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Ask the Herbalist -Lymphedema

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FROM Carlos:

QUESTION: My 80-year-old mother developed lymphedema after taking Cipro for two days. She took it for a UTI she had after sustaining a compression fracture in her lower back.  She has been diagnosed with an almost systemic staph infection.  She recently underwent light therapy and is on Rifampin/Doxycycline. She is taking Rutin, Horse Chestnut, and a number of other anti-lymphedema herbs, but  I have heard that a wrap of honey and slippery elm, or a cabbage wrap, can have an
antibacterial effect and help to draw out the infection.   Do you know how do do this, or would you recommend it?  I understand that Castor Oil would have the same effect, but she is reluctant to use this for obvious reasons.

ANSWER: Glad to be of help.

Your mother's immune system appears to be depleted. I suggest that she begins drinking Green tea and adding 30 drops of extract of Astragalus. Sweeten with only a bit of honey and drink 3s day. She should include in her diet plenty of fresh garlic and onions, raw or steamed fresh vegetables and fresh fruits daily. Turmeric should be added to her diet. Turmeric is a great remedy for staph infections. One teaspoon in a glass of water 3xs day for 7 days. She should also eat plenty of yogurt at least 3xs day.

I would suggest to you a warm onion poultice - Sautee few chopped onions in pan and then smash it to make a paste of in before applying to the surface wrapped in a clean peace of cloth. To get better results you may add a small quantity of flour to the paste. This poultice in cheese is perfect for drawing out toxic substances from the infected area. The paste of the poultice has actually high sulfur content that to a great extent reduce the degree of inflammations.

The Castor oil would perhaps be better than the Cabagge poultice. I do not suggest honey. Use a few drops of Almond oil, Hemp oil or vegetable oil to coat the area where the poultice will be placed to prevent the poultice from sticking.

Of the ones you mention, Slippery elm is perhaps the best. To make a poultice simmer the herb for 3 minutes. Squeeze out any excess liquid, rub the oil to prevent sticking. Apply while hot. Bandage the herb with gauze and leave in the affected area for 3 hours. Repeat as often as needed.

Lymphedema occurs more often in women than in men. It often occurs in elderly persons suffering from chronic venous insufficiency, since the pumping of blood through the veins contributes to the movement of lymph.

In Traditional Chinese Medicine we often used a combination of  formulas named Siler and Chiang-huo Combination, Pinellia and Arisaema Combination, Hoelen and Alisima combination or Magnolia and Hoelen Combination. Depending as to what the presenting and underlying symptoms may be, usually determined by an evaluation. If interested in these or in an evaluation you may email me directly at: admin@tcmconsultants.org