MCS Conference Tokyo 2009 – Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS)
MCS – International Conference, Tokyo Oct 3 – 4, 2009 JICA-Research Institute Treatment of Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS). Individual Detoxification with Natural Chelators (f.e.Glutathion), Minerals and Vitamins <The Hepar-Tox-Therapy> Klaus-Dietrich Runow MD Institut for Functional and Environmental Medicine (IFU) Buttlarstr. 4A D-34466 Wolfhagen- Germany www.umweltmedizin.org www.ifu.org
1.What is Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS)?
People who suffer from MCS react to very small amounts of many commonly used toxic chemicals. Many chemicals have the potential for acting as toxicants in initiating cases of MCS. pollutants in buildings (new: nanoparticles)
pollutants in cars (fogging substances) emissions from plastic materials solvent agents perfume cosmetics laundry powder smoke (cigarets and chimney) inhalants (pollen) foods drugs
MCS can occur after:
A. a sudden chemical overexposure (high dose initiated),
B. a long time exposure of small amounts of chemicals,
drugs, odors etc (low dose intitiated).
2. What ist the opinion of the Main Stream Medicine?
Patients, who suffer from MCS – they are afraid of chemical and pollutants. Some doctors say: „Yes, MCS may exist. But you don´t have it. Your symptoms are psychsomatic.“
3. The Functional Medicine Model
Functional Medicine moves away from the Disease Centered Medicine to a Patient Centered Medicine.
Sir William Osler: „It is much more important to know what sort of a patient has a disease than what sort of disease has a patient.“ Try to understand what your patient´s health and life were like before the onset of the present illness.
4. Randolph´s Specific Adaptation Syndrom (SAS) to environmental stressors
The term „stress“ was first used by psychologists before the endocrinologist Hans Selye in the 1930s . He later broadened and popularized the concept to include the response of the body to any demand. In Selye’s terminology, „stress“ refers to a condition, and „stressor“ to the internal reaction causing stress. It covers a huge range of phenomena from mild irritation to the kind of severe problems that might result in a real breakdown of health. Signs of stress (also chemical stressors) may be cognitive, emotional, physical or behavioral. Signs include poor judgment, a general negative outlook, excessive worrying, moodiness, irritability, agitation, inability to relax, feeling lonely or isolated, depressed, aches and pains, diarrhea or constipation, nausea, dizziness, chest pain, rapid heartbeat, eating too much or not enough, sleeping too much or not enough, withdrawing from others, procrastinating or neglecting responsibilities, using alcohol, cigarettes, or drugs to relax, and nervous habits (e.g. nail biting or pacing). Selye exposed rats and other animals to unpleasant or harmful stimuli
and discovered 3 stages of adaptation:
1.Alarm 2.Resitance 3.Exhaustion.
There are always the same stress response patterns (activation of the Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Adrenal (HPA) axis, producing cortisol etc.) to different stressors, he called it the „General Adaptation Sydrome (GAS)“. After a phase of a apparently adaptation (Phase 2) f.e. to chemicals, food, physical stres etc. the person comes into the state of Exhaustion; means: a breakdown of biochemical systems in the body. The rats in Selyes trial (exposed to the stressor coldness) died from Adrenal Hypofunction – the Adrenals had been completely destroyed in Phase 3. In comparison to the General Adaptation Syndrome (GAS) after Hans Selye, the environmental physician Prof. Theron Randolph (Internist, Psychiatrist) has developed the Specific Adaptation Syndrome (SAS). He discovered in his chemical sensitive patients that they have an individally long period of apparently (not really!) adaptation phase (Resistance Phase 2) without symptoms in spite of chemical exposure. At the end, in Phase 3 (Phase of Exhaustion) the person developes severe acute and chronic reactions like Multiple Chemical Sensitivity.
5. CAUSES: Precipitating Events, Triggers and Mediators (Fire in Body and Brain)
Regarding the possible causes of chemical sensitivity we discuss in the Functional Medicine Preciptitating Events, Triggers and Mediators.
1. Precipitating Events
A Reactive Arthritis after an amebic infection (Parasites) is called precipitating event. In MCS patients the Chemical Overexposure (solvents/paintings, pesticides, antibiotics, heavy metals etc.) can be the Precipitating Event.
Parasites, pathogenic bacteria, yeast and molds or food antigens and ingested toxins can act as continuous Triggers of inflammations like chronic colitis and digestive disorders. They have to be diagnosed and eliminated. In MCS patients the Triggers are different chemicals like solvents, plastic materials, parfume, pharmaceutical drugs and
also foods and food additives etc. They have to be diagnosed and eliminated.
Mediators are intermediates/metabolites that contribute to the manifestations of disease. Like Triggers, Mediators do not in and of themselves, cause disease. Mediators vary in form and substance; they may be biochemical (cytokines, prostanoids), ionic (like hydrogen ions), social (like reinforcement for staying ill), psychological (like fear) or cultural (like beliefs about the nature of illness). Common mediators of illness include hormones (Adrenal Hypofunction, Dysbalances of Melatonin, Progesteron etc.), free radicals, fear of pain or loss, poor self-esteem, learned helplessness and lack of relevant health information. The striking characteristics of all mediators is their lack of disease specifity.
6. Biochemical Individuality
MCS-Patients are Biochemical Individuals with their individual Precipitating Events, Triggers and Mediators which have led to chronic inflammation causing fire in body and brain. Once activated, chronic inflammation can lead to an Immun-Activation of our Glia-Cells in the brain – the so called Blood Brain Barrier (BBB). Because Glia-Cells are associated with the immune cells in the gut, we can understand what chronic digestive disorders may also cause in the brain: Mood and
behavioral disturbances, epilepsie, migraine, hyperactivity, depression etc. The cause for inflammations in the gut and digestive system can be the intake of drugs, chemicals, solvents, heavy metals, infections and hidden food allergies. A recent animal study demonstrated that mediators released from mast cells in tissue taken from irritabel bowel symdrome patients resulted in increased firing of visceral-nociceptive sensory neurons (pain triggering neurons) in rats. What means: Inflammatory Mediators influence the nervous system. Also there is a link between the Hypothalamic- Pituitary-Adrenal (HPA) axis and the gut immune system. Chronic Stress with chronic high levels of ACTH and Cortisol cause the release of proinflammatory cytokines Interleukin-6 (IL 6) and Interleukin 8 (IL 8). Because chemicals are able to upregulate inflammatory processes in the body and also in the brain both origines of inflammation have to be analysed in MCS patients. Based on these knowledges we have to investigate in MCS Patients whether they have developed chronic inflammatory processes in their body – a continuous fire caused by toxic or biological triggers and mediators?
7. Diagnostic Programme recommended for MCS-Patients
7.1. The Metabolic and Nutritional Status (Organic Acid Profiles),
Toxins etc. The most productive area in biochemical research over the past few years is the identification and isolation of the biochemical disease mediators. In addition to the regular medical analysis including toxicological tests the new urine test – Organic Acid Analysis (Organix Profile)- can help discovering Triggers and Mediators in MCS-Patients. The Original Comprehensive Organix Test (patent pending) provides a view into the body’s cellular metabolic processes and the efficiency of metabolic function. Identifying metabolic blocks or problems with detoxification, gut dysbiosis, or oxidative stress that can be treated nutritionally allows for individual tailoring of interventions. Targeted treatment can help maximize patient responses and lead to improved patient outcomes. Patients with MCS often show mitochondrial disturbances which cause a lack of energy production (ATP). Because the body needs about 80% of the energy for detoxification purposes, mitochondrial dysfunction leeds directly to an insufficient eliminatin of toxins. Substances like Glutathion, Alpha-Lipoic Acid and Coenzme Q 10 (Ubichinon) can help supporting the mitochondria, increasing the energy level and increasing the detoxification capacity.
7.2. Heavy Metal Toxicity
Some elements can accumulate in tissues causing toxic effects. Metal toxicity is a significant environmental health concern. A toxic load of lead, cadmium, mercury or arsenic is capable of rendering considerable damage to the brain and nervous system, particularly in children. Toxic elements produce their many negative effects through various
mechanisms. One mechanism, irreversible enzyme inhibition, is illustrated by the anemia caused when lead binds to enzymes in the hemoglobin synthesis pathway. Mercury causes enzyme poisoning. Lead and Mercury reduce Glutathion and cause a Vitamin B12 deficiency (Methyl-B12). The cancer-inducing effect of arsenic seems to be due to an inhibition
of DNA repair. Genotoxicity, in which chromosomes are damaged, is linked to the free radical generation abilities of cadmium, lead and nickel. Nutritional and toxic elements can be measured in Blood, Urin and Hair. Hair has a long history of successful use in detecting chronic exposure to toxic heavy metals in humans and animal models because hair
concentrates heavy metals several hundred fold above concentrations found in blood. When any of the toxic heavy metals are elevated in hair, there is reason to investigate the origin of exposure. High levels in hair may reflect early chronic exposure before other signs and symptoms appear. Another diagnostic tool is the analysis of Porphyrins. The Porphyrins
Profile can help identify the severity of heavy metal toxicity or organic chemical exposure in patients. Chemical exposure and a heavy toxic burden can have physiological effects resulting in impaired metabolism and cellular function. Porphyrin testing in the urine also helps to monitor the therapy in MCS patients.
7.3. Phthalates & Parabens Profile
The Phthalates & Parabens Profile can help identify everyday exposures to toxins from the use of items such as personal care products and plastic food containers. Environmental toxins should be evaluated as a „first step“ to help patients get back on the road to wellness. Why assess phthalate and paraben levels? Exposure to phthalates and parabens is more common than you may realize. Phthalates and parabens are often classified as xenoestrogens, foreign compounds in the body functioning as endocrine disruptors by binding specifically to estrogen receptors.
Endocrine disruptors are associated with diseases such as:
• Breast cancer
• Ovarian cancer
• Prostate cancer
• Testicular cancer
• Decreased sperm count
Other health problems associated with daily exposures are:
• Liver toxicity
• Immune effects such as allergies and asthma
• Reproductive toxicity
• Pubertal development
Where are phthalates and parabens found?
Phthalates, also called „plasticizers“, are found in numerous
everyday products such as:
• Children’s toys
• Cleaning products
• Air fresheners
• Vinyl flooring
• Plastic food containers
• Medical products
Di-(2-ethylhexyl) phthalate ester (DEHP) is a common additive to Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC). This additive helps make PVC soft and pliable to be molded into eye-pleasing shapes. PVC products are marked with the plastic identification code 3. The analytes measured in this profile are metabolites of DEHP. In perfumes and air fresheners, phthalates are often listed as „fragrance“.
7.4. Hidden Food Allergies
IgG4 antibodies are associated with non-atopic or „delayed“ food reactions that can worsen or contribute to many different health problems. These reactions are considered the most common form of immunologically mediated food intolerance. An IgG4 response to food is actually more common than the IgE response, which causes an immediate reaction. IgG4 acts as a blocking antibody, protecting the individual from potentially fatal IgE reactions. These reactions are more difficult to notice since they can occur hours or even days after consumption of an offending food. In some cases, a person’s reaction to a food may occur several days after eating the offending food and the link between the food and their symptoms may not be connected. These „hidden“ food allergies are caused by increasing blood levels of IgG4 antibodies in reaction to specific foods. New patent-pending IgG4 assay allows our test to show less false positives leading to better patient compliance.
7.5. Stool- and Digestive Analysis
The new stool test uses DNA analysis to identify microbiota including anaerobes, a previously immeasurable area of the gut environment. DNA assessment is specific and accurate, avoids the pitfalls of sample transport, reports results as specific numbers, and is more sensitive than classic laboratory methods. The stool analysis detects as few as 5 cells per gram – a 5000-fold increase in sensitivity over microscopy for parasite detection.
Why Use Stool Analysis?
Gastrointestinal function is important for general health. The intestinal tract contains significant amounts of bacteria; some beneficial, some neutral, and some harmful. Balancing beneficial microbial flora in the gut is key to proper digestion, efficient nutrient usage, and ridding the body of waste and pathogens. Poor digestion and malabsorption can lead to immune dysfunction, nutritional insufficiencies, mental/emotional disorders, and autoimmune diseases.
8. Therapy: The DNA-Concept
I have summarized our therapeutical strategy and call it The DNAConcept, because it is based on 3 „pillars“.
Detoxification Nutritional – Therapie Anti-Stress-Management
– Clean Environment + Detoxification
– Orthomolecular supplements (Vitamins, Minerals)
– Anti-Stress-Programmes: Physical Therapy with Sauna, Massages, Sport etc.
– Individual Coaching: personal medical education of the
„Basics“ of Environmental and Functional Medicine
The aim is :
1. Increasing Detoxification Capacity
2. Antiinflammatory (Stopp the fire in body and brain)
3. Physical and mental stability
8.1. The Hepar-Tox Detoxification:
The optimized nutritional support program In our Detoxification programme, called the HEPAR-TOX Therapy, we give infusions (i.v. Therapy) with Vitamins, Minerals and body own sulfur containing chelating substances like Glutathion and Alpha-Lipoic Acid. We don´t use synthetic chelators like EDTA or DMPS. On the basis of the above mentioned medical analysis we create an individual tailored optimized nutritional support program to normalize nutrient-dependend metabolic functions.
The following supplements are important tools in our detoxification therapy:
Coenzyme Q10 (Ubichinon)
Vitamin-B Complex (incl. Niacin, Pyridoxal-5-phosphat + Methyl-B12)
Antioxidants (High Dose Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Polyphenols)
Minerals and Trace Elements: Magnesium, Zinc, Selenium
9. Ecological Architectur and Environmental Medicine
People who suffer from MCS have to be treated in a safe environment. 20 years ago, in 1989, I have decided to build the Institute for Environmental Diseases, applying the latest knowledge of ecological architecture in a little spa village located in Northern Hessia in the center of Germany. The lime mortar used for the plastering of the walls and the open pored mineral pigments in the paints have the ability to filter, bind and neutralize toxic substances. Low moisture and a short drying time as well as good insulating qualities were important criteria in selecting these building materials. We required our suppliers and contractors to provide proof that the materials delivered contained no radiation, toxic vapors or odorous substances (low emission products). For treatment of the wood components, terpene-free natural lacquers
and specially developed waxes for sensitive patients were used. For reduction of electromagnetic fields we have used shielded cables. In order to avoid oscillating fields caused by plugged-in electrical appliances, all circuits are equipped with circuit switches, which cut off electronically all current in the lines when the appliances are turned off.
The circuit wiring have laid in a star-shaped fashion. New Projects in Wolfhagen – the historic city in the land of the
Brothers Grimm At the moment we are planing together with the city of Wolfhagen / Germany a new ecological project: Eco-Hotel Castle Wolfhagen (Wolfhager Burg). Wolfhagen is the historic city of half-timbered houses
in the fairy tale land of the Brothers Grimm. One of the Grimm Brothers, Ludwig Emil Grimm, used to live in Wolfhagen. He painted numerous pictures for the famous collection of fairy tales written by his brothers Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm. The city has been established in the year 1231 from Landgrave Conrad of Thuringia. Close to the Edertalsperre
(Edel valley barrier) and west of the old kurhessischen (Hessian elctorate) capital of Kassel with ist wealth of monuments, it is one of the most beautiful part of the Central German Uplands region. The number of people suffering from Multiple Chemical Sensitivity (MCS) ist growing constantly. These persons who are more and more socially isolated, need safe places where they can stay, relax, make holidays or stay for medical treatment. Therefore it is urgent necessary to build houses, hospitals and hotels on the basis of the knowledges of ecological architecture and applied environmental medicine. We are privileged to get suppport by the local government – especially from our major Mr. Reinhard Schaake, who
supports our projects very much under the motto: Environmental Technology meets Environmental Medicine. His aim is also the energy production out of 100% regenerative sources until the year 2015. Last year Wolfhagen received the „Energy Friendly Town“ award from the federal government.
1. Runow, Klaus-Dietrich : “Wenn Gifte auf die Nerven gehen” (If toxic
chemicals attack the nervous system – How we can protect our brain and
nerves by detoxification). Südwest Verlag / Random House Verlagsgruppe,
Munich, Germany, 2nd Edition, April 2009
2. Leo Galland, Helen Lafferty : Gastrointestinal Dysfunction: Connections to
Chronic Disease., A Functional Medicine Monograph; The Institute for
Functional Medicine, 2008
Diagnostic + Therapy Center:
Institut for Functional and Environmental Medicine (IFU)
Medical Director: Klaus-Dietrich Runow
D-34466 Wolfhagen- Germany
Wolfhagen – the historic city in the fairy tale land of the Brothers Grimm
Town and Tourist Info
Tel: ++49-5692-602-102 or -103
Fax: Tel: ++49-5692-602-190