Symptoms Of Mercury Poisoning Have Been Confounding Doctors For Years.
It is one of the most difficult conditions to diagnose because it has symptoms that vary so widely. Unless a doctor has been specially trained or has encountered mercury toxicity before, it’s unlikely that he will add up the apparently disconnected set of symptoms and arrive at the correct diagnosis of mercury poisoning.
Why Is It So Difficult To Diagnose Mercury Poisoning?
Mercury works deep within the cells of our body creating havoc.
Mercury damages the structural framework of nerves cells which is needed for them to grow and function. It can affect nerve cells anywhere in the body.
Mercury damages the mitochondria within cells which function like a power plant providing energy for cell operation. Its like trying to operate a generator after putting water in its motor’s gasoline tank.
Mercury twists proteins out of their normal shape. Imagine trying to build a house using only bent and twisted lumber. It would be virtually impossible. Cells crippled by mercury can’t build other cells.
Depending upon where the mercury settled, the types of cells affected and the uniqueness of the individual each case has its own characteristics.
Doctors don’t know what to look for because, “To date, there are no universal diagnostic criteria for mercury overload.” (1) This comes from a journal article published this year, 2016, in Annals of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.
Mercury Poisoning-The Case Of two Sisters
Just two days of using a compound purchased from a local herbal shop to kill head lice was enough to start a cascade of events in two 13-year-old twins. Unusual symptoms began to develop, worsening gradually until three months later they were admitted to a local hospital.
The twins suffered pains in their arms and legs, developed itchy rashes, sweating, and profuse salivation. They also experienced weakness and changes in mood.
Three months after the two uses of the herbal lice compound, which contained toxic mercury, they were eventually diagnosed with mercury poisoning. Toxicology testing revealed high levels of mercury in their urine. Mercury appears in the urine as your body is trying to rid itself of the toxin. Unfortunately, mercury by itself, leaves the body very, very slowly.
The sensations of pain could be direct nerve damage within the hands and feet or anywhere along the sensory nerves from the brain leading to them. Itchy rashes could be due to nerve involvement or direct cell damage or both. Weakness could be the result of lower cell energy output from mitochondrial damage or muscles failing to respond due to nerves from the brain being compromised. Changes in mood would likely be due to direct brain involvement.
With symptoms so different and unrelated, it is no easy task for a correct diagnosis to be made. The twin’s doctors, using the skills of a “Sherlock Holmes,” successfully deduced the offending herbal lice compound to be the culprit. Now they faced the problem of mercury contamination and how to deal with it.
Chelation-One Therapy For Mercury Poisoning
The physician’s training and experience lead to the girls being “successfully treated” using chelation therapy, reversing many of their symptoms. Chelation therapy uses substances designed to aggressively “grab” onto mercury and escort it out of the body primarily through urine and feces. Like a bouncer at a nightclub throwing out an unruly patron.
The treating doctors appropriately advised other physicians, in their published article, to consider mercury poisoning when a patient develops any kind of joint or bone pain, itchy skin rashes and symptoms of weakness or numbness with pain in hands and feet.
Since mercury poisoning can affect the brain, heart, kidneys, immune system and the lungs for starters, how much residual damage was created? It’s hard to quantify. Even though many of the symptoms experienced were “reversed,” after this one-time exposure, what will be the long term effects of that mercury exposure episode?
Chelation removes gross amounts of excessive mercury, enough to reverse recognized symptoms. But it does not remove all of it. The residual mercury will continue to cause damage that may never be recognized.
Using chelation therapy for treating high levels of mercury can be very effective. But what about one-time low level exposures. Or what about the low-level constant exposure to mercury leaching out of mercury amalgam fillings? Will any symptoms even be recognized by the victim, and even less likely, be diagnosed? And if not diagnosed, never treated.
Mercury Poisoning And Your Immune System
Russian researchers have long been aware of the degeneration of the central nervous system in workers with long term exposure to mercury vapors. They have recently identified antibodies to nerve cell components circulating in the blood.
For your immune system to develop antibodies to your own nerve and brain cells requires damage to the nerves by mercury. And then your mis-lead immune system identifies those pieces to be “dangerous” and a threat to your survival. The result is an immune attack on vital brain and nerve cells accelerating the destruction started by mercury. The result is dementia and Alzheimer’s symptoms that accompany the hollowed out brain.
In addition to the auto-immunity guided destruction of brain cell proteins, the cells of the spinal cord and peripheral nerves are affected as well.
It sounds very similar to other nerve degeneration diseases that have puzzled researchers for decades. As mercury affects the brain it can trigger tremors, emotional changes, insomnia, weakness, performance deficits, and cognitive function declines. As it affects other nerves in the body, weakness, muscle atrophy (shrinkage), twitching, and nerve responses changes.
Symptoms like these, are often reported by patients suspicious of mercury poisoning from their dental amalgam fillings. If high levels of mercury poisoning can cause hallucinations, delirium and psychoses due to direct brain damage, why would anyone tolerate exposure to mercury at even very low levels?
Most human exposure to mercury is caused by outgassing of mercury from dental amalgam fillings followed by eating contaminated fish, or occupational exposure, according to the World Health Organization.(2)
My Friend-Poisoned At His Hospital Job
A friend of mine worked at one time in a hospital laboratory where liquid mercury was utilized in the diagnostic equipment.
He related to me that during routine cleaning of the apparatus, a small amount of liquid mercury was spilled as equipment was disassembled and reassembled. Tiny spills over a number of years lead to fumes being released from mercury accumulation in cracks and crevices of the laboratory floor. Enough that laboratory personnel were affected.
Many were forced to leave work at the hospital due to “unusual” symptoms. Eventually my friend lost coordination and his ability to function. He too, was let go from his job. He succumbed to, an undiagnosed illness, and due to behavior changes and physical deterioration, lost his marriage.
Aided by close friends, he later discovered that the symptoms he was experiencing were the result of chronic mercury exposure and toxicity. He then set out on a mission, to cure himself of mercury poisoning. He recovered and for years consulted, successfully aiding many afflicted by toxic exposure of all kinds, but especially mercury.
The Van Slyke apparatus, as it was known, was used in hundreds of hospital and chemistry laboratories. It was a vital piece of equipment used to measure blood and other gases that came with a risk not recognized for years.
Treatment Of Mercury Poisoning
Chelation therapy is the current treatment of choice for mercury poisoning. Researchers have used both oral and intravenous delivery of a variety of chelating agents with DMPS being a popular agent. These agents grab onto mercury and escort it out of your body.
One two week trial using the oral DMPS showed significant improvement in tests for tremors, coordination, and visual perception. Individuals reported improvement in memory, sleeplessness, metallic taste, perceived fatigue and anxiety.
Another report included groups treated with chelation therapy for occupational exposure to mercury vapor. Improvements in muscle twitching, joint pain, pins and needle numbness, night sweating and weight loss were seen.
Even though chelation therapy works to remove mercury it is not without risks.
How Do You Know If Chelation Is For You?
The diagnosis of mercury poisoning or mercury overload is not easy. The easy to evaluate blood, urine and hair tests provide little useful information as they do not necessarily reveal the total mercury body burden. Mercury “hides” from most testing methods and may need to be revealed by using what is called a provocation test.
If you have been exposed to mercury through occupation, high seafood consumption, multiple mercury amalgam fillings or multiple thimerosal-containing vaccines, a provocation test for mercury may be worth considering.
Search for doctors familiar with using chelation therapy for mercury removal. But first, stop the exposure. Talk with your holistic, biological dentist about the safest way to remove mercury amalgams, one of the leading sources of mercury exposure. It doesn’t make sense to start the removal process using chelation until the contamination due to continued exposure is eliminated.
As research continues, I believe it will reveal how many areas of our body are affected by constant exposure to mercury at very low levels. This is the exposure many endure as they live with amalgam fillings leaking mercury vapor. I also believe that we will eventually conclude it should never have been implanted in the human body as dental mercury amalgam fillings.
(1) [Ann Occup Environ Med. 2016; 28: 5.
Published online 2016 Jan 22. doi: 10.1186/s40557-015-0086-8
Evaluation of mercury exposure level, clinical diagnosis and treatment for mercury intoxication
Byeong-Jin Ye, Byoung-Gwon Kim, Man-Joong Jeon, Se-Yeong Kim, Hawn-Cheol Kim, Tae-Won Jang, Hong-Jae Chae, Won-Jun Choi, Mi-Na Ha, and Young-Seoub Hong]
(2)[Mercury Toxicity and Treatment:
A Review of the Literature
Robin A. Bernhoft1, 2
1Bernhoft Center for Advanced Medicine, Suite 208, 11677 San Vicente Boulevard,
Los Angeles, CA 90049, USA
2 Los Angeles Center for Advanced Medicine, Brentwood Gardens Suite 208, 11677 San Vicente Boulevard, Los Angeles,
CA 90049, USA]