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Dr. Fred Hui

Helping People Achieve Balance in Life

Shingles under Attack

                                                                               

A Toronto doctor
combining the best of
Eastern and Western

medicine believes he has
found
an effective
treatment

By Lucille de St. Andre  (Today’s Seniors)

‘ I wouldn’t wish shingles on my worst enemy,” smiles Dorothy Harrison, 76. For the past week she’s been treated at Dr. Fred Hui’s Bloor Street Clinic in Toronto and today is her first pain-free day.

 Shingles is an excruciating illness. “People come to me in tears and I Biblical times, it’s no respecter of per-search the internet to help them. Why, sons, attacking everyone and most of I’d look at East Indian methods, all seniors. Eskimo methods, anything to alleviate Shingles is the result of infection by their pain,” says physician and the herpes zoster virus, the same one acupuncturist Hui, who believes he has finally made a breakthrough in the treatment of shingles. 

As old as mankind, and older than Biblical times, it’s no respecter of persons, attacking everyone and most of all seniors. 

Singles is the results of infection by the herpes zoster virus, the same one that causes chicken pox and lies dor­mant in people until reactivated, with blistering and searing, jabbing and shooting pains. Says one patient: “I’d rather have three child births than one month of shingles.” 

Hui’s patients are in such pain they often can’t stand a touch of clothing and are horrified of showers, with water touching their sore bodies. 

Lately, the busy clinic has been swamped with patients and the staff has strict instruction to give them immediate appointments. Shingles caught and diagnosed within the first six months has a dramatic recovery rate with Chinese cupping. But Hui, who specialized in practically hopeless cases, is willing to give even hard-core, four-year shingles sufferers a good shot. 

On her second visit to the clinic, Irena Hok, 69, a retired Polish-born seamstress, is able to raise her arm for the first time in four and a half years. She’s had shingles since 1992 and gone from doctors to doctors, getting Tylenol and sedatives until she gave up. Blisters cover her back and her skin is so sore that she can’t wear a bra. Showers are our as she gingerly washes her body. 

Practising a unique blend of Eastern and Western medicine. Hui believes he may be the only licensed Canadian physician east of Edmonton applying a fully integrated approach of Chinese and Western healing. He says, it’s the accepted approach for all doctors in China today. 

In the last 15 years he’s seen five or six Singles patients a year and was touched by their suffering. He resolved to put his 15 years in shingles treatments to the test. He recruited a series of patients via an announcement in a “Toronto newspaper. Today he’s delighted his initial enthusiasm for the traditional Chinese method called cupping has resulted in enough solid cures to be documented in a forthcoming study. 

Harrison received 13 anesthetic spinal injections at the North York Branson Hosptial. “It helped for the day.” she ruefully. ” I had a blister on my back and I was so sore the pain just never stopped; My doctor gave me Tylenol 3, strong pain pills, pepper cream, calamine lotion and Zostrix. I read about Dr. Hui’s treatment in the newspaper and came to him right away. After tow treatments I didn’t have the pain. Now, after a few more treatments I’m totally free.” 

The cupping methods consists of pricking the skin at acupuncture points along the appropriate nerve roots, placing over the spot a small cup from which the oxygen has been removed to create suction. Hui documents on a pain scale: a maximum of 10, which often falls in a draati decrease to one after merely one or two treatments. The treatment is not covered by OHIP. 

Harry Martin, 76, of East York, was one of the lucky sufferers. “My doctor thought it was pleurisy. I had blisters in my back, severe pain and a rash. I suffered for six weeks. When I got to Dr. Hui my pain level was eight. By my forth appointment i fell to one and I bacame one of his ‘graduates.'” 

Conventional treatment for shingles relies on drugs, notably the latest, acyclovir, given intravenously, and perhaps steroids. A conventional doctor usually recommends the ever-ready calamine lotion, strong pain killers and sleeping pills. Some early cases go into spontaneous remission in the first three months and patients then wait and wait for the pain to stop sometimes months or years. 

Hui was born in Hong Kong and attended University of Toronto medical school. After graduation he set up his medical practice in Toronto and decided to blend Eastern and Western medicine. 

He treats such illnesses as chronic headaches, musculo-skeleton disorders, nervous system disorders, abnormal menstrual periods, lack of energy, appetite, chronic fatique, insomnia and stomach disorders. 

Increasingly, family physicians such as Dr. Barbara Pilarski are referring their shingles patients to him.