Should I try Torrance FFC? What to expect if I were to go?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by CinCA, Mar 6, 2006.

  1. CinCA

    CinCA New Member

    I went to a dr.'s office (saw an ND, but she works with an MD) last summer, and she did many tests and was the one who dx'd me with CFS. I also see my "regular" ND now that I am not in as critical of a state, and he isn't as test-happy and expensive as the other doctor (we were getting really tapped out).

    But I have taken a downturn with this recent move, and I am very down on things. I know the homeopathic treatment I am doing has helped, but I almost feel like it is not enough again. I now live where it's a reasonable drive to the FFC in Torrance, but I just don't want to get into a pile of debt/incur huge medical expenses again.

    I'd appreciate any info. I can get about people who have gone there (ideally the Torrance center) and their experiences. Dr. thoughts, cost estimates/your experience would be helpful. I just am so leery and cynical of places like this cropping up that run tons of tests and throw people on several very pricey supplements, which they often get kickbacks on. And the website strikes me very much like a business. I don't trust anyone anymore. But I also have heard a lot of people say the FFC really helped them, so I am willing to at least lend an open ear.

    Thanks for any info. anyone can give.
    C.
    [This Message was Edited on 03/06/2006]
    [This Message was Edited on 03/06/2006]
    [This Message was Edited on 03/06/2006]
  2. alaska3355

    alaska3355 New Member

  3. CinCA

    CinCA New Member

    Hope to get some feedback.
  4. rockgor

    rockgor Well-Known Member

    Maybe you can find past postings on it.

    Somebody said you'd better have at least $5000 to go there.
  5. spiritsky

    spiritsky Member

    C.

    As you know I've been going to the Torrence FFC. As far as I'm concerend, they have given me my life back. I've been on their treatment for almost 4 months now and am back to work part time. Walk 2 to 4 miles a day and do some weights in the morning also. I thought my life was over, going down, down, down. My regular doctor who diagnosed me said I was one of the worst cases of CFS he's ever seen. I was completely disabled and rarely left the house for any reason. Going to FFC was my last resort and I really didn't know if it was going to help. Just driving as a passenger in the car with my wife was an agonizing 7 hour trip. But in my own case, within a couple of weeks the malaise was beginning to lift and I could already start to do mild exercise. It's been great and I feel that it's only getting better, feeling better, sleeping better...

    I know others are not having the same dramatic improvements that I've been having and I think a lot of that has to do with the fact that I didn't have any major infections when I started the program. My immune system was already very strong from living on an alkaline food diet. I can't say enough about staying alkaline. I used to get colds and sore throats weekly for years but since staying alkaline I haven't had a cold for the last 2 winters straight.

    Anyway, back to FFC...So for me, the treatment basically consisted of hormone replacement. All my hormone levels were very down - Testosterone, DHEA, Thyroid, Growth Hormone, Pregnenalone. Starting a replacement program was pretty straightforward with the exception of getting the right dose for Thyroid. My docotor is pretty good "Dr Whiteman"...He's not perfect, but he's the best and openminded doctor I've ever had. He's been pretty much right on about the dosing of the hormones, although you still have to monitor yourself closely to get things fine tuned. No doctor can know what your feeling better than you, and my doctor is very easy to work with. If I tell him I need more thyroid, he listens to what I'm saying and gives me what I need. If I ask him to give me a double dose of thyroid because I can break them in half and save money, he does it for me, no problem.

    As far as cost, this is how it works, $385 for the first two visits and $285 thereafter. You can get a bit of a cheaper rate if you go on the outpatient program and pay for the first 4 visits in advance. Basically the outpatient program is designed for people like myself who can't see the doctor in person all the time. You go there in person for the first visit and then followups are over the phone.

    As far as supplements are concerned, yes he will recommend some that you can buy on the internet and some you can buy from him for convenvience if you want. They don't push their products on you and you can just say "no" and buy them yourself. The only thing that I find they overcharge for is their Growth Hormone. I buy it from a different pharmancy and get a much cheaper rate.

    All said, I am so so happy to be getting my life back and am already feeling better than I've felt in years...

    Good luck to you...

    I know you going through a lot of stress, on top of your illness.

    Whatever you do though, do something. It won't get better on it's own. At the minimum, go to your regular doctor and get your hormone levels checked. I kind of suspect you are low, most likely on cortisol, since you under a lot of stress and having a tough time handling it.


    Also, PPO Insurance does cover the cost of the lab tests and also part of the prescriptions. I have Kaiser, and so everything was out of pocket with the exception of the tests. My Kaiser doctor was kind enough to run all my tests for me and saved me a bundle.





    [This Message was Edited on 03/07/2006]
  6. yesnettv

    yesnettv New Member

    The waiting list was a couple of months when I wanted to go so I got in to see their NP Dee Dee - what a great lady!

    Changes for me so far:
    It now only takes me an hour to get going in the morning instead of two!
    I have NO allergy symptoms instead of having them all the time.
    My PT says I am finally building muscle mass - I had some amino acid malabsorption thing going on - I am gaining back the weight I need to gain back! The day after PT I am only tired, NOT EXHAUSTED!
    I have LESS PAIN!
    My injuries seem to be healing better.
    But the very best thing...............
    I CAN THINK!!!!! Now dust and clutter bother me! I feel I can tackle doing my taxes.
    I wake up rested.

    I have not had the infectious labs done yet, tho there is a high probability I have that kind of thing going on, ONLY BECAUSE I AM AFRAID OF THE COST! Will do it soon.

    They put me on lots of supplements, thyroid, all the hormones. I bought the supplements from them because I knew I just would take my sweet time getting around to getting them somewhere else.
    This place is worth what they charge! I have spent the last year and over $8000 getting nowhere until I went there.

    I am getting my ambition back. In addition to Dee Dee I have also seen Drs Whiteman and Holtorf.
    Take care,
  7. pawprints

    pawprints New Member

    Congrats on your improvements. Did you feel that you might have had some infections at some point?

    Just wondering if it was only your hormones that were off causing the illness? Also did you do the IV's?

    I tested positive for numerous infections but live too far away to do the IVs.

    Thanks for your input.
  8. spiritsky

    spiritsky Member

    Yes, I believe I had infections at one time...I was always getting colds and sore throats every week (Had EBV at one time) but once I started with the alkaline diet, I havne't had a cold or flu since (it's been almost 2 years now). So staying alkaline was a good preparation before going to the FFC because by the time I got there all I had to do was balance my hormones.

    One other thing I did before going to the FFC was get my minerals levels balanced. I did several hair mineral analyses to determine what I was missing. I'm still working on some levels but they are much better.

    Also, no, I didn't do any IV's at the FFC. I wasn't necessary for me..
    [This Message was Edited on 03/07/2006]
  9. pawprints

    pawprints New Member

    thanks for the information. I did buy the Ph book but have not had the energy to follow it yet.

    Cinca...good luck if you decide to go to the FFC. They do give comprehensive testing.
  10. CinCA

    CinCA New Member

    Sorry...my mom got in town to visit on Tues., and we've been going nonstop since then (plus I have a lovely head cold now, too).

    I really appreciate everyone's helpful advice, and I think I will call the FFC to at least inquire about appt. availability, rates, etc. I need to talk to hubby about our insurance, as it will be going from COBRA PPO to an indemnity plan, of which his employer gives a generous out-of-pocket allowance. I am so thankful we seem to be getting a wonderful insurance plan, as we for years have had to pay thousands and thousands out of pocket for my and our daughter's care.

    I'm a little better re: the CFS flare, but I think it's more that hubby's traveling, mom/nana's here, and I just can't quit if I want to. Nana (my mom) doesn't know a thing about the CFS, but she is quite worried about how thin I am and keeps saying she doesn't know how I keep up with my kid and to please try to take care of myself. Yes, it shows that much now.

    Hopefully the FFC will yield some info., at least, as well as a plan to remedy things. I feel I may need to call in the big guns like these, as I am definitely getting a ton of help from my ND but I feel my problems are just surpassing his basket of remedies' ability to handle.

    Thank you so very much, again, for the info.
    C.
  11. KimWeb

    KimWeb New Member

    I also see a Dr. @ the Torrance center. Made a huge difference in my life. Can you tell me where you get your growth hormone? I was going to stop taking it beccause it is sooo expensive. Thank you.