The 12th Invest in ME Research Conference June, 2017, Part 2
MEMum presents the second article in a series of three about the recent 12th Invest In ME International Conference (IIMEC12) in London.
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Does massive temp / baro / humidity change spike your symptoms

Discussion in 'Hypersensitivity and Intolerance' started by ebethc, May 5, 2017.

  1. ebethc

    ebethc Senior Member

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    we had a massive temp change this week - a rare occurrence where I currently live... it was in the 80s F 1.5 days ago and it's currently 52 F... the humidity was ~40% and now it's 96%.. high humidity really bothers me, barometric pressure drops, too


    I've had a rough few nights, wide awake in pain and massive skin itching! I don't know what the skin itching is all about, but I'm trying not to panic and assume bed bugs or something drastic because it's happened before when the seasons change and the weather fluctuates... I wish I understood ... ugh

    Are big temp or humidity or barometer fluctuations a trigger for you?
     
  2. antherder

    antherder a.k.a. Princess Dauer, Nematode Nation

    Last edited: May 5, 2017
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  3. ebethc

    ebethc Senior Member

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    very interesting... if I could make myself less reactive to particles (pollen, dust, dander, pollution...) that would be the best..
     
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  4. PatJ

    PatJ far and free I gaze

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    Here is some information from Erica Verrillo's CFS Treatment Guide v2:

    WEATHER SENSITIVITY

    The expression “feeling under the weather” has a literal meaning for people with CFS/ME, especially for those who suffer from concomitant fibromyalgia (FM).

    In fact, so strong is the association between weather changes and exacerbation of pain in FM that weather sensitivity was included as one of its defining characteristics in Dr. Yunus's pioneering work on FM in the 1980s. There are a number of reasons why changes in weather can affect joints and skeletal muscles. Decreases in barometric pressure allow the small fluid-filled sacs surrounding joints to expand, irritating and inflaming the tissue around them. Fluid expansion leads to increased sinus problems, toothaches, and even migraines. In a 1990 study by D. Guedj and A. Weinberger, two Israeli scientists, 83% of arthritis sufferers and 77% of FM patients could successfully predict rain based on increased joint pain.

    It is common knowledge among people with CFS/ME that weather changes produce not just pain, but a general worsening of symptoms. CFS sufferers in the same geographic area often exchange sympathetic phone calls just before storms, during impending pressure fronts, and on windy days (which signal a drop in barometric pressure). In situations where more than one member of a family is ill, the response to weather may be particularly dramatic because all ill members experience an exacerbation of symptoms simultaneously.

    Fully one-third of the general population may be sensitive to weather changes, according to studies performed at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Those who are weather sensitive commonly experience symptoms such as muscle pain, aching joints, insomnia, irritability, and the "blahs" as much as a day or two before the weather changes. The worst weather for the sensitive individual is characterized by a falling barometer and high humidity. The reasons for the mysterious clairvoyance of those who seem to know when the weather is going to change may have to do with neurochemical changes stimulated by radio waves sent out by advancing fronts.

    Studies directed by Dr. Felix Sulman, head of the Bioclimatology Unit at Hebrew University, demonstrated that people who reported sensitivity to weather changes had unusually high amounts of serotonin and histamine in their urine a day or two before a weather change. Histamine is an inflammatory agent released during allergic reactions. Serotonin, a neurotransmitter and vasoconstrictor, is also an irritant and can be released in the body during emotional stress. According to Dr. Sulman, excessive amounts of serotonin, like histamine, can produce agitation, insomnia, irritability, runny or stuffy nose, inflammation of the eyeballs and lids, shortness of breath, sore throat, edema in hands and feet, migraine headache, nausea, dizziness, palpitations, flushes accompanied by sweating or shivering, diarrhea, and the constant urge to urinate.

    Dr. Sulman maintains that the "sferics," or radio waves, released as a consequence of the increased electrical activity preceding a front, produce positive ions that in turn act to stimulate the release of serotonin and histamine. He also speculates that weather sensitivity may be genetically adaptive because increased moodiness might have served as a warning to get back to shelter as quickly as possible. Animals may be subject to the same mechanisms. It has often been observed that their uncanny foreknowledge of coming storms leads them to seek shelter before the weather changes.

    People who are weather sensitive may also react similarly to changes in temperature. Dr. Sulman's group found that, in addition to increased histamine levels, hot weather produced decreased excretion of adrenal hormones (e.g., cortisol) signaling adrenal exhaustion. With prolonged hot weather, the symptoms of adrenal exhaustion become evident: low blood pressure, fatigue, listlessness, depression, confusion, difficulty performing mental tasks, and hypoglycemia. In some individuals the period of exhaustion may be preceded by transient hyperarousal of the thyroid – particularly at the onset of hot, dry weather – causing overactivity, insomnia, irritability, restlessness, palpitations, sweating, and diarrhea. Cold weather can produce similar effects.

    Dr. Sulman has noted that prolonged hot weather stimulates the hypothalamus, the brain structure which signals the pituitary to release hormones that activate the adrenal glands. The hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis abnormalities common in CFS/ME (as noted by Dr. Mark Demitrack and colleagues) may be responsible for unusually rapid depletion of adrenal hormones and ensuing malaise brought about by heat. Increased histamine levels also have profound implications for the substantial number of people with CFS/ME who may also experience oversensitivity to histamine itself (CFIDS Chronicle, Summer 1993). Dr. Sulman's findings also predict higher reactivity to weather changes in women, who produce far fewer adaptive stress hormones than men and more histamine and serotonin in response to weather stress.

    Dr. Michael Persinger, a neuroscientist at Laurentian University in Ontario, Canada, concurs that weather sensitive people may experience numerous symptoms from approaching weather fronts. Dr. Persinger found that dropping temperature, increased barometric pressure, and increased humidity cause sympathetic nervous system arousal. This results in increased urination, migraines, peripheral circulatory problems, and joint stiffness. Influxes of warm air with falling barometric pressure and high humidity are associated with parasympathetic responses (water retention, glaucoma, menstrual swelling). According to Dr. Persinger, the effects of weather fronts both precede and follow their passage. Parasympathetic activity is noticeable five to six hours before the passage of a cold front, while sympathetic activity increases from three to five hours afterward. Dr. Persinger has observed that the autonomic effects of weather fronts may continue for as long as 16 to 30 hours after the fronts have passed.

    Dr. Persinger's theory is that those with unstable hypothalamic function have exaggerated responses to weather fronts. For example, those with parasympathetic dominant autonomic function will be “pushed over the edge” by oncoming storms, resulting in lethargy, increased pain, orthostatic hypotension, and depression. Sympathetic dominant individuals would experience euphoria and insomnia. Like Dr. Sulman, Dr. Persinger notes that there is a predominance of women among the weather sensitive.

    Many people with CFS/ME and FM note a definite worsening of symptoms, including anxiety, myalgia, headache, inflammation, and insomnia just before storms and the passing of weather fronts, particularly during conditions of low barometric pressure and high humidity. Many also note a worsening of symptoms during hot weather. We are not aware of anyone with CFS/ME who has been tested for serotonin, histamine, or adrenal hormone levels in the urine before a storm or during hot or cold weather, so it cannot be certain that altered hormone levels cause the weather sensitivity experienced by people with CFS/ME. However, many of Dr. Sulman's findings support what is known about hormonal irregularities caused by CFS/ME, as do those of Dr. Persinger.

    Some people, paradoxically, may actually feel better before a storm. It is possibly that increased serotonin levels—or, more likely, the constriction of blood vessels (leading to a rise in blood pressure) due to changes in barometric pressure—may contribute to increased energy. Some CFS/ME patients report that they can tell a storm is coming if they feel an urge to clean off their desks, do taxes, or pay bills that have been accumulating. This may, in fact, be the only benefit of weather sensitivity, so these individuals should make hay while the sun shines – or doesn't, in this case.

    TREATMENT TIPS

    To minimize the effects of impending storms, Dr. Sulman recommends avoiding sources of positive ionization (forced-air heating and cooling, friction between synthetic fabrics, and air pollution) as much as possible. Exposure to negative ions is also helpful. Ionizing machines can be purchased to increase negative ion ratios in your bedroom. However, make sure to read product descriptions carefully. Dust-removing ionizers, because they produce ozone and nitrous oxide, may, in fact, worsen health problems. If you are interested in purchasing a negative-ion ionizer, look for an ozone-free product. (These generally run about $125.)

    Some essential oils reputed to increase the effectiveness of negative ions are cypress, lemon, orange, bergamot, pine, bois de rose, cedarwood, grapefruit, pettigraine, patchouli, and sandalwood. For people with SAD (seasonal affective disorder), full-spectrum lightbulbs and light boxes can be purchased.For people sensitive to humidity, it may be worthwhile to purchase a dehumidifier for the bedroom. Air-conditioning systems also reduce the amount of humidity inside the house. Although Dr. Sulman cautions against forced-air cooling, sometimes the relief brought by the decrease in humidity offsets any negative effects of the machinery. For all types of weather sensitivity, it is important to be aware of impending storms and fronts. Listen to weather forecasts and keep a log of symptoms before weather changes to see which ones produce the most severe effects. Plan to take it easy on those days.
     
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  5. jpcv

    jpcv Senior Member

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    No.
     
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  6. ukxmrv

    ukxmrv Senior Member

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    It's humidity that I find hard but I've always assumed that it is the POTS which is worse. Thunderstorms are OK in cold weather but not in hot as an example.
     
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  7. ChrisD

    ChrisD Senior Member

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    I often have more severe fatigue and fibro symptoms on cloudy/rainy days, and it was suggested to me that it could be to do with Mold
     
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  8. lauluce

    lauluce as long as you manage to stay alive, there's hope

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    hig and low temperatures worsen my symptoms. cold, especially, worsens the pain I feel at every muscle and joint
     
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  9. Friendlyfisho

    Friendlyfisho

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    Just go and live on the NE Coast of Tasmania. Certifiably the cleanest air in the world!
    The first land upwind is the southern tip of South America. True fact!
    I have been to the baseline air monitoring station there.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
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  10. PatJ

    PatJ far and free I gaze

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    Here are some methods that other people have used to combat allergies:

    Iodine, from an interview with Lynne Farrow (author of The Iodine Crisis):
    That's one of my favourite things because every spring I would get allergies. That just disappeared and I don't lose the month of May anymore. Food sensitivities not being allergic to certain foods that I just couldn't eat, they're totally gone now [that I take iodine].

    Milk thistle, from a comment on Vitacost review of Nature's Answer non-alcohol liquid extract:
    Because of the numerous prescriptions my husband takes, he is limited in what he can take to address his allergies. We live in the high desert of So. Calif where winds and seasonal pollen present serious challenges to our comfort. When the OTC allergy medication that his doctor recommended did little to help him, I suggested he try Nettle drops as they would not interfere with his Rx meds. From the first dose, they addressed the symptoms that were making him miserable and now, we are never without them!

    ACV, from a comment on Earthclinic.com:
    I have recently (within the last month) started taking anywhere from 1 tsp 1X a day to 1 tsp 3X per day, depending on my level of stuffiness (I have been taking it for my allergies and digestive issues) of Bragg's Organic Apple Cider Vinegar. Both my allergies and digestive issues are GREAT now.
     
  11. ebethc

    ebethc Senior Member

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    I used to think I was reacting to mold, too, but now I'm not so sure...

    I def have a big problem w any kind of particulate matter triggering a response, so I'm wondering if humidity suspends more particles in the air (so I'm breathing in more particles)??
     
  12. ebethc

    ebethc Senior Member

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    Me too... it's awful
     
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  13. ebethc

    ebethc Senior Member

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    @PatJ
    Thanks - the Dr Sulman (et al) info is great! All of it doesn't apply to me but a lot of it is very relevant...

    Milk thistle does nothing and iodine can make me VERY sick (I'm hypothyroid)... ACV is great- do u use a straw to avoid harming the enamel on your teeth? 3x a day is alot


    ==
    1) Can anyone recommend a non ozone producing, negative ionizer? E.g. A trustworthy brand?

    2) What's the best way to make blood vessels stronger?
    All the info re histamine's effect on blood vessels is interesting...Butchers Broom, Horse Chestnut, and does resveratrol have this effect, too??? Those are the ones I've discovered this week... the dr sulman into say that sacs of fluid fill up, causing pain so if the blood vessels are more resilient, then maybe this is less likely to happen???

    I've also discovered proteolytic enzymes in the past year, which have been amazing! Supposedly, they flush out cytokines and break down "immune complexes" ...the only downside is that I have to take high doses so it gets expensive... Wobenzym is by far the best one I've tried, and Bromelain is good too... my doctor carries a wobenzym competitor called vascuzyme, which is a little less effective than wobie but has the upside of not causing the body odor that I get from wobie (hopefully I'm the only one who notices it!) read the reviews of wobenzym on Amazon... there are tons of ppl like me who have tried everything for joint pain and wobenzym works after nothing else (even compared to hardcore drugs like enbrel, which I didn't opt to take but some in the the Amazon reviews said wobie works better...)

    I am waiting for some DHA, which has been helpful for pain in past..

    I want to get a compression leg massager (like recovering marathoners use.. lol) but at $400 it's not happening soon.. using a foam roller in the mean time to keep lymph moving... glad to incorporate anything effective that allows me to avoid supplements and drugs..

    SIBO-C herbs have been helpful for gut issues, but I still had a terrible reaction to this week's weather change, so not sure of benefits besides gut issues (i.e. overall resilience)

    Tried intranasal insulin and ibudilast this week... pretty disappointed and frustrated that I spent money on things that didn't work, although not entirely ready to write them off since this may not have been the best week to try something new... on the other hand, both are microglial inhibitors so I guess I can rule out over-activation of microglia as primary culprit of my weather sensitivity... so that's something.
     
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  14. PatJ

    PatJ far and free I gaze

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    I take two tsp before bed then brush my teeth.
     
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  15. SueJohnPat

    SueJohnPat Sue

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    I am in NJ. Went out to Death Valley had a mini remission. Now I am obsessed with moving to a pristine location.
    I live across the river from Philadelphia. I started doing much better last summer after we fixed the mold in our house and I took cholestyramine.when barometric pressure falls especially in the winter that's when my health plummets I think my house is cleaner more mold free than most I am just sensitized .
    I plan on taking as many day trips to the Jersey shore as possible. Next winter I plan on being a snowbird if I have too.
     
  16. ebethc

    ebethc Senior Member

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    So , do you think the barometric pressure sensitivity is linked to mold? I.e. It improves if you're away from mold?
     
  17. TrixieStix

    TrixieStix Senior Member

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    yes barometric pressure changes before storms definitely cause an increase in my pain because....

    "Barometric pressure often drops before bad weather. Lower air pressure pushes less against the body, allowing tissues to expand. Expanded tissues can put pressure on joints and cause pain."

    http://directorthocare.com/does-temperature-and-barometric-pressure-affect-joints/
     
  18. SueJohnPat

    SueJohnPat Sue

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    Yes, it is raining and cool today on Philadelphia. I feel lousy. We are going to a graduation party at a relative's house in the city. When the barometric pressure dropped last night I was planning on going out to dinner with my family . About 4pm ( Sky clouded up) felt the life go out of me and stayed in and ordered Chinese. My husband mentioned that I may need an " escape" hatch. I plan to bring a sleeping bag so I can lay in the car if I get a bad mold hit . I will just start crying over nothing and it is really embarrassing.
    This did not happen at all near Death Valley even when it rained all day.

    I was originally diagnosed with fibromyalgia. I don't have much pain anymore but still have Cfs. I have periods of wellness when I can sleep outside. I have been ill for 7 years . I have periods of relative wellness but it is a roller coaster right now. I am sitting outside on my porch in rainy 52 degree weather and my head is clearing up.



    I have " recovered " from fibro ( yes had massive increases of pain when barometric pressure dropped. ) In mold avoiders it mentions mold spores being released when the barometer falls so it may be a double whammy.

    I attribute this to " mold". I get really bad emotional symptoms which quickly dissipate if I rinse my face and hair. Too weird to go into with doctors except my family doctor who has known me for 15 years.
     
    Last edited: May 13, 2017
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  19. Dechi

    Dechi Senior Member

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    So far there has been 2 winters since I've been sick and I was always worse during this season. I don't know of it's the actual weather, or the fact that I have to shovel, even if not that much, or both. In summer I am better.
     
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  20. SueJohnPat

    SueJohnPat Sue

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    Me too . I started going down in Late October every year. Thought it might have to do with the heating system or sunlight. This lead me to think about environmental triggers.
    . Dr's said this could be seasonal affective disorder. I tried ssri and a sunlamp no effect at all and my symptoms were more physical felt like I had the flu all the time which lead to the end of my career in March 2010.

    I just turned the heat off and it is only 52. But I am going nuts today. May go through a hotel. Tempted to take prednisone but I know that is not the answer. Tried on 2 shirts and reacted to them . Ugh!
     

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