A metabolic disorder can provoke the development of inflammatory processes in the cartilaginous tissue due to the inability of the kidneys to excrete uric acid with the appearance of gout. Treatment with leeches is a worthy alternative to conservative medicine. Hirudotherapy involves planting living beings on biological points located in inflamed areas, that is, in the foci of the greatest accumulation of urinary crystals.
Leeches in the treatment of gout
Gouty arthritis: who gets it?
The gene for the disease is located on the X chromosome, and therefore men are more likely to inherit gout and suffer from its manifestations. Due to the failure of metabolic processes, sodium urates are deposited in the joints, causing swelling, pronounced inflammation and pain. Without medical care, pain attacks will occur more and more often over time.
In gout, inflammation of the big toe joint is most common.It is in this place that leeches are planted.
The inflammatory process in a patient can develop under such conditions:
- Intoxication – poisoning of the kidneys with alcoholic beverages leads to disruption of their functioning, which is why salts stagnate in the body.
- Obesity. With excess weight, joints are at risk, as they are exposed to increased stress, which can cause inflammation.
- Exposure to extremely high and, conversely, low temperatures that cause discomfort can also cause gout.
- Genetic predisposition.
Hirudotherapy: restoration of blood circulation
Laboratory analysis of leech secretions showed the effectiveness of the effects of mucus components on the treatment of diseases caused by metabolic disorders. The therapeutic effect of hirudotherapy is caused by a comprehensive effect on the body. The reflex effect is expressed in the peculiarities of leeches to act as natural acupuncturists: they purposefully bite through the skin in biologically active areas, that is, in fact, they conduct an acupuncture session. The mechanical effect is caused by the ability to restore normal blood circulation. But the greatest effect is provided by the biological component of the treatment associated with the unique components of mucus.
Leech mucus contains:
- alpha chymotrypsin;
- trypsin and others;
Due to biologically active substances (BAS), blood thins and the risk of blood clots decreases, blood flow accelerates, harmonizing metabolic processes in the body, which is especially important in the treatment of gout. Also, the stabilization of oxygen supply to the cells, caused by the action of hirudin, helps to relieve edema. In hirudotherapy, biologically active substances act as an antiseptic and provide an analgesic effect, which is also essential in the treatment of joint inflammation.
Treatment with leeches
The standard course of treatment with leeches for gout consists of 7-8 procedures, which in no case should be carried out in a row. It is necessary to take breaks of 6-7 days after each session. Re-passing the course is possible only after 2 weeks. However, it is worth taking into account the individual characteristics of the course of the disease, in which the specialist performing the procedure can slightly adjust the schedule.
Each procedure requires from 2 to 7 leeches, which are placed on the inflamed area, where a high concentration of salt crystals is observed. The patient can be in a lying or sitting position for the entire session, which lasts about an hour. At the end, the leeches usually fall off on their own, without causing any inconvenience. Patients do not experience painful sensations, except perhaps a slight burning sensation, but only at the very beginning of the procedure.
Mild side effects after the procedure may include a slight increase in temperature, drowsiness, and dizziness.
Who shouldn’t use leeches?
Treatment with leeches has few contraindications, but it is important to take them into account before signing up for a session. Hirudotherapy is not recommended for children under 5 years old, since it will be psychologically difficult for a child to withstand an hour-long procedure, but there are no physiological contraindications for age. It is forbidden to undergo treatment for people with the following diseases:
- incoagulability of blood;
- exacerbation of mental illness;
- severe forms of anemia
The most important thing to remember is that hirudotherapy sessions should be conducted by a certified specialist in a specially equipped sterile room. The leeches selected for the procedures must be exclusively medical, grown in artificial conditions. Self-medication or home treatment can lead to infections and worsening of the condition.