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Cholestyramine (CSM) Treatment - Elimination of Toxins

Discussion in 'Addressing Biotoxin, Chemical & Food Sensitivities' started by lono, Oct 28, 2010.

  1. lono

    lono

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    There has been a recent article in the medical literature that furthers our understanding of using Cholestyramine (CSM) to remove potentially harmful toxicants from the body.

    A couple of quick points of background. CSM has been promoted by Dr. Ritchie Shoemaker (as an off label use) to remove biotoxins from the body caused by toxic mold exposure. Dr. Shoemaker has published several medical articles about this, however, no one had been able to test to see if toxicants are actually being removed by CSM.

    There is a recent article in the medical literature that furthers our understanding in this area.

    Human detoxification of perfluorinated compounds. Journal: Public health yr: 2010, Volume 124, Issue 7. Authors: Genuis, Birkholz et al.

    In the article, a patient had a high level of potential toxins (perfluorinated compounds, aka PFCs) in his body, probably caused by exposure at his house. Testing showed that many of the PFCs were not eliminated by sweating in a sauna nor through urination. Cholestyramine eliminated PFCs from the patient's body. CSM treatment lowered levels of the PFCs in the blood. Also, prior to treatment by CSM, no PFCs were detected in stool. Following CSM treatment, however, numerous PFCs were were identified in the post-treatment faecal samples.

    Unfortunately, the patient did not have mold exposure (which is what I'm most interested in seeing), but we now have some evidence that CSM can eliminate (at least some) toxins from the body.
     
    Skyline likes this.
  2. BEG

    BEG Senior Member

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    Interesting, I did this treatment back in 2004 at my doctor's suggestion. I was told to use it for about 3 weeks which should long enough to eliminate the toxins. I felt better that summer. I don't know if it was coincidence.
     
  3. ggingues

    ggingues $10 gift code at iHerb GAS343 of $40

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    Really only 3 weeks? Wow, I did CSM with Chlorella for over 3 months! I think it helped my brain fog?

    GG
     
  4. Wayne

    Wayne Senior Member

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    Slayadragon has posted frequently regarding her use of CSM. I've never been able to determine however whether this is a naturally occurring product, such as bentonite clay or zeolite, or if it's some kind of synthetic compound.

    Also, I've never been able to determine whether this is only available through physicians by way of prescription or if it can be purchased over the counter. Any feedback on these points would be much appreciated.

    Regards, Wayne
     
  5. zoe.a.m.

    zoe.a.m. Senior Member

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    I just recently received a prescription for this Wayne. I haven't begun taking it yet, so I haven't thoroughly investigated what it is... but, at least in WA, it's by prescription only. My doctor seems quite confident about what it can do and I'll certainly post about it when I get going with it.
     
    Wayne likes this.
  6. Athene

    Athene Never give up

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    Cholestyramine does trap lots of medications, stopping them being absorbed, so if you are on other meds, check before using it.
     
  7. Jenny

    Jenny Senior Member

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    FWIW - I took this for 3 months while on IV ceftriaxone and it did nothing.

    Jenny
     
  8. andreamarie

    andreamarie Senior Member

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    I had an intestinal resection in 1965 because I was hemorraging to death from Crohn's disease. This left me with bile salt diarrhea because my bile salts were dumping into my colon. I was having diarrhea nonstop. The treatment is Questran, because it absorbs the bile salts. I started with four packets a day. I had to juggle any meds because it can eat them up and also take children's liquid A,D, and E because it absorbs fat soluble vitamins.
    It was magic. As time went on I was able to decrease it and now take one packet a day. When I had C.Difficile three yrs ago, the literature recommended it so I increased it. Questran can be very constipating. I have no idea what role it's played in my CFS because I've been taking it so long. And it's not standard procedure for C.Diff but I had it anyway and it helped with the diarrhea.
     
  9. andreamarie

    andreamarie Senior Member

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    I take Prevalite, the generic. It's half the price and exactly the same.
     
  10. ggingues

    ggingues $10 gift code at iHerb GAS343 of $40

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    I was taking meds when I did detox, you just need to time your meds around the Cholestyramine.

    GG
     
    merylg likes this.
  11. Medman99

    Medman99

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    I did 3 months of csm, did absolutely zero for me. Not to mention most of the rx grade csm is loaded with sugar or the toxic nutrasweet. No thank you.
    Zeolite or IP6 are much better, imo.
     
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  12. Wayne

    Wayne Senior Member

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    Zeolite

    Thanks much for your post and information Medman. So I guess CSM is synthetic, since it appears to be filled with sugar and nutrisweet. My goodness, how almost unbelievable is that?

    I'm with you on the zeolite. I don't know about IP6, but will give it a google. I recently had a zeolite product recommended to me called:

    ZeoForce - Zeolite 400 Gram Powder

    I'll probably give it a try, as I've been wanting to supplement my current charcoal capsules with something a little more "substantial", especially since I'm experimenting with a number of detoxification regimens.

    Thanks again.

    Wayne
     
    merylg likes this.
  13. slayadragon

    slayadragon Senior Member

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    Shoemaker talks about csm in Mold Warriors.

    Supposedly it has a special structure that is capable of attaching itself to mold toxins. Other detoxifiers do not do that.

    The main problem that people have with csm is that it detoxifies too fast. Especially if people are living in a bad place, they can get really sick on it. This includes all kinds of symptoms, including vomiting.

    I couldn't take csm when I was in a bad place. It had an extremely intense effect on me in a good place, removing a lot of toxins.

    I feel certain that I would not have gotten much better at all if I hadn't used this, in a good place.

    CSM was originally used for high cholesterol. Apparently people concerned with that don't have sugar or nutrasweet on their "no-no" list.

    I just went ahead and used the kind with sugar in it. My candida problems went away in a good place anyway.

    Like every tool that we have, this one needs to be used in the right way at the right time.

    There's no magic bullet, as far as I have been able to find.

    (Except Lightning Process, of course.)

    Best, Lisa
     
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  14. silicon

    silicon Senior Member

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    It is apparently possible to get cholestyramine (CSM) without sugar at a “compounding” pharmacy, such as Hopkington Drug in MA—I believe they sweeten with stevia instead (I don’t know if you can get it “plain”). You still need a prescription, and it’s more expensive than regular CSM.

    http://www.rxandhealth.com/
     
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  15. andreamarie

    andreamarie Senior Member

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    I'm aware of the additives to csm, but I was taking it for eighteen yrs before I got CFS and literally can't live without it. There is no other way to control bile salt diarrhea. Before I had it I was in and out of the E.R. because I got continually dehydrated. My insurance has always paid for it. When I first started taking it I did not have CFS, but had some g.i. distress that quickly passed. Some people with high cholesteral who do not have CFS have trouble tolerating it. When I was on four pkts a day I found it nearly impossible to balance my meds. It eats them and nutrients more than one thinks.
     
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  16. lono

    lono

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    Zeolite treatment


    Zeolite treatment was also tried by the person in the study. Unfortunately, it didn't appear to remove the perfluorinated compounds (PFCs).

    From the paper:

    Following zeolite treatment, only minuscule amounts of PFCs were detected in the faecal sample; no other PFCs were detected, thus the type of zeolite used in this case did not appear to facilitate considerable excretion of PFCs into stool.
     
  17. slayadragon

    slayadragon Senior Member

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    I wrote the following to someone, and will paste it here too.

    This is my understanding of what happens with csm (from Shoemaker, other sources and my own experiences).

    Some of us have HLA DR types that cause our immune system not to recognize mold toxin. As a result, Shoemaker says, the toxins are perpetually reabsorbed into the body rather than eliminated through the stool.

    Cholestyramine hooks onto mold toxins as they go through the bowel. Apparently its special structure makes it appropriate to do this, in a way that no other detox supplements can. As a result, they are eliminated through the stool rather than reabsorbed.

    It seems that the body has a natural tendency to remove toxins as it can. Once the levels of toxin in the bloodstream go down (as a result of some toxins being eliminated), the body releases more toxin from storage. These bounce around in the system for a while, causing inflammation as they stream through. Eventually they hit the liver and the gall bladder, and (provided that more csm is being taken) then are moved out.

    The gall bladder tends to be a weak spot in mold illness and (if you dig a bit) CFS patients. The tendency is for it to build up with black sludge (though there may be some gallstones too). Insofar as all that guck is stuck in the gall bladder, it's not being effectively removed from the body. It's not particularly good for the gall bladder either (and some patients do "lose" their gall bladders).

    It seems that my own gall bladder did have this issue, and that taking small amounts of csm (back when I was doing "moderate" avoidance) exacerbated this problem. Finally I did get it to loosen up, with the help of a lot of Omega 3/6 oils (one doctor said it might have unstuck the "sphincter of Oddi"), a lot of coffee enemas, and a mild gall bladder flush (lots of olive oil and apple cider vinegar). Large amounts of black mucus and some small stones came out. Detox went a bit more smoothly after that.

    I started taking small amounts of csm right after I moved out of the moldy house. I didn't have any of my contaminated possessions but was living in a place that (as I later found out when I got more clear) was somewhat problematic. I wasn't able to take much though. If I pushed it, I would get increased systemic inflammation, pitting edema and just generally feeling awful.

    (Shoemaker suggests that this kind of bad reaction to csm is a manifestation of Lyme rather than mold illness. I'm of the impression that the vast majority of CFS patients have Lyme problems, so I don't think it's really matters for us.)

    After I got to the Godforsaken desert, I started being able to take larger amounts of csm. I didn't get the inflammation or edema, then. I more went into a trance, what Erik calls "zonked-out immobilized semi-comatose groggified." Like being a heroin addict, except without the enjoyment component. Toxins flowed out fast then, and I think that doing that was essential to my getting better. (I was taking FolaPro/B12 too. That may just be related to non-biotoxins, but Rich and I wonder if it might not be important to get the biotoxins released from the cells and into the gut where the csm can remove them.)

    Recently I talked to someone who has been doing detoxification (close to full Yasko) for almost four years and appeared to be making progress. Then this person (who's living in a moderately bad place) took a bit of csm and got a severe reaction (including vomiting) - suggesting that there's still a ways to go.

    I believe that the toxins it removes are different than the ones that are removed with just methylation support, or with other detoxifying agents.

    Shoemaker's recommendation is 4 packets a day, but I certainly wouldn't suggest that to start. More like 1/4 teaspoon total per day, if people aren't already in a super-good place. If that works well, the dose can be increased.

    Best, Lisa
     
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  18. Sparrowhawk

    Sparrowhawk Senior Member

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    Is this something that can be pulsed, like a few days on Cholestramine, a few off? Or does that reduce its effectiveness? I'm thinking anyone especially toxic may have to do this like a Cutler protocol, on weekends. That also might give your body the days during the week to be absorbing nutrients. Thoughts?

    Anyone do this who also had leaky gut?
     
  19. Wayne

    Wayne Senior Member

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    Hi Sparrowhawk, I recently ran across an excellent article on methylation: --- Methylation Problems Lead to 100s of Diseases --- I thought you might find the following mention of cholesyramine interesting.

    Wayne
    ......................................................

    Medicines that Make MTHFR Much Worse

    2. Cholesterol-binding drugs such as Cholestyramine or Colestipol: These drugs not only are drug muggers for vitamin A, D, E and K, but they also reduce absorption of folate and cobalamin from your food. This enhances the methylation problem, allowing for more toxins to build up.

     
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  20. Sparrowhawk

    Sparrowhawk Senior Member

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    Well tarnation, all this does make a body wonder what can be done. I'll keep pushing forward with methylation first in that case. Thanks!
     
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