritability & mood swings. Oats (Avena sativa) nourishes the nerves. Burdock (Artium lappa) nourishes the liver, reducing hot flashes. These herbs are also supportive of Lupus therapy.

Susun Weed in "Healing Wise" (Ash Tree Publishing, 1989) particularly recommends Oats as supportive in healing Lupus, for its supply of calcium, iron, phosphorus, vitamins A, B complex, C, E and essential amino acids. Oats can be taken as Oatstraw tea or tincture, or the oat grain cereal. It builds strong bones, improves the circulatory and nervous system functioning, improving memory, clear thinking, balance, coordination and bone density. Combined with Slippery Elm (Ulmus fulva), it can heal chronic digestive problems (for which your Zantac is often prescribed). Oats is contra-indicated in gluten allergies.

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