Saturday, 30 November 2013

Warning: Fluoroquinolone Antibiotics May Cause Permanent Nerve Damage

By Dr. Mercola

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently issued a warning that fluoroquinolone antibiotics, taken by mouth or injection, carry a risk for permanent peripheral neuropathy. The safety announcement states:1

“The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has required the drug labels and Medication Guides for all fluoroquinolone antibacterial drugs be updated to better describe the serious side effect of peripheral neuropathy.

This serious nerve damage potentially caused by fluoroquinolones may occur soon after these drugs are taken and may be permanent... The topical formulations of fluoroquinolones, applied to the ears or eyes, are not known to be associated with this risk.

Peripheral neuropathy is nerve damage in the arms and/or legs, characterized by “pain, burning, tingling, numbness, weakness, or a change in sensation to light touch, pain or temperature, or sense of body position.”

This is not the first warning FDA has posted about this family of antibacterial drugs. In 2008, they posted a black box warning about severe tendon damage. Now having the additional warning for severe and sometimes-permanent nerve damage, there should be NO question in your mind about the danger of these drugs, and I strongly recommend avoiding them if at all possible.

Just Say “Know”

Fluoroquinolones, a class of synthetic antibacterial drugs, are the only types that directly inhibit bacterial DNA synthesis. Several drugs in this class have been taken off the market due to their deadly adverse effects, but six of them remain FDA-approved for use in the United States:

Due to their tremendous health risks, fluoroquinolones should be reserved for treating serious bacterial infections that won’t respond to any other treatment, when the patient is made fully aware of the potential for serious adverse events. Instead, they’re often inappropriately prescribed for mild conditions like sinus, urinary tract and ear infections.

In fact, fluoroquinolones are among the most commonly prescribed antibiotics in the United States. I highly recommend you take pause before filling a prescription for these drugs, especially if you have a “routine infection” that has not been treated by other agents that have a safer side effect profile.

You should not expose yourself to this degree of risk unnecessarily! The dangerousness of fluoroquinolones definitely warrants some serious discourse with your health care provider about whether they are really necessary, versus safer treatment options.

Fluoridated Pharmaceuticals Can Be Extremely Damaging to Your Nervous System

Fluoroquinolones may be the deadliest antibiotics on the market. Besides nerve damage, they have been associated with damage to other body systems, including your musculoskeletal system, eyes and kidneys. What makes these particular drugs so hazardous?

It has to do with the fact that fluoroquinolones are antibiotics whose potency has been “kicked up” by the addition of a fluoride molecule. Fluoride increases permeability into hard-to-penetrate tissues, such as your brain.

Fluoroquinolones are quinolones with fluoride molecules attached—so they penetrate your blood-brain barrier. This ability to penetrate sensitive tissues is what makes fluoride such a potent neurotoxin, able to get into your brain and damage your central nervous system.

In terms of peripheral neuropathy, the FDA was not exactly quick to take action. Twelve years ago Dr. Jay Cohen documented the following fluoroquinolone-related reactions, and as you can see, nervous system problems topped the list.2 Yet it took more than a decade—and many destroyed lives—for the FDA to take action.

Levaquin, the best-selling antibiotic in 2010, actually faces thousands of lawsuits per year from people who have been seriously harmed by taking it. The serious reactions reported from Levaquin include:

Fluoroquinolones Destroy Collagen

Animal studies have shown that fluoroquinolones are directly toxic to collagen synthesis and promote collagen degradation.4 Fluoride disrupts collagen synthesis, which may be part of the reason that fluoridated pharmaceuticals can damage your muscles, tendons, cartilage, ligaments and other structures.

The fluoroquinolones seem to have an especially detrimental effect on your musculoskeletal system, presumably related to this adverse effect on collagen, which can lead to tendon damage and actual tendon ruptures. This resulted in the FDA’s issuing of a black box warning about tendon damage in 2008.5 Fluoroquinolones are not the only drugs “suped up” by the addition of a fluoride molecule. Prozac (fluoxetine), Prevacid, Baycol, and Dalmane (flurazepam) are also fluorinated.6

If you or someone you love are placed on these dangerous antibiotics, for whatever reason, one of the ways you can compensate for this toxicity is by taking magnesium.  It likely binds to the drugs and prevents it from causing the collagen damage.  In fact animal studies have shown that magnesium deficient animals can develop similar damage to those exposed to fluroquinolone drugs.  Lack of extracellular magnesium impairs the function of integrins which are transmembrane proteins that connect the cells to the extracellular matrix proteins which provide the functional strength for collagen.

Are We Heading for Even MORE FDA Warnings?

Two other recent studies may foreshadow even more warnings about fluoroquinolones, in terms of liver toxicity and greater risks for people with diabetes. Are we nearing the time when these drugs should be yanked off pharmacy shelves altogether, rather than just receiving more warnings on their labels?

Moxifloxacin and levofloxacin were found to increase the risk for acute liver toxicity in people age 66 and up. The findings were published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal in August 2012. The authors recommended FDA consider regulatory warnings regarding acute liver toxicity.
Oral fluoroquinolones cause an increased risk of dysglycemia (high blood sugar or low blood sugar reactions) for those with diabetes, according to a study in the August 14, 2013 issue of Clinical Infectious Diseases

Read the rest of Dr.Mercola's article HERE

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Wednesday, 27 November 2013

12 mistakes even good doctors make

By Daily Mail

London - General practitioners act as the gatekeepers when it comes to our health – they decide whether they should treat you or whether you need specialist attention. It is a challenging role, since a family doctor needs some understanding of a broad range of physical and psychological conditions.

With even specialists overwhelmed by the rate of medical developments, are there ways GP care could be improved?

Urologist Chris Eden said: “I struggle to remain current with the latest research in prostate cancer and can’t imagine trying to keep abreast of advances in all specialities.”

We ask some of the UK’s leading medical specialists to identify how doctors could enhance the care they provide.

Faulty heartbeat
Dr Glyn Thomas, a cardiologist at the Bristol Heart Institute, said: “People who suffer with atrial fibrillation – irregular heart rhythm – are five times more likely to have a stroke; and those strokes are also more likely to be fatal.

“Atrial fibrillation patients should be prescribed an anticoagulant such as warfarin to prevent the blood clotting.

“GPs often prescribe aspirin instead because they fear the risk of internal bleeding. This is nonsense. Not only does aspirin carry the same risks of bleeding, it’s ineffective as an anticoagulant.

“Warfarin reduces the risk of stroke by 64 percent; aspirin reduces it by 0 percent. The bleeding risk is the same.”

‘Warfarin does need careful monitoring, which perhaps is why GPs might not prescribe it, but I think the main reason is they are concerned, wrongly, about excess bleeding.”

Abdominal pain
Dr Peter Fairclough, Harley Street consultant gastroenterologist, said: “I see patients needlessly referred after an attack of upper abdominal pain, which their GP says is gastritis. They recommend investigation with an endoscopy.

“These patients have gallstones. They won’t be picked up through an endoscopy but with blood tests or ultrasound.”

Bloated stomach
Professor Gordon Jayson, oncologist and ovarian cancer specialist at The Christie Hospital in Manchester, said: “GPs need to listen carefully when a women in her 50s complains of abdominal pain and bloating. It’s easy to think it’s IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) – and in most cases, it will be.

“But the symptoms could be those of ovarian cancer. The difference is that whereas IBS pain will come and go, the pain from ovarian cancer will be progressive and constant.

“If it’s the latter, a GP needs to do a blood test for the chemical CA125.

“If it’s caught early, 95 percent of cases are treatable.”

“For a GP with only a few minutes to make a diagnosis, IBS is going to be faster and a far more likely diagnosis than ovarian cancer. A study by Target Ovarian Cancer found four in five GPs wrongly thought women with early-stage ovarian cancer had no symptoms.”

Dr Andrew Dowson, director of headache services at King’s College Hospital, London, said: “Many GPs will miss a diagnosis of migraine as they think this type of headache has to have an aura preceding an attack, but only one in 10 patients has an aura and only 40 percent of these will get them all the time.

“A GP needs to recognise the other main symptoms such as one-sided throbbing, nausea or light and sound sensitivity.”

Andrew Wright, dermatology professor at the University of Bradford, said: “The routine seems to involve the GP having a quick look, then prescribing a cream, but little direction is given about how much to use. A 30g tube may be given with a request to come back in two weeks if there’s no improvement.

“The patient thinks the cream must last two weeks, under-treats themselves, the eczema gets worse, they go back to the GP, who refers them to a specialist.

“If GPs could give proper direction, it would save us all a lot of time.

“GPs also shouldn’t prescribe aqueous cream – not even to wash with. It’s incredibly damaging to skin, especially children’s.”

“As a consequence, it breaks the skin down, making eczema worse. Very worryingly, many people are still given it as a moisturiser as it’s the cheapest option.

“Research has shown more than half of children who used it suffered an immediate bad reaction, such as stinging.”

Blocked nose
Henry Sharpe, a consultant ear, nose and throat surgeon at East Kent Hospital, said: “About 5.2 million people see their GP with a blocked nose. Many will be given antibiotics or nasal spray on the assumption that the cause is congestion.

“But a blocked nose can be anything from complications of a deviated septum to polyps.

“I’d like to see referrals to an ENT department if the congestion goes on for over a month. Antibiotics won’t work if it is not a bacterial infection; steroid sprays can have side-effects.”

Shoulder pain
Professor Tony Kochhar, shoulder surgeon at South London Healthcare NHS Trust and BMI The Sloane Hospital, said: “GPs should refer patients with shoulder pain for an ultrasound scan before any other treatment.

“The anatomy of the shoulder is so complex. It’s very hard for a GP to find the cause.

“If there is a tear, and a GP sends the patient for physiotherapy – where they’ll often be told to work through the pain – that tear can get worse.”

Mucus in throat
John Rubin, an ear, nose and throat surgeon at the Royal National Throat, Nose and Ear Hospital in London, said: “I see a lot of patients who have suffered with a post-nasal drip and whose GP has referred them. In fact, it could be something as simple as acid reflux. So rather than referring to a specialist, I’d like GPs first to try a frontline treatment, such as Gaviscon.”

Painful joints
Dr Andrew Bamji, a rheumatologist at Chelsfield Park Hospital, Orpington, said: “Patients with rheumatoid arthritis do much better if they are referred quickly, within four weeks of diagnosis.

“I’d like to see GPs do better at spotting signs of the disease at its early stages – swelling with the joint pain, morning stiffness and generally feeling under the weather.

“And one red flag, which can get missed, is anaemia. Eight out of 10 sufferers have this.”

Swollen leg
Eddie Chaloner, consultant vascular surgeon at Lewisham Hospital, says: “Patients with a swollen leg are often given antibiotics because they’re told they have an infection. It’s usually superficial phlebitis – where a vein becomes inflamed and a blood clot forms.

“Usually it goes away on its own. Antibiotics wouldn’t have any effect.

“If there hasn’t been any recent wound or surgery and there’s no pus, infection is unlikely to be the cause.”

Middle-aged spread
Christopher Eden, a urologist and prostate cancer specialist at the Royal Surrey County Hospital in Guildford, said: “Many GPs will advise overweight men in their 40s and older to have a cholesterol test. But men in this bracket are also at risk of prostate cancer, so I wish GPs would offer them a PSA test, too.”

Hearing loss
Dr Myles Black, an ear, nose and throat and thyroid surgeon at East Kent University Hospital, said: “GPs sometimes dismiss sudden hearing loss as ear wax or fluid from an ear infection or cold when it could be caused by sensorineural hearing loss, which requires immediate treatment to prevent permanent hearing loss.

“What distinguishes sensorineural hearing loss from the blocked-up feeling you get with a cold is that the hearing disappears completely, usually in one ear. With a cold, that hearing may just be muffled.

“Sensorineural hearing loss – caused when a cold, virus or infection travels to the inner ear – needs speedy treatment with steroids and it worries me that patients could be needlessly losing their hearing because GPs don’t get enough training at medical school to diagnose sensorineural hearing loss.

“Yet it can be picked up easily using a tuning fork.”’ (This is placed on the forehead and, if hearing is normal, the sound will be heard equally in both ears.)

Source: Daily Mail

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Patent for Artificial Sweetener Aspartame Verifies it is E. Coli Excrement

With the patent for the very popular artificial sweetener aspartame recently being released to the public domain comes the bizarre news that it is actually “harvested” from the excrement of GM E. coli bacteria.

Wait, what? What are we drinking when we decide to gulp down a soda that’s been sweetened with “artificial sweetener”? Yes. You heard right. E. coli excrement. Pretty disgusting.

Apparently the E. coli are grown in tanks and, as they defecate, their faecal matter is harvested because it contains aspartic acid-phenylalanine amino acid –the protein needed to make the aspartame. These faecal proteins are then treated with methanol to produce the artificial sweetener.

Did you get that, Gnarly patriots? Something innocuously labelled “artificial sweetener” on the back of that soda (or something else) is actually excrement from a deadly bacteria. Oh wait, excuse me, excrement that’s been treated with methanol. Awesome. Thanks, Monsanto.

Pop quiz: Who doesn’t use artificial sweeteners in any of their products? That’s right, my little urchins of health and common sense, Gnarly doesn’t.