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Defeating Pain with Lifestyle Changes, Part 2

In my last article, we discussed how inflammation causes pain, and the bad things we do that increase inflammation, so that we can avoid them and decrease the pain.  Now, let’s look at some things you can do to reduce inflammation by adjusting your lifestyle.

So, how should you eat and what can you eat?

  1. Try to eat 6 times daily to reduce stress on your body-3 meals and 3 snacks. Each meal should have some protein, good grains, fruits and veggies. Snacks can be a dozen nuts or a piece of fruit.
  2. Eat 15-20 grams of protein at each meal. This includes grass fed lean red meat, white meat skinless chicken, white meat turkey, and other meats free of hormones and antibiotics. Eggs are good. Wild caught fish and shrimp are good. Try vegetable protein such as organic hemp or soy.
  3. Drink 70-80 ounces of reverse osmosis or distilled water This does not include sodas or sports drinks-they need to go. Consider putting a Reverse Osmosis system under the kitchen sink to make your own water for drinking and cooking. This will help eliminate the plastic water bottles and will save you money.
  4. Eat fruits and vegetables free of pesticides. Lots of them. Eat brightly colored and dark green leafy ones. Eat tubers such as sweet potatoes. A pesticide wash you can make in a spray bottle combines a cup of water and 1 tbsp baking soda, then slowly pour in 1 cup vinegar and ½ lemon. Leave this on produce for 5 minutes and then rinse off.
  5. Eat raw nuts. Walnuts and almonds are the healthiest, but all are good. They have lots of calories, so eat them as snacks, only a dozen or so at a time. Nuts have good fatty acids, fiber, and protein. Roasting and processing destroys some of the nutrients.
  6. Eat dark chocolate (75% or more cocoa) or unprocessed raw cocoa Cocoa is very high in antioxidants, magnesium, and other good things. Avoid commercial processed chocolate as it is loaded with fat and sugar.
  7. Eat good oils, such as extra virgin olive oil and coconut oil. Organic butter is OK.
  8. Eat They are high in fiber, protein, and other good nutrients. Wash them thoroughly if out of a can as they will be contaminated with plastics (BPA).
  9. Drink limited amounts of coffee and tea, especially green tea. There are antioxidants and good compounds in them. Avoid creamers and sweeteners. Use a little honey, agave nectar, or stevia.

 

Sleep is essential to healing. You must get 7-8 hours of deep sleep nightly. Many pain patients have trouble sleeping. For falling asleep, Melatonin, Tryptophan, and Taurine can help. You need a quiet, dark room with a comfortable temperature. Do not use computers or watch TV 30 minutes prior to bed or if you wake up. Reading is calming for the brain; try reading the Bible before bed or if you wake up. Benadryl can help make you tired. Consult us if you can’t sleep for prescription medications to help.

 

Reduce Stress to reduce inflammation. How do we do that? By taking time to relax, meditate, listen to music, read, and talk. Turn off the electronics, the computer, TV, social media, etc. Critical to reducing stress is your spiritual life. The Bible, prayer, fellowship with others in church, worship, listening to Christian music, and your overall relationship with God will help reduce the effects of stress. Speak to us further to get help with your spiritual life. Counseling can be very effective at reducing or even eliminating some kinds of pain, as well.

 

Lack of exercise causes inflammation and increases pain. You must move to heal. Even walking can help. We can advise you on what exercises you can do to help your condition.

 

Several supplements can help reduce inflammation and pain. These include Omega 3 fatty acids, MSM, Antioxidants, Vitamin D3, Curcumin (Tumeric), Ginger, and Garlic. Ask us about dosing.

 

In summary, inflammation is a critical part of your pain syndrome. There are definitely things you can do to reduce your level of inflammation and pain. By following the recommendations above, your quality of life will improve and our therapy for your condition will be more successful.

 

God bless you,

Alan W. Gruning, DO, FACOEP

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Defeating Pain with Lifestyle Changes, Part 1

Our specialty medical practice is dedicated to helping our patients defeat their pain. We work hard to treat you, and give you the tools you need to treat the conditions causing your pain, so that you can return to life. However, we realize that is only part of the story. There are things you must do to defeat your pain! Otherwise, the treatments we provide may not work and you may continue to live in pain.

 

We know that inflammation is a big part of your painful condition. Whether you have an acute injury or a chronic painful condition, inflammation is an underlying cause of your pain and disability. There are definitely things that cause inflammation in your body, or allow it to continue. If you can make the necessary changes outlined below, your inflammation will greatly decrease and so will your pain! In addition, you will be healthier, have more energy, be in a better mood, and need less medical treatment for preventable diseases in the future.

 

Toxins must be eliminated. Pain patients do not get better if they use tobacco or alcohol. You must stop smoking and drinking in order to have any chance of healing. All illegal drugs must be stopped immediately, including pot. These poisons create inflammation and pain.

 

Diet is extremely important as you seek to get out of pain. You must do the following:

  1. Eliminate all wheat from your diet. Gluten is very inflammatory and is found mostly in wheat, but also rye and barley. Gliadin from wheat is also inflammatory. That means that bread and pasta must go. Wheat is also hidden in many foods. Read labels. By eliminating wheat, you will lose weight, have less gut problems, and have lower blood sugar, reducing the risk of Diabetes.
  2. No High Fructose Corn Syrup. It is in a lot of things, including many sweetened beverages (soda, Gatorade, etc). It is a poison. Your Liver makes fructose directly into fat. Read labels.
  3. No artificial sweeteners (aspartame/Nutrasweet, saccharin/Sweet and Low, Splenda) or diet food/drinks. They are poisons and cause weight gain, not weight loss. They cause inflammation and other health issues.
  4. Reduce or eliminate cow’s milk and all dairy products. The proteins in cow’s milk cause inflammation. Goat’s milk/products are OK.
  5. Stop eating GMO’s (Genetically Modified Organisms)-this includes corn, soy, canola oil, cottonseed oil, vegetable oil, and sugar from sugar beets unless it is organic or certified free of GMO’s. Go to the Institute for Responsible Technology website for the non-GMO shopping guide.
  6. Avoid all pesticides, especially on foods. Go to the Environmental Working Group website ewg.org for lists of the Dirty Dozen and Clean Fifteen. Pesticides poison your endocrine system and metabolism. Start eating organic produce. A pesticide wash you can make in a spray bottle combines a cup of water and 1 tbsp baking soda, then slowly pour in 1 cup vinegar and ½ lemon. Leave this on produce for 5 minutes and then rinse off.
  7. Eliminate plastic from your diet-don’t microwave in it, don’t use plastic bags and wraps, and get rid of the plastic water bottles. Use glass, ceramic, or stainless steel. Plastics poison your endocrine system and metabolism.
  8. Eliminate processed foods-things with an ingredient list and chemicals you can’t pronounce. Try to eat whole foods-fruits vegetables, nuts, beans, and protein. Remember: wheat and processed sugar feed inflammation.
  9. Eliminate rice and rice products from your diet. Rice is contaminated with arsenic, a poison.
  10. Eliminate excess omega 6 fatty acids as these increase inflammation. They are found in corn, sunflower, safflower, peanut and cottonseed oils. They are also found in grain fed meats and farm raised fish. Also eliminate trans fatty acids. Omega 6 and trans fatty acids are typically found in processed and fried foods, sweets, and fast foods.

In my next article, we’ll discuss things you can do and what to eat to help reduce inflammation and stop the pain.

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Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS)

Are you suffering from debilitating pain all over (Fibromyalgia), fatigue (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome), an autoimmune disorder, leaky gut, brain fog and other problems, while the routine tests that your doctor or specialist runs keep coming back negative? Join me this week for my next blog on Biotoxin Illness.

The real name for this disorder is Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS), brought to light by Richie Shoemaker, MD and detailed on his website survivingmold.com. While there are several causes, the most common is toxic mold from the interior of a water damaged building, which is a problem for over 50% of the buildings in America. Please refer to my prior blogs for more information on the symptoms and screening tests.

In my last blog, I discussed ERMI testing of your environment to confirm if any of the 5 toxic mold organisms, that make us sick, are present. Now, I would like to discuss the remediation of your home or work place to create a safe “bubble” to live and work in while going through the detoxification protocol to heal from this disorder.

The most common source of contamination for my patients is the HVAC system. This is the AC/heating system for your home and work. I was educated about HVAC systems by Mike Lyon of Cole’s Air, who I consider the most mold literate and thorough AC person I have met in SW Florida. Mike taught me about all of the ways the HVAC system can grow mold due to faulty service and balancing. Once the coils and/or fan in the air handler grow mold, it is blown all over your home and contaminates everything. Many of my patients have Mike inspect their HVAC system and he sends me pictures of the mold found. Disgusting!

Other places for mold growth include wet drywall and carpet. This is now a common problem in our area due to Irma. If wet drywall is not removed within 48 hours, mold will start to grow on the backside, invisible from the room. Wet carpet also needs to be removed quickly unless it is just a small area that can be dried with fans. The mold grows deep down in the fibers and is hard to remove. It is best to live in a home with solid surface floors that can be easily cleaned.

If the ERMI test is suspicious for toxic mold, and if the HVAC system is felt to only be partly to blame, then I suggest bringing in an Indoor Air Quality Specialist who is thoroughly familiar with the latest information on toxic molds and their remediation. In our area, Irv Kraut is such a specialist and will determine where the mold is and how to remove it. He then writes the remediation protocol for the remediation company to follow and makes sure it is completed properly.

Beware of so-called mold remediation companies. There are no good standards to call yourself one and many are using methods that are outdated given current science. They need to have a proven track record and a good reputation with people like Irv and Mike. I have had several patients who had their home remediation done by a certified mold remdiator and they got incredibly sick because it was not done properly. Buyer beware.

Other things that are important to create a safe “bubble” in the home or workplace include removing cloth furniture, since it can harbor molds, and books and papers that mold loves to eat from. It is important to get a quality HEPA vacuum (like Miele) and vacuum everything at least once a week. A portable HEPA air filter is a better investment than a UV light on the air handler. IQ Air Health Pro Plus is the best, but it is not cheap. Move it around to different rooms each day and it will remove mold spores, VOC’s, and other airborne inflammagens.

There is hope for the tired and hurting!

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CIRS Treatment

Are you suffering from debilitating pain all over (Fibromyalgia), fatigue (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome), an autoimmune disorder, leaky gut, brain fog and other problems, while the routine tests that your doctor or specialist runs keep coming back negative? You know something is wrong with you, but no one seems to believe it. They think you are depressed or anxious and want you to take psych drugs and get counseling. But you know there is something physically wrong. What can it be?

I would like to continue my discussion on Biotoxin Illness. The real name for this disorder is Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS), brought to light by Richie Shoemaker, MD and detailed on his website survivingmold.com. The causes are indoor toxic molds from water damaged buildings, chronic Lyme Disease, and several other biologic organisms that produce neurotoxins that poison your brain and set off chronic immune system inflammation.

I specialize in the care of these patients, both in my office, the International Center for Health and Wellness, and my free medical clinic, the SW Florida Free Pain Clinic, both in Fort Myers. I utilize Dr. Shoemaker’s diagnosis and treatment protocols, because they are the only scientifically validated protocols published in peer reviewed journals and proven to work. In my experience treating CIRS patients for 10 years now, I believe that every Fibromyalgia, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and autoimmune patient has this as the cause of their problems.

In my last blog, I detailed some of the elements needed to establish the diagnosis by history, symptoms, VCS testing, and laboratory studies. I would like to discuss briefly the treatment needed to correct this disorder. I believe that we are on the verge of an epidemic of CIRS due to all of the recent Hurricanes and floods resulting in water damaged buildings growing toxic molds.

If you are suffering from CIRS, the only effective treatment is a comprehensive detoxification program developed by Dr. Shoemaker and confirmed by those of us around the country that are treating patients by his protocols. They work! You can get better! But it is not easy and there are a lot of steps to take.

The first thing to understand is that you are not crazy and that there is something seriously wrong with you. It can be confirmed by the right testing and then a plan developed to fix it. You can find a lot of treatments on the internet for toxic mold and Lyme disease, but I warn you that they have no science behind them. I wish that they would work or even help, but they don’t. And wasting time on them will keep you from getting the effective treatment that you need.

The first step in the treatment of toxic mold induced CIRS is to remove yourself from the exposure. This sounds pretty basic, but it is not that easy. NIOSH says 50% of the buildings in America are water damaged. Any of these could be growing toxic indoor molds. The incidence in SW Florida, especially after Irma, is obviously higher. We can’t control every place we go, but we can at least try to make sure we live and work in a safe environment.

This requires testing your environment. Mold testing is not complicated, as long as you know the facts and do the right tests. The gold standard is ERMI testing, which was developed by the EPA after testing homes around the country. It involves collecting a dust sample using a specific kit and instructions, but you can do it yourself. The dust is sent to a company that specializes in this testing and they do a DNA alaysis of the dust looking for mold organisms. A report is sent back detailing the amount of mold in the dust, the organisms, and a score on the structure called an ERMI score. This tells you how “moldy” the building is compared to others.

Based on the ERMI testing, we can look at the organisms and determine another score called the HERTSMI-2, based on the five worst organisms. This will tell us how safe or unsafe the building is to live or work in. Don’t do air sampling, swabs, petri dishes or other techniques that do not work. If a remediation company or so-called mold certified specialist suggests them to you and does not mention ERMI testing, then look for someone who knows what they are doing. There are a lot of people out there who have not kept up with the latest information or are looking to make a few dollars at your expense.

In my next blog, we will discuss remediation and how to create a safe “bubble” to live and work in while you are undergoing detoxification.

God bless you,
Alan

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CIRS Diagnosis 2

In my last blog we continued the discussion on Biotoxin Illness, or Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS) from toxic indoor molds. As I mentioned, I believe this disorder will explode in the coming months due to Hurricane Irma here, and other storms affecting Texas and Puerto Rico/US Virgin Islands, and the resultant water damaged buildings growing toxic molds. I am already seeing more of these patients in my office and free clinic.

I would like to discuss the evaluation I do on patients that present to me with these disorders. As mentioned, the VCS (Visual Contrast Sensitivity) Test is a great screening tool and can be taken on survivingmold.com or VCStest.com. Failure is 98.6 % accurate if done strictly according to the instructions. Symptoms are also highly accurate and having 8 or more of certain clusters of symptoms is also over 98 % accurate. The two, taken together, can be diagnostic without even doing lab tests. That is how I am treating Fibromyalgia patients in my free clinic, the SW Florida Free Pain Clinic, since I do to have the benefit of the complex free lab testing i need for free for these patients. You can learn more at christianmedicalministries.org.

The Diagnosis and Treatment plan I use is based on the work of Richie Shoemaker, MD, who I and others who specialize in this field consider the world expert on Biotoxin Illnesses. You can learn more about him and his protocols at surviving mold.com. i follow his protocols exactly and have done so for the past 10 years because they work and patients get better. There is a lot of stuff on the internet about mold and most of it is junk. No one has the peer reviewed published science on the topic like Dr. Shoemaker.

The first thing I do after taking a careful history and performing a physical examination, is to review the screening tests. If there is concern, then I order extensive laboratory testing. This is not the routine labs that your doctor orders. These are complex tests to measure brain hormones and immune system function. Many are sent out to specialized labs throughout the US. Consequently, they are very costly. Fortunately, insurance companies will cover them since I have the right diagnosis and test codes for Quest and Labcorp. If you have a high deductible police, like I do, or no insurance it will be very expensive.

The lab tests look at hormones produced in the Hypothalamus, the area of the brain poisoned by the neurotoxin produced by both toxic molds and the organism responsible for Chronic Lyme Disease. I also look at hormones made in the Pituitary, another part of the brain, the Thyroid and Adrenal glands, and sex hormones. I look at vitamin and mineral levels as deficiencies are common due to Leaky Gut Syndrome, a disorder affecting the gut lining and making absorption of nutrients defective. Methylation, an extremely important pathway in the body for detoxification and creating important hormones, is examined. Vitamin D deficiency is sought and is extremely common also, affecting every organ of the body.

I look at HLA, the genetic defects on Chromosome 6, that makes one susceptible to these disorders. They can be readily identified. I also look at Cytokines, which are the substances made by the immune system to generate an inflamed response to invaders. I look at several of these as well as hormones affecting blood flow. Again these are not your normal tests and I guarantee no other doctor has ordered these on you unless you have seen someone trained in Dr. Shoemaker’s protocols. It is not uncommon for me to see patients who have been to Mayo Clinic, Cleveland Clinic, and other highly specialized centers for their complaints and these tests were never run.

Once all of the tests are back, I sit down and go over them in detail with the patient. It is usually the first time any doctor has explained to them what is wrong and can prove it. Then we lay out the Treatment regimen for them to get well. That will be the subject of our next blog.

God bless you. Stay away from moldy buildings (if you can identify them).
Alan

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CIRS Diagnosis

Are you or someone you know struggling with debilitating fatigue, pain all over, brain fog, leaky gut problems, sleep disorder, headaches or strange neurological symptoms? I want to continue my discussion on Biotoxin Illness, technically called Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS). If you are suffering with these symptoms, you may have this disorder. I believe we will be seeing an epidemic of CIRS in the coming year due to Irma and water damaged buildings in SW Florida.

In my last blog, I discussed the genetics behind this disorder and why toxic molds are growing in our buildings. I promised to continue with one of the specific genetic types, called the dreaded haplotype, because patients with this genetic profile tend to get sicker than most of the other types and react quicker with each subsequent toxic mold exposure (sicker quicker).

Patients with the 11-3 52b genetic defect appear with a very recognizable body type. They tend to look like models and are mostly females. They have long, slender arms and legs, a narrow chest and pelvis, a longer neck, and long slender fingers. They tend to be very flexible, even “double jointed” to some degree, Many will say that they have never really felt well, but push through each day because they have to.

Practices like mine that specialize in Biotoxin patients and their treatment have up to 40% of patients that are hyper-flexible. Many of my patients are current or former yoga instructors, gymnasts, cheerleaders, dancers, and others that are very flexible. There is up to 15% of my patients that have Ehlers Danlos Syndrome type 2, a genetic disorder involving cartilage that makes it too soft and they are extremely flexible, but able to carry on with life. Many of these are 11-3-52b types and Biotoxin susceptible patients.

As I mentioned in my first blog, you can get a good idea if you have CIRS if you have a multi symptom, multi system illness. Fatigue is a predominant component and can be debilitating, preventing many activities. Since most of my patients are females due to the genetics, they tend to keep going despite the symptoms because they have to. They push through each day trying to survive and do all of the things they are expected to do. That does not mean you are not sick. If you continue to ignore your symptoms, they get worse over time until eventually you fall off of a cliff and wind up in bed all the time.

The 37 symptoms of CIRS are organized into 13 clusters. We know from prospective studies that if you have 6 of these clusters, you need a workup for CIRS. If you have 8 or more, there is almost a 99% chance you have this disorder. Most of my patients have 11 or more clusters.

A VCS test can be an effective screening test for CIRS. It is a Visual Contrast Sensitivity test and tests your ability to discriminate white and gray. It is not a test for visual acuity, like you get at the eye doctor. This is not a common test. You can take it yourself online at VCStest.com or survivingmold.com. You must do it exactly as instructed and have at least 20/50 vision or better. Wear glasses if you normally wear them to see the computer. Measure distances as instructed.

If you fail this VCS test, even by one point in one eye, it is 98.6% accurate for CIRS. Coupled with a positive symptom score, you can be at 100% accuracy. 8% of patients can pass the VCS and still have CIRS. They tend to be people with a fine eye for details, such as artists, graphic designers, baseball and tennis players.

CIRS is diagnosed by the symptoms, screening tests, a history of exposure, and appropriate laboratory testing to confirm it. We will discuss the tests needed and what they show us in my next blog. If you have any questions about CIRS and whether you have it, contact my office at 2399393303.

God bless you,
Alan

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Genetics and CIRS

I have had a lot of feedback on my last blog on toxic mold illness (CIRS), so I wanted to continue the discussion with more details on this disorder and what you can do to prevent or treat this illness in this and subsequent blogs.

I have been able to start seeing patients again, but had to remove the wet carpet in my waiting room to prevent mold growth. We had some minor leaks in the roof, as did many people, but no evidence of mold growth fortunately. I have a lot of patients that are scared about the future as there will be a lot of buildings with toxic mold due to Irma and water intrusion. Let me give you some facts and then discuss a plan to navigate the future.

Dr. Shoemaker has made some blogs and appearances discussing the implications of Harvey, Irma and now Maria on the health of our people. He believes we will have an epidemic of toxic buildings and people with illnesses that are not being diagnosed properly and not getting better. You can find out more on survivingmold.com.

Not all of you are at risk for developing Biotoxin Illness, or Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (the technical name for this disorder). It all has to do with genetics. 24% of the US population is genetically susceptible to sickness from toxic molds that grow inside a water damaged building (WDB). That means 76% of people are not susceptible and don’t get seriously ill from these organisms. That is why 100 people can be in a sick building and only 10 will be seriously sick. The rest are looking at them like they are crazy. Then the owners try to convince them that they are crazy. The doctors can’t find anything wrong, so they think you are crazy. Soon, you begin to think you are crazy, too.

The reason is the genetic defect on chromosome 6 in the area called HLA. This area controls our response to invasion from toxic organisms. You have an area there for viruses, strep, staph, and other organisms you encounter and can mount an immune response to them by identifying them with HLA as “bad” and making antibodies and other immune steps to kill them. This specific HLA genetic defect makes it impossible to identify these toxic mold organisms as “bad” and you never make antibodies to kill them. There are 7 major and a few other minor genetic types that are well studied and defined and easily tested for by major labs. As mentioned in the last blog, I am a 4-3-53, one of the worst types.

There are also HLA defects for the organism that causes Lyme Disease, borrelia. There is an epidemic of Lyme disease in the US, with 300,000 new cases reported annually. Some genetic types are called multi susceptible, because they can get sick from mold, borrelia and other Biotoxins like Brown Recluse spider bites, Ciguatera fish poisoning (from bad Mahi and other reef fish), and Pfisteria and other dinogflagellates (red tide). I am one of those multisusceptible types.

The result of these genetic defects is that the toxic mold organisms (or the Lyme organism) live in your body forever and make a potent neurotoxin that poisons the brain, specifically the Hypothalamus. There are five toxic mold organisms that we look at on testing that are particularly poisonous to human beings. They are Aspergillus penicilloides, Aspergillus versicolor, Chaetomium globosum, Wallemia sebi, and Stachybotrys chartarum. These are not outdoor molds that cause allergies. These are molds growing inside a water damaged building that can make us very sick.

This has happened because of the way we build buildings since the 1970’s energy crisis. They are very tight and do not breathe, being well insulated and sealed up. We have a separate environment controlled by a HVAC system (central air and heat). The paints used on our walls have had a fungicide in them for decades and have bred highly resistant organisms. Add a little water or high humidity to the environment, and these toxic organisms grow like wildfire, contaminating the structure. The HVAC system picks them up and spreads them all over the building, contaminating every room. The air handler becomes contaminated with these molds, especially when it has insufficient air return (common) or is not balanced properly (very common). The result: a sick building.

Many buildings in SW Florida are contaminated and sick. Schools, government buildings, healthcare facilities, businesses, restaurants, and homes are all involved. NIOSH says that 50% of buildings in America are WDB’s. It may be higher here now. If you have the genetics, then the risk of exposure is very high.

We will talk more about a specific severe genetic type that can be recognized by your body type and how to identify if you may be ill with this condition in my next blog. Consult my book, Prescription for Health, for more details. If you feel you may have this disorder, call my office or come to my free clinic if you have no insurance or finances.

God bless you,
Alan

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Post Hurricane Health and Safety

I pray you are doing well after Hurricane Irma. We stayed in Fort Myers and are all fine, thank the Lord. My home is ok, but I have lots of big trees down and my neighborhood flooded. My office has some leaks and wet carpet. I was able to reopen my office Friday and saw some patients. I hope to open our free clinic this Tuesday night. All in all, I feel very blessed, but I know so many others are struggling.

After the storm, and the flooding, there should be concerns about toxic mold. I am being asked a lot of questions about that since I specialize in the care of those with Biotoxin illness, caused by toxic molds, and am one of the only Drs in SW Florida doing this. Now if you have not been tested for the genetics for this disorder, then you don’t know much about this. Toxic mold is one of the inflammagens that grows inside a water damaged building. We now have plenty of those in SW Florida!

If you are living in a wet environment, and you start to not feel well, or you were not well before and now are getting worse, then you need to learn about this condition. It only takes 48 hours for wet drywall to grow toxic molds. Wet carpet and cloth furniture also breeds them. Leaks in the ceiling can harbor all kinds of toxic organisms behind them. Once the power comes back on and the central air starts running, it picks up the mold spores and distributes them all over your home or business. Now, the entire structure is contaminated.

Biotoxin Illness is technically called Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome, or CIRS. 24% of the US population is genetically susceptible to toxic molds and can get very ill from them. I am one of them, a 4-3-53. That means I can’t kill these organisms when they enter my body and they live inside forever, producing a neurotoxin that is potent enough to be used as a biological warfare weapon. This toxin poisons the brain and causes all kinds of hormone disruptions and symptoms.

CIRS is a multisystem, multisymptom illness. Fatigue is a prominent complaint. Pain all over, as in Fibromyalgia, can result. Autoimmune disorders are common, as is Leaky Gut Syndrome and headaches. Strange neurological symptoms that defy testing are also common. Brain fog can be debilitating, resembling dementia at times.

There is a screening test for this disorder that is very accurate. You can do a VCS test at VCStest.com on your computer. It is 98.6 % accurate if the symptoms are present. There is an effective detoxification protocol that I use in my practice and free clinic for patients with this disorder. It was developed by Richie Shoemaker and you can check out his website at survivingmold.com; it is the premier place in the world for accurate information on CIRS and toxic mold illness.

Don’t believe the remediation and air conditioning people when they say they don’t see any mold. Make them take pictures and show you. Assume the worst if the area was wet for over 48 hours as it may be hard to see visually. Get it properly remediated with a containment zone under negative pressure and HEPA air scrubbers. Check yourself for symptoms and using a VCS test. Call my office if you are having symptoms or fail the test.

God bless you as you recover from Irma. Stay safe and be cautious.

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