Fluoroquinolone Toxicity News in South Africa – Carte Blanche

I encourage you all to watch, and share, the WONDERFUL news story from Carte Blanche, a South African investigative journalism television series, about the dangers of fluoroquinolones. It’s one of the best pieces of journalism I have seen regarding fluoroquinolone adverse-effects. You can view the story through the Carte Blanche web site, or through Youtube:

Carte Blanche Web Site, “Antibiotic Alert”

Video Link

Carte Blanche tells the stories of pain brought on by fluoroquinolones for three South African “floxies,” Tracy Witelson, Gerald Ludwinsky, and Debbi Kinrade. Their stories are powerful and poignant, and they thoroughly describe the horror of fluoroquinolone toxicity.

The Carte Blanche journalist that interviews the victims of fluoroquinolones, as well as Bayer representatives and representatives of the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA), does a WONDERFUL job of compassionately framing the stories of the victims, and pushing the pharmaceutical and SAHPRA representatives by asking them tough questions, challenging them, and doing what he can to hold them accountable for the harm done by fluoroquinolones.

In an exchange that is simply wonderful, journalist Derek Watts goes over the newly (2016-2018) highlighted warnings included on the FDA warning labels for fluoroquinolones (including a warning that notes that fluoroquinolones can cause permanent disability, one that notes that the risks of fluoroquinolone use outweigh the benefits, one that notes that fluoroquinolones cause blood-sugar irregularities and mental health adverse-effects, and one that notes that fluoroquinolones increase the risk of aortic aneurysm and dissection) with Dr. Naren Jairam, the Bayer Pharmaceuticals representative. Dr. Jairam dismissively asserts that these warnings are nothing new. Watts responds by asking Jairam why Bayer hasn’t been communicating the dangers of fluoroquinolones with doctors (much less patients). Jairam claims that Bayer supports responsible use of antibiotics and that Bayer has advocated that fluoroquinolones not be used as first-line antibiotics. Watts CALLS HIM OUT and says, “That’s not true,” and notes that millions of prescriptions for non-life-threatening infections are being given all over the world. It is truly wonderful to see a quick-witted journalist asking tough questions of pharmaceutical company representatives, and calling them out when they lie and mislead.

In another exchange, Watts asks Jairam, “Is your intention to obfuscate or clarify?” VERY good question – thank you for having the chutzpah to ask, Mr. Watts!

Watts also confronts Eric Chauke, Bayer’s Head of Regulatory Affairs, by asking him to show that Bayer is communicating the risk of harm by fluoroquinolones with doctors. Chauke shows Watts some general pamphlets on antibiotic stewardship, and Watts pushes back – noting that there is nothing in what Chauke is showing him that adequately communicates that fluoroquinolones can have “dreadful side-effects” or that adequately communicates that fluoroquinolones should not be used as first-line antibiotics.

Watts also asks Professor Marc Blockman, a representative of the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA), some tough questions. He asks whether or not the SAHPRA warnings are adequate, and why SAHPRA can’t send a communication to doctors stating, “don’t prescribe these drugs unless it’s life threatening and there is no alternative?” Patient advocates have been asking the same thing for years, and it’s nice to hear a journalist ask this question to a drug regulator.

I love how tough Watts is on the Bayer and SAHPRA representatives. He is doing a wonderful job at being a journalist that brings to light stories of victims, and holding those in-power responsible for their role in victimizing people.

Please watch and share the Carte Blanche piece on fluoroquinolones. It’s wonderful, and it would be great for it to be internationally “viral.”



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20 thoughts on “Fluoroquinolone Toxicity News in South Africa – Carte Blanche

  1. Patrick Jordan February 3, 2019 at 9:41 am Reply

    This was a completely unexpected post. I am so busy I can’t see straight so I would like to ask anyone to investigate the: “mechanism of action, blood sugar metabolism, fluoroquinolones” and post here for the rest of us. This is a HUGE part of the puzzle. Please pay close attention to anything that involves insulin being affected by FQ’s. Thanks.

  2. Carbone February 3, 2019 at 11:50 am Reply

    All I feel is anger mixed with dispair. With the understanding there is no compensation and I must just get used to it.

  3. Ruth Dixon February 3, 2019 at 10:08 pm Reply

    This is the best article I have seen on fluoroquinolones. I was given Cipro and Levaquin intravenously with six pills of Cipro for projectile vomiting and diarrhoea seventeen years ago. Three hours after the last pill, those drugs took my life away. I have had both knees replaced, Achilles tendon surgery, knee arthroscopy, toe surgery due to distonia, and now needing hands and arms surgery, one and a half years psychiatric counselling to learn how to deal with the disabilities and continuous pain, inability to work, inability to do any of the sports I used to; can no longer drive at night, remember what I read; sometimes have trouble speaking, get lost in a town I’ve lived in for about forty years; have neuropathies, hypothyroidism, muscle wasting, muscle spasms, nerve damage; can’t spell anymore, can’t write legibilly, can’t hold a pencil properly, and it just goes on and on. I never know what to expect. My eating habits have completely changed as I now have to be very cautious of eating anything treated with fluoroquinolones because I crash and burn, then have to start recovery all over again. I have disassociation disorder because my body doesn’t feel right or like it is even mine anymore. I have horrendous nightmares that I am unable to wake up from when I can actually sleep, usually three to four hours a night and am chronically fatigued every afternoon. Like I said, it goes on and on. I was an active, contributing member of my community, working and participating on several boards. My artistic endeavors were beginning to be acknowledged. I was physically active, x-country skiing, mountain biking, hiking, etc. Now I can’t even stand on one leg without immediately falling over. I don’t want sympathy. I want those pharmaceutical producers to stop handing these drugs out like candy and to be held responsible in a world court for what they are doing to us.

    • Patrick Jordan February 3, 2019 at 11:15 pm Reply

      Hi Ruth. Sorry to hear about your list of problems. Any single one of them would be hard enough to deal with. What stood out was you inability to drive at night. Please explain more about that. As to sleeping: I have been experimenting with amino acids in order to facilitate sleep. The problem is that some of them encourage the replication of viruses like herpes in some people so nothing is a magic bullet cure-all for everyone. The goal with the amino acids is to remove ammonia that is a byproduct of microbe growth. If anyone on this thread can tell me if ammonia metabolism gets broken by FQs that would be a big help.

      • Mariaan February 4, 2019 at 3:05 am Reply

        Have you been trying citro soda, I take some 1 a day with lots of water

    • Mariaan February 4, 2019 at 3:03 am Reply

      Sounds like me, I’m trying to detox myself but have more bad days than good days, my mixture of herbs which I have been selling as an antiviral helps a lot, little did I know that it was probably this mixture that was helping, I was given Ciploxx like smarties, and earlier years ciprobay, I struggle to walk properly and have skin discolouration but can still do my own house work, I thank the Lord for that. Be blessed

      • Patrick Jordan February 4, 2019 at 11:16 am Reply

        Hi Mariaan. I am really intrigued now. Why antivirals? Was it related to the original condition where FQs were used? or Is it unrelated to the original presentation but has to do with FQ toxicity? I ask because the whole connective tissue meltdown has ascorbic acid at the center, and there is one thing that destroys viruses like a lightening bolt and that is ascorbic acid. Therefore, we have to wonder if the viral load of folks is depleting the vitamin C levels to a point where connective tissue cannot rebuild. (I can think of a dozen other scenarios, but this one is new and possibly unexplored). Please explain the skin discoloration: what does it look like and where is it? The body often gives external clues right over traditional chinese medicine organ meridians as if it is shouting at us: Hey! Look over here!

        • Chris February 4, 2019 at 12:38 pm

          That’s why at a bare minimum folks should be taking some sort of multivitamin for life at this point. Certain fruits as well.

          I have the skin condition and have had it for a couple years. It’s like shingles but not that bad. A blotch here and there on the upper torso neck area. It doesn’t heal by itself no matter how long you wait. My doctor gave me acyclovir 200mg and I don’t have HSV 1 or 2 aside from zoster (chicken pox) we all get as kids. It’s helped the lesions and I don’t have to worry about an upset stomach. I was also told by two of my many doctors that for all viral syndrome or the viral flu I am to take acyclovir.
          Crazy at it sounds it works.

        • Patrick Jordan February 4, 2019 at 1:19 pm

          Doesn’t sound crazy that an antiviral would have an effect when you know microbiology and biophysics. It seems that people with or without being floxed are hosts to multiple systemic viral infections. I know several people were severely damaged by acyclovir long term use. As a guanine synthase inhibitor I could never sort out how the drug knew the difference between the host DNA and the viral DNA, so I equate it with chemotherapy. That being said, in order to replace it then we have to consider natural anti-virals instead. Problem is that many floxies may be on pain killers so the opioids and THCs will allow viruses into cells to replicate. Catch twenty-two and three-quarters…
          Is your skin condition only on one side or does it cross over your midline left or right?

        • Chris February 4, 2019 at 2:00 pm

          Most folks have told me acyclovir? I can see where some are coming from. But they work as intended for viruses.

          I have a 21 year history in the medical field with the US military. I have worked with dozens and dozens of doctors and specialists . I have let them all know about this.

          As to your question, I have about 4 lesions right now around my neck area. Front, sides and back. They won’t heal for about a year if I don’t use acyclovir. If I do they typically go away but again they don’t bother me and my healing has slowed down. A typical dog scratch took about 4-5 days to completely go away now it’s 2-3 weeks. It’s improving.

          Another key thing to know as we age our sensitivity to things gets larger. Meaning our list gets longer and we can never go back. With being floxed I have see a dozen new sensitivities I never had in 40 years. Now I avoid them and I am better.

        • Mariaan February 6, 2019 at 11:46 pm

          Hi, maybe the combination of herbs I have for viruses was unknowingly helping to stop further damage from the antibiotics, the discolouration is the bottom part of my legs and feet, with stabbing pains now and again but have found that Omega 3 helps

        • Patrick Jordan February 7, 2019 at 1:25 am

          Bottom of the feet is definitely Kidney Merdian in TCM. Check out Ray Peat and Lita Lee on their views of Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids. Have you ever tried olive oil and/or coconut oil in place of PUFAs? If so do you get the same kind of relief? I eat a vegan diet so animal oils are not an issue but a compromise would be to eat fish rather than taking fish oils; or whole nuts and seeds instead of refined oils. What we are trying to establish is if all AlterNOTive interventions might not be a Devil’s Bargain of using things like omega-3s that give temporary relief because they are so prone to oxidation once they incorporate into the tissue that the relief they give comes with an expiration date. Many inteventions have become so canonized to the point where no one critically evaluates them from a biophysics point of view, so no one is asking the hard questions.

    • Chris February 4, 2019 at 3:09 am Reply

      Sorry to hear about all you’re going through Ruth. That’s awful. I am right there with you. You’re at 17 years in with this. That tells me and everyone here some are permanent cases and some are very very long healing processes. I am one of those as well. I am at year 3. I took 60 500mg tablets and now am at 90%. I will never be 100% and my sensitivity to things went way up along with very slow healing. I can take steroids and NSAIDs now but any soda or caffeine and it’s lights out. I was lucky enough to have a doctor very familiar with this and has gotten me back to almost normal. It’s scares me feeling better and better because I have been sick for a long time. My keys to me getting over 90% are;
      1) probiotic
      2) multivitamin
      3) being active
      4) water
      5) green diet
      6) certain fruits and vegetables

      This has made it so I am not sick day to day. Still have eye pain and insomnia and stool/bowel issues and all three may be permanent at this point. I can live with that.

      I watched this video and passed it around to US military doctors and US military pharmacists I worked with and for during my 21 years of active duty. They believe all of us and they are currently not using any Cipro or levaquin for routine illnesses. Life and death situation only.

      Thanks for sharing and I pray we will all improve to 100%!

  4. Greg February 8, 2019 at 2:35 pm Reply

    It is amazing how utter stupidity has been allowed to enter the mainstream through the pomposity of ignorant fools. I believe Derek Watts would be the last person from whom I’d be taking any advice let alone medical advice. For years the Carte Blanche TV program’s half baked investigations have managed to mislead uninformed viewers. I believe the time has come for this ridiculous program to fade into the distance. Far from asking that Bayer should be doing more to discourage the use of quinolones. The public should be cautioned against the pseudo-scientific, scientology-like suggestions made by Derek Watts. His implication is that patients put their lives at risk by not complying with their treatment regimes. This report is one of the most irresponsible reports I have ever seen. Please consult your doctor before giving any heed to ignorant reporting. It is a classic example of the dangers of “a little bit if knowledge”.

  5. Debs March 14, 2019 at 2:51 am Reply

    Consulting my Dr is something I do not do unless I have no other choice, as I am VERY aware of just HOW misinformed they are, & just how much they do NOT know, how little knowledge they have into the mechanisms, & potential harms of the various drugs they prescribe, either when prescribed alone, or concurrently with others.
    In fact, I would strongly recommend that when a physician is consulted that the understanding at the front of the patients mind should be at ALL times the following : ‘ I am actually not actually speaking to my Dr, I AM speaking to the pharmaceutical industry ‘. With that thought & understanding at the front of my mind when I personally consult with my Dr, I listen to what they say, I also take on board the Drs advice, then I go home & do my OWN research IN DEPTH into WHAT they have advised . Believe me, doing that personal research has saved me from further harm more than once.

  6. Kim Jansen April 2, 2019 at 4:01 am Reply

    I have just attempted to watch this piece, but the Carte Blanche website link comes up with a ‘The page you were looking for doesn’t exist’ error, whilst the Youtube link comes up with a ‘This video is unavailable’ message. Any idea what has happened? And is there anywhere else this can be viewed?


  7. Kerry April 7, 2019 at 11:18 am Reply

    How come I can’t access this video anymore? I’ve tried and tried. I want to show my family and am applying for an extension on my housing, because I can barely move. I wanted to show them this. Does anyone know how to access this video or send me a good link? Or did the BigPharma make it inaccessible? Please help if at all can. Lisa? Anyone? I feel like a simple printout does not do the adverse reaction justice. These people in this story do.
    My email is kes48@live.com

  8. lisalisa12years May 1, 2019 at 11:41 am Reply

    Please be careful of acid reducers. Nexium a popular one was found to cause kidney damage. Also research shows most people don’t produce enough stomach acids. Being floxed is a horrible thing I’m 13 years out. I feel fine sometimes than down and out ? I just read the article about how the Cipro / qunolones. Were able to change the DNA of cells that carry lipids and other things we need to other cells. Scientists are trying to figure it out now. Hoping they’ll at least find a way to stop it. If not a complete cure. Stopping more symptoms as time goes on. I beleived the tendons tears were the worst side effect. I was wrong I have progressive neuropathy heart valve and heart damage. Intercranial pressure causes horrible migraines. The list goes on , as I do everything possible to help slow this down. Ensuring I take the vitamins and minerals I’m depleted or low in subligually. That actually helps tremendously. Along with colostrum which actually helps with my shoulders, knees and ankles with the pain from inflammation. We all need to do whatever helps us as we’re all different. All apply no fluoride. No chlorine ( be careful of pools ) Magnisium is a definite plus. Wishing all the best health and healing possible. I believe if I started trying to heal earlier I wouldn’t have been SO hurt. I went fives years before knowing I was floxed. I had tremors nightmares fatigue so bad I stopped driving. Left shoulder excruciating pain due to tendons tearing. They’re both totally destroyed. I quit smoking to try to help myself. I blew up with water. Apparently the nicotine was being attacked instead of me. That’s when my heart valves developed regugatation and now my left ventricular function is slow. My brain feels scrambled at times. I have horrible anxiety and depression. I’m fighting as hard as possible. It just gets really hard sometimes as you all know. I keep trying and get SO upset and angry when I see people saying they’re a year out ??????? These TOXINS need to be banned. If I were faced with taking a chance in a life or death situation knowing what I know now. I would definitely take my chances. Using oil of oregano capsules with probiotics and pre biotics. I just had an upper respiratory infection. It was cured in three days. Using natural materials. Unless anyone’s allergic to oregano. It works. BORAGE tea for allergies. Works as an antihistamine. Actually builds up in my system. Allergies are horrific this year. I didn’t start the tea until I already became ill. I’m drinking it every am now. ✌ and Health to all

  9. K. Critchfield June 6, 2019 at 2:00 am Reply

    I am suffering from Perioheral Neuropothy I believe as a result of taking Cipriobay when I had an infection after surgery for kidney stones I would like to enquire about contacting other patients who have the same condition with a view to starting a claim against Bayer Pharmaceuticals Can someone give me contact details for the people interviewed on Carte Blanche

  10. K. Critchfield June 6, 2019 at 2:00 am Reply

    I am suffering from Perioheral Neuropothy I believe as a result of taking Cipriobay when I had an infection after surgery for kidney stones I would like to enquire about contacting other patients who have the same condition with a view to starting a claim against Bayer Pharmaceuticals Can someone give me contact details for the people interviewed on Carte Blanche

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