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From the Townsend Letter
July 2006


Natural Medicine Works
by Alan R. Gaby, MD

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Natural medicine doesn't work for everyone, although it does for most. It definitely worked for Bernard Kleiman, MD, an elderly Baltimore physician, medical colleague of my father, chief of otolaryngology at a local hospital, and past president of the Baltimore County Medical Society. After hearing a presentation on nutritional medicine that I gave at the annual meeting of the Baltimore County Medical Society, Dr. Kleiman consulted me for his own medical problems.

He called me "Alan"; I called him "Dr. Kleiman." He was a member of the Maryland Board of Physician Quality Assurance (the Board that can take doctors' licenses away); I was excited about the prospect of helping him. After a string of successful nutritional interventions, I asked Dr. Kleiman if he would write a letter about his experiences in my office. I reasoned that a statement of support from a physician so highly respected in the conventional medical community might be of value if the Board ever attempted to discipline me for "deviating from the standard of care." The Board never did, but Dr. Kleiman's letter remains as a testament to the effectiveness of natural medicine.

Dr. Kleiman succumbed to ALS about three years after he wrote this letter, more than seven years after the onset of his neurological symptoms.

September 13, 1990

To whom it may concern:

I first consulted Dr. Gaby on August 10, 1987. At that time, I was a 73-year-old man with a one-year history of a left foot drop increasing progressively in severity, and several areas of progressive muscle atrophy. I also had a one-year history of worsening fatigue, which had become overwhelming. Standard diagnostic tests had failed to find a cause of this fatigue. A neurologist diagnosed my condition as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). This diagnosis was confirmed by several other neurologists, although two additional neurologists questioned that diagnosis.

On my first visit with Dr. Gaby, he raised the possibility of drug-induced autoimmune peripheral neuropathy, since I had been taking procainamide for the treatment of chronic atrial fibrillation. This possibility had not been considered by any of the specialists I had seen. However, my ANA titer was found to be greater than 1:10,000, an unusually high level.

Dr. Gaby administered a series of weekly, intravenous nutrient injections designed to keep me in sinus rhythm, so that I might be able to discontinue procainamide. The injections consisted of magnesium chloride, B-complex vitamins, and vitamin C. He informed me that magnesium was the primary active substance and that the other components were synergists. Within 24 hours after the first injection, I noticed an unexpected and dramatic resolution of my overwhelming fatigue. This benefit has persisted for nearly three years now, while I have continued to receive weekly nutrient injections. On several occasions, when I was unable to receive an injection for a few weeks, the severe fatigue returned, only to resolve completely after I received another injection. I am strongly convinced this is not a placebo effect.

A number of weeks after beginning the injections, I successfully discontinued procainamide without developing a recurrence of atrial fibrillation. On three occasions during the ensuing three years, I did revert to atrial fibrillation. On each of these occasions, I went to Dr. Gaby, who administered an intravenous injection as described above. Each time, the atrial fibrillation resolved; twice, in a matter of a few minutes and, once, after a few hours.

On April 16, 1989, I presented with a case of persistent pharyngitis, diagnosed by one of my otolaryngology associates. The severity of the pharyngitis was such that I was ready to receive an intramuscular injection of penicillin, which, in my experience would resolve the condition after 48 hours or so. Instead, Dr. Gaby administered 4.5 grams of vitamin C (sodium ascorbate) intravenously along with my usual injection. I was quite amazed to find that my pharyngitis had disappeared after only five hours.

On June 4, 1990, I complained of spasms in the calf muscles. This had actually been a problem for a number of years, affecting me on most days, but becoming more severe recently. Dr. Gaby prescribed oral treatment with potassium magnesium aspartate, even though previous serum electrolytes had been normal. He explained that intracellular potassium and magnesium levels are frequently low in elderly or chronically ill individuals, even though serum levels may be normal. He explained further that when potassium and magnesium are bound to aspartate, transport of these minerals into the cell is facilitated. Whatever the mechanism, I was surprised and gratified to find my spasms had disappeared in less than 36 hours. I have continued to take potassium magnesium aspartate, and the spasms have not recurred.

When I first consulted Dr. Gaby, I knew he had an unusual approach to medical care, emphasizing, when possible, the therapeutic use of nutrients and other biochemicals. I had heard him lecture on two occasions, and he seemed to have some very interesting ideas. He has shown me his collection of scientific papers related to nutritional therapy, which he states now numbers more than 21,000 articles. In my numerous discussions with him, I have been impressed with his knowledge of this vast body of literature, most of which is unknown to physicians who practice conventional medicine.

My neurologists are now fairly convinced that I do have ALS. They inform me that the overwhelming majority of patients with my condition do not survive as long as I have. Although my gait has deteriorated, the rate of deterioration has been quite slow. Dr. Gaby has recommended various nutrients designed to enhance the integrity of the tissues of the central nervous system. I may never know whether these nutrients have slowed the progression of my illness, but I can certainly not rule out that possibility.

Some physicians are opposed to the type of medicine practiced by Dr. Gaby. I am convinced that the only reason these physicians reject this treatment approach is that they are unfamiliar with it or do not understand the medical literature on which it is based. Dr. Gaby's treatments have consistently helped me more than anything that conventional medicine has to offer. I have experienced no side effects from any of these treatments.

Bernard Kleiman, MD


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