Roxann’s Recovery

Roxann’s Recovery

Julian Whitaker, MD

A few years ago, while undergoing hyperbaric oxygen therapy for a sprained ankle, I met a remarkable patient named Roxann. This 64-year-old from Bremerton, Washington, is a dramatic living testimonial to the power of alternative medicine.

Roxann Had Multiple Medical Problems

Roxann was diagnosed with diabetes at age 26 and has been on insulin for 16 years. She developed several complications of diabetes, including retinopathy (she has had laser surgery on her eyes), heart disease (two heart attacks, angina, high blood pressure, and a recommendation for bypass surgery), and an open ulcer on her right foot that, despite surgery, refused to heal.

However, her most debilitating problem was diabetic neuropathy, nerve damage that affects a majority of diabetics. She had no sensation at all in her feet, which made walking without assistance nearly impossible, and her thighs were so painful that merely holding her cat in her lap was excruciating.

Roxann was also plagued with psoriasis, a painful, disfiguring, and chronic inflammatory condition of the skin resulting from excessive production of skin cells. Her arms, legs, and trunk were covered with red, oozing patches of thickened, scaly skin. Her clothes would stick to these weeping sores, and as she peeled her garments off, the skin would bleed. Every morning she had to wash her bloody, crusty sheets.

A Last-Resort Visit to Whitaker Wellness

Over the years Roxann consulted more than a dozen physicians for her multitude of problems. She tried scores of different drugs and was on nine prescriptions when she first came to us. She had read about the Whitaker Wellness Institute, but never seriously considered coming here. After all, she was consulting the best doctors and was assured that she was receiving the highest standard of care. Only when she hit rock bottom did she decide to give us a try.

Roxann and her daughter enrolled in our weeklong Back to Health Program. She was placed on a healthful diet, which she stuck to religiously, in spite of her sweet tooth. Although vigorous exercise was obviously out of the question for her, she began a modest exercise program. She started on a comprehensive nutritional regimen, which included high doses of antioxidants, B-complex vitamins, and magnesium for her heart disease, lipoic acid for her neuropathy, and targeted nutrients for her diabetes, psoriasis, and vision problems. Given the severity of Roxann’s condition, her physician also prescribed a course of enhanced external counterpulsation (EECP) and hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT).

Roxann’s Journey Back to Health

Within three days, Roxann noticed a return of sensation in her feet. The roughness of the shower mat, the coolness of the tile, the differing textures of the bathroom rug and the bedroom carpet: Small details, but for Roxann, who once unknowingly walked around all day with a thumbtack in her foot, this was enormous progress.

Over the next few days the pain in her legs diminished, which she proudly demonstrated to me by vigorously slapping her thighs. She was so delighted with her progress that she decided to stay at the clinic for two more weeks to continue these therapies. By the end of her second week, she was walking normally. In fact, she and her daughter walked around Disneyland for seven hours, then strolled around Catalina Island the next day.

Roxann was equally impressed with the improvements in her psoriasis. She still had patches of pink and scaly skin, but the oozing and bleeding had stopped completely. The blurred vision in her left eye cleared, her blood pressure fell into the normal range, and she had no more angina. Furthermore, her insulin dose was cut in half, and some of her other drugs were discontinued. Roxann was ecstatic and utterly amazed. “It’s a miracle. I want to jump on the rooftop and tell the world about it!”

Miracle Cures?

Not to boast, but we are frequently blessed with “miracles” at the Whitaker Wellness Institute. Like Roxann, patients often come here as a last resort, after every conventional approach (i.e., drugs and surgery) has failed, leaving them with little hope. For patients told that nothing else could be done for them, getting well is indeed miraculous.

Folks, there’s really no mystery here. We simply treat our patients with well-researched, patient-proven therapies that conventional medicine chooses to ignore.

HBOT and EECP: The Dynamic Duo

Of course, Roxann’s diet, exercise, and supplement program contributed to her recovery, but I would have to credit her rapid and remarkable improvements to the combination of HBOT and EECP. Most of her problems could be attributed to insufficient oxygen delivery caused by poor circulation, and both of these therapies flood the system with oxygen.

When there is damage to the circulatory system (a hallmark of diabetes, heart disease, neuropathy, and many other conditions), oxygen simply cannot reach the affected tissues. However, when you breathe pure oxygen under pressure in a hyperbaric oxygen chamber, massive amounts of oxygen (10 times its usual concentration) saturate all your tissues, even those deprived of an adequate blood supply.

EECP approaches the same goal from a different angle. By assisting blood flow through the arteries in your legs and throughout your body, it increases circulation and promotes the growth of new blood vessels to areas deprived of blood. The combination of these two safe, noninvasive therapies has unusually powerful effects, which accounts for Roxann’s brisk response.

These Therapies Must Be Put to Greater Use

If Roxann had walked into a hospital that offered HBOT, she would have been denied treatment. Her condition falls outside “approved” indications. If she looked hard enough, she could have found an EECP provider, but only because she had angina as well as her other health problems.

This is absurd. HBOT and EECP should be used far more frequently than they are currently being used. Stroke, multiple sclerosis, brain injury, poisoning, AIDS, healing of burns, sprains, fractures, wounds: These are but a few of the 50+ conditions HBOT has been demonstrated to successfully treat.

In addition to angina, EECP is helpful in the treatment of hypertension, erectile dysfunction, peripheral artery disease, Parkinson’s disease, some vision and memory disturbances, and other problems related to poor circulation. But even with all these benefits its use is almost always restricted to patients with angina. These limits have nothing to do with science and everything to do with modern medical economics.


  • If you are interested in receiving EECP and HBOT treatment at the Whitaker Wellness Institute, call (866) 944-8253 or click here.
  • My book, Reversing Diabetes, explains in detail my program for preventing and treating diabetes. Call (800) 810-6655 to order.

Modified from Health & Healing with permission from Healthy Directions, LLC. Copyright 2008. Photocopying, reproduction, or quotation strictly prohibited without written permission from the publisher. To subscribe to Health & Healingclick here.

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