Alpha Lipoic Acid for peripheral neuropathy.....

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by bct, Oct 20, 2008.

  1. bct

    bct Active Member

    I just wondered if anyone with PN has tried ALA, and with what success, if any. I have idiopathic peripheral neuropathy, sometimes burning over much of my body.

    A doctor I see said he has seen some good results with patients using 600 mgs. a day (that's a lot of ALA).

  2. dannybex

    dannybex Member

    Hi Barry,

    I was using ALA for awhile, but got a little concerned when I read it can bind to certain minerals and metals. For some this might be a good thing, but my iron is reeeeaaally low, so I went looking elsewhere and found that many people are finding benefit from benfotiamine, the fat-soluble form of vitamin B-1.

    It's helped me a lot.

    If you look up either one on google, one of the deficiency symptoms is neuropathy.

  3. frostymocha

    frostymocha New Member

    I too have this - and I have switched neurologists to try and get a determination of whether this is a permanent problem caused by the viruses that were attacking my system or what. I am terrified.

    How did they decide what yours was due to? When they first did the EEG on me they said there was nothing wrong but it got so bad I could not walk. So tomorrow I get an EEG again.
  4. tansy

    tansy New Member

    Hi Barry

    ALA is often recommended by doctors who use both meds and alternatives for neuropathy and neuropathic pain. I am currently taking a slightly lower dose. I had problems with N Acetyl Cysteine so opted for reduced lipoic acid and then ALA. Jacob Teitelbaum MD recommends a combo of meds and alternatives, including ALA, to treat neuropathic pain; they may help with your burning sensations too.

    I have also found some of the B vits help with my neuropathies, damaged nerves, and post operative neuropathic pain these include B1 (benfotiamine), B6 (P5P), and methyl B12 which may not be advisable if you have amalagams since it can mobilise mercury.

    I hope ALA helps if you decide to try it.

    tc, Tansy

    [This Message was Edited on 10/20/2008]
  5. bct

    bct Active Member

    Thanks for the replies Tansy, Dan, and Frostymocha. I will be asking my GP for any thought on the chelation problems, if any. The ALA was actually recommended by my oncologist who I see for CLL leukemia, and who knows I have PN.

    I do take large amounts of sub-lingual methyl B12 as advised by my neurologist. She said nothing about any potential problems....

    So I guess I will ask my GP, and a local naturopath I know of, and also my dentist. I DO plan on taking it however; any possibility of reducing my Neurontin intake will be looked into. The side-effects of Neurontin are just too hard on me, with the sleepy, dopey feeling on top of CFS, and I want to reduce my dosage as much as possible, I am now on 2700 mgs. a day. Sure hope the ALA can help.

    As for "idiopathic", what a hoot. As my doc said, it means the idiots can't figure it out, LOL.

    Regards to all,

  6. bct

    bct Active Member

    bumping for any other input.

  7. tansy

    tansy New Member

    but Rich and others frequently point out issues relating to mercury from dental amalgams. My blood levels of B12 were at top end of the normal range yet the methyl form helped me when other forms of B12 had no discernable effect good or otherwise. Methyl B12 appears to be important in the CNS; since B12 levels with in the CNS were found to be low in ME/CFS it might explain the differences in my responses.

    I have been Rx Gabapentin for post operative peripheral neuropathic pain 8 months after it was first clear I needed it. I too I am having problems tolerating the most effective dose but at least even a low dose it stopped the electric shock type Sx. Neurontin/gabapentin can reduce levels of vits/mins in which we are often low anyway and that's another factor I feel I have to take into account.

    I have not been able to go up to anything like the dose you are taking; at least this time round my GP understands the need to start low and go slow. Now I am seriously considering stopping it altogether; it is difficult enough to function with ME so maybe I should just go back to living with the pain; I've lived with PN and neuropathic pain for most of the 2 1/2 decades I have had this illness. Prior to surgery ALA, and other non pharmaceutical TX, seem to have helped reduce my day to day pain levels including the muscle and joint pain.

    Barry I sincrely hope you are able to find the right combo soon; PN and neuropathic pain is no trivial matter.

    tc, Tansy
  8. bct

    bct Active Member

    Thanks so much for your input. You are right, Neurontin on top of Cfs/ME is almost too much. I have just started the ALA @ 600 mgs. a day (3 divided doses) and am hoping for the best. My Oncologist has seen good results with many of his patient with PN, using the ALA at this dosage. Of course, his patients have PN because of their therapies. I see him for routine checkups re my CLL which is dormant. My PN is idiopathic, and my neurologist has no clues as to cause; only diagnosis is small fiber neuropathy. It was she who put me on the Methyl B12 supplement. She raised no concerns about chelation, and she seems pretty "hip", as it were.

    At any rate, thank you for your thoughtful reply. I hope to reduce my intake of Neurontin; the doc says the ALA usually takes a month or two to show effects.... I am keeping my fingers crossed!

    Many regards,