By Kathy Lynch, PharmD - Women's International Pharmacy
The late Dr. Bernard Bihari discovered and developed the therapeutic use of LDN in the mid-1980s while practicing Internal Medicine in New York City. He was treating drug addicts with a new drug, Naltrexone, which blocked the heroin "high". Unfortunately, 50 milligrams daily had unpleasant side effects. When his addicts started dying from AIDS, he began to search for a drug that would help them.
Dr Bihari knew that endorphins, small neurochemicals produced by the body, had pain-relieving, anti-inflammatory properties. Dr Bihari and his colleagues hired a lab scientist to measure patient endorphin levels. He discovered that his HIV patients had sub-normal endorphin levels. His team determined that LDN doses ranging from 1.75 to 4.5 milligrams increased endorphin levels by two to three hundred percent. By blocking the body's endorphin receptors, LDN caused an overproduction of endorphins.
Dr Bihari then started a small foundation to study the use of LDN in HIV patients. After one year, he discovered that the patients who took LDN had an eight percent death rate while patients taking placebo had a thirty-three percent death rate. He and his colleagues went on to treat hundreds of patients with LDN.