New This Week — CFS/Fibromyalgia News: June 26, 2009
Update on the Antiviral Isoprinosine (Immunovir)
New research is suggesting that the prescription antiviral Immunovir (Isoprinosine) may be very helpful in treating viral infections in CFS. Though prescription, it is not approved in the U.S., so it isn't covered by insurance. Physicians in the U.S. (and elsewhere) can order it from Canada or Ireland. It is safe and well tolerated, and compared to other antivirals, relatively reasonably priced at about $100 per month. Though not needed for everyone with CFS, it offers another helpful treatment tool for the 15% who don't adequately improve with the SHINE Protocol, or for those with chronic symptoms suggesting a long term viral infection.
For more information on this helpful medication, how to dose it, and how your physician can order it, I invite you to read our guest article by Alina Garcia MD, an excellent CFS & fibromyalgia specialist who works at the Las Vegas Fibromyalgia and Fatigue Center.
Also, see our overview on diagnosing and treating viral infections in CFS.
When treating underlying chronic infections in CFS & fibromyalgia, I find it is best to attack the infection and build up your immune system in several ways at once. A balanced approach would be to:
|Add colloidal silver (Argentyn 23) — Silver is an amazing, safe and natural anti-infectious agent. Historically it has been very effective against many (if not most) infections, including those seen in CFS. Because it is relatively inexpensive and not patentable, no one can pay to put it through the FDA process. See below for more information about silver. For chronic sinus problems, I recommend the Argentyn 23 nose spray as well.|
|ProBoost — This natural thymic hormone mimics the main effect of the hormone that regulates our body’s immune function, and is the first thing I reach for when coming down with a bug. It usually knocks out most colds and respiratory infections in the first 36 hours when caught early. For chronic infections seen in CFS, it needs to be taken for 3 months (1 packet DISSOLVED UNDER THE TONGUE 3 times a day). It is one of the most popular products we carry, and I recommend keeping a box in your medicine cabinet.|
Argentyn 23 — Colloidal Silver Liquid and Nasal Spray
Silver is a remarkable anti-infectious agent against a very broad spectrum of infections. I suspect it is more effective against a larger mix of infections than any other antibiotic or anti-infectious agent. Because it is not patentable, it cannot go through the FDA process, but has been so effective over its many decades of use that it has became controversial — despite being safe and relatively inexpensive. I suspect this occurred because makers of expensive antibiotics and antivirals were afraid it would offer too much competition!
Though effective for numerous infections when taken by mouth (or even IV), it is especially helpful for sinusitis when used as a nose spray (called "Argentyn 23 nasal spray" — which patients love). There is also an oral liquid form that can be helpful for body wide infections as well (like chronic viral infections). In low doses, this natural mineral kills viral, fungal, and bacterial infections, and liquid silver can be taken by mouth for many types of difficult-to-treat chronic infections. Silver also works well in combination with the prescription sinusitis nose spray, which your physician can call in to ITC Pharmacy (303-663-4224).
The problem with using the wrong types of silver is that if a person overdoses it can build up in their body, and turn the skin permanently blue (very Smurfy, but not a good idea). Called "argyria," this discoloration is not dangerous, but it is odd looking. Because of this, it is important to use safe forms that are very small molecules, so they don't build up in the body. I recommend the Immunogenics Argentyn 23 brand of silver liquid or nose spray. These have never caused the blue skin problem and are both safe and effective.
If dealing with a possible chronic infection, especially in CFS or fibromyalgia, it is worth a 3 month trial of Argentyn 23 colloidal silver liquid by mouth plus the immune stimulant ProBoost. I would also get 1 bottle of 90-100 zinc tablets (25 mg), and take 1 a day till they are used up. The zinc in the vitamin powder is then enough to keep levels up after the 1 bottle. Zinc deficiency is routinely present in chronic infections (which cause you to lose zinc in the urine), and zinc is critical for optimal immune function. You can find zinc in any health food store and most supermarkets (and it is very low cost).
Help for Dry Eyes and Dry Mouth
A recent study found decreased tear production in 90% of those with fibromyalgia. Dry mouth is also common — aggravating dental and digestive problems. This comes as no surprise to those with CFS/FMS. Here is how to treat this problem! Read more »
CFS Research Study Seeks Subjects in Los Angeles Area
Charles R. Drew University of Medicine and Sciences will be conducting a clinical study on alterations in blood flow and the effect of a medication on treatment. They are recruiting subjects in the Los Angeles, CA area to participate (with compensation). Read more »
Probiotics Decrease Anxiety in CFS
Exercise Decreases “Brain Fog” in Fibromyalgia
Exercise (the “E” in the SHINE Protocol) was shown to also decrease “brain fog” in fibromyalgia. The trick is to do enough to condition, but not enough to cause you to “crash” the next day. Read more »
Ginkgo May Help Nerve Pain
Ginkgo is an herb that can help brain fog. This new study suggests the ginkgo may also help nerve pain and pain with normal touch (called "allodynia"). Lipoic acid also helps nerve pain. Both the ginkgo and lipoic acid (and more) can be found in a product called "Remember." This makes it especially worth trying if you have both brain fog and nerve pain. Read more »
FEATURED QUESTIONS FROM READERS
Q: Other natural antivirals resulted in “incredible” improvement in this person’s severe fatigue/CFS. Read more »
OTHER NEWS AND ANNOUNCEMENTS
Cool Resources for Herbal Information
I would like to introduce you to two of my favorite herbalists and their websites. I had the pleasure to travel in the Amazon on an herbal tour with both of these gentlemen over 15 years ago, and they are wonderful. For those interested in herbals, both of these sites offer an enormous wealth of information. Like an Amazon River tour — but without the mosquitos! ;-)
Dr. Jim Duke Ph.D. is a world class botanist and his new website is www.greenpharmacy.com. He also has a new book The Green Pharmacy Guide to Healing Foods. Described as the "A-Z encyclopedia of amazing food antidotes you, and even your doctor, never knew existed, "it covers more than 2,000 food cures and more than 80 common medical conditions."
Mark Blumenthal is the Director of the American Botanical Council (ABC). This wonderful nonprofit is another leading source of information on herbals, and very worthy of your support.
These are 2 experts I turn to when I want the science behind herbal remedies — instead of marketing hype!
JOKE OF THE WEEK
Kids Eye View
A grandfather was delivering his grandchildren to their home one day when a fire truck zoomed past. Sitting in the front seat of the fire truck was a Dalmatian dog. The children started discussing the dog's duties. "They use him to keep crowds back," said one child. "No," said another. "He's just for good luck." A third child brought the argument to a close. "They use the dogs," she said firmly, "to find the fire hydrants."
A View from the 90’s (Which is the New 80's ;-)
Jacob, age 92, and Rebecca, age 89, living in Florida, are all excited about their decision to get married. They go for a stroll to discuss the wedding, and on the way they pass a drugstore. Jacob suggests they go in.
Jacob addresses the man behind the counter: "Are you the owner?"
The pharmacist answers, "Yes."
Jacob: "We're about to get married. Do you sell heart medication?"
Pharmacist: "Of course we do."
Jacob: "How about medicine for circulation?"
Pharmacist: "All kinds."
Jacob: "Medicine for rheumatism?"
Jacob: "How about suppositories?"
Pharmacist: "You bet!"
Jacob: "Medicine for memory problems, arthritis, and Alzheimer's?"
Pharmacist: "Yes, a large variety. The works."
Jacob: "What about vitamins, sleeping pills, Geritol, antidotes for Parkinson's disease?"
Jacob: "Everything for heartburn and indigestion?"
Pharmacist: "We sure do."
Jacob: "You sell wheelchairs and walkers and canes?"
Pharmacist: "All speeds and sizes."
Jacob: "Adult diapers?"
Jacob: "We'd like to use this store as our Bridal Registry."
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