I have acute intermittent porphyria and Fibromyalgia. Like anyone who has struggled with an obscure, debilitating illness year after year, I was grateful when I found doctors who could tell me why I was sick. In the end, however, a diagnosis is only so much without an effective treatment. Essentially, the treatments I was receiving were to prevent me from dying. And it was working. I was bedridden (due primarily to exhaustion and muscle weakness) and confined to a wheelchair (which I still fell out of sometimes because I was too weak to hold myself up), but undead. By the time a friend recommended Dr. Stéphane Provencher, I had all but accepted that this undead state was the best I could hope for.
Although I'd received chiropractic treatment before, I'd never heard of SOT. It sounded different enough from anything else I'd done that I thought it might be worth a try. Best case scenario, I imagined, I'd have some pain relief, a little more energy, and maybe be able to sit up longer before my muscles gave out on me. I showed the information to my primary physician who was familiar with SOT and agreed I might benefit from it.
On the way to my appointment, I passed a highway herbicide spraying site and had a severe porphyria attack. (The symptoms of such an attack are extreme nausea, dizziness, seizure-like activity, headaches, muscle pain and weakness and mental confusion/disorientation.) In my experience, the only treatment that could stop an attack of that degree was a dextrose IV. I decided to go ahead with the appointment, intending to have an IV administered as soon as I got home.
By the time I got to the clinic, I couldn't even sit up in my wheelchair. I waited for my appointment lying in the waiting room. At the beginning of the appointment, I was unable to complete some on the preliminary tests because I couldn't stand up for more than three seconds.
When my first treatment was over, I was experiencing a significant decrease in pain, which was more than I had expected so soon. What I hadn't expected at all was that my porphyria attack stopped. I was able to sit upright in my wheelchair with no difficulty; my headache, seizures, and disorientation were gone, and my nausea had subsided enough that I was able to eat a meal. On the way home, the same site that had triggered the attack earlier now only triggered mild nausea that was easily treated with oral glucose intake. I never had an IV that day after all.
Over the next few days, I noticed an increase in energy. I could walk short distances with my walker without falling, and I could sit upright for several minutes without collapsing. By my next appointment, two days later, I was able to stand without support for the necessary thirty seconds. After my third treatment, I was still using a wheelchair for long distances but was walking unaided around the house. During the first three weeks of the study, I only fell once. Before that, I'd consider myself lucky if I only fell once in a day.
At my sixth appointment, I walked unaided. I didn't take a single fall.
Naturally, there have been some ups and downs, but my overall condition is steadily improving. My fibomyalgia pain is practically non-existent. Porphyria attacks are milder and less frequent. I only use my walker for long distances, never around the house anymore. Many days I don't use a wheelchair at all, even for things like grocery shopping. I'm able to do little things around the house that I haven't done for years – load and unload a dishwasher, put away laundry, make simple meals. For the first time, it seems unreasonable NOT to expect my health to keep improving.
If I had read this testimonial a few months ago, I would have thought, "That's nice that it helped her, but for me it would just be one more dead end." But maybe, after giving it some thought, I'd have decided it was worth a try. I'm glad that's exactly what I did