Treating the Flu, Chronic Ear Infections, and Other Respiratory Infections


Before there were antibiotics and flu shots, many people died of flu and other infections. Osteopathic physicians used OMT to help boost the patient’s immune system and to aid the body in fighting off the infection. During the deadly Swine Flu epidemic in the early 1900’s, the death rate for patients of osteopathic physicians who used OMT was much lower than those of MDs.


As concerns mount about antibiotic-resistant super bugs from the overuse of antibiotics, the threat of pandemics including Swine Flu, the risks of flu shots and the long-term effects of chronic ear and respiratory infections in children, maybe it’s time to learn about the benefits of this effective, century old treatment, call Osteopathic Manipulation Treatment (OMT) used by osteopathic physicians.


One reason why the osteopathic approach can be helpful is that is provides another effective treatment other than antibiotics. There is a great deal of controversy about the over-use of antibiotics for ear and respiratory infections. Because of this over-use, there are now bacteria in the environment that are no longer susceptible to any antibiotic now available. There are no guarantees that the pharmaceutical companies can develop a new, stronger, more broad-spectrum antibiotic for the next generation of resistant bacteria. If we do not turn around this trend, we may find ourselves back in the pre-antibiotic age. Research shows that 80% to 90% of all ear infections heal on their own, and children who do not receive antibiotics actually heal faster and have fewer recurrences. By treating every ear infection with antibiotics, we only succeed at increasing antibiotic-resistant bacteria and prevent the patient from building up his or her own immunity, thus setting the child up for more infections.


My patients often ask me if they should get the flu shot. Getting any vaccine should be a personal decision. In Texas, parents have the right to opt out of having their children vaccinated for everything if they so wish. And if they do opt out, the children can still attend school. There are about 17 other states that allow opting out of vaccinations for personal reasons. Other states usually allow opting out for a medical or religious reason. To my knowledge, the flu shot is not required in any state.

I recommend that people thoroughly educate themselves concerning the risks and benefits to getting, or not getting, any vaccines. However, it may be difficult to get all of the information needed to make a good decision about vaccines. If the doctor has received her information from the pharmaceutical company who is selling the vaccine or from another doctor who is working for the company, that information may be biased to help market the product. The news media may also get their information from sources that have a similar bias. So it can be very difficult to decide what to do.


In 1976, when the last Swine Flu vaccine was made and administered to the American public, it was found that the public did not get the full truth about the potential side effects of the vaccine. More people died of the flu vaccine that year than died of the flu. According to physician and Congressman Ron Paul, the government suspended the use of the vaccine because there were so many deaths. I feel badly for the families of those who died or were injured from the vaccine before that information was known and its use was suspended.

In addition to the deaths, according to Mike Wallace of 60 Minutes, there were 4,000 injuries resulting from taking the Swine Flu vaccine in 1976. Many of those injuries were neurological and permanent.

The government had a similar response to the flu in 1976 as what they are doing now. In 1976 when one soldier died from the flu after he went on a forced march even though he was ill, the rest of the soldiers were tested. Only four were found to have the Swine flu and they all recovered completely without taking a vaccine according to Wallace’s report. Based on this one death, the government called for everyone to take the vaccine. Later the vaccine was withdrawn but much damage had already been done. According to Wallace, the government studies had shown that neurological damage could occur but the government did not warn the public so that they could make an educated choice for themselves. See 60 Minute video at this website.

I think it is important to look at the past to help make decisions in the future. I have to ask the question, if the government kept that information from the public then, could they be doing the same thing now?

It had been reported that this Swine flu of 1976 presented as no worse than a bad cold. If the soldier who died had not gone on the march while ill, would he have died? How do we know that the Swine Flu hasn’t been here every summer, but no one has ever been tested for it? We might have thought it was only a “summer cold”. One of my patients was sent home from camp when she appeared sick and others at the camp had tested positive for flu. She also tested positive for flu, but her mother remarked that she hardly seemed sick at all, more like a cold. At the time of this writing there have been several deaths attributed to the Swine Flu which is now referred to as H1N1.

This year has been interesting because it appeared that the flu was present in some areas, all spring and summer, not just in the winter as the seasonal flu is thought to be. Because of the deaths in Mexico, a red flag went up, that this could be a significant flu. Doctors and public health departments began testing for the Swine Flu. They found it. Many people tested positive, many schools were closed and much fear was expressed. It seemed that for many people though, the Swine Flu was manifesting itself as nothing more than a bad cold. Why did some people die while others had only a bad cold? Could it be that there were differences in the people themselves? Could it be that the ones who died were already sick with something else or were unhealthy to start with or had stressed themselves physically? I would like to know more about the health condition of those who died and those for whom the flu was only a bad cold. As I was writing this, a woman in my community died from Swine Flu. It was reported that she had other medical conditions that may have put her in the position to have a more serious reaction to the Swine Flu virus. I think the health departments should be looking at those differences and informing the public about them. What kinds of illnesses did the people have who died from the virus? I think they should be telling the public how to be as healthy as possible so if we get sick, we are more likely to fully recover. I think they should also be telling us all the potential risks of taking the flu vaccine.

A few years ago, on The Today Show, a couple from Colorado whose son had died from the flu, expressed to the watching public that they regretted not giving their son the flu vaccine. He had died and they were encouraging everyone watching to not make the same mistake they felt they had made. Four children from Colorado had died from influenza that same year.

Someone from the Colorado public health department was also on the show to discuss this issue. Matt Lauer asked the public health official how many children died who had been given the flu vaccine. The health department person replied, “Several.”

If four children died and only one of those four had not been vaccinated, why did they choose the parents of the one child who had not been vaccinated to be interviewed on The Today Show? If three children died who had been vaccinated and only one died who had not been vaccinated, the odds certainly point to not vaccinating, yet the public only heard the plea from the parents who did not vaccinate. Seventy-five percent died who received the vaccine while only 25% died who did not. Why are we not being given that information?

Is the government overreacting and putting fear into everyone over something that may only be a bad cold? The millions who died from the 1918 flu epidemic died mostly from pneumonia that developed secondarily to the flu. There were no antibiotics then as we have now and medical knowledge was very different then as well.

According to Ron Paul, there were 13,000 cases of Tuberculosis (TB) in the US last year alone. Yet no one appears to be panicking about that. Why the scare over an influenza that has not been shown to be much more than a cold for most people?

The virus in each year’s flu vaccine is actually a guess. There is no way to know which strain of influenza will appear each year, so the drug companies have to guess at which ones to put into the vaccines. They put several into each vaccine, so it increases the odds that at least one of the strains that actually appears, will be in the vaccine. As we have seen, there are years when the vaccine just doesn’t seem to be much benefit.

It is important to have a healthy immune system so that when we are exposed to bacteria and viruses our body’s immune system can step in and handle whatever the exposure is.

When my Mother was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer, I knew that the chemotherapy she underwent would lower her immune system and make it harder for her to fight the cancer herself. To offset this, I gave her nutritional IV’s, many oral supplements and even shots of some nutrients. She used visualization to make her immune system stronger. Instead of being dead in 2 months, as was predicted, she was cured of the cancer in 4 months and lived 18 more years without a recurrence of cancer. She continued to take nutritional supplements for the rest of her life, she opted to not take the flu vaccine each year and even though she lived in a retirement facility with many other people, she did not get the flu.

Even though there was a death from Swine Flu in my community, I am not going to get the vaccine myself. I don’t get a flu vaccine for two reasons. First I am concerned about the levels of mercury used. There is still 25 mcg of mercury in the current flu shots. Second, the body’s immune system gets stronger and works better if it has a chance to get sick and recover on its own. I will take nutrients like vitamin C and other anti-oxidants. If I should get the flu, I will use my gentle Osteopathic Manipulation Treatment (OMT) to help get well faster.


I use gentle manipulation modalities that help drain the fluid from the ears, head and neck and enhance the immune system. In my office, I have measured ear fluid with a tympanogram and then treated the patient with manipulation alone. A recheck of the ears, with the tympanogram immediately after the treatment, has revealed some dramatic improvements in fluid levels in the ears.

I teach parents how to do this treatment at home on their children for ear infections. I also recommend that they use it for all respiratory infections and flu as it can be very helpful for children and adults. This is the same type of treatment that osteopathic physicians used in the early 1900’s to treat Swine Flu. It helped save lives.