A New Way of Thinking About Autoimmune DiseaseBy Denise Nagel, M.D.关于自身免疫性疾病的新思路作者：Denise Nagel医生我长期以来一直受自身免疫性疾病的折磨。直到最近，纽约时代杂志上的一篇文章才让我了解了使我致病的原因和如何才能康愈的办法。文章网址： [http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/25/magazine/can-the-nervous-system-be- hacked.html?_r=0]我认为这篇文章会给被各种炎症折磨的人们带来一个根本性的变化。炎症性疾病目前已知可以影响到人体的每一个器官。 Feinstein医学院的 Kevin Tracy医生[http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1783813/] 曾在 1998年证实了迷走神经对免疫细胞有直接的影响。他的实验思路突破了当时所有的医学理念。迷走神经从脑干下行到所有人体的主要器官，能帮助各器官保持镇 定。Tracy医生通过注射一种毒素引发肿瘤坏死因子的产生，而肿瘤坏死因子可以致发炎症。他接着刺激迷走神经，结果发现百分之七十五的肿瘤坏死因子的生 成被抑制了。进一步研究通过切断迷走神经发现它是大脑和身体之间信息传输的通道。九年前，一次由病毒引发的疾病之后，我患上了一种严重的使人致残的自身免 疫性疾病。与此同时，我的血液里被查出有多发性骨髓瘤的标记。三年后，这个病发展成了郁积性骨髓瘤。通过传统的和非传统疗法，目前我的这两个病都被压制住 了。我服药的剂量也减到了刚开始时的四分之一。Tracy医生的研究成果终于使我了解了我的病是怎么产生的。我希望我的心得能帮助那些受类风湿性关节炎和 其他炎症性疾病折磨的人们。目前的研究发现很多疾病最初都与炎症有关。在我生病之初，我的肌肉疼得如此厉害，我连转头都做不到。任何的需要肌肉收缩的动作 都带来巨大的疼痛。三个月后，通过使用大剂量的强的松，我的炎症终于得到了控制。但是药物的副作用使我增重 70磅，骨密度下降。一年以后，通过各种试验，我发现一种抗肿瘤坏死因子的药物 Enbrel对我的病有效。Enbrel使我可以渐渐的停服强的松并减轻体重。我开始探索各种非传统疗法。我感谢这两种药物的存在。没有他们，我现在可能 还在受无法忍受的疼痛和持续的炎症的折磨。但现在病症减轻了，我还是希望能找到一种副作用小的治疗方法。我试过很多方法，包括气功，太极，心跳变化生理回 馈和服用大剂量的鱼油。作为一个医生和科学家，我并不喜欢“非传统”和“辅助性”这些提法。我认为，如果一种疗法有效，那它就是对证的疗法。我们只不过是 还没有找到它的科学依据罢了。原来我过去八年一直在坚持做的气功，太极和心跳变化生理回馈都是在增强迷走神经的效用。我的老师之一，吴明杰医生， [http://wuhealing.com]，是三代祖传的中医师和太极专家。从我认识他以来，他就一直在提倡使用这些简单的古老疗法来影响身体的生物 电系统。这些“非传统性疗法”很可能就是通过刺激迷走神经来减少肿瘤坏死因子的产生。Enbrel是通过直接捆绑肿瘤坏死因子来起作用。压力可导致肾上腺 素的分泌和身体的对抗—逃跑反应系统过度活跃。迷走神经的活动可以使身体放松。现在我终于明白了。病毒，我的压力水平，和我的身体特性互相作用，导致了我 的严重的炎症。炎症使我的身体释放了过多的肿瘤坏死因子。Enbrel，强的松，针灸，气功和太极都能降低肿瘤坏死因子的浓度，通过直接捆绑肿瘤坏死因 子，或者通过作用在现在已被科学认知的生物电系统。
A New Way of Thinking About Autoimmune DiseaseBy Denise Nagel, M.D.Having long struggled with an autoimmune illness, recently I found a key to understanding why I got sick and how I got well in the New York Times Magazine. [http://www.nytimes.com/2014/05/25/magazine/can-the-nervous-system-be-hac... I think it will be a game-changer for people suffering from inflammatory diseases that now are thought to affect every organ system in the body. In 1998, Dr. Kevin Tracy, [http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1783813/] a neurosurgeon at the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research, convincingly demonstrated that the vagus nerve directly affects immune cells through a game-changing experiment that went against all known medical thinking at the time. The vagus nerve travels from the brainstem through the body, connecting to most of the major organs and exerting a calming influence on them. Dr. Tracy injected a toxin known to trigger the production of tumor necrosis factor (TNF) that leads to inflammation. He then stimulated the vagus nerve and blocked the production of TNF by 75 percent. Further studies involving incision of the vagus nerve concluded that this was the route of information transfer from the brain to the body. Nine years ago, after a viral illness, I developed a severe and incapacitating autoimmune disease that defied diagnosis. At the same time, a marker for multiple myeloma appeared in my blood and progressed to smoldering myeloma over the next three years. Using both conventional and alternative therapies, I am now essentially in remission from both diseases, and have reduced my medication to one quarter of the initial dosage. Dr. Tracy’s work has finally helped me understand how this happened. I hope this insight may help you if you suffer from rheumatoid arthritisor another inflammatory disease. Many diseases are now thought to have an inflammatory cause at their root.When I first became ill, the muscular pain was so severe that I was unable to even turn my head. Any muscle contracture was excruciating. It took three months before high dose prednisone calmed the inflammation but caused me to gain 70 pounds andlose bone density. It took another year before Enbrel, an anti-TNF drug, was found effective through trial and error. This allowed me to slowly wean off the prednisone, lose the weight, and begin my exploration of alternative therapies. I remain grateful for the efficacy of the prednisone and the injectable biologic. Without them I may have remained in intolerable pain and had the impact of ongoing inflammation. Once quelled, however, it made sense to try to find something with a lower risk profile. Qigong, tai chi, heart rate variability biofeedback, and high dose EPA fish oil were justa few of my investigations.As a physician and scientist, I never really liked the term “alternative” and didn’t feel that much better about “complementary.” To me, if a treatment works, it is just medicine for which we don’t yet have the scientific basis. The vagus nerve, it turns out, is what I was learning to impact through my heart rate variability biofeedback and also the qigong and tai chi that I have been doing for eight years. One of my teachers, Dr. Ming Wu, [http://wuhealing.com/ea third generation Chinese herbalist and tai chi master, has been talking about affecting the body’s bioelectric system through these simple ancient treatments since I have known him. These “alternative therapies” as it turns out are most likely working by stimulating the vagal nerve and thereby reducing TNF. Enbrel reduces TNF through directly binding it.Stress leads to over activity of the adrenal fight-flight reaction. The vagal nerve leads to the relaxation response. Now it all made sense. The viral load, my stress level, and undoubtedly my genetics interacted to create a profound inflammatory disease releasing too much TNF. Enbrel, prednisone, acupuncture, qigong and tai chi all lower the circulating TNF either through directly binding it or through the now scientifically recognized bioelectric system.