Dealing with Environmental Illness

This work was done for my clinics but gives good informaiton related to my experience with environmental illness.

Do you feel sleepy, congested, irritable or confused after eating? Are you anxious, lethargic, or filled with apathy? Do you have earaches, infections including sinus? Perhaps fatigue or a vague run down feeling leaves you unprepared to deal with every day concerns. Do rashes, anxiety, or ADD affect you or someone for whom you are responsible? Do you become overwhelmed with little things that you were once able to manage but now it seems to throw you off kilter? If you have symptoms such as these and have not considered allergy or hypersensitivity to your environment, what you eat, breathe, or touch, then perhaps it is time to explore the possibilities. Allergy and hypersensitivity are more problematic than just sneezing, congestion, or hives. Allergy is the result of an immune system gone awry.

There are many types of testing procedures available today. Blood tests usually result in the avoidance or abstinence of the offending foods or the patient is put on a rotation diet. Skin testing and allergy EAV machines all claim some success but often do not tell the whole story. Months, even years later, the patient may still be highly reactive despite their best efforts because the root problems were never addressed. Reasons for allergies are many and may include poor digestion, poor nutrition, medications that cause Leaky Gut Syndrome, or the internal or external toxic environment to which one is constantly exposed.  To be clear, once you have orders from the supervising doctor, you may be tested  skin testing for foods and inhalants and / or tested provocatively.

Injections for environmental inhalants such as mold, dust, pollens, and pet dander are popular even though research has determined the efficacy for allergy injections is limited to about 50% of the treated population. Most of the other 50%, probably, fall into the category of the chronically ill. By creating weaker solutions as needed to remove related symptoms up to 100%, we accomplish symptom relief at the Center for Environmental Medicine.

One approach to allergy and hypersensitivity you may not be familiar with is Provocative Neutralization (PV), Clinical Ecology or Environmental Ecology. Does it work? Yes. We have patients who come from great distances and internationally for treatment at this Center because our treatment protocols allow them to lead a more normal life. Because we can use a variety of testing modalities, treatment is individualized and customized for each patient considering their history of environment, medical tests and many other factors. Patients are encouraged to come to the clinic when they are experiencing symptoms because it is easier to find the solution if the patient is reacting.

This testing process is painless. Testing requires participation on the part of the patient by providing requested information throughout the testing process. Most allergens are administered under the tongue and symptoms recorded. A series of tests are analyzed from a technical view, antigens are manipulated until the related symptoms are removed; an antigen is then produced. The patient uses the antigen after contact with that specific allergen and within minutes the symptoms are eliminated.

The doctor will have considered liver, digestive system, and immune system dysfunction need immediate attention. To develop a successful healing program, less than optimal function of these three areas of the body must be considered. The liver becomes congested from histamine as a result of allergic reactions and other toxins. It is then unable to filter and remove toxins, including heavy metal toxins as nature intended, congestion and toxicity may then occur. Environmental illness requires that we look at influences from outside the body as well as those from within. Another area we must consider is nutrition. Essential minerals that register low in laboratory tests can contribute to allergy and susceptibility to adverse conditions in the gut. The gut can become too permeable and further contribute to allergy.

When you come to your doctor visit regarding allergy, there are many options that may be available to you in the  treatment and management of your symptoms.  Options will be discussed with you and provocative neutralization may be suggested.  If so, then you will be appointed a time in the Allergy Lab, with orders for testing of foods, and/or inhalants & chemicals.  Provocative testing is not diagnostic in itself.  You will not know if the reaction is IgG (immediate and true allergy) or IgG (hypersensitivity).  Only through other procedures will you know the true nature of your reactions.

The doctors supervise the allergy lab and all testing information is ordered and monitored by them as well as all antigens dispensed are authorized by them.  Therefore, you may not receive an antigen the day of testing and we require a weeks notice for antigens to be made up.  This allows time for the doctor’s review.  Followup appointments from time to time are essential in addition to the brief interactions you will have with the doctor in the Allergy Lab.  All new symptoms require a doctor visit.

Provocative Neutralization, by definition, is the administration of antigens to provoke syptoms or relieve them if the patient is sensitive to a substance.  The homeopathic strength of the antigens are safe and easy for patients to administer to themselves by placing a few drops under the tongue when they experience symptoms or are reactive to an exposure (i.e. perfumes, pollen, etc.).

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Types of Tests We Use

PROVOCATIVE NEUTRALIZATION – - This is a test that can use either oral or skin testing, that provides information as to sensitivity while providing a neutralization treatment for use upon exposure.

RAST – This is a conventional allergy test that measure IgE and IgG4 antibodies for identification of food and inhalant allergies. If a person is on prednisone, and antihistamine, has been fasting, or has avoided a food for a particularly long period of time, the results may not reflect an accurate picture of allergy.

INTRADERMAL – This is an invasive test used by conventional and ecology doctors alike. Using a needle, a small dose of the allergen is injected under the skin. The test requires skill in reading the wheal, that is the small bubble produced when then does or doesn’t react. A positive result determines how allergic a patient is to foods, pollens, mold, and danders.

HYPERSENSITIVE REACTIONS – A person who suffers from numerous unrelated complaints are said to be hypersensitive.

All of these situations may contribute to hypersensitivity susceptibility:
• adrenal exhaustion
• caffeine and other stimulants
• chronic yeast infections
• digestive enzyme deficiency, improper chewing, enzyme deficiency
• drug use; legal & illegal
• environmental overload
• heavy metal poisoning
• high acidic diet, refined carbohydrate diet, or high sugar diet
• hypoglycemia
• intestinal microbes (bacteria)
• immune deficiency
• intestinal permeability
• junk food diet
• over-nutrition and under-nutrition
• pesticides & herbicides
• pollution in or out of home
• poor digestion, poor bowel elimination , monotone diet, junk food diet
• stress and emotional conflict
• toxic chemical exposure
• vitamin/mineral imbalances

Predictable Testing Related to Specific Diagnosis

If you suffer from:

• CHRONIC YEAST INFECTION: — you most certainly will be chemically sensitive. We will test for sensitivities to different types of chemicals.
• CONGESTION OR STUFFINESS: — can be caused by seasonal allergies, mold, dust, dander’s, or foods, and sometimes chemicals.
• SKIN RASHES: — eczema, or other skin ailments you may have a chronic yeast infection which will be treated, but relief of symptoms can be helped with desensitization.
• CHRONIC YEAST PLUS VIRAL AND FEEL QUITE FATIGUED AND MALAISED: — you will benefit from the allergy lab more than any other type of patient.

A fixed allergy will most likely produce symptoms every time upon exposure to the offending food. Employing a rotation diet can control acquired allergy reactions, but the more sensitivities being dealt with, the less effective a rotation diet will be. When patients have many symptoms and have a negative blood allergy test, food hypersensitivity could be the problem.

A cyclic reaction is a variable state in which eighty percent of all allergies fall for fairly healthy individuals. A small or medium portion of food is eaten with no reaction and is tolerated well. Subsequent meals including the food would result in a reaction. For some, avoiding the food completely for six to eight months would result in a loss of most or all of the sensitivity. Making sure you have a healthy gut increases the chances of the sensitivity not reoccurring.

Cross-sensitivity is when intolerance to one member of a food family predisposes an individual to react to other members of that family. Quite often, an individual can react to an entire food group.

Synergistic reactions occur when the sum of the combined reaction is huge compared to the same substances in individual reactions.

Cumulative reactions occur by combining two or more substances, which otherwise produce no reaction if taken individual (concommitant).

Fixed reactions are described as a reaction that is provoked no matter how infrequently eaten or how much is consumed at a time; IgE mediated allergy.
Delayed reactions typically occur from 12 to 48 hours after the ingestion of food but can occur up to 72 hours. This type of allergy is called a masked or hidden food allergy because it is often difficult to detect. The best blood test specific for detection of delayed food allergies is IgG4; IgG mediated allergy.

Other reactions: Foods can cause reactions with absolutely no allergy or sensitivity reaction present. Low blood sugar reactions or high blood sugar reactions as well as enzyme deficiency syndromes can cause symptoms. These kinds of reactions include lactose intolerance and alcohol intolerance in the North American Indians.

Testing Substances include:

• Basic and Expanded chemicals
• Molds, skin molds, dust, pollens, dog, cat, horse
• Neurotransmitters, Phenolics
• Foods, hormones, supplements
• Fillers and Excipients for medications-people who are sensitive to medications are often sensitive to the fillers. Testing results in the neutralization of the drugs fillers and excipients but it is not possible to neutralize a drug reaction such as a rash that looks like a burn since drugs are not tested.  Avoidance is the only solution for a true drug reaction as some of these conditions may be life threatening.

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