Dr. Straus Blog
Medications PDF Print E-mail

pillsThere are a number of prescription medications available to help maintain abstinence from alcohol and drugs.

Alcohol

Antabuse (Disulfiram) causes an acute reaction of nausea, vomiting, headache, shortness of breath within 15 to 60 minutes after drinking.  he threat of illness acts as a deterrent to drinking.

Revia (Naltrexone) lessens the desire for alcohol in the brain by blocking the opiate pain receptors that trigger the brain dopamine pleasure circuits.  It also lessens the feeling of intoxication if a person does drink.

Antiseizure Medicine. Although not approved by the FDA for addiction, research has shown that some of these medications can lessen cravings and inhibit drinking behavior.  These medications include: depakote, tegretal and topamax.

Opiates

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Lab Testing PDF Print E-mail

Lab TestingLab testing of most hormones is used to establish a baseline, monitor treatment and ensure safety. Not all hormones being replaced need laboratory testing.An example of one such hormone is melatonin, which is produced by the pineal gland and helps to regulate sleep. Lab testing will not tell us if you will tolerate a particular hormone or combination of hormones. Lab testing does not predict if a hormone will have a beneficial effect on symptoms or illnesses, how much to use, the duration of treatment or how effective a hormone will be in preventing future illness, i.e. preventative effects. Thus, hormone prescriptions are adjusted based partly on lab testing but patient symptoms and well-being are generally the best guide. Tests may provide qualitative data to help determine whether unresolved symptoms are a result of excess or insufficient supplemental hormones.

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Nutritional Changes and Supplements PDF Print E-mail

These foods and supplements work by enhancing the liver enzyme systems that metabolize estrogen and other hormones.

Cruciferous vegetables specifically support the healthy metabolism of estrogen. This group of vegetables includes arugula, cabbage, brussels sprouts, chard, broccoli, cauliflower, turnips, daikon radish, bok choy, mustard greens, kale, watercress, rutabagas, radishes and kohlrabi. The supplement DIM (diindolymethane) is an extract of the active principle from these vegetables.

Methyl Donors are useful to prevent cancer formation and promote healthy detoxification of hormones. Nutritionally, methyl donors are contained in green leafy veggies, beans, berries, nuts and citrus. The supplements such as SAMe, MSM, folic acid (5-methyltetrahydrofolate and L-methylfolate), B12 (methycobolamine) and betaine are also useful in providing support for methylation. Stress robs the body of methyl donors due to use in adrenalin production,

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Estrogens and Progesterone PDF Print E-mail

While these hormones have far reaching effects on all bodily systems, they are principally associated with sexual function and menopausal symptoms. This is unfortunate as they are effective for preventative benefits such as preventing chronic illness and for long term wellness. The large WHI (Women’s Health Initiative) study using estrogen and progesterone for prevention of illnesses associated with menopause began in 1997 but ended early in 2002 for Prempro (Premarin and Provera combined) due to an increase in breast cancer rates. In 2004, the study was discontinued early for Premarin due to an increase in strokes.

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Supplemental Hormones PDF Print E-mail
  • Progesterone. Used in miconized form for absorbtion. Metabolized to allopregnanolone and Hydroxyprenanolone, when taken orally, with useful sedative and anti anxiety effects for Sleep.
  • Pregnenolone. Can be metabolized to all other steroid hormones but is unpredictable in effects.
  • Estrogens
    • Estrone (E1)
    • Estradiol (E2) aka 17-beta estradiol (the most potent estrogen; 10x vs. E1 and 25x vs. E3)
    • Estriol (E3)
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