Mold Toxicity Treatment Center in Scottsdale, Arizona
Mold illness is a medical condition that is very serious and often misdiagnosed. When a genetically susceptible individual is exposed to toxic mold spores in a water-damaged building, an inflammatory cascade occurs due to the body’s inability to remove the mycotoxins. This can result in a complex multi-system illness, coined “Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome, (CIRS),” by Ritchie Shoemaker, MD. Symptoms of CIRS may include fatigue, weakness, muscle pain, headaches, sinus issues, dizziness, abdominal pain, joint pain, difficulty concentrating, and insomnia.
CIRS represents a constellation of symptoms that collectively encompasses Biotoxin Illness. Originally thought to be caused only by mold exposure, it has been found that exposure to other fat-soluble toxins as well as numerous bacteria, fungal and viral infections can lead to Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome. Some auto-immune disorders as well as post-treatment Lyme syndrome are actually the manifestation of immune dysregulation resulting in regional and/or systemic chronic inflammation.
Signs and Symptoms of Mold Exposure
Exposure to mold can be a very serious health concern that is often overlooked in conventional medicine. Mold and fungus produce very toxic chemicals called mycotoxins. Different species of mold produce different toxins. That is why people suffer from a wide range of symptoms when they are exposed to molds. Some common symptoms include:
- Brain fog
- Depression or mood swings
- Chronic fatigue
- Skin sensitivity and rashes
- Unexplained allergic sensitivities and immune hypersensitivity
- Breathing problems
- Memory loss, short term
- Chronic sinusitis, ear infections, or bronchitis
- Nausea and/or vomiting
Our medical professionals have thorough knowledge about the pathogens that are present in contaminated environments and are capable of doing accurate diagnoses and providing effective treatment. We not only focus on alleviating the symptoms of mold sickness, but we dig deeper and find out the root cause, eliminating the mold sickness completely.
What Mold Exposure can do to your Body
Mold sickness and related illnesses from mold exposure are real, and in some cases, very dangerous. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), and Journals of American Medicine, all agree that Mold Fine Particulate is injurious to human health.
Mold sickness has been linked to lung damage, brain damage, cancer, asthma, Invasive pulmonary aspergillosis, fibromyalgia, and even death. It is also known to be a major cause of death in the elderly, infants, diabetics, transplant recipients, AIDS patients, and people receiving cancer treatments. Moreover, exposure to mold has been suspected to be a cause of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS).
Due to the complexity and severity of symptoms in this condition, a systematic approach needs to be taken to evaluate and treat mold and biotoxin illness. For diagnosis, this commonly includes some combination of the following:
- Direct testing for mycotoxins utilizing Real-Time Labs or Great Plains Laboratory
- Performing a swab of the sinuses for culture and/or PCR testing to determine if there is the fungal presence of certain bacteria (MARCONS) which are characteristic of ongoing mold exposure.
- Visual Contrast Sensitivity – this test is a very inexpensive and effective method for understanding the severity of mold illness as well as tracking the effectiveness of therapy.
Indirect testing to ensure no particular mold/biotoxin was missed as well as to determine the severity of illness and how best to initiate and progress through treatment. This testing can include markers such as MSH, VIP, TGF-b1, ADH with osmolality, testosterone, DHEA, VEGF, MMP-9, and cortisol.
- Once the diagnosis of mold/biotoxin illness has been made, a similarly integrative approach is used to help eliminate toxins from the body. Depending on the individual diagnosis, this includes some combination of the following:
The first and most essential starting point is ensuring that the patient is no longer being exposed to a sick/water-damaged building. Testing for mold spores (and toxin levels) using an ERMI, EMMA, HERTSMI, canister test or other method is critical, as ongoing exposure will surely sabotage recovery. Until you clean or move out of the toxic environment, it’s a bit like using a bucket to bail out a leaking boat.
Binders to sequester toxins and promote elimination, primarily through stool. These medications are chosen based on the specific toxins identified as well as gauging which substances are most likely to be individually tolerated. Common binders include cholestyramine, charcoal, clay, chlorella, propolmannan, and modified citrus pectin. Cholagogues to stimulate bile flow are often utilized prior to taking these binders and can be provided either orally or intravenously.
Nasal-sinus sprays or washes to eliminate abnormal fungi/bacteria associated with mold illness. This can range from prescription antibiotics and antifungals to essential oil formulas or patented colloidal silver sprays with EDTA.
Mobilizers to promote the elimination of mycotoxins/biotoxins from fatty tissues such as cell membranes. This ‘lipid-exchange’ method can be done orally or, if needed, intravenously and involves the use of true phosphatidylcholine, fatty acids in a specific ratio, folinic acid, glutathione, and other nutrients needed for cell membrane and mitochondrial membrane repair and remodeling.
Medications, either naturally or pharmaceutically, to help repair the damaged systems in the body. This is done in a very targeted and systematic way as established by Dr. Shoemaker. Commonly the goal is to eventually use VIP (vasoactive intestinal peptide) spray to repair atrophied neuroendocrine regions of the brain.
In certain cases of CIRS, the offending biotoxin comes from an implanted material or a resident commensal or opportunistic organism living in the body. This could be virtually any organism that has found a way to survive in the human body including herpes, Candida, Klebsiella, Strep, Epstein-Barr, a dental filler or implant, a stool parasite, or a tick-borne infection such as Borrelia (the organism that causes Lyme).
In these cases, since it is not always possible to eliminate the source of inflammation, the goal is to re-establish immune tolerance. This is commonly done using thymic peptide injections, immune-based therapies, and/or Low Dose Immunotherapy.
- Hypersensitivity- The allergic effect from repeated exposure to the mold spores or particles that are released into the environment. This reaction may be IgE (histamine) mediated or inflammatory causing problems such as pneumonitis.
- Infective – This includes mild to severe growth of the mold/fungus in the body, generally in the sinuses or lungs.
- Toxic – The toxic black molds produce chemicals that are airborne and toxic to the human body. They are absorbed by breathing the air that is contaminated and may stay in the body for an unknown length of time, possibly months.
Immune status evaluation by blood work and allergy hypersensitivity.
Individual skin testing with preservative-free antigens to avoid false-positive reactions.
Blood antibody specific testing for the body’s immune response to the infection.
Direct cultures of the infective site.
Blood tests to detect genetic particles of the fungus that may be circulating in the bloodstream.
- Urine evaluation for the toxin (mycotoxin) if present.
- Blood tests for the genetic ability of the exposed individual to metabolize the toxin.
Allergy immunotherapy desensitization.
Immune enhancement with nutrients and natural substances.
Medication when indicated to treat acute situations.
The antifungal medication, oral or intravenous.
Antifungal nutrients and natural substances.
- Nutrients to enhance the toxin metabolism both by the oral and intravenous routes.
- Bile binders to hinder re-absorption of the toxic metabolites for the intestinal tract that the liver secrets in the body’s natural detoxification process.
- Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy to enhance the body’s ability to mobilize and metabolize the mycotoxin (mold toxin) from the body’s cells and tissue.