I’m back again this year in Montreal taking Dr. Andre Saine’s “Essentials of Acute and Chronic Prescribing” course. Last year, we covered so much great information that I wanted to return to keep learning more. Although the course focuses on homeopathy, one of the many tools in the naturopathic toolbox, the first three days have covered many other aspects of getting patients well such as sunlight, nutrition, fasting, sleep, and spirituality.
One thing that Dr. Saine shared with us last year was that he was dealing with a frozen shoulder after injuring it, and how he was trying to use stinging nettles to help it heal. He had the idea based on many cultures using bee venom to help heal tissues, but nettle was more easily accessible. Now, a year later, he confirms that his frozen shoulder has healed, and he had a patient also successfully use nettles to reverse her frozen shoulder.
He demonstrated removing the leaves and using the stem of the nettle plant (with the spines) to gently touch the area of injury for several minutes. The spines induce inflammation thereby calling the body to focus on that part of injury and send increased blood flow and nutrients to the area. Since the nettle is in season, several classmates tried it on old injured joints, although several sessions would be needed to see lasting results.
My pubmed.gov search to find research articles regarding the use of stinging nettle in this way revealed no results, but like all aspects of medicine, people are always learning and discovering different ways of healing the body. I’m excited to keep learning more this week!