- Rheumatoid arthritis,
- Lupus (SLE),
- Traumatic brain and spinal injury.
However there are also significant side effects associated with the high-dose prescribing protocols used by most allopathic medical doctors, including:
- Adrenal suppression (loss of the ability of the adrenal gland to make cortisol),
- Immune suppression,
- Fluid retention,
- Muscle wasting.
While high-dose allopathic prescribing protocols are sometimes necessary and indeed may be life-saving, Dr. William McK. Jefferies, MD, FACP [MckJefferies2004] and others have demonstrated that low-dose prescribing protocols, while initially slower-acting, are effective and free of the side effects associated with high-dose prescribing protocols.
In order to understand the difference between the low-dose protocols developed by Dr. William McK. Jefferies, and used by Dr. Weyrich, it must first be understood that the body normally makes about 40 milligrams of cortisol (hydrocortisone) a day, and significantly more when coping with various stressors. In other words, cortisol (also called hydrocortisone) is a natural "bio-identical" hormone that regulates the body's response to stress, under a complex feedback-control system that includes the pituitary, hypothalamus, and adrenal glands. The amount of cortisol normally made by the body is called the physiological or replacement dose. The amounts of corticosteroids prescribed using high-dose allopathic protocols are far in excess of these physiological levels, and are referred to as pharmacological doses.
It is the High-dose pharmacological levels of cortisol that cause all of the side effects described above. On the other hand, low-dose sub-physiological levels of supplementation do not produce these side effects, but rather simply assist the adrenal glands by providing a basal level of cortisol. This basal level of cortisol does not result in adrenal suppression - it simply allows a weakened adrenal system to produce adequate levels of cortisol during times of stress, while maintaining full feedback control by the pituitary and hypothalamus glands.
Following Dr. McK. Jefferies' protocols, Dr. Weyrich normally prescribes about 20 mg of "bio-identical" hydrocortisone a day in divided doses, which is about half of that which is produced by the normal adrenal glands when unstressed, although more may be required when the patient is under stress or suffering acute distress.