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Letters to the Editor Issue 264

by Letters(more info)

listed in letters to the editor, originally published in issue 264 - August 2020

Richard Millard Appeals for Support Donations for the Samarathon

As some of you may know, this month I've been tackling the Samarathon - 26.2 miles in support of the Samaritans.

I've just finished the miles - but my support donations are embarrassingly far behind my local team members...!

To understand a bit better why I'm doing this, please read my story "Why Do I Listen at Length to Complete Strangers?"

This is the Samarathon message to our supporters:

Samaritans know that life can sometimes be incredibly tough. Each year, our 20,000 volunteers answer more than 5 million calls for help by phone, email, SMS, letter, and face-to-face visits at one of our local branches or in local communities right across the UK and Republic of Ireland. We're here 24/7, before, during and after a crisis for anyone struggling to cope. This life-saving work wouldn’t be possible without the generosity of our amazing supporters. Thank you.

So if you’d like to donate – anything from £1 to £100 as a thumbs up for the Samaritans will be wonderful – please click here.

Other ways to respond:

Best wishes

Richard

Richard Millard <rcmillard@gmail.com>

Energy for Health

www.energyforhealth.co.uk

08456 120129  Direct: 01934 257066  International +44 1934 257066  Mobile: 0773 221 2945

 

 

COVID-19: How Can I Cure Thee? Let Me Count the Ways

Commentary by Thomas E Levy MD JD

orthomolecular.activehosted.com

http://orthomolecular.activehosted.com/index.php?action=social&chash=0777d5c17d4066b82ab86dff8a46af6f.167&s=c7ae1002d2f579a22c16a1b89c854212

 

Probably never before in history has anything or any event mixed fact, fiction, fear, and confusion like the COVID-19 pandemic of 2019-2020. Political and medical "experts" have been in abundance, primarily regurgitating the same message as though it was something new every time they get interviewed: wash your hands, maintain social distancing, and wear a mask as much as possible. And the public and the news media always take great comfort that an "expert" told them the truth. Trouble is, you can always find another "expert" of equal credentials who will offer a completely contradictory perspective. Understandably, this generates much of the fear and confusion noted above. The good hygiene and virus avoidance advice noted above is helpful, although it is probably a bit overblown when discussing how important a mask is in preventing virus transmission, especially outdoors. It seems ludicrous to mandate mask-wearing at all times, indoors and outdoors, although this is being given consideration by some governmental (and medical) authorities at the time of this writing. However, this advice only scratches the surface with regard to the numerous options available to avoid contracting this infection, or to even cure it. There is no point in suffering from misguided advice when COVID-19 can be prevented or reliably cured in short order. As will be clearly explained in this article, nobody needs to die from COVID-19, or even to suffer needlessly (as many virus victims have remained quite ill for months before finally recovering).

While still unknown to most practitioners of traditional, or "modern" medicine, acute viral syndromes, COVID-19 included, can all be easily prevented most of the time. And when such viruses do get a foothold in the body, they are still easily eradicated if the patient is not too close to death before receiving any of a large number of treatments established to be effective. Many doctors get attacked for promoting treatments as cures for afflictions that are traditionally considered to be incurable. Certainly, it is true that some treatments promoted as being reliable cures are either fraudulent or of only nominal benefit. However, failing to assert the validity of a true cure for a medical condition is just as detrimental to the health of an ailing patient as it is promoting a false cure. Many doctors know of highly beneficial treatments that cure or vastly improve medical conditions that are little affected by traditional therapies. Yet, fear of license revocation for telling the truth about inexpensive and natural therapies that cannot be protected by patents keeps most health care practitioners from promoting those beneficial therapies. Nothing is ever embraced, and seemingly not even permitted, that would take away large profits from pharmaceutical companies, hospitals, and even many of the doctors themselves. Whenever you are absolutely stupefied and cannot figure out why a valuable treatment is not being used, just take the time to identify, expose, and analyze the money trail that is involved with the prescription drugs and/or overall treatment protocol that would be displaced. [1] The reason for the avoidance or suppression of that therapy will then become apparent.

To be perfectly clear: The health of the patient must always be the primary concern whenever rendering medical care.

There exists a first amendment right in the United States that permits free speech, including the writing of books and articles. This right has even protected authors that openly provide information on how to make bombs and promote terrorism. One can only hope that discussing inexpensive and effective medical treatments will continue to receive the same protection. However, it is very clear that this right is rapidly disappearing, in light of the open suppression of free speech that has been occurring for some time, but especially in the last few months. In light of this, then, the information in this article is being presented.

There already exist numerous ways to reliably prevent, mitigate, and even cure COVID-19, including in late-stage patients who are already ventilator-dependent. Some of the modalities have already been proven to work, although not in the classic "prospective double-blind, placebo-controlled trials" conducted on hundreds to thousands of patients. A perceptive clinician realizes that one overwhelmingly impressive case report where an agent or intervention promptly and unequivocally reverses the condition of a rapidly declining patient back to good health simply cannot be dismissed and disparaged as anecdotal and irrelevant. Furthermore, it is the existence of such cases and unequivocally positive responses that makes it completely unethical to put other patients into placebo-controlled trials when the treatment is dramatically beneficial to most patients and harmless to all. Allowing patients in the placebo group to suffer greatly and even die under such circumstances can never be justified.

Unfortunately, even when multiple scientifically-sound clinical studies actually do get conducted and reported on inexpensive, nontoxic, and highly effective therapies, those therapies rarely get utilized clinically. Although there are many examples of such therapies, an especially noteworthy example of the suppression of good medicine is seen with vitamin C. The continued avoidance of the use of intravenous vitamin C, especially in septic patients in the intensive unit, [2] stands out as a clear example of flagrant malpractice. Conservatively, thousands of ICU patients around the world, on a daily basis, would be saved or at least spared substantial suffering with a simple protocol utilizing intravenous vitamin C. And the morbidity and mortality of many different infections and toxin exposures outside of the ICU setting would also be readily mitigated and even resolved with vitamin C-based protocols. But this is not happening, even though the literature has unequivocally indicated the clinical importance (and safety) of vitamin C for over 80 years. [3]

The following therapies can be used, and many have been used, to prevent and treat COVID-19 (and many other infections, viral or otherwise). Not all of them have been equally well-documented or proven as being effective. Some have strong literature, research study, and clinical support. Others represent simply logical applications of treatment protocols that have already been proven to be highly effective in eradicating other viral infections and should be expected to have comparable effects on the COVID-19 virus. The treatments described below are categorized as having the ability to prevent, to improve and to cure COVID-19 and other viral syndromes.

Vitamin C (prevents, improves, cures)

Vitamin C has been documented to readily cure all acute viral syndromes in which it has been adequately dosed. As the ultimate virucide, vitamin C has been documented to inactivate/destroy every virus against which it was tested in vitro (in the test tube). Similarly, vitamin C has consistently resolved nearly all acute viral infections in patients treated with sufficient doses. [1,3] Vitamin C has cured Zika fever, another epidemic virus that struck in 2016. [4] Along with hydrogen peroxide, intravenous vitamin C has also been documented to be highly effective against the debilitating pain of Chikungunya virus. [5] Intravenous vitamin C has also resolved influenza. [6] A high degree of protection against infection by many other pathogens is also achievable with a variety of treatments featuring oral forms of vitamin C.

In an ongoing clinical study on hospitalized COVID-19 patients, a combination of vitamin C, methylprednisolone, heparin, and thiamine has already resulted in a dramatic decrease in hospital mortality rate. [7]

Vitamin D (prevents, improves)

Vitamin D has been clearly documented to strengthen immune function and decrease the risk of infection from any pathogen, including the COVID-19 virus. Patients with the highest vitamin D levels have shorter and less symptomatic courses of infection. While vitamin D has not been demonstrated to cure viruses as a monotherapy, maintaining an adequate level of vitamin D is vital for both preventing the contraction of infectious diseases as well as for recovering more rapidly from such infections, with a clear decrease in mortality rate. [8] In a recent study not yet published, Indonesian researchers studied the effects of vitamin D on mortality in 780 patients hospitalized with COVID-19. They found that nearly all (98.9%) of COVID-19 patients with vitamin D levels below 20 ng/ml died. Yet, less than 5% with substantially higher levels of vitamin D died. Consistent with these findings, it has been shown that the most life-threatening complication of COVID-19 infection, acute respiratory distress syndrome, occurs much more readily in the presence of a vitamin D deficiency. [9] Clearly, vitamin D supplementation should be part of any treatment protocol for COVID-19 or any other infectious disease.

Zinc (prevents, improves)

Zinc is needed inside the virus-infected cells to stop virus replication by inhibiting viral RNA polymerase. It is a possibility that many of the younger individuals that are either killed or made severely ill by COVID-19 are chronically zinc-depleted due to inadvertently zinc-deficient diets. Since supplemental zinc has only a limited ability to reach the cytoplasm of cells due to its ionic nature, zinc ionophores (agents that complex with zinc and transport it into the cell) are known to be good general antiviral agents. Quercetin is one such supplement, and it can serve as a good adjunctive agent to any COVID-19 treatment protocol. [10] Chloroquine, discussed below, is also a zinc ionophore, perhaps explaining its potent anti-COVID-19 effects.

Magnesium Chloride (prevents, improves, may cure)

Magnesium, especially as magnesium chloride, has been documented to have substantial antipathogen properties, and it has been reported to cure poliovirus infections as a monotherapy when ingested orally. [11] While it remains unclear what an aggressive regimen of this agent would do as a monotherapy for COVID-19, it can be expected to be a positive adjunctive agent in any COVID-19 prevention or treatment protocol.

Ozone (improves, cures)

Ozone is probably the single most potent antipathogen agent available today. It readily eradicates all pathogenic bacteria, fungi, viruses, and protozoa. It has many routes of administration and can be utilized as an effective monotherapy, although it positively supports all treatment protocols in an adjunctive and usually synergistic fashion as well. [12] Ozone has been documented to cure advanced cases of Ebola virus, for which there are still no known effective mainstream medical therapies. [13] For someone with ready access to ozone, different applications of ozone could certainly be used to prevent COVID-19 and other respiratory viruses as well. However, with the other simple and effective antiviral measures listed in this article, using ozone for prevention is not really needed.

Hydrogen Peroxide (prevents, improves, cures)

Hydrogen peroxide has been used for many years as a monotherapy as well as part of many different treatment protocols for a wide variety of infections. A clinically effective dose will typically cost less than a dime. During a severe epidemic of influenza in 1919 a protocol of intravenous hydrogen peroxide given only to the most severely ill patients dramatically decreased the death rate. [14]

Due to its well-documented and potent antipathogen properties, along with producing no toxic by-products upon killing pathogens, hydrogen peroxide is now being proposed in the literature for an off-label use via oral and nasal washing, a regimen of gargling, and administration via nebulization immediately upon symptom appearance with the presumptive diagnosis of COVID-19. [15,16] Impressive anecdotal evidence already indicates that this application, especially via nebulization, appears to be a powerful preventive and even curative therapy against all respiratory-acquired infections, viral or otherwise.

In addition to nebulization with hydrogen peroxide, a large number of other agents can also be nebulized that have pathogen-killing and mucosal cell-healing properties, including, but not limited to: DMSO, magnesium chloride, sodium ascorbate [vitamin C], nascent iodine, sodium chloride, sodium bicarbonate, zinc chloride, glutathione, and N-acetyl cysteine.

Hyperbaric Oxygen (may improve, may cure)

Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is the breathing of pure oxygen inside a chamber that is pressurized between 1.5 to 3 times normal atmospheric pressure. It has been documented to consistently help eradicate deep-seated and otherwise non-healing wounds and infections. [17] Ozone therapy, which has destroyed all viruses and pathogens against which it has been tested, has been shown to share some mechanisms of action with hyperbaric oxygen therapy. This certainly raises the reasonable possibility that hyperbaric oxygen might also be a very effective antiviral therapy in addition to its established antibacterial effects. [18]

Ultraviolet Blood Irradiation (improves, may cure)

Also known as photo-oxidation therapy, ultraviolet blood irradiation therapy has been effectively treating infections for many decades now. In a series of 36 cases of acute polio (spinal type), the blood irradiation treatment was successful in curing 100% of these patients. Viral hepatitis and bacterial sepsis were also found to be very effectively treated with ultraviolet blood irradiation. [19] This irradiation therapy would likely be equally effective against any other pathogens, especially viruses.

Chlorine Dioxide (improves, cures)

Chlorine dioxide has long been recognized as a powerful antimicrobial agent. It has been around for over 100 years, and it is used both to purify water and to purify blood to be used for transfusion. As a therapeutic agent for infectious diseases, it has been given both orally and intravenously with great effect, and it has been shown to be very effective against COVID-19 as well. [20,21] Dr. Andreas Kalcker directed a clinical study with doctors in Ecuador on COVID-19 patients using oral and intravenous chlorine dioxide. 97% of over 100 COVID-19 patients were vastly improved with clear remission of the severest symptoms after a four-day treatment regimen with chlorine dioxide. No deaths were reported. Oftentimes a dramatic clinical response was seen after only 24 hours. [22] A clinical study on the effects of oral chlorine dioxide on COVID-19 patients in Colombia was initiated in April of this year. [23]

Dexamethasone (improves)

Early findings in the Randomized Evaluation of COVid-19 thERapY (RECOVERY) Trial in the United Kingdom indicate that the addition of dexamethasone significantly improved clinical outcome in COVID-19 patients. A 35% reduction in death was seen in treated patients already dependent on mechanical ventilation, and a 20% reduction in death was seen in the treated patient group just receiving supplemental oxygen therapy. [24] This response of COVID-19 patients on ventilators is very consistent with the benefits of dexamethasone seen with acute respiratory distress syndrome unrelated to COVID-19. [25]

Budesonide (may prevent, improves, may cure)

Budesonide is a corticosteroid approved for inhalation via a nebulizer (Pulmicort Respules), and it is primarily used for persistent asthma and asthma exacerbations in children and infants as young as 12 months. [26,27] Dr  Richard Bartlett, a West Texas physician, has treated several dozen COVID-19 patients as of mid-June with nebulized budesonide, and he has asserted that all have promptly and dramatically responded positively and none have died. Sequential, or even combined, nebulizations of budesonide and hydrogen peroxide would appear to have great potential for a safe and rapidly effective treatment for any respiratory virus, including COVID-19. The hydrogen peroxide would serve to promptly kill the virus in the airways, and the corticosteroid would relieve the COVID-19 inflammation ("cytokine storm") and the associated shortness of breath. Nebulized budesonide has also been shown to be an effective treatment for preventing fungal infections of the nose and sinuses. [28]

Patients already on mechanical ventilation can also benefit greatly from the direct nebulization of therapeutic agents through the endotracheal tube. [29,30] This can certainly be done with budesonide [31] and hydrogen peroxide as well. Too many ventilator-dependent patients are left to eventually overcome the virus with whatever remaining immune capacity they have. Having a treatment that can directly attack the virus present in the lungs while relieving the inflammation with a resultant improvement in oxygenation should result in many of these patients getting weaned off the ventilators and eventually recovering completely. To date, being hospitalized with COVID-19 and eventually ending up on a ventilator still appears to be a death sentence for the vast majority of such patients.

Convalescent Plasma (improves, may cure)

Convalescent plasma is plasma collected from individuals who have recovered from an infectious disease resulting in the formation of antibodies. Depending on the severity of COVID-19 infection and the inherent immune capacity in a given patient, the transfusion of convalescent plasma from recovered COVID-19 patients has nearly always significantly reduced the viral load and clinically improved the patient. When the viral load is lowered dramatically, a clinical cure can be expected. A significantly improved survival rate has been seen in COVID-19 patients who have received convalescent plasma therapy. [32,33]

Chloroquine and Hydroxychloroquine (prevents, improves, cures)

I have had the opportunity to see clear-cut and dramatically positive clinical responses in six individuals with rapidly evolving symptoms consistent with fulminant COVID-19 infection treated with oral chloroquine phosphate. In these individuals (ranging from 35 to 65 years of age), therapy was initiated when breathing was very already very difficult and continuing to worsen. In all six, significant improvement in breathing was seen within about four hours after the first dose, with a complete clinical recovery seen after about an average of three days. The oldest individual had a pulse oximeter reading of 80 before the first dose of chloroquine, and the reading improved to 94 after about four hours as the laboured breathing eased. The rapidity with which the shortness of breath evolved in all these individuals strongly suggested that respiratory failure secondary to COVID-19-induced acute respiratory distress syndrome was imminent. The chloroquine dosing was continued for several days after complete clinical resolution to prevent any possible clinical relapse. While a large, definitive study on chloroquine and COVID-19 remains to be completed, there is already a great deal of published evidence supporting its effectiveness and overall safety. [34,35] Also, a recent clinical trial demonstrated that hydroxychloroquine given with azithromycin eradicated or significantly decreased measured viral load in respiratory swabs. [36]

Both chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine are old drugs that are very safe at the doses shown to be effective in treating COVID-19, and they are both recognized as having significant nonspecific antiviral properties. Also, chloroquine, and probably hydroxychloroquine as well, are zinc ionophores, [37,38] which is likely the reason why they have such significant antiviral properties. As noted above in the discussion on zinc, agents that greatly facilitate zinc transport inside virus-infected cells rapidly accelerate virus destruction and clinical resolution of the viral infection. Many clinicians now feel that chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine therapy for COVID-19 and other viruses is optimized by concomitant zinc administration. [39,40] Certainly, there is no good reason to avoid taking zinc with these agents.

As might be expected, drugs as potently antiviral to COVID-19 as chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine would be expected to be effective preventive agents as well, particularly in the setting where exposure is known or strongly suspected to have taken place, or in a setting where repeated and substantial exposure will reliably occur, as in COVID-19-treating hospitals. [41,42] Many front-line health care workers are on such preventive protocols. But many of the physicians who are taking one of these agents to prevent COVID-19 infection are still resistant to giving it to infected patients. This is difficult to logically reconcile if patient welfare is of the uppermost concern.

Radiotherapy (improves, cures)

In a recent pilot trial at Emory University, five nursing home patients hospitalized with COVID-19 were given a single treatment of low-dose radiotherapy over the lungs. All five patients had radiographic evidence of pneumonia and required supplemental oxygen. All five were felt to be deteriorating from a clinical perspective. The radiotherapy consisted of a 10- to 15-minute application of 1.5 Gy (150 rads). Four of the five patients were noted to have a rapid improvement in their breathing, and clinical recovery was seen to occur between 3 and 96 hours post-irradiation.

General Recommendations

While many supplement regimens can be used for COVID-19 prevention, such regimens should include at a minimum vitamin C, vitamin D, magnesium chloride, and zinc. Any of many additional quality nutrient and antioxidant supplements can be added as desired, largely dependent on expense and personal preference.

Nebulizations of powerful antipathogen agents, especially hydrogen peroxide, can readily prevent respiratory viral infections like COVID-19 from taking hold, and initiating such nebulizations even after an infection has been contracted will still make a substantial contribution to a more rapid and complete recovery.

As noted earlier, interventions such as ozone and ultraviolet blood treatments have the potential to be effective monotherapies, although it is always a good idea to accompany such treatments with the baseline supplementation regimen and nebulizations as mentioned above.

In the hospitalized setting, intravenous vitamin C and dexamethasone should always be part of the treatment regimen. Nebulizations with hydrogen peroxide and budesonide can accelerate recovery substantially. Also, patients already on ventilator support should always be given vitamin C and dexamethasone along with these nebulizations in addition to anything else felt to be indicated by the attending physician.

Low doses of hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine along with zinc should always be given in the setting of high-risk exposure. Azithromycin can be taken with these agents as well. Higher doses of these agents should always be part of any regimen in the treatment of a suspected or diagnosed COVID-19 patient, whether asymptomatic or already in the hospital.

Recap

While the politics of the COVID-19 pandemic are beyond the scope and aim of this article, there remain no valid medical reasons for not using any of the agents or interventions itemized above for either preventing or treating COVID-19 patients. Furthermore, many combinations of these treatments can be applied, depending on their availability and the clinical status of a given patient. Traditional medicine insists on "proof" of any therapy before it is used routinely, even though this standard of proof is never actually obtained for many of the usual prescription drug approaches to infections and other diseases. When an agent is inexpensive, virtually harmless, and with substantial evidence of providing benefit, there is no justification for a physician to refuse or even actively block its administration to a patient otherwise assured of prolonged suffering and likely death (as with hospitalized COVID-19 patients on ventilation support).

With the treatment options available, there is no good reason for most people to even contract COVID-19, and there is certainly no good reason for anyone to die from this virus, much less have a prolonged clinical course of infection with a great deal of needless suffering.

Please note: None of the information in this article is intended to be utilized by anyone as direct medical advice. Rather, the article is intended only to make the reader aware of other treatment possibilities and documented scientific information that can be further discussed with a chosen health care professional.

(Cardiologist and attorney Thomas E. Levy is the author of a number of books, including Curing the Incurable: Vitamin C, Infectious Diseases, and Toxins; Primal Panacea; and Stop America's #1 Killer. His email is televymd@yahoo.com).

References

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36. Gautret P, Lagier J, Parola P et al. (2020) Hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin as a treatment of COVID-19: results of an open-label non-randomized clinical trial. International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents Mar 20, 105949. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32205204

37. Xue J, Moyer A, Peng B et al. (2014) Chloroquine is a zinc ionophore. PLoS One 9:e109180. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25271834

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40. Shittu M, Afolami O (2020) Improving the efficacy of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine against SARS-CoV-2 may require zinc additives-a better synergy for future COVID-19 clinical trials. Le Infezioni in Medicina 28:192-197. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32335560

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42. Huang M, Tang T, Pang P et al. (2020) Treating COVID-19 with chloroquine. Journal of Molecular Cell Biology 12:322-325. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32236562

Nutritional Medicine is Orthomolecular Medicine

The peer-reviewed Orthomolecular Medicine News Service is a non-profit and non-commercial informational resource. Orthomolecular medicine uses safe, effective nutritional therapy to fight illness. For more information: http://www.orthomolecular.org.

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Click here to see a web copy of this news release: http://orthomolecular.activehosted.com/p_v.php?l=1&c=163&m=167&s=c7ae1002d2f579a22c16a1b89c854212

 

 

How We Can Fix This Pandemic In A Month

Commentary by Damien Downing MBBS MRSB

If we act on the data showing that it is highly probable that vitamin D can save lives, we could fix this pandemic in a month, for perhaps $2 per person. There would be no significant adverse effects. If we wait for "evidence" that vitamin D mitigates the impact of COVID-19, thousands more will die. If we could arrange to give everyone vitamin D, and it failed to protect them, so what? The risk from not acting is much greater than the risk from acting. Dosage is important and generally misunderstood.

Two countries have acted on this already: Egypt and Slovenia. Why can't we?

The Orthomolecular Medicine News Service has been publicizing the importance of vitamins D and C, and the minerals zinc and magnesium, in this pandemic since January [1]. I have been writing about Vitamin D and sunlight for over 30 years [2], and it has never been more relevant.

If you caught the COVID19 virus right now, having a good vitamin D status (from already having taken a supplement) would

  • Reduce your risk of the disease becoming severe by 90%
  • Reduce your risk of dying by 96%

This is not "proven" or "evidence-based" until we have done controlled trials comparing it to placebo. Any volunteers for that? But the data, already strong, has been pouring in since the start of the pandemic. Here's the data for the two statements above.

[A Hazard Ratio of 4 means that in one condition, for instance vitamin D deficiency, you are 4 times more likely to suffer the ‘hazard’ than in another condition, say vitamin D adequacy. The graphics are all mine.]

 

% in Outcome Category by Vitamin C Status

A Philippine Study [3]

With a deficient vitamin D status (<50nmol/L) the probability of becoming Severe or Critical with COVID-19 was 72.8% against 7.2% with adequate vitamin D (>75nmol/L). The Hazard Ratio is 10.0.

 

% Mortality by Vitamin D Status

An Indonesian Study [4]

With a deficient vitamin D status (<50nmol/L) the mortality rate from COVID-19 was 98.8% against 4.1% with adequate vitamin D (>75nmol/L). The Hazard Ratio is 24.1.

 

Deaths per 1m Population

A Review of Data on Europe [5]

For countries in Europe, the probability of developing COVID-19, and of dying from it, is negatively correlated with mean population vitamin D status, with both probabilities reaching zero above about 75nmol/L. (The chart also shows the lower vitamin D levels for the elderly in Spain and Italy. [6]) It is also known that other factors such as age, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease, obesity, and diabetes are commonly associated with death in COVID-19. [5-8] For example, the elderly population in care facilities often do not get much sunlight exposure nor adequate supplements of essential nutrients including vitamin D, which will increase their risk of serious infections. Further, the 25(OH)D level in northern European countries such as Sweden drops in late winter to ~50 nmol/L or less, which may explain their relatively high death rate from infection. [9]

Dosage is Important and Generally Misunderstood

Recent studies have suggested in discussion that more than 4000 IU per day of vitamin D3 may carry a risk of harm, citing the UK Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition report of 2016 which set the recommended Upper Level (UL) intakes of 50mcg/2000IU per day. [10] That report says; "Excessive vitamin D intakes have, however, been shown to have toxic effects (Vieth, 2006)". [10] However this is misleading, as the Vieth paper [11] states: "Published reports suggest toxicity may occur with 25(OH)D concentrations beyond 500 nmol/L." This leaves a wide margin of safety.

The 3 papers mentioned above [3-5] show that a vitamin D3 blood level of at least 75 nmol/L (30 ng/ml) is needed for protection against COVID-19. Government recommendations for vitamin D intake - 400 IU/day for the UK and 600 IU/day for the USA (800 IU for >70 years) and the EU - are based primarily on bone health. This is woefully inadequate in the pandemic context. An adult will need to take 4000 IU/day of vitamin D3 for 3 months to reliably achieve a 75 nmol/L level [12]. Persons of color may need twice as much [13]. These doses can reduce the risk of infection, but are not for treatment of an acute viral infection. And since vitamin D is fat-soluble and its level in the body rises slowly, for those with a deficiency, taking a initial dose of 5-fold the normal dose (20,000 IU/day) for 2 weeks can help to raise the level up to an adequate level to lower infection risk.

Other Essential Nutrients can Help

As mentioned above, many studies have shown that for those deficient in essential nutrients, a protocol that includes vitamin D, vitamin C, magnesium, and zinc can decrease the risk of infection for viruses, including those similar to COVID-19.[1] Recommended preventive adult doses are vitamin C, 3000 mg/day (in divided doses, to bowel tolerance), magnesium, 400 mg (in malate, citrate, or chloride form), zinc, 20 mg. [1]

References

1. Saul AW. (2020) Vitamin C Protects Against Coronavirus. Orthomolecular Medicine News Service http://orthomolecular.org/resources/omns/v16n04.shtml

2. Downing D. (1988) Day Light Robbery. Arrow Books, London. ISBN-13: 978-0099567400

3. Alipio MM. (2020) Vitamin D supplementation could possibly improve clinical outcomes of patients infected with Coronavirus-2019 (COVID- 2019). Preprint available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3571484

4. Raharusuna P, Priambada S, Budiarti C et al. (2020) Patterns of COVID-19 Mortality and Vitamin D: An Indonesian Study.

5. Ilie, P., Stefanescu, S., Smith, L. (2020) The role of Vitamin D in the prevention of Coronavirus Disease 2019 infection and mortality. Research Square preprint. https://europepmc.org/article/ppr/ppr147305

6. Lips P, Cashman K, Lamberg-Allardt C et al (2019) Current vitamin D status in European and Middle East countries and strategies to prevent vitamin D deficiency: a position statement of the European Calcified Tissue Society. Eur J Endocrinol. 180:23-54. https://europepmc.org/article/MED/30721133

7. Oaklander M (2020) Almost Every Hospitalized Coronavirus Patient Has Another Underlying Health Issue, According to a Study of New York Patients. Time Magazine, April 22, 2020. https://time.com/5825485/coronavirus-risk-factors

8. Richardson S, Hirsch JS, Narasimhan M. (2020) Presenting Characteristics, Comorbidities, and Outcomes Among 5700 Patients Hospitalized With COVID-19 in the New York City Area. JAMA. 323:2052-2059. https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2765184

9. Klingberg E, Oleröd G, Konar J, et al. (2015) Seasonal variations in serum 25-hydroxy vitamin D levels in a Swedish cohort. Endocrine, 49:800-808. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25681052

10. UK Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) (2016) Vitamin D and Health. https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/537616/SACN_Vitamin_D_and_Health_report.pdf

11. Vieth R (2006) Critique of the considerations for establishing the tolerable upper intake level for vitamin D: critical need for revision upwards. J Nutr, 136:1117-1122. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16549491

12. Vieth R, Chan PC, MacFarlane GD. (2001) Efficacy and safety of vitamin D(3) intake exceeding the lowest observed adverse effect level. Am J Clin Nutr, 73:288-294. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11157326

13. Cashman KD, Ritz C, Adebayo FA, et al. (2019) Differences in the dietary requirement for vitamin D among Caucasian and East African women at Northern latitude. Eur J Nutr. 58:2281-2291. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30022296

Nutritional Medicine is Orthomolecular Medicine

The peer-reviewed Orthomolecular Medicine News Service is a non-profit and non-commercial informational resource. Orthomolecular medicine uses safe, effective nutritional therapy to fight illness. For more information: http://www.orthomolecular.org.

OMNS free subscription link http://orthomolecular.org/subscribe.html

OMNS archive link http://orthomolecular.org/resources/omns/index.shtml

Find a Doctor

To locate an orthomolecular physician near you: http://orthomolecular.org/resources/omns/v06n09.shtml

Editorial Review Board

Vladimir Arianoff, M.D. (Belgium)
Ilyès Baghli, M.D. (Algeria)
Ian Brighthope, MBBS, FACNEM (Australia)
Gilbert Henri Crussol, D.M.D. (Spain)
Carolyn Dean, M.D., N.D. (USA)
Damien Downing, M.B.B.S., M.R.S.B. (United Kingdom)
Martin P. Gallagher, M.D., D.C. (USA)
Michael J. Gonzalez, N.M.D., D.Sc., Ph.D. (Puerto Rico)
William B. Grant, Ph.D. (USA)
Tonya S. Heyman, M.D. (USA)
Suzanne Humphries, M.D. (USA)
Ron Hunninghake, M.D. (USA)
Robert E. Jenkins, D.C. (USA)
Bo H. Jonsson, M.D., Ph.D. (Sweden)
Jeffrey J. Kotulski, D.O. (USA)
Peter H. Lauda, M.D. (Austria)
Thomas Levy, M.D., J.D. (USA)
Alan Lien, Ph.D. (Taiwan)
Homer Lim, M.D. (Philippines)
Stuart Lindsey, Pharm.D. (USA)
Victor A. Marcial-Vega, M.D. (Puerto Rico)
Charles C. Mary, Jr., M.D. (USA)
Mignonne Mary, M.D. (USA)
Jun Matsuyama, M.D., Ph.D. (Japan)
Joseph Mercola, D.O. (USA)
Jorge R. Miranda-Massari, Pharm.D. (Puerto Rico)
Karin Munsterhjelm-Ahumada, M.D. (Finland)
Tahar Naili, M.D. (Algeria)
W. Todd Penberthy, Ph.D. (USA)
Dag Viljen Poleszynski, Ph.D. (Norway)
Selvam Rengasamy, MBBS, FRCOG (Malaysia)
Jeffrey A. Ruterbusch, D.O. (USA)
Gert E. Schuitemaker, Ph.D. (Netherlands)
T.E. Gabriel Stewart, M.B.B.CH. (Ireland)
Hyoungjoo Shin, M.D. (South Korea)
Thomas L. Taxman, M.D. (USA)
Jagan Nathan Vamanan, M.D. (India)
Garry Vickar, M.D. (USA)
Ken Walker, M.D. (Canada)
Raymond Yuen, MBBS, MMed (Singapore)
Anne Zauderer, D.C. (USA)

 

Andrew W. Saul, Ph.D. (USA), Editor-In-Chief
Editor, Japanese Edition: Atsuo Yanagisawa, M.D., Ph.D. (Japan)
Editor, Chinese Edition: Richard Cheng, M.D., Ph.D. (USA)
Robert G. Smith, Ph.D. (USA), Associate Editor
Helen Saul Case, M.S. (USA), Assistant Editor
Michael S. Stewart, B.Sc.C.S. (USA), Technology Editor
Jason M. Saul, JD (USA), Legal Consultant

Comments and Media Contact: drsaul@doctoryourself.com

OMNS welcomes but is unable to respond to individual reader emails. Reader comments become the property of OMNS and may or may not be used for publication.

Click here to see a web copy of this news release

 

 

Acid Blockers Make COVID-19 More Deadly

Republished from anh-usa.org

https://anh-usa.org/ppis-make-covid-19-more-deadly/

The FDA has ignored the dangers long enough. Action Alert!

ANH-USA has submitted a Citizens Petition to the FDA concerning the increased risk of pneumonia that is associated with proton pump inhibitor (PPI) medications for acid reflux. This effect has been documented for a number of years, yet the agency has so far refused to update these drugs’ label warning to reflect this danger. This side effect is especially concerning given the current pandemic, which attacks the respiratory system. It is time to force the FDA’s hand.

These widely prescribed drugs (Prilosec and Prevacid are popular brand names) block the production of stomach acid and are used to treat heartburn and GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease). PPIs have been linked with increased risk of pneumonia  which is of particular concern with COVID-19 and the respiratory damage that characterizes advanced cases.

The mechanism by which PPIs cause pneumonia is not fully understood, but one theory is that they compromise the stomach’s ‘acid mantle’ against gastric colonization of bacteria.  Normally, gastric pH is around 2, which effectively limits bacterial colonization from ingested microbes; PPIs increase this pH to above 4 for approximately 24 hours, compromising this natural defence mechanism. PPIs may also lead to delayed gastric emptying, increased gastric contents, larger bacterial loads, and increased pressure on the lower oesophageal sphincter, causing reflux that brings bacteria back up into the respiratory tract and thus increases the likelihood of infection. Another theory is that PPIs reduce the acidity of the upper digestive tract which results in increased bacterial colonization of the larynx, oesophagus, and lungs.

PPIs also impact the gastrointestinal microbiota, which could be linked to reducing immunity and hence increasing pneumonia risk. This is key. We’re currently living through a viral pandemic that attacks the respiratory system. Not only do PPIs weaken our immune response overall; they make us more susceptible to a respiratory infection that could put us more at risk for COVID-19 complications.

Important research has found that PPIs shut off acid pumps, not just in the stomach, but in every other cell of the body. This interferes with the way cells make energy and detoxify. It also results in “systematically compromised immunity.” Referring to his research on PPIs and their effect on the lysosomes, one doctor summed it up like this: “I think we now have a smoking gun,” referring to the mechanism by which PPIs cause the wide range of negative health effects that have been documented.

There are an estimated 4.9 million cases of pneumonia in the US per year, requiring more than 250,000 hospitalizations and resulting in 50,000 deaths. The cost of treating pneumonia in the US is estimated to be $13.4 billion. PPIs could be costing us billions of dollars a year in healthcare costs for pneumonia alone, not to mention the other health hazards they cause.

The COVID-19 pandemic starkly underlines the significance of these dangers. The millions of users of PPIs must be warned that using these drugs compromises immunity and increases risk of pneumonia – pertinent information, to say the least, during a viral pandemic that attacks the respiratory system.

Public health experts say between 60 and 70% of people who take these drugs don’t need them. Acid blockers like PPIs do not address the root cause of stomach trouble, which is often too little stomach acid, not too much. This means that in many cases, taking acid blockers simply makes your stomach problems even worse.

Then there are the other side effects, which we’ve written about extensively. Acid blockers:

  • Increase the risk of a baby developing asthma if taken by pregnant mothers;
  • Increase the risk of bacterial infection and bone fracture;
  • Cause both acute and chronic kidney disease;
  • Increase the risk of dementia by as much as 52%;
  • Raise the risk of heart attack by as much as 20%.

The FDA already has issued a number of warnings regarding PPIs, including the increased risk of bone fracture, hypomagnesemia (low serum magnesium levels), and Clostridium difficile associated diarrhoea. It’s time to add pneumonia to this list, especially given the increased danger as we weather this pandemic.

Action Alert!  Write to the FDA, with a copy to Congress, telling the agency to add a warning that PPIs increase risk of pneumonia. Please send your message immediately. Take Action!

Citation Acknowledgement

Republished from anh-usa.org

https://anh-usa.org/ppis-make-covid-19-more-deadly/

Further Information

Source and Contact: "ANH-USA" <office@anh-usa.org>

 

 

Detailed 3D Model of SARS-CoV-2 Revealed

As the world races to understand more about SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic, scientists are gaining increasing amounts of information about the viral components that make up the infectious particles.

While each new discovery on the virus provides scientists and governments with vital new information on SARS-CoV-2, none of them are able to give a clear overall image of the virus particles that can infect us.

Now, a collaboration between experts has created one of the most detailed 3D models of both the interior and the exterior of the SARS-CoV-2 virus particle.

The collaboration includes Annabel Slater, a freelance scientific Illustrator and graduate of The Glasgow School of Art – University of Glasgow Masters in Medical Simulation and Human Anatomy; scientists at MRC-University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research; and experts from the School of Simulation and Visualisation at the GSA (SimVis).

The striking new images and videos are available to see on the UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) COVID-19 website,  Coronavirus Explained.

Piecing together the complex scientific jigsaw of all the known details about this new coronavirus so far, the cross-disciplinary team have created a series of striking images and videos. While the illustrations do not reveal any new information about SARS-CoV-2, they are one of the first and most detailed 3D representations of the virus particles.

It was possible to create the detailed illustrations so quickly, thanks to a long-standing collaboration between the University of Glasgow and The Glasgow School of Art (the GSA).

The illustrations and 3D models have been made freely available to view online and to download for use by anyone who wishes to visualise SARS-CoV-2. A set of science communication resources incorporating then, including colouring sheets, are already in development at the CVR and will be released in the near future.

By visualizing existing data about the particles that transmit COVID-19, it’s hoped that this model will provide a valuable resource for anyone who wants to have a mental image of the invisible agent behind the current pandemic.

Annabel Slater said: “I think making scientific images into something 3D, opens up a whole new world of interaction, exploration and understanding. The science of a virus can be better understood by making the virus particle into something tangible and interactable. I hope these models of the SARS-CoV-2 virus particle will help people by making the invisible visible.”

Dr Ed Hutchinson, research fellow at the CVR who led the virology work in this project, said:

“No single experiment can directly produce a detailed image of a SARS-CoV-2 virus particle. Not only are they incredibly small, like all viruses, but they are also irregular – every virus particle is slightly different from the next – and getting detailed information requires each component of the virus to be studied in isolation.

“Fortunately, for several years we’ve worked with students doing projects for the MSc in Medical Visualisation and Human Anatomy, including Naina Nair who developed one of the most detailed models of the influenza virus particles – which are also very irregular, and then found ways to use those models for science communication.

“When the current pandemic began, Annabel got in touch and asked if we could collaborate on a model of the SARS-CoV-2 virus particle. As a graduate of the MSc programme herself, she was able to quickly pick up the methods needed to build a model of the virus, working with us to interpret a set of data that combined the most up-to-date studies of SARS-CoV-2 with ‘missing information’ from studies of related viruses.”

Graphics and Visualizations

To download the COVID-19 visualizations visit:

https://sketchfab.com/3d-models/sars-cov-2-envelope-section-400b397b402246eaab2d33436f43bcb5

A video of the visualisation can be found here https://youtu.be/7oiSWfVHg98 

To download the colouring sheets visit https://www.gla.ac.uk/researchinstitutes/iii/cvr/events/public%20engagement/resources/

Further Information 

For more information contact Elizabeth McMeekin or Ali Howard in the University of Glasgow Communications and Public Affairs Office on Tel: 0141 330 4831 or Tel: 0141 330 6557; or email Elizabeth.mcmeekin@glasgow.ac.uk  or ali.howard@glasgow.ac.uk 

For further information on the School of Simulation and Visualisation at The Glasgow School of Art contact: Lesley Booth, Tel: 07799414474;  press@gsa.ac.uk

 

 

COVID-19 Drug Trial Could Lead to Enhanced Respiratory Care for Patients

Researchers at the University of Oxford are working with clinical collaborators from NHS hospitals to carry out a new clinical drug trial aimed at treating COVID-19, funded by LifeArc. It will test a drug that could raise oxygen levels in the blood in COVID-19 patients in order to improve their chances of recovery. Raising oxygen levels is important in COVID-19, because many patients with the disease die when oxygen levels in their arterial blood fall to levels that are too low to support life.

Currently, supportive therapy for COVID-19 in hospitals aims to keep oxygen levels sufficiently high with treatments such as supplementary oxygen or by using ventilators to artificially support the body’s breathing process. In normal circumstances, if the oxygen becomes too low in a part of the lung, the blood vessels in that part constrict to redirect the blood flow to other regions of the lung where the oxygen is higher. In COVID-19 patients, however, the Oxford University researchers hypothesise that this mechanism is not working properly. Consequently, the blood flow is going to the most diseased and non-functioning parts of the lung where the oxygen is low, and is not getting diverted to the healthier parts of the lung where the oxygen is higher. This means that too much blood flows through the lungs without picking up oxygen.

The research team aims to address this problem by preferentially constricting the blood vessels going through the diseased parts of the lung, thereby redirecting the blood towards the healthy parts where it can pick up oxygen. To do this, they will use an old drug first developed in France called almitrine bismesylate, which is known in the scientific community to have this effect when treating acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). The drug acts to increase the sensitivity of the acute oxygen sensing mechanisms of the body. According to Lead Researcher Professor Peter Robbins:

“We know that almitrine can increase oxygen levels in patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome by constricting the blood vessels in regions of the lung where the oxygen is low. We want to see if almitrine will also have this effect in COVID-19 patients.”

The team will work with the UK pharmaceutical industry to produce almitrine for clinical use and will run a trial of the drug in selected UK locations. The trial will be split into two phases. Phase A is to administer one oral dose of the drug to patients needing respiratory support to ascertain whether it is successful in increasing oxygen levels in the arterial blood. Phase B aims to administer the drug to patients for a seven-day period to ascertain whether it reduces the amount of other respiratory support the patient needs. Professor Robbins said:

“If almitrine can add to the overall effectiveness of respiratory support, then the hope is that clinicians will need to mechanically ventilate fewer patients, and that they will be able successfully to support more seriously ill patients throughout the course of their illness.

“People can recover from COVID-19 in the same way that they recover from other viral illnesses. That’s by fighting off the virus with the body’s normal defence mechanisms. But if the lung becomes so damaged that blood just doesn’t pick up enough oxygen, then the body never gets the chance to finish the job and the patient dies from the low level of oxygen. So, what we are really trying to do with supportive therapy is help the patient to continue to function whilst their body fights off the infection in the normal way.”

The trial is a close collaboration between academic staff located across different departments at Oxford University and NHS hospital consultants. The researchers include Professor Peter Robbins and Professor Keith Dorrington at the Department of Physiology, Anatomy and Genetics, Professor Najib Rahman at the Nuffield Department of Medicine, Professor Chris Schofield at the Department of Chemistry, Dr Stuart McKechnie and Dr Matthew Rowland (Kadoorie Centre for Critical Care Research), Dr Nayia Petousi and Dr Nick Talbot (Respiratory Medicine) at Oxford University Hospitals’ John Radcliffe Hospital, Dr Matthew Frise at the Royal Berkshire Hospital in Reading, and Dr Matthew Wise at the University Hospital of Wales in Cardiff.

The almitrine will take three months to manufacture. Once the almitrine becomes available, it is anticipated that phase A of the study will take one month to complete, and phase B will take four months to complete. The results should become available one month after completion of the last patient.

This study is being supported by a grant from the medical research charity LifeArc, as part of its activities to address the need for new therapies for COVID-19. LifeArc has made £10m available to repurpose existing medicines or those in the late stage of development as this approach offers one of the fastest routes to develop new treatments that could tackle the virus and its impact.

Further Information

For interviews with Professor Peter Robbins, contact Alex Buxton at alexander.buxton@admin.ox.ac.uk.

 

 

Let’s Work Together and Make Noise – FHT Federation of Holistic Therapists

For more than three months, FHT members have been diligently following government guidelines in order to protect the NHS, save lives and prevent the spread of COVID-19. It is therefore completely understandable that so many of you are feeling extremely frustrated by the government’s recent decision to reopen hairdressing and barbershops in England on 4 July, while other close contact services – including beauty, sports/massage therapy, and wellbeing and holistic services – have been told to remain closed ‘until further notice’ (see page 3 of these guidelines for more information).

While we all knew that the therapy industry was unlikely to get the ‘green light’ any time before 4 July, what we didn’t anticipate was that the government would reopen some close contact services ahead of others, without providing any scientific rationale as to why they were doing this.

In addition, the ‘road map’ for England seems to have dropped off a cliff, with no review dates announced or published by the government that go beyond ‘Step 3’ (4 July).

So, we think it’s time to make some noise. Together.

Throughout the pandemic, the FHT has been working closely with other professional organisations and stakeholders in the industry, both as a Core Member of the Integrated Healthcare Collaborative (IHC), and more recently through meetings with the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Beauty, Aesthetics and Wellbeing (APPG-BAW).

As such, we have already sent four letters to the Prime Minister and different Secretaries of State to represent the interests of our members (see our coronavirus statement for more information), but now we’d like to ask you for your support.

Sign this Petition

Along with 20 other organisations and stakeholders in the complementary, traditional and natural healthcare industry, the FHT is a Core Member of the recently formed Integrative Healthcare Collaborative (IHC).

For seven weeks, the IHC has been waiting for approval of a parliamentary petition (a process that usually takes up to 7 days), asking the government to work with the IHC and its Core Members to produce guidelines for COVID-19 secure workplaces in this industry, and prioritise a safe return to work as soon as possible.

As the situation is now time critical and we cannot wait any longer, a petition has been launched on behalf of the IHC on change.org.

Read and sign the IHC petition

Email or Write to your Local MP

We have two template letters for you to choose from, both of which you can adapt and personalise, which will carry much more weight.

To get the most out of your letter:

  • Find the name and email address of your local MP at https://members.parliament.uk/FindYourMP
  • Address you local MP as ‘Mr/Ms/Dr’, writing MP after their name – for example, Mr Bloggs MP
  • Include your name and address – MPs only listen to concerns from their constituents, so will need your address and postcode to confirm that you are a constituent.
  • Make it personal – edit the letter to make it more personal and to reflect your own situation. Where indicated, use your own words to explain your contribution to the local industry and explain your concerns. This will help to make the letter more impactful.

Download a template letter written in collaboration with the IHC 

Download a template letter written in collaboration with the APPG-BAW 

Thank you for your support

Federation of Holistic Therapists

Comments:

  1. Tom said..

    Thanks for the info. All we hear from the media and government is one side of this whatever-it-is. Any alternative ideas, digressions from the agenda, anti-virus talk or practical methods to get through these times are conveniently whitewashed, expunged or clearly derided by the main street media. This suggests to me a fake pandemic, especially since millions are not dying, many of the deaths are questionable as to exact cause, over inflation of statistics for the explicit purpose of creating fear and imposing silly mandates, variances from state to state or country to country, the fact that no specific "virus" has been found to exist and social media expelling any critical or opposite views and ideas of discoveries. If this is a flu virus, or similar, then why did it supposedly spike in July? Usually these types of viruses become very dormant or dissipate during the warmer months. Spikes in influenza and other bacterial diseases always occur during the colder months. I believe we are dealing with some kind of altered protein or substance that has been genetically created for a specific purpose. It is almost some kind of TB derivative that moves much faster in it's destruction of lung function. We can expect another much more severe lockdown in the coming months and it's only purpose is political. The deaths from isolation, lack of fresh air, sunshine and even possibly lack of decent food will far outstrip any of the fake Covid deaths. And governments couldn't care less who they destroy or murder.


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    Essential reading for people/carers with ME/CFS serious debilitating illness. Counteracts bad advice

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    Fine quality flower essences international ranges to help promote vitality and emotional well-being.

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  • PROFESSOR Sheik IMAM

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  • radical spirituality

    UK publisher of rejected knowledge in areas of esoteric thought and radical streams of spirituality.

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