Dale Guyer, M.D., is a holistic family physician and Director of the Advanced Medical Center in Zionsville, Indiana, where patients are offered a unique blend of traditional and alternative therapies incorporating a mind-body-spirit approach for a variety of health issues, including Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and fibromyalgia.
HEALTHwatch (HW): In a previous article we discussed a promising novel therapy called Insulin Potentiation Therapy (IPT) for the adjunctive treatment of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) and Fibromyalgia Syndrome (FMS). Dr. Guyer, could you please explain again to our readers what IPT is and the rationale for its use in treating CFS/FMS?
Dr. Guyer: In its simplest description, IPT uses a low dose of insulin to amplify or potentiate the activity of a drug or nutrient with which it is administered. This can be a significant advantage when using any pharmaceutical with potential side effects such as chemotherapy medicines. In this instance a low dose (about 1/10 the usual dose) of the drug can be given since its activity is modified by insulin (information is available about this treatment at www.IPTQ.com.) Although IPT has been used to treat many medical conditions, to my knowledge we are the first to be using this method to treat CFS/FMS.
The interesting thing is that this adjunctive inclusion (IPT) has had success in recalcitrant cases where other approaches have yielded negligible results, which has been an encouraging finding. As we are all aware, there remain many who suffer with CFS/FMS who have really tried everything, in terms of comprehensive therapies, but have had marginal success. I have found for many that we have treated, IPT has really been the ‘icing on the cake’ that has propelled them over the unwellness hump.
HW: This sounds promising. At this time how many patients have been treated with IPT and what approximate percentage have clinically improved?
Dr. Guyer: To date we have treated about 45 patients using IPT as an adjunctive therapy. Most will, over time, receive anywhere from 3-12 treatments depending on individual need. Of these patients I have felt like there were about 2-3 people in whom I had not seen any favorable response. (They had only 2 treatments, however.) Otherwise, I would estimate about 80% of patients treated with IPT experience a significant functional improvement.
HW: It seems that for some patients, there is a direct correlation between the total number of treatments they receive and the degree of improvement.
Dr. Guyer: Yes, that is an individual variable. Most will notice a significant boost with 2 or 3 treatments, but others will take 6 or 7 before noticing a clinical change.
HW: These results seem very promising, especially given the fact that this initial group of patients were non-responders to other forms of therapy tried (both conventional and alternative.) Are you now starting to use this treatment as an initial therapy with your other CFS/FMS patients?
Dr. Guyer: Yes. To date I am finding this approach even more promising with “typical” CFS/FMS patients.
HW: What are the patient criteria you have observed that tend to be associated with an increased likelihood of improvements?
Dr. Guyer: Generally the pattern I have seen is that the typical IPT candidate would be a patient who tends to feel exhausted and flu-like most of the time. In addition, their mood may tend to be on the depressed side. Laboratory analysis will generally show elevated viral antibodies, or they may have a positive PCR test demonstrating chronic viral infection, such as EBV, CMV, HHV-6, and others.
HW: How would you describe the typical response of the patients treated?
Dr. Guyer: The patient reports, from a symptom perspective, include a generalized improvement in mood (sometimes even euphoria), a significant improvement in energy levels and the ability to do things they would not generally have been able to previously accomplish. Also, a decrease in overall body pain. As you might expect these real world improvements have been the most satisfying for the patient and myself. When a mother can take her children to Disney World on vacation for the first time, it is a transformative experience and increases the individual’s faith in their own health potential. Secondly, we see positive changes on lab analysis including resolution of positive PCR results and in antibody levels of viruses returning to normal. Additionally, immune system abnormalities will usually return to normal range.
HW: Could you discuss some individual cases in a little detail which you have treated lately?
Subscribe to the World's Most Popular ME-CFS Newsletter (it's free!)
Dr. Guyer: This could help personalize the approach and give your readers a real sense of the human character and results of this treatment. A first patient is John. I initially saw him in 1999 for CFS and he had previously been to a number of other health care providers. We worked nutritionally with him for some time with good results, but he was unable to get over the “hump”(i.e., he had a 50-60% improvement, but did not return to a baseline state of health).
He lives here in Indianapolis and works as a T.V. production technician at a local station. He has had about 12 treatments over all. Initially his EBV antibody was 25 times higher then normal and as you might expect he felt tired and flu-like all of the time. After six treatments he improved about 80%. The additional benefit with John was that his mental focusing and concentration came back and even comprehension of mathematical skills which have helped in his vocational obligations considerably. John also has mentioned a profound improvement in mood (no depression) and self-confidence.
HW: So, the insulin has a therapeutic effect as well, in that it has been used historically to treat depression.
Dr. Guyer: Yes, the concept is similar, but obviously much less invasive, completely controlled and without side effects. One of our other IPT patients, Jan, who works in the pharmaceutical industry, has told me she feels like the insulin therapy seems to “clear her body out” of all the negative feedback. Somewhat like what happens with a computer that is malfunctioning and resumes function after being rebooted. She also improved significantly.
HW: When our CEO visited your office in Indiana he met Dan, who was feeling great after just two treatments that week.
Dr. Guyer: Dan is from Illinois and had worked as a chiropractor, but he had been out of work for several years due to CFS.
HW: How is he doing now?
Dr. Guyer: As Dan mentioned to your CEO, he had done wonderfully after just two treatments and he is now back at work. Still he plans to return to our office in February for additional treatment. Overall, Dan had an exceptional response and with a little fine tuning I would expect he could regain normal function.
HW: And you had a case from New York – a patient who had mixed viral infections and Babesia.
Dr. Guyer: Yes, James was a young man who competed on his school’s crew team. Unfortunately, he no longer had been able to participate in crew because of CFS. In addition he would experience cyclic periods of a very high fever and severe headaches. His lab analysis did show antibodies for Babesia, and a PCR test showed mycoplasma pneumoniae and HHV-6 A.
HW: Do you think IPT can help a variety of illnesses?
Dr. Guyer: Yes, I have even seen a case of a patient with Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis (being treated for CFS) whose liver functions have returned to normal. Initial results in a disease process such as this are encouraging. Primarily, much of the experience of IPT is with cancer treatment. But, there is also considerable historical usage with a broad array of medical problems ranging from chronic back pain, asthma, arthritis, autoimmune problems and depression, to name a few.
HW: You mentioned using cellular extracts with great success recently. Are you still finding good results with these additional therapies?
Dr. Guyer: Definitely. I would say using the Live Cell Therapy has been an enormous boon with our CFS/FMS patients.
HW: Thank you again for keeping us updated on the cutting-edge treatments you are successfully using in your practice. We look forward to future treatment developments and follow-ups to the continued use of the therapies you have discussed here.
Dr. Guyer: As always, I am happy if what I can share helps and encourages those with CFS/FMS. We both have seen that often many patients get discouraged by their doctors and the medical profession in general. If there is any single piece of advice I could give, it would be to keep the faith and keep searching with an open mind. Your answers are out there and all it takes is persistence and faith, and always trust your intuition. I have found it to be the most successful guide in my work with patients. They generally have a sense of what is the “right” path of healing for them.
HW editor’s note:If you are interested in learning more about IPT and Dr. Guyer and the Advanced Medical Center, please visit: www.daleguyermd.com.