Much worse after short course of Equilibrant

gbells

Improved ME from 2 to 6
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Dr Chia found that if you are a responder to oxymatrine, you may need go through the storm to get to the calm of better health on the other side. And after passing through the storm, Dr Chia found that you may have to keep taking the oxymatrine in order to maintain your gains. If you stop taking oxymatrine at that point, then your ME/CFS symptoms may return. That has been Dr Chia's experience.

However, if you did stop taking it and got worse again, in most cases (but not all), Dr Chia found that starting a second course of oxymatrine again led to an improvement in symptoms. But in some cases, you don't get a second chance (ie, the oxymatrine does not work the second time).

I went through the Equilibrant formula and wasn't impressed. It seems to be a mix of apoptosis stimulators (Oxymatrine/Sophros, Shitake mushroom) and apoptosis inhibitors (Vit D, A, olive leaf extract, oxymatrine effect on caspase-3) along with antivirals (olive leaf extract) to reduce viral reproduction. Apoptosis is a tricky process to activate when you have strong viral inhibitors at work and it makes no sense to include apoptosis inhibitors in the formula. I decided to avoid it and hand select better supplements to try that don't have these problems and should give a better response. His response wasn't that great anyway, it took a year of treatment and people backslid if they stopped the supplement. No wonder it isn't that popular.
 

gbells

Improved ME from 2 to 6
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Equilibrant is a brand of oxymatrine. I don't know which type of oxymatrine Dr Chia's son used, nor which Dr Chia recommends.

Actually Equilibrant is a combination of herbs that includes oxymatrine (Sophros extract). So it isn't correct to call it a brand of oxymatrine.
 

Hip

Senior Member
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I went through the Equilibrant formula and wasn't impressed. It seems to be a mix of apoptosis stimulators (Oxymatrine/Sophros, Shitake mushroom) and apoptosis inhibitors (Vit D, A, olive leaf extract, oxymatrine effect on caspase-3) along with antivirals (olive leaf extract) to reduce viral reproduction.

I don't know any ME/CFS researcher or clinician who has ever talked or published on the need to stimulate apoptosis.

What they usually talk about is stimulating the Th1 antiviral immune response, which oxymatrine is known to do.



Actually Equilibrant is a combination of herbs that includes oxymatrine (Sophros extract).

Oxymatrine is the primary active ingredient, the other ingredients just provide a slight improvement, as verified by the fact Dr Chia says Equilibrant has a slightly higher ME/CFS treatment success rate than oxymatrine alone.

White Tiger oxymatrine also contains other ingredients, including matrine.

The only pure oxymatrine brand is AMS.
 

gbells

Improved ME from 2 to 6
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I don't know any ME/CFS researcher or clinician who has ever talked or published on the need to stimulate apoptosis.

What they usually talk about is stimulating the Th1 antiviral immune response, which oxymatrine is known to do.





Oxymatrine is the primary active ingredient, the other ingredients just provide a slight improvement, as verified by the fact Dr Chia says Equilibrant has a slightly higher ME/CFS treatment success rate than oxymatrine alone.

White Tiger oxymatrine also contains other ingredients, including matrine.

The only pure oxymatrine brand is AMS.

It looks like Chia got his idea to use oxymatrine and astalagus from Traditional Chinese Medicine.

http://www.itmonline.org/arts/coxsackie.htm

I'm surprised that Chia's goals is only to stimulate the Th1 antiviral response given that oxymatrine increases BAX apoptosis (while also suppressing caspase 3 apoptosis) and that he only has a 30% success rate with the need to stay on the supplement. Th1 is an early response to acute infections. It works fine for acute but when the virus becomes entrenched and especially if the virus becomes chronic, in the case of multiple chronic viruses then the amount of inflammation overwhelms the system and causes excessive immune attack. That's how covid kills through cytokine induced lung inflammation. Given that chronic viruses evolved numerous ways to block apoptosis it makes more sense to me to target that instead and it has been successful as immunotherapy for cancer. However, even with that given the large amounts of virally infected cells I suspect that it can systemic lupus erythematosis if Gcmaf therapy is done for too long a period, as what happened in my case when I did it for the six month recommended duration that Goelic's manifacturer recommended.

Anyway, if Chia is only targeting Th1 and following Chinese medicine then it makes sense why he wouldn't think about apoptosis and why his formula would be formulated this way.
 
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Hip

Senior Member
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It looks like Chia got his idea to use oxymatrine and astalagus from Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Undoubtedly. I even tried Sophora root myself (it contains 2% oxymatrine), years before Dr Chia started using it, because I read this herb was used for coxsackievirus B in China. And in China oxymatrine is used for hepatitis B virus infection, quite effectively.



I wonder whether apoptosis is a desirable route to promote in enterovirus ME/CFS. The chronic non-cytolytic intracellular enterovirus infections just involve very small amounts of enteroviral RNA living in cells, and this RNA replicates very slowly. A large number of cells are infected, but each with a very small amount of enterovirus RNA. So if you promoted apoptosis, there might be large amounts of cell death.

Cells have other ways of ridding themselves of this viral RNA, such as the RNase L enzyme (which interferon releases) that destroys single-stranded RNA. And the dicer enzyme which destroys double-stranded RNA.

But for some reason, in ME/CFS the immune system struggles to clear this viral RNA from cells, even though there are only low levels of the RNA within cells.

There is a new idea from Lévêque et al to explain why the immune system struggles to clear enterovirus RNA. Briefly detailed in this post.
 

gbells

Improved ME from 2 to 6
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Undoubtedly. I even tried Sophora root myself (it contains 2% oxymatrine), years before Dr Chia started using it, because I read this herb was used for coxsackievirus B in China. And in China oxymatrine is used for hepatitis B virus infection, quite effectively.



I wonder whether apoptosis is a desirable route to promote in enterovirus ME/CFS. The chronic non-cytolytic intracellular enterovirus infections just involve very small amounts of enteroviral RNA living in cells, and this RNA replicates very slowly. A large number of cells are infected, but each with a very small amount of enterovirus RNA. So if you promoted apoptosis, there might be large amounts of cell death.

Cells have other ways of ridding themselves of this viral RNA, such as the RNase L enzyme (which interferon releases) that destroys single-stranded RNA. And the dicer enzyme which destroys double-stranded RNA.

But for some reason, in ME/CFS the immune system struggles to clear this viral RNA from cells, even though there are only low levels of the RNA within cells.

There is a new idea from Lévêque et al to explain why the immune system struggles to clear enterovirus RNA. Briefly detailed in this post.

I hear your concerns about apoptosis. If it were just enterovirus I would say you have a point however since many ME patients have dual DNA virus infections (HHV6, EBV, VZV) the only way to get rid of them without a working gene splicing treatment is to use apoptosis. Luckily Lerner says these infections are non-reproducing so hopefully the amount of infected cells apoptosing won't be so much that we have massive tissue damage and permanent disability or death. However, given how desperate we are for a cure and how poor our quality of life is, death doesn't really phase me that much personally. Anyway, I'm happy to be a guinea pig and will let you guys know how it goes. Also, there are limitations to how fast apoptosis can run. Supplements and antibodies have to apoptose layer by layer and it is very painful (you are literally burning away tissue from inside cells using free radicals) so there is an incentive not to overdo it and you can always decrease or take a break from the program.

Personally, I know I am positive for HHV6, EBV, coxsackie virus B5,6 and VZV and this already predisposes me to get cancer (which along with suicide are the two most common causes of death from ME). Also, I have ECG changes (ST segment elevation. left atrial enlargment) and pericarditis that I treat with colchicine daily. Heart changes can be seen on ECG. So it will be interesting to see what apoptosing the infected tissue will do to my heart and systemic lupus erythematosis. Who knows, maybe it will eliminate the source of the SLE antibodies and fix the pericarditis. Nothing ventured nothing gained. If I see problems worsening too much I'll re-evaluate.

However, so far I've been doing my current apoptosis regimen for several months without addressing coxsackie and I've been tolerating it without much ado, no heart failure/transplant, in fact my depression and anxiety have significantly decreased in severity, frequency and duration so I know it must be decreasing the HHV6 Sith1 protein so HHV6 viral load should be dropping. The question is whether adding specific supplements for coxsackie virus apoptosis blocks will enhance the process (shorten duration of treatment, improve outcome) or if it won't matter and will just be extra cost and effort because the current regimen is effective enough.

Also, if I will get cancer anyway from the viruses then I'll need to remove that tissue anyway so it is probably better to remove it with apoptosis before the cancer starts than after it gets going and metastacizes (we ME patients never seem to get a break). Also, if medicine can't handle ME viruses then I don't have a lot of confidence it can do much for cancer + ME.
 
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Hip

Senior Member
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@Hip What's the current treatment recommendation for single coxsackie virus infection with no other coinfections?

Dr Chia is the only one I know who experiments with enterovirus treatments, and he uses oxymatrine (sometimes he adds inosine to boost this), Epivir (makes some modest improvements in some people) and tenofovir (can make some substantial improvements in those it helps). All of these are pretty cheap, and usually well-tolerated. Taking tenofovir requires regular kidney tests, but your doctor can do that.



The only way I could think of a person having that would be if their doctor had them on steriods while they caught it and before they could generate antibodies.

Yes, Dr Chia found being given corticosteroids during an acute infection is a disaster, it often leads to ME/CFS.

Chronic stress also weakens immunity by raising corticosteroid levels. There are several studies showing lots of people were hit with ME/CFS when they caught a viral infection after a period of chronic stress (eg, from divorce or bereavement).

In my case I caught my virus not long after a serious organophosphate pesticide exposure, and I wonder whether the organophosphates weakened my immunity. There are studies showing major organophosphate exposure substantially increases the risk of ME/CFS.
 
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I had a pretty rough time getting started on Equilibrant too. It definitely made me much more sick at first, but I was determined to make it work. I started off with 1/4 of one pill per day which was way too much. I kept trying with 1/8th and even 1/16th of a pill but it was still too much. I eventually decided to crush the pills into powder and measure out milligram dose increments, starting with 10mg. I did this for several months and it was tolerable but just barely.


This is what ended up working for me, after being on these small amounts for several months I finally was able to see Dr. Chia and he put me on lamivudine. As soon as I started this drug I was suddenly able to tolerate way more Equilibrant and quickly increased the dose over several months until I was up to the full 6 pills a day dose. I've since gone beyond that and currently take 8 pills per day, if I take any less symptoms start to recur.
Hi, new member here :). I know this is an old thread, so I wanted to ask.. how has oxymatrine been working for you the past couple of years? And are you still taking 8 pills per day? Also, I'm curious by what you mean about the symptoms recurring if you take any less than 8 pills. Do you mean that you revert back to your previous state before the pills? Or does it get worse than that?
I'm asking because I'm debating whether or not I should start taking Oxymatrine, without the supervision of Dr. Chia.
 

halcyon

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Hi, new member here :). I know this is an old thread, so I wanted to ask.. how has oxymatrine been working for you the past couple of years? And are you still taking 8 pills per day? Also, I'm curious by what you mean about the symptoms recurring if you take any less than 8 pills. Do you mean that you revert back to your previous state before the pills? Or does it get worse than that?
I'm asking because I'm debating whether or not I should start taking Oxymatrine, without the supervision of Dr. Chia.
Unfortunately I had to eventually stop taking it. About 3 years into my illness (I don’t know if this relates to the findings of Lipkin/Hornig or was just a coincidence) I suddenly went from moderate to severe. A few months later I then developed MCAS and had to stop taking it. I attempted restarting it at tiny crumbs of a pill again but it would severely exacerbate symptoms and was intolerable, so I had to abandon it completely.

I think the tolerability of it must depend heavily then on immune status, but what the specifics are of that I have no clue. I’d say if you’re mild or moderate it’s worth a try, starting at low doses, but if you’re more severe it may be completely intolerable.
 
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@halcyon Sorry about the MCAS :(.. how are you managing with that? And do you think there's any chance that developing MCAS was linked to the oxymatrine?
(Btw I don't quite understand what you mean by the findings of Lipkin/Hornig in the link you put up.)
 

halcyon

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@halcyon Sorry about the MCAS :(.. how are you managing with that? And do you think there's any chance that developing MCAS was linked to the oxymatrine?
(Btw I don't quite understand what you mean by the findings of Lipkin/Hornig in the link you put up.)
I get by, with trigger avoidance and premedication with cromolyn and flavonoids. It's possible that Equilibrant might have been involved, but I did have symptoms of mast cell activation months prior to first starting it. I attribute it more acutely to possibly a double hit of medications (lisinopril and antibiotics).

Lipkin and Hornig found a difference in immune parameters in people sick less than 3 years and greater than 3 years, though I believe at least one further study failed to replicate these findings. I've just wondered if this could be related, given that I transitioned suddenly to severe ME right around the 3 year mark.
 
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I get by, with trigger avoidance and premedication with cromolyn and flavonoids. It's possible that Equilibrant might have been involved, but I did have symptoms of mast cell activation months prior to first starting it. I attribute it more acutely to possibly a double hit of medications (lisinopril and antibiotics).

Lipkin and Hornig found a difference in immune parameters in people sick less than 3 years and greater than 3 years, though I believe at least one further study failed to replicate these findings. I've just wondered if this could be related, given that I transitioned suddenly to severe ME right around the 3 year mark.
I see, thanks for the detailed explanation :)
 

godlovesatrier

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@halcyon hello. Can I ask were you working when you took Equilibrant and when you say you didn't tolerate it what do you mean? Intolerance seems to vary from person to person. Was the worsening of symptoms so severe that was the main issue? And did that involve very bad brainfog?

I am assuming epivir was given becuase you had bad neurologicsl and cognitive dysfuncitin brought on by cytokine activity as the Equilibrant essentially knocked your braincells around in an attempt to stay alive while being killed off.

Thanks.
 

godlovesatrier

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Chatted to a few people on here now. Seems 3 patients Inc Alex halycon and flitza who were all taking Equilibrant short or long term relapsed badly into more severe states while on it.

To be honest I was just going back over my timeline. I think my oxymatrine crash April 2019 messed me up as I've never recovered fully in terms of energy envelope. I've got other things under control but maximal energy expenditure remains dented. Guess it's all related :/

Bit of a warning for others.
 

Judee

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A few months later I then developed MCAS and had to stop taking it. I attempted restarting it at tiny crumbs of a pill again but it would severely exacerbate symptoms and was intolerable, so I had to abandon it completely.

Is it possible the reaction was to some of the ingredients? (There are two different food dyes in Equilibrant which is one of the reasons why I tried to make my own version and then just ended switching to straight oxymatrine?)
 

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I had CFS for probably a decade before I tried this particular treatment. Again, could be coincidence to some extent, but I got worse after taking EQ. I did not ramp up my activity since I never felt better on the treatment; if anything, I was less active because of the increased fatigue.

I might have been a candidate for coupling EQ with other drugs, but that seemed even riskier to try that on my own without being under the direct supervision of Dr. Chia. I guess that's what I'm trying to say - attempting treatments without supervision by a knowledgeable physician is risky.

Hey Rich D,

We're you able to at least recover ? I am going through the same thing atm. Could use any advice.