Medically termed as hyperadrenocorticism, Cushing’s syndrome is a glandular disorder caused by excessive cortisol in the body. Endogenously, cortisol is produced by the adrenal gland, which is in turn controlled by another endocrine gland, the pituitary. Generally speaking, Cushing’s syndrome and Cushing’s disease have become interchangeable terms, but Cushing’s disease refers specifically to excessive cortisol caused by a tumor in the pituitary gland. Cushing’s in dogs may also be iatrogenic or drug induced (administration of exogenous steroids).
Symptoms of canine Cushing disease are initially vague, but with the passage of time, attain severity of a magnitude that can seriously affect the quality of life of your dog. Abnormal hair loss is the most common symptom that initiates owners to seek veterinarian advice. This is when the verterinarian generally picks up other signs of Cushing’s in dogs, such as excessive thirst and urination. The disturbance in protein and carbohydrate metabolism caused by elevated levels of cortisol also induces behavioral symptoms like lethargy, intolerance to exercise, and apathy towards the owner.
While iatrogenic Cushing’s may be treated with the planned withdrawal of exogenous steroids, adrenal and pituitary dependent disorders require oral medication or surgical removal of the adrenal tumor. Disillusionment with conventional medicine and the prohibitive cost of treatment has led people to homeopathic remedies that have now become a popular choice for alternative medicine for pets. Individual remedies or a homeopathic remedy for Cushing’s disease comprising of a combination of several remedies may be prescribed to improve adrenal functioning.
The ground reality, however, is that conventionalist practitioners tend to discredit the efficacy of homeopathic remedies. Even after two hundred years of homeopathic treatments and practice, it remains a controversial issue with skeptics. The main contention of critics is that mathematically speaking, extreme dilution does not leave a scope for even a single molecule of the original substance to remain in the end product. They contend, therefore, that no pharmacological effect can be possible in homeopathic remedies.
The efficacy of homeopathic remedies cannot be proved using the molecular paradigm. However, reproducible experiments, using modern techniques, have proved that even in ultra-molecular homeopathic dilutions, the original substance dissolved in the alcohol-water solution still remains in the end product. While skeptics refuse to accept efficacy of dilutions beyond 20 to 23 times, experiments conducted on the rat ileum show favorable response to homeopathic remedies that have been diluted as much as 90 times.