Curing Autoimmune Naturally: My PMR Story

Curing Autoimmune Naturally: My PMR Story

Donna J. Karaba
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-7524-7.ch011
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In September 2010, Donna, an active 49-year-old woman, experienced an autoimmune attack. After eight months of intense pain, she underwent a 10-day supervised fast at True North Health Center in Santa Rosa, CA. Her inflammation was eliminated and she has regained an optimal level of health and an active lifestyle including tennis, hiking, yoga, biking, and swimming. Donna also continues to practice and teach meditation. This chapter is intended to relay a case example of how one woman cured her symptoms of Polymyalgia Rheumatica (PMR) in the hopes of reducing unnecessary suffering and financial drain in the lives of others.
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It was 2:30am. I woke up in agonizing pain. This had become my nightly routine. The pain in my shoulders was so intense I could not lie in bed any longer. My shoulders burned all the way to the bone, starting at the tops of each shoulder and moving down the sides of my upper arms. On a scale of one to ten, with ten being “unbearable,” my pain intensity was certainly a level ten. I needed comfort, or at least, distraction from the excruciating pain.

The only place I could find relief was in the shower. The hot water helped to displace the pain and brought some peace temporarily. Standing in the shower, I allowed the water to distract my mind away from the constant pain, until I was relaxed enough to go back to bed. Slowly, with great effort, I would dry off with my towel. It was a challenge to actually reach the heavy wet towel onto the hook where it hung to dry. My arms looked like someone else’s, emaciated, like a very unhealthy old woman as they barely reached the towel hook. My shoulders were practically useless. This constant burning sensation caused me the most discomfort between two and three in the morning and persisted for eight months from September 2010 to April 2011. My husband had to help me get dressed. I felt helpless, vulnerable, and very frustrated. Toward the end of April, through constant searching desperate for answers, I found and experienced a cure.

This pain had persisted for months. Something was happening to my body that seemed outside of my control. I was scared because I did not know how to cure myself, or even if a cure was possible. The “experts” I saw did not know of a cure either. Was I going to have to endure this pain for the rest of my life? Through my story, I wish to provide you with hope and guidance to cure your own symptoms of autoimmune disease and benefit all who suffer from inflammatory disorders in the body. If you suffer from PMR you may relate to this story as I share the symptoms and how I cured my body from this particular disease. I share resources that I found helpful in my quest for information and answers to this mysterious illness. (See list of resources on the references page.)

An Epidemic?

It is estimated that half of the U.S. population, 150 million people in the U.S. alone, suffer from arthritis and other rheumatic diseases. This includes autoimmune inflammatory disorders like PMR. An article in the January 2008 issue of Arthritis & Rheumatism, referenced the results of the study including the estimates per disorder (

  • Rheumatoid Arthritis: 1.3 million U.S. adults;

  • Juvenile Arthritis: 294,000 people in the U.S.;

  • Spondylarthritides: 0.6 to 2.4 million U.S. adults over 15;

  • Systemic Lupus Erythematosus: 161,000 to 322,000 U.S. adults [1.5M in the U.S. and 5M worldwide estimated by the Lupus Foundation of America (Lupus, 2014)];

  • Systemic Sclerosis: 49,000 U.S. adults;

  • Sjögren’s Syndrome: 0.4 to 3.1 million adults;

  • Clinical Osteoarthritis: 27 million U.S. people age 25 and older;

  • Polymyalgia Rheumatic: 711,000 people in the U.S.;

  • Giant Cell Arteritis: 228,000 people in the U.S.;

  • Gout: Eight million people in the U.S.;

  • Fibromyalgia: Five million people in the U.S.;

  • Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: Four to 10 million people in the U.S.;

  • Low Back Pain: 59 million within the three months prior to the study;

  • Neck Pain: 30.1 million within the three months prior to the study.

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