I wanted to call out a success story with respect to the combination of artemisinin and gardasil, because I have seen very little additional information with respect to this topic.
A family member had his first operation for vocal cord growths in June of 2006 at the age of 19, and was diagnosed with RRP. That operation involved a CO2 laser. The otolaryngologist recommended that we seek treatment with someone more knowledgeable in RRP. We
have sought treatment from a medical center with many RRP patients, but unfortunately only surgery and finally cidofovir at my urging were the only additional recommendations made.
My son's voice would deteriorate after 2 months and he was completely hoarse by the time of the (microdebrider)operation at 3 months. We were ready to opt for cidofovir injections when I read
of artemisinin and gardasil.
He got his first gardasil injection after the operation in March, 2007, and started the artemisinin at the same time. Although he opted for an operation in August (at 5+ months), he was not completely hoarse but he wanted to have his voice as clear as possible before beginning fall semester. (From past experience he assumed that his voice would continue to deteriorate.) Now, 3+ months after that operation, his only current symptom is that he feels that his voice gets weak after prolonged (loud) speaking. At this point in time we think that he won't need an operation before the end of the next semester in May, if even then.
Although it is not a household name here, Artemisinin is widely used as a malaria treatment in the tropics, even by American missionaries, so there is little doubt about its safety.
He has also used DIM since the first operation, continuing to do so, but considering the brief intervals between the 1st 4 operations, I doubt that it is contributing to the improvement. We just hate to stop anything that might be contributing to his improvement.
You can get more information about it at the RRP-ISA website www.rrpwebsite.org. Navigate to the tabs Learn>Treatment and also Learn>Novel Therapies.
I would like to hear of others who might have tried this treatment, and what your experience has been.
Update: April 13, 2008
I want to give an update to my son's condition.
My son was diagnosed with AORRP at 19 years old and had 4 surgeries during the first 9 months. Since starting the gardasil / ART combination a year ago, he had one surgery in early September, which may have been residual paps from prior to starting gardasil / ART (his surgeon is very conservative with respect to avoiding damage to his vocal cords). Since that time his voice has remained strong. An examination in February revealed no papilloma.
When we first talked to Michael about the gardasil / ART approach, I couldn't see a downside to trying it. Although some might say that gardasil wasn't approved for males, we're not talking about hormone therapy; we're talking about HPV. Merck's target market was potential cervical cancer patients. The fact that it wasn't tested and approved for males didn't seem to be a big risk.
I checked with a brother who is a missionary in a tropical country who indicated that Artemisinin is the drug of choice for malaria treatment and that he would use it for any recurrence of malaria that he has.
My son is actively participating again in clubs / classes where he doesn't have to be concerned about his voice 1/2 the time and is again optimistic about his future.