Bromelain is a powerful proteolytic (protein digesting) enzyme that is found in the lower stem and fruit of the common pineapple plant.
Of special interest to those with Dupuytren’s contracture, bromelain is sometimes used because it is very effective to debride (remove dead and damaged tissue) from third-degree burns and frostbite injuries. Bromelain when used to debride injured tissue will speed healing and reduce chance of infection. It works to break down damaged skin tissue protein found in wounds as well as in the scar tissue of Peyronie’s disease. Bromelain has been used successfully to treat a large number of disorders including cardiovascular disease, joint disease, upper respiratory tract infection, and Peyronie’s disease. Since Dupuytren’s contracture is the same disease process as Peyronie’s disease, just in a different part of the body, it makes sense to use bromelain for DC.
The essential benefit of bromelain to assist reversal of Dupuytren’s contracture is due to affect the protein known as collagen, the primary material found in all scar tissue. Of several protein-digesting enzymes that are active in the body, bromelain is most effective at stimulating production of collagenase – the enzyme that breaks the peptide bonds of collagen and thus dissolves scar tissue. Using bromelain as an essential part of your Dupuytren’s contracture treatment plan may slow or reverse the fibrous cords and nodules that cause reduced finger movement to develop.
Douglas Laboratories Bromelain 5000 supplies 5,000 m.c.u (milk clotting units) of enzyme activity in each capsule. Milk clotting units are a unit of measure of enzymatic activity. This is a level of bromelain enzyme activity much higher than other commercial sources.
It is best known for its ability to assist general digestion of protein-based foods and for its anti-inflammatory effects that reduce the effects of soft tissue injury and edema. It does this by reducing the production of pro-inflammatory prostaglandins via modulating what is called the arachidonate cascade. Bromelain also acts to help prevent allergens from crossing the gastrointestinal tract. It also assists in the breakdown of large macromolecular protein complexes.
This enzyme is used in Alternative Medicine because it has a strong reputation for function of the respiratory, gastrointestinal, vascular and musculoskeletal systems by way of its anti-inflammatory ability. As examples, bromelain decreases bronchial secretions in patients with upper respiratory infections, heals gastric ulcers, increases digestive breakdown of proteins, reduces plaque buildup in arteries and reduces joint inflammation caused by trauma, osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis, and sciatica. It also accelerates the action of antibiotics and many chemotherapy drugs, as well as acting as an antiviral agent for AIDS treatment.
Bromelain is generally very safe to use, although it can cause temporary side effects such as diarrhea and gastric discomfort to occur. It may also interfere with certain antibiotics and blood clotting medications. It is, therefore, important to talk to your doctor before using bromelain to treat Dupuytren’s contracture.
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