RSS Feed Print
Has anyone here tried the The Bredesen Protocol™?
Michael Ellenbogen
Posted: Wednesday, November 1, 2017 1:29 PM
Joined: 11/30/2011
Posts: 3409


Has anyone actually started Dr. Dale Bredesen program or has gone thru it? These folks reached out to me before it was famous and offered it completely free. I was very skeptical about it then and I still am. They are coming to me again and offering all-expense paid for this but I need to speak to a few who have gone thru the program. I also don’t want to talk to people the give me. Since my new diagnose I was possibly thinking of trying it.  Thanks


Iris L.
Posted: Wednesday, November 1, 2017 4:11 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 16569


I looked at his busy website.  Is this a clinical trial, or are you expected to pay for participation?  This will be a great question to discuss with the cruise participants. 


 Personally, I'm not doing any more treatment unless I get a specific reason to do so.  Right now, I'm working on modulating my blood pressure, my blood sugar, and my sleep cycle, as well as stress relief.   I'm looking forward to seeing what I will learn from the cruise conference.


Iris L.


Michael Ellenbogen
Posted: Wednesday, November 1, 2017 4:47 PM
Joined: 11/30/2011
Posts: 3409


This is not a clinical trial and people do need to pay for it. They are offering it for free to me. 


Keep It 100
Posted: Wednesday, November 1, 2017 5:20 PM
Joined: 2/26/2017
Posts: 580


Why NOT? It can't hurt, it can only enhance your healthfulness... and it's being offered for free....

 

They haven't come after the likes of Ray with a free offer...so I surmise that they must see a potentially positive outcome in you that they can promote. 

 

I would choose to see that offer as a good thing and take it. 


Iris L.
Posted: Wednesday, November 1, 2017 11:15 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 16569


Michael, in your case, since you have been through so many other trials, I would say, go for it.  

Iris L.


Iris L.
Posted: Wednesday, November 1, 2017 11:33 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 16569


Michael, there is a long thread on the Clinical Trials board regarding The Bredesen Protocol.

https://www.alzconnected.org/discussion.aspx?g=posts&t=2147530864


There might be some interesting information for you there.


Iris L.


Jo C.
Posted: Thursday, November 2, 2017 9:09 AM
Joined: 12/9/2011
Posts: 11109


Well; I got curious and decided to do a bit of online searching.  There is a lot of information contained in this Post which may be difficult to digest all at once.  Just break it down into segments; one at time and read as best can with rests in between.  Here goes . . . .

Hello Michael, this is a difficult sort of invitation to unravel.  You have been offered this program free of charge . . . . more about that later; but does that also include the costs of the expensive labs and supplements?  Or is just the appointments?

Who is offering this to you?  Is it Dr. Bredesen's clinic itself, OR is it from one of the trained doctors in this protocol who have started their own practice or clinic?

I would be aware that the costs of this program can be very expensive to those not given a "free ride," from what I found online; but it is difficult to discern that specifically as there is a complete lack of transparency for costs/fees regarding Dr. Bredesen's services, no matter how I searched.

QUESTION:   Why is this being offered free of charge to you?  What is THEIR gain?   Well; when I look at this, I wonder . . .  . you are very well-known; you are often in the media; you have been active in Washington DC.  Would they keep your involvment absolutely confidential?  Or . .  .

Would at any point in time your name be used as a person who completed their program; OR would they expect you to become a speaker for them or a supporter of their program?  If this is so, then you will need to evalulate if this is something you would be willing to do.

Evidently, insurance does not cover.  There are considerable fees for the doctor, high fees for specialized and regular labs that evidently go to different labs and insurance does not cover.  Then there are supplements; I do not know whether Dr. Bredesen sells supplements under his name or company or not; but at least one of the Bredesen trained doctors I found online did.

 Unable to Bold after this point; it would not work:

There was no information online that I could find that spelled out the costs and fees for Dr. Bredesen's clinic; one would have to make contact to obtain that.  He has written a book that can be found on Amazon.

NOTE:   I see that his name has been Trademarked.

CAVEAT:  It is stated on multiple sites that this protocol is for MCI and EARLY Alzheimers.  It is not a reversal for those who are farther along in their dementia.

It has results in the present time for MCI and early Alzheimers per their studies; what we do NOT know, is if this is lasting or whether in years ahead, this continues or if the persons will go on to develop dementia later anyway.  That would take a decade or more to discern, I would imagine.

The recipe for much of  this care is standard stuff that has been around for a long time.  Diet, exercise, etc.  Our Mimi is a very good example as to how this benefits a person as she began very early with this sort of practice in both diet and strenuous exercise and has been very, very disciplined over the years with very good results.

Again, I would also be very wary of who specifically is offering you this opportunity.  Yes; Bredesen has his clinics, but there are other doctors who have trained for this program who have set up their own clinics as it is a rather lucrative practice.

Since your diagnosis is now up in the air and may well not be Alzheimer's Disease, this does not seem as though parameters would be the same so to speak.  As it is; it has been stated this protocol is for MCI and Early Alzheimer's; would you still have that offer on the table?

I did not see if this protocol also relates to FTD or LBD and other dementias; if it does, I did not find it.

Here is some information from one link I read, with one patient example:

 "Bredesen’s approach is personalized to the patient, based on extensive testing to determine what is affecting the brain’s plasticity signaling network. In the case of the patient with the demanding job who was forgetting her way home, her therapy consisted of some, but not all, of the components of Bredesen’s program, including:

  • eliminating all simple carbohydrates, gluten and processed food from her diet, and eating more vegetables, fruits and non-farmed fish
  •  
  • meditating twice a day and beginning yoga to reduce stress
  •  
  • sleeping seven to eight hours per night, up from four to five
  •  
  • taking melatonin, methylcobalamin, vitamin D3, fish oil and coenzyme Q10 each day
  •  
  • optimizing oral hygiene using an electric flosser and electric toothbrush
  •  
  • reinstating hormone replacement therapy, which had previously been discontinued
  •  
  • fasting for a minimum of 12 hours between dinner and breakfast, and for a minimum of three hours between dinner and bedtime
  •  
  • exercising for a minimum of 30 minutes, four to six days per week
  •  

Bredesen said the program’s downsides are its complexity and that the burden falls on patients and caregivers to follow it. In the study, none of the patients was able to stick to the entire protocol. Their most common complaints were the diet and lifestyle changes, and having to take multiple pills each day."

The following was from an advert from 2017 regarding an offering of an "Immersion Program." No information regarding costs/fees; it appears one had to call to get that information:

"On March 24 - 27, In Indian Wells, Ca., Dr. Bredesen and his physicians will host an Immersion Program, aimed at those with SCI, MCI, early stage and mid-stage Alzheimer's. This is for those who qualify, are serious about the disclipine necessary to achieve success, and can attend with a significent other or care-giver. It is the start of a one year program"

For you, the bottom line is; you probably do not fit the category of MCI or Early Alz's; do you still fit their program protocol; if you do, be very careful about what is expected of you since this is "no cost."  Or , . . they know you like speaking with media and may expect you to be a good speaker all on your own if you have good results.  I just don't know; but still good questions to ask.

In closing, just be cautious and also have your wife or someone you deeply trust do the background and ask questions with you too.  May all go well.

The following information if from a link from a Bredesen trained physician who has opened is own clinic and some fees are displayed:

https://functionalmedicine.doctor/alzheimers-disease-advanced-treatment/the-bredesen-protocol/

 

 

 

 


Jo C.
Posted: Thursday, November 2, 2017 9:27 AM
Joined: 12/9/2011
Posts: 11109


Here is link to a three day December, MD Training Conference in Florida to train doctors in Dr. Bredesen's Protocol; to obtain pricing for the conference training, one has to click on red link. Evidently the cost is $1,500 - $1,800.  It is listed as a non-CME conference; for those who may wonder what that means, it is "not certified for Continuing Medical Education" requirements:

https://www.ifm.org/learning-center/act-rcd-2017-dec/

Here is Dr. Bredesen's link regarding his company and his Board of Directors:

https://www.drbredesen.com/copy-of-company

Always good to have information that can shed more light on how things work.  May all go very well for you.  Let us know what you decide and if you do accept, let us know how you are doing.

J. 


Haven
Posted: Thursday, November 2, 2017 9:40 AM
Joined: 11/2/2017
Posts: 41


My husband has been doing all that was suggested by this method since June 2017 and he is still on a rapid decline with early onset unspecified dementia.Not everyone reacts the same so everything is worth a try just did not work for him.
Lane Simonian
Posted: Thursday, November 2, 2017 10:24 AM
Joined: 12/12/2011
Posts: 4831


I agree with all the caveats in the posts above.  The Bredesen protocol is aimed at identifying the multiple factors that can contribute to Alzheimer's disease and trying to remove or treat those risk factors.  As the disease progresses many of the factors that helped trigger the disease become less involved in its progression.  The use of antioxidants, though, can help delay the onset of Alzheimer's disease, slow or reverse its early progression, and lead to some improvements in memory and in some cases behavior as the disease progresses.  The Bredesen protocol employees a number of antioxidants including the following: 

resveratrol, thiamine, mixed tocopherols and tocotrienols (Vitamin E), melatonin, selenium, abscorbate (Vitamin C), blueberries, N acetylcysteine, alpha lipoic acid, and coenzyme Q 10, and coconut oil or Axona.

However better antioxidants exist in CBD oil, essential oils via aromatherapy, and panax ginseng.

I am particularly looking forward to further results from this study using a combination of Chinese herbs.

The cognitive outcomes of the patient after receiving eight year’s sequential therapy was significantly better than the expected changes. The use of donepezil [Aricept] in this case also showed similar pinnacle effects around three months followed by a retreat to the baseline. However, with the support from our herbal formula, the beneficial effects sustained for a longer time and her cognition was steadily improved significantly thereafter. Therefore, this phenomena cannot be explained solely by the effects of donepezil, indicating that our herbal formula might work additively and independently to the cholinesterase inhibitor donepezil. Our previous work using a similar herbal formula called GAPT can markedly enhance learning and memory of AD rat models induced by Aβ injection or transgenic mice of APPV717I and APPs we/PS1dE9, and also showed a significant improvement on cognitive function in patients with amnestic mild cognitive impairment, an early stage of AD (n = 101), consistently across different cognitive scales in a small sample of clinical trial. The good effects of multiple combined therapy in treating MCI (mild cognitive impairment) and SCI (subjective cognitive impairment) and AD, was published by Dale E. Bredesen et al.. A therapeutic approach characterized by programmatic, personalization, as well as dubbed metabolic enhancement for neurodegeneration (MEND protocol) was used. Authors reported that those patients had unprecedented symptom improvement. However, the time of those patients treated with this MEND protocol only ranges from five to 24 months. Our case was treated and observed for much longer time than this study. Meanwhile, a two year polite [pilot] study to check effects of the sequential therapy was conducted in more than two hundred patients recently. Primary results favor the sequential therapy than pure conventional medicine, which will be published soon.

 




Michael Ellenbogen
Posted: Monday, November 6, 2017 6:04 AM
Joined: 11/30/2011
Posts: 3409


I am becoming even more skeptical as I had pasted this on all of my networks and usually get people to reply to me. I am kind of surprised I have not heard back from just one person that has been involved in this program. That kind of makes you wonder even more. I have a very huge network of people who see my information who are in the dementia arena.  


Michael Ellenbogen
Posted: Monday, November 6, 2017 6:27 AM
Joined: 11/30/2011
Posts: 3409


Thanks so much for all of the responses as I just noticed some of them now for the first time. Unfortunately I never get updates when new messages are added because the system does not work for me.  

 

First of all they know I am a open book and I did share everting publicly no matter what. It is not fair for me to be selective in what I do share and what I don’t.  I got into this arena to help others and that is the key to why I do all this. They all know I am in the public eye all the time and they all know I have the highest-level connections in the health and dementia arena. I can either break them or make them famous to the folks that count. It would all depend on the end results of what happens to me. They know my expectations of what I would need to see happen to me in order to believe in the protocol.

 

When I say all cost I do mean everything no matter what comes up from there testing that I may have a issue that needs correcting. As for as normal cost for this programing I have no idea at this time what it could cost. I can tell you if I end up coming back with mercury pointing it will cost them a minimum of 10 -15 thousand dollars to make just those corrections. That is something I have thought of doing in the past but I could never get a definitive reason to do it from the folks I had spoken with. If for some reason that should to be the reason for my issues I would say I will have a major change to many if it turned out to be related to such a simple issue. 


Iris L.
Posted: Monday, November 6, 2017 3:17 PM
Joined: 12/15/2011
Posts: 16569


Most of us don't have the opportunity to undergo the specific Bredesen Protocol, especially at no charge.  I am very surprised that no one who has already undergone this Protocol has responded.  Michael, since you have such an extensive network, any result that you might obtain from the performance of this Protocol, positive, negative or neutral, will be of benefit to the rest of us, because we don't know much at this time.  In other words, you could be our guinea pig for this Protocol.  I think I am already doing a protocol like this.  I will have to check.


Iris L.



Unforgiven
Posted: Monday, November 6, 2017 7:34 PM
Joined: 1/28/2013
Posts: 2661


Jo, I was intrigued by the mention of restarting HRT after it had been terminated.  As you may know, after the Women's Health Initiative study on  HRT in heart disease and dementia, all HRT other than temporary for extreme menopausal symptoms has been terminated.  My own mother, who was on HRT following a radical hysterectomy at age 30, was taken off it at age 80 when the study results were released.  Her downturn became marked right after that, both spinal and cognitive.  It is very difficult to find a gynecologist who will prescribe HRT these days, even when osteoporosis runs in the family.  Could it be that the medical establishment has made an error here?

Everything else in the protocol seems to be simple common sense, especially the anti-inflammatories and proper dental hygiene, as that is yet another theory in what causes vascular disease.

My mother took part in the WHI study on low fat/low protein diet which ultimately proved to be ineffective.  I feel that diet, which led her to consume more simple carbohydrates, led to her decline as well.  I'm not planning a lawsuit or anything, just confirmation that sometimes accepted medical advice has us doing pretty stupid things like avoiding all fats and starving our brains.


steved64
Posted: Monday, November 13, 2017 6:00 PM
Joined: 6/2/2017
Posts: 39


Michael, I hope you said yes.  Besides asking yourself what do you have to lose, you should be asking what do they have to gain?  Hopefully the answer is they will have another success story to add to the growing list of people who were helped by this treatment.  And perhaps improvements to the program that will benefit a wider range of patients.


My DW was diagnosed EOAD in July this year.  I had seen in these forums sparse references to Dr. Bredesen and his recent book The End of Alzheimer's.  The book is a bit technical but anyone with a little education in sciences, especially biology will get the concepts.  The main challenges are:
1) everyone is different
2) there are 30+ potential contributing factors ranging from genetics to environment

The premise of the treatment is that these factors can be measured/tested to figure out which ones apply to the individual, and most of them can be influenced through diet/exercise/supplements/medication.  Not all of them have to be fixed completely to achieve benefits.  Apply the right influence to correct the triggering causes and it may be possible to slow/halt/partially reverse the process.  The best candidates are MCI/early stages.  After some point the disease has progressed too far and the benefits will be little to none.

The program definitely is not do-it-yourself / self-help.  It takes someone trained in the protocol, able to order and interpret a variety of tests, prioritize which problems to treat first and how.  Most of the practitioners are functional medical doctors.  We found one using the registry at https://www.ifm.org/find-a-practitioner/.

In our case existing insurance has covered most of the testing (blood tests from a standard lab) but still awaiting out-of-network coverage on the doctor's fees and definitely not going to cover the supplements which are running $300/month to start.

This is not an endorsement; in fact I can't say it has made any measurable difference since we only just started in last 1-2 months.  The one thing it has given us is a glimmer of hope where the message from the rest of the medical community has been "try to enjoy the time you have left and get ready for worse things to come".

One more reference worth mentioning is this interview where Dr. Bredesen is the guest:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qrQyxWP-S2s

As far as I can tell he is the real deal and we are cautiously optimistic.  Only time will tell.


Jo C.
Posted: Wednesday, November 15, 2017 9:19 AM
Joined: 12/9/2011
Posts: 11109


Hi Unforgiven, I just saw your Post.  Long term use of HRT still remains an issue that has no solid agreed upon answer for everyone.

Mayo Clinic succinctly put things together, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/menopause/in-depth/hormone-therapy/art-20046372

It is easy to read.  The risk of stroke and heart attack to the elderly is a real concern; for some people that is a risk trade-off that some are willing to accept and others are definitely not.

If your mother had a very abrupt change in her spine and mentum within an extremely short amount of time, it may well be that other factors, other than HRT, were in play.

We just don't know enough, and as with so many things; what works and is good for one person, may be just the dramatic opposite for others.

Sorry I cannot be more helpful.  I'd like solid answers to this question myself, but I don't think we will ever be able to say that HRT is 100% safe for everyone and we just do not know who will have the dreadful known impact and who won't. 

J.


susiemcg1
Posted: Sunday, January 26, 2020 10:13 AM
Joined: 1/26/2020
Posts: 3


Hi!  Did you go forward with this protocol?  My mom has been using this since July 2019 and her decline has progressed rapidly.  I agree that healthy eating is good for you, but following the protocol is cumbersome and expensive for my dad to follow.  My sister goes up weekly to keep them on it (she has eaten cardboard, as we joke--no gluten, no sugar, vegan--for years, so she is rigid with them on this).  My mom takes about 20 supplements per day.  She has lost weight she doesn't need to lose.  My other sister practically slapped her hand when she ate a Christmas cookie on Christmas day.  The diet is not working at all and seems to be stressful to follow.  Thanks!
susiemcg1
Posted: Sunday, January 26, 2020 10:17 AM
Joined: 1/26/2020
Posts: 3


Hi, Steved64--did you have any success?  My mom has been on this protocol since July 2019 and she has declined rapidly.  It seems to just add expense and stress for my dad to follow.  They even canceled an appointment with a neurologist for further diagnosis because they were going to a family practitioner who advocated this protocol.  I'm just wondering if you saw any improvement and if so, did it last?  Thanks!
steved64
Posted: Tuesday, January 28, 2020 9:00 PM
Joined: 6/2/2017
Posts: 39


Here is an update on our experience with the Bredesen protocol.

After about a year with our local functional medicine doctor there were no clear results; DW had no noticeable improvements and memory symptoms continued to progress.  Several underlying issues believed to be triggers did improve according to blood test results for inflammation, hypothyroid, heavy metal toxicity, optimal vitamins, etc. so in theory she is physically healthier than when we started.

Wondering if I could be doing more, I studied the Reversing Cognitive Decline course available from Institute for Functional Medicine.  It is intended for medical practitioners but available to anyone who can afford the registration fee ($$$).  Key learnings for me were:

- the treatment does not work for everyone and they do not understand why
- works better for earliest stages (MCI, minimal symptoms)
- works better for patients not yet on donepezil / memantine
- works better for older patients than for early onset

Several of these are not in DW's favor.

I also sought a second practitioner and found one of the co-authors of the "first 100 patients" publication https://www.omicsonline.org/open-access/reversal-of-cognitive-decline-100-patients-2161-0460-1000450-105387.html 

Lacking from that paper are the patients not selected as successful.  It is not clear what the total poplation was.  Bredesen has stated elsewhere they see "some improvement" in approximately 50% of patients.  As a simple example MoCA score improved from 0 to 2, perhaps regaining some ability to speak.  Even minimal improvement or stopping decline with no improvement is a significant result compared to the prevailing attitude that this disease has no effective treatments at all.

With the new doctor some small changes were made to supplements, closer monitoring of diet, added more physical coordination exercises.  After 9 more months there were still no real results and DW has continued to decline, albeit slowly.  Her regular neurologist expected her to be significantly worse and asked where did we find this treatment.  Her functional medicine doctors recommended not completely giving up the treatment as there will be no going back if decline accelerates.  They also suggested this could buy time for newer treatments to become available - stem cell therapy is one that is emerging.  So with no real alternatives we plan to continue for now.  If all we get is slowing rate of decline, this is worth something to our quality of life.

Implementing the diet has been the most difficult part.  DW feels deprived of foods she used to enjoy.  She does not understand all the rules and asks all the time "can I eat this" with a constant stream of no's from me - and of course she blames me in part as a result.  Eating out at restaurants is a challenge to find something suitable on the menu, interrogate the server on ingredients, request substitutions,  For us it has become the new normal.

At some point I expect it will no longer be worth the effort.  We are not there yet


looking4relief
Posted: Tuesday, January 28, 2020 9:24 PM
Joined: 11/27/2019
Posts: 56


I would be careful too. Even things that seem legit can be designed to make money on the back of vulnerable people. And some people no matter their titles are shameless about taking advantage of people's desperation. Well for the ones of you who pay a lot of money for this I hope you had some benefits. For me if I tested eating a lot healthier and saw no effects at all then I wouldn't pay for some restrictive diet that pushes things further. Not that it's not good for your overall health it probably is.
looking4relief
Posted: Wednesday, January 29, 2020 7:18 AM
Joined: 11/27/2019
Posts: 56


I would try a diet without dairy and wheat first..
Michael Ellenbogen
Posted: Wednesday, January 29, 2020 7:47 AM
Joined: 11/30/2011
Posts: 3409


Thanks so much for your feedback. I hope people continue to add to this tread as they have had real experiences that are good or bad.  


LDDaughter
Posted: Tuesday, February 11, 2020 8:02 PM
Joined: 12/22/2011
Posts: 1065


Everyone on this thread have made some very good points and I'd like to add a few more thoughts. 

Will the Bredesen folks provide a coach as well?  Bredesen and the Functional Medicine Coaching Academy partnered up and developed a course for health coaches to support people going through the protocol because it is so rigorous. I would ask if they would provide one.   I bet they would and there is probably a list of coaches trained in this. I'm not a health coach, but took the course(reversing cognitive decline) out of furthering my interest in the book. It was excellent. The coaches can assist in prioritizing the most important aspects for you to start first based on your lab results and how to integrate it into your life.  One point they stress, is the first goal is to slow the decline, then to stop the decline, then to reverse. It's different for each person...and it takes the body awhile to process the protocol. 

The Bredesen protocol can take some people 6-9 months or perhaps longer before they see results. One factor that can cause it to take longer and prove more difficult is if you've been affected by mold, environmental toxins, lyme disease, mercury...etc.  It takes longer to reverse these issues than if you are just working to reduce inflammation and insulin resistance in the brain.  Not being consistent with the diet, exercise and supplements are also obstacles, which is why having a coach could be helpful. They don't expect people to go from 0 to 180 in a day and they're trained to help people ease themselves into it and can provide a very positive and supportive approach to it.  Another factor is working with a physician who is very thorough in the testing to make sure they haven't overlooked anything in the beginning.  As they reached out to you, I'm guessing they would probably refer you to one of their top trained doctors if not Bredesen himself.  My sense of the program is that more results happen for people in the early stages, but there have been people in later stages that went through it and some had some results. I would ask about this if it's a question for you. 

 If you want to get more feedback on people that are doing the program you could check out this website https://www.apoe4.info/wp/ .   This site is primarily for people that have the APOE4 gene, putting them at higher risk of Alzheimer's, and many are using the protocol. I'm guessing many are in the early stages and some are just doing it for prevention.

 
Have you read Bredesen's book?  I'd recommend it as well. Many of his ideas are consistent with what we've all been learning about diet, stress and exercise, but his explanations are quite detailed and IMO make a lot of sense.  (I really like what he had to say about the role of amyloid plaque being more of a response gone amuck than the actual cause of the disease. When we think about how all of the clinical drug trials that targeted amyloid plaque removal it makes even more sense).   The program is also highly personalized to each person based on lab work and comprehensive assessments.  

 

As long as you understand what their expectations are of you, ( could that be put in writing?) why not try it? Like someone said above, what have you got to lose?  There just aren't a lot of other options available and this program would support you in your overall health too. 


 

 


HowDoYouDeal
Posted: Monday, March 2, 2020 3:34 PM
Joined: 2/17/2019
Posts: 347


Clinical trials near Tempe, AZ

 https://antidote.me/match/search/results/52740e48-64bd-4a30-bdb5-4ff8a73fa54e/1


Michael Ellenbogen
Posted: Monday, March 2, 2020 4:50 PM
Joined: 11/30/2011
Posts: 3409


Are one of those trials with Dr Bredese? If so which one?