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Chemotherapy-Induced Cardiomyopathy- Arjuna/Hawthorn

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“Extensive research demonstrates that the botanical extracts Hawthorn and Arjuna deliver optimum support for normal heart muscle function and coronary artery health…”

In early 1994 I  was diagnosed with a blood cancer called multiple myeloma (MM). Standard-of-care (SOC) therapy for this “incurable” cancer is

  • induction therapy,
  • consolidation therapy and an
  • autologous stem cell transplant.

I “failed” all conventional therapies an underwent a quack therapy in late 1997. My quack therapy put me in complete remission by early 1999 where I remain to this day.

I developed a series of long-term and late stage side effects from my SOC therapies. I developed chronic atrial fibrillation (AF) and chemotherapy-induced cardiomyopathy (CIC) in 2010.

The challenge now is to live a long and happy life with my chronic AF, CIC and the associated heart/blood issues. I recently wrote a blog post, linked below, talking about the risk of stroke from AF.

My struggles with conventional oncology aka traditional medicine has made me skeptical of prescription medications that come from my cardiologist. Dr. Moudgil seems like a nice, well-educated guy but he asked me to take metoprolol at our last appointment. I decided to lower my blood pressure with non-toxic therapies.

I take omega 3 fatty acids and systemic enzymes each day to reduce my risk of blood clots. As I mentioned in the post below, I didn’t want to risk any of the side effects that come with conventional blood thinners.

AF, Stroke and Omega 3 Fatty Acids

According to the EveryDay Health article linked and excerpted below, the other concern I have living with chronic AF is heart failure- “Heart failure occurs because the heart is not beating effectively and gradually gets weaker and weaker.”

According to research, my CIC has about a 50% life expectance. That is to say, about half of everyone diagnosed with chemotherapy-induced cardiomyopathy dies in five years or less.

Because of my skepticism of conventional medicine, I work at my own cardiac rehabilitation. I’ve even begun calling myself a cardiac rehab coach. I have not been certified as such…

I moderately exercise six mornings a week, alternating between cardio and weights, I eat cleanly, have a glass or two of red wine weekly and I supplement with Life Extension Cardio Peak With Standardized Arjuna & Hawthorn. This supplement is a combination of Arjuna and Hawthorn. Both which have positive heart benefits excerpted in the studies linked below.

For the record, I’ve developed a long list of heart heathy supplements in addition to hawthorn, arjuna, wobenzyme, omega-3 fatty acids, others.

To learn more about managing your a-fib, scroll down the page, post a question or comment and I will reply ASAP.

Thank you,

David Emerson

  • Cancer Survivor
  • Cancer Coach
  • Director The Galen Foundation

Recommended Reading:

What Is Atrial Fibrillation?

“According to the American Heart Association, about 2.7 million Americans have atrial fibrillation, or afib…

The two big complications from atrial fibrillation are blood clots and heart failure. Blood clots occur because blood that is not moving normally tends to clot…”Blood clots may form inside the atria over time and are a leading cause of stroke,” says Westveer. A stroke can occur when a blood clot leaves the heart and gets lodged in an artery inside the brain. About 15 percent of all strokes happen in people with atrial fibrillation…

Heart failure occurs because the heart is not beating effectively and gradually gets weaker and weaker. Heart failure symptoms such as fatigue, shortness of breath, and fluid retention can develop over time as atrial fibrillation makes the heart work harder and grow weaker…”

Terminalia arjuna Wight & Arn.–a useful drug for cardiovascular disorders.

“Its (arjuna)  stem bark possesses glycosides, large quantities of flavonoids, tannins and minerals. Flavonoids have been detected to exert antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and lipid lowering effects while glycosides are cardiotonic, thus making Terminalia arjuna unique amongst currently used medicinal plants…

Considering its anti-ischemic activity and its potential to correct dyslipidemia, reduce left ventricular mass and increase left ventricular ejection fraction, it is essential to examine the molecular mechanism of its action and its core constituents…”

Hawthorn: pharmacology and therapeutic uses.

“The cardiovascular effects are believed to be the result of positive inotropic activity, ability to increase the integrity of the blood vessel wall and improve coronary blood flow, and positive effects on oxygen utilization. Flavonoids are postulated to account for these effects…”


Leave a Comment:

Jennifer says a couple of years ago

Hi David. Recently diagnosed with persistent a fib. I have a heart murmur and mitral valve prolapse with slight regurgitation. Cardiologist said the mitral valve issues are not a concern. Tried cardiablation which put me into perfect rhythm but was back in chronic persistent afib in a day. Now on eliquis to prevent stroke. Doc says Ecotrin is not as good at preventing strokes. He wants to put my on Tikosyn which requires a 3-5 day hospital stay or Flecainide with beta blocker, or do ablation. Ablation would have to be on left side which carries much greater risks. I do not want to do either. I just started hawthorn, ubiquitous, GlycoTrax, and 1000mg magnesium. Any others I should look into? Doc also said to stop omegas while on the eliquis. I was taking 8000-10,000mg a day. Can I go back on that while taking eliquis? Advice is greatly appreciated. My BP is usually good but I am in afib all the time

    David Emerson says a couple of years ago

    Hi Jennifer-

    I replied to your post via your email address.


    David Emerson

Virginia Martyn says 5 years ago

Just dx. With a fib. Meds making me weak and extremely tired. Suggestions please.

    David Emerson says 5 years ago

    HI Virginia,

    I am sorry to read of your afib. I can tell you what I do for my own afib but you should also talk to a cardiologist about your situation. I tried a beta blocker several years ago and I too felt tired.

    I have decided that I can live with my Afib. While shortness of breath sometimes bothers me, I’ve decided to live with it rather than deal with the side effects of other therapies. My approach has risks and benefits. Talk with your cardiologist before deciding what therapies to pursue.

    My primary focus is to keep my BP as low as I can. I do this with Hawthorn/Arjuna, omega 3, grape seed extract, cocoa capsules, frequent, moderate exercise, diet. My cardiologist prescribed metoprolol at a low dose but I am holding off taking it until I see him again in about two months. I want to see how I do with my BP with non-toxic therapies first.

    For the record, I think combining conventional with non-conventional therapies is the best way to manage most any health issue.

    Your cardiologist may advocate cardiac ablation. I have done my homework on this procedure and have decided it is not for my. You may feel otherwise.

    I hope this helps. Let me know if you have any other questions.

    David Emerson

Your Heart- Atrial-Fibrillation (AFib) Therapy-Coventional or No? - PeopleBeatingCancer says 6 years ago

[…] Arjuna/Hawthorn- Treat Cardiovascular Disorders and Keep Your Heart Strong […]

Marsha Clearwalker says 6 years ago

In your experience, do you believe it is safe to reject Western Meds (Diltiazem and Eliquis) for recently diagnosed persistent AFib , as a 65 year old woman who has no heart disease or risk factors aside from occasional moderate hypertension. I am still shocked I even have this. I have never been overweight, eat healthy, never smoked, drink occasional alcoholic drinks, and have been very active my entire life . Still exercise with my elliptical, bicycle, garden, walk often @ Ocean… and long yoga sessions, 5x per week. No family history. Have seen a Naturopath and am taking daily heart specific supplements, ( Acetyl-L-Carnitine, HEartCalm, Ubiquinol, Nattokinase, daily Trace Mineral drops, Hawthorne Solid Extract, Himalaya Arjuna, and a baby aspirin ….daily.
Also have invested in a portable Infrared Sauna so I can do healthy (20 min.) sweats 4-5x per week. After 2 months, still have recurring Afib , so still feel nervous about my “racing heart and being smart and safe. Any comments will be appreciated. Thanks, Marsha in Eureka, California

    David Emerson says 6 years ago

    Hi Marsha-

    As you know, afib increases the risk of stroke. At the same time, exercise, weight, supplements, etc. reduce the risk of stroke. You and I are in similar situations as I too have afib and worry about a stroke. This decision is personal to you so you are the person who must make it. BTW, I just returned from my weekly sauna. I am hoping to buy a home model for the condo that my wife and I are moving into. I am sorry I can’t be more help.

    Hang in there,

    David Emerson

Pam says 7 years ago

I’ve had paroxysm a-fib for 25+ years that was gradually getting worse. I feel transdermal magnesium and Arjuna have given me my life back. Still have to watch triggers, but the improvement has been nothing short of amazing.

    David Emerson says 7 years ago

    Hi Pam-

    Sorry to read of your a fib. Good to read that mag. and arjuna help. Just to get a clearer picture of your situation, when you say that your paroxysm a fib is getting worse you are saying that your episodes are more frequent or longer or both? I would like to write a post on paroxysm a fib- just trying to cover more types, more symptoms, etc. of a fib.

    Do you think there are any reasons for your par a fib? Meaning I think my chronic a fib was caused by chemotherapy. Do you have history of any causes? Further, do you supplement with other heart healthy supplements such as omega 3 fatty acids or coQ10? Just curious.

    Thanks for reaching out.

    David Emerson

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