Bee Venom Therapy

Bee Venom Therapy

Healing from the Hive
This article was published in August 1997 by Christine Norris. It highlights some of the issues that help create the BVT controversy.

Does A Bee Sting Work
Connie Chung televised a report that shared stories of multiple sclerosis patients experiencing benefits and relief from symptoms of MS by using venom from honeybees. Several of the people who participated in this segment shared their stories how MS had debilitated them. Once they started doing or taking the alternative medicine route of bee stinging, they experienced results.

Donna Domby of Michigan was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis twenty years ago. Her physical health had deteriorated with the disease that she became bedridden. She was skeptical but thought that she would try the alternative route of bee venom therapy (BVT). She said that in one year, with doing the regimen of receiving 60 stings every other day, she was able to walk. The article goes on to list other people who have regained use of parts of their body lost to MS. Donna goes on to say that she knows it works because when she agreed to participate in a BVT study, she was forced to stop bee stinging treatment. Once she stopped, her symptoms returned but once she resumed BVT, the symptoms improved again.

The controversy is that there is no scientific evidence to prove the BVT works. A group of researchers from the University Medical Center Groningen in the Netherlands conducted a study using 26 patients who had relapsing-remitting or relapsing secondary progressive MS. The study was conducted over a 24 week period were some patients received BVT and others received no treatment. The results were published in the December 2005 issue of Neurology. The results stated that there were no significant reductions, or improvement of the disability observed.

What this means to us
Despite its controversy, BVT therapy grows in popularity. Some parents/groups may insist that children with MS have the right to receive BVT to improve their quality of life or make their symptoms more manageable. Others may insist that they have no right since medical evidence does not support it. We need to know because of the controversy that exist with the subject. We may have a student in our class that receives BVT and needs our support in order to maintain existence in a school environment. If BVT improves or makes a students MS symptoms more manageable and they are able to participate in class, why wouldn’t you support the treatment for that student? Wouldn’t his/her self esteem improve or be maintained if they were allowed to continue to participate in class instead possibly facing isolation. The student would be able to focus more on their academic abilities without the stress of focusing on their physical disability. If it works, support it.

Footnotes:

Norris, Christine. (1997) Healing from the Hive. Motivator Magazine, July/August 1997.
www.unitedspinal.org Multiple Sclerosis Quarterly Report Online. November 2006.
Wikipedian Assignment added by Andrea (Andy) Spann.