Sunday, September 18, 2011

Colchicine is a very dangerous drug

Some people have been misinformed that having Familial Mediterranean Fever proves a Melungeon connection. This is certainly not true despite articles on the Internet.  The statement that there are many cases in Hancock county, TN is false. The most dangerous aspect of this dislusional thinking is that the advice to just TRY colchicine is very dangerous advice because colchicine is a very dangerous drug. An ethical Dr. would only prescribe colchicine if the benefits outweighed the danger. Leave the prescribing to a licensed physician.

What can it do?
According to web site Epocrates Online, these are the things colchicine can do to you. We explain each medical word in simple terms. Please note: As with each drug, a list of side effects doesn’t mean you will definitely get them all, or even one of them. But it's way too dangerous to take trying to prove you have FMF

Serious reactions:

1. Myelosuppression – This means suppression of your bone marrow, where your blood cells are created. When our bone marrow is suppressed, we can have anemia, be more prone to infections, and we may bleed more easily.

2. Leukopenia (lack of white blood cells – responsible for fighting infections), thrombocytopenia (lack of platelets – responsible for stopping bleeding), granulocytopenia (lack of a type of white blood cells also responsible for fighting infections), pancytopenia (this means lack of all types of blood cells altogether) – All of these can happen when your bone marrow is suppressed.

3. Diarrhea, severe – Well, this doesn’t require any explanation, does it?

4. Myopathy – This means an inflammation in your muscles, causing them to be weak, among other things.

5. Rhabdomyolysis – This means breakdown of muscles.

6. Neuropathy – This is something the guy in the show had at the end, and it means an inflammation of nerves. It can cause tingling, pain or a lack of sensation in our fingers.

7. Hepatotoxicity – This means a toxic effect on our liver.

8. Nephrotoxicity – This means a toxic effect on our kidneys.

9. Multiple organ failure, including fatal – This means that instead of just one organ in our body having problems (like the liver or kidney above), many organs stop working properly altogether.

10. DIC – This means “disseminated intravascular coagulation”. It’s a condition in which blood clots form inside blood vessels throughout the body while at the same time bleeding can happen.

11. Hypersensitivity reaction – This means an allergic reaction to a drug. It can be anything from a rash or fever (seen on the show) to a potentially fatal condition called anaphylaxis. The latter one can show up as a low blood pressure (like the guy on the show had).

12. Azoospermia – This is a condition in which a person doesn’t have enough sperm in the semen.
Common reactions:

1. Diarrhea, nausea/vomiting, cramping, abdominal pain
2. Fatigue
3. Headache
4. Pharyngolaryngeal pain – This means pain in the throat and mouth.

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Nancy said...

hope you will publish this rebuttal!!

Nothing could be further from the truth that having Familial Mediterranean Fever proves a Melungeon connection. Having FMF proves that somewhere in your ancestry you have Mediterranean ancestry.

The Melungeons said that they were Portyghee. Portugal is a Mediterranean country. Therefore the possibility of finding FMF among SOME Melungeon descendants.

Familial Mediterranean Fever blog - 'my story' w/ FMF, and LOTS of medical documentation, charts etc.

History Chasers said...

Nancy; I have no problem at all with publishing your rebuttal.

I have a problem with people thinking because they have been prescribed Colchicine for Gout it suggests they are of Melungeon descent. And I had just read an article saying just this very thing.

I have also heard of people taking this drug just to see if it *might* make them feel better.

Not a good idea!!!!

Nancy said...

Janet, I'd like to know where you heard that gout patients thought they were Melungeons. I have never heard anyone say this. Send me the piece privately if you want. I'd appreciate it.

As for taking colchicine to see if it 'might' make them feel better, this is standard operating procedures for DOCTORS. 'Let's try this drug and see if it helps.' You can NOT get colchicine easily. It requires a prescription and no good doctor just gives out scripts for no reason.

Again, a POSITIVE response to colchicine treatment is a POSITIVE diagnosis of FMF.

History Chasers said...

Nancy; I said the author suggested this as some kind of proof. Or at least implied a connection.

By the way there is a Melungeon descendant who took Colchicine and almost died. I am not going to tell you their name nor how I know this. It is privileged information.

I agree with everything you are saying. But in the real world there are people who take illegally obtained drugs, who consider their body their own personal Guinea pig, etc.

Hopefully they won't read this article and extrapolate it into trying Colchicine, but you never know.

<a href="!/groups/2209487467/doc/10150444088362468/>!/groups/2209487467/doc/10150444088362468</a>

I know no good doctor gives out prescriptions easily but there are always the bad ones amenable to patient suggestion. There are always kids who mix up Mom's pills and take them and pass them out as a "cocktail" at parties.

Also people are getting these prescriptions from Canada. Does a doctor even see them? What about Mexico? I think they'll prescribe anything down there.

I am just trying to help prevent these bad things from happening.


Nancy said...

I get my colchicine from Canada and a prescription is REQUIRED just like in the US. The reason that folks are using Canadian drugs is that colchicine in the US went from 10 cents per pill to $5.00 per pill because of some silly government oversight and personal greed on the drug's maker. Has nothing to do with safety.

I do not know of anyone getting anything from Mexico. I believe that would be illegal.

I would have to talk with the Melungeon descendants doctor before I would believe that it was the colchicine that ALMOST killed them!! An interaction between colchicine and another drug that person was taking might have made them very ill but that would be the fault of the doctor for not knowing that and not the colchicine. ALMOST and did are two very different things. Colchicine has been used safely for over 2000 years. It needs to be monitored by a doctor and we can not do anything about kids taking drugs from their mom's medicine chest.

While your heart MIGHT be in the right place Janet, and your intent may be of the best, by bringing up stuff like this you may prevent someone from saving their own or others lives.

History Chasers said...

Nancy; It took me about 2 minutes to find this place in Canada that was going to sell me some Colchicine and give me a free bonus of Viagra. No prescription required. I followed the ordering process all the way up to entering my credit card info. It clearly said no prescription required.

Also I watched an episode of House MD where a patient was nearly dead before it was discovered he was being given Colchicine by a family member.

If it couldn't be fatal why would the article I published say could be fatal?

I am glad it's working for you and not harming you.

Why are you so defensive?