I’m working on a couple of posts/articles/essays right now about how all sorts of chronic diseases, from diabetes to alzheimer’s to autism, are caused by mitochondrial damage and oxidative stress. I’m pointing out that pharmaceuticals cause mitochondrial damage and oxidative stress. Of course, I’m focusing on my least-favorite pharmaceuticals, fluoroquinolones, and am trying to make a case that fluoroquinolones cause many chronic diseases.
That line of thinking is scary as hell for those of us who have had a bad reaction to a fluoroquinolone.
What does the connection between fluoroquinolone induced mitochondrial damage / oxidative stress and chronic diseases mean for us? What is our prognosis? Are we going to come down with diabetes or Alzheimer’s? Are our kids going to be autistic? Scary stuff – aaaarghhhh!!! New plan – run and hide on a tropical island far from the internet.
Just so you all know, I’m not sure what it all means. I am doing my best to put together the pieces of the puzzle. I’m doing my best to draw conclusions from reputable sources. I’m doing my best to understand what happened in my body when the Cipro bomb went off in me. In trying to understand what happened, I’m stumbling upon articles that point to the possibility that the problem is bigger than we think. It is possible that fluoroquinolones are causally related to fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome / M.E., all autoimmune diseases, depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, diabetes, Alzheimer’s, autism, some kinds of cancer, and more. Are all cases of those chronic diseases caused by fluoroquinolones? Of course not – most of the diseases are older than fluoroquinolones. But it’s possible that they have increased hand in hand with fluoroquinolone use because of the damage that fluoroquinolones do to mitochondria, and the oxidative stress that they induce.
It’s also possible that other drugs are the primary culprits. And I suppose that it’s even possible that junk food that is full of free radical producting chemicals is the culprit behind all the oxidative stress that people who have chronic diseases experience. Or maybe the problem is GMO corn or childhood vaccines or pesticides or something else. There are pretty reputable sources that note that pharmaceuticals cause mitochondrial damage and oxidative stress though, so I’m betting that the culprits are Bayer, Johnson & Johnson, Merck, Pfizer, Abbvie and all the other pharmaceutical giants that are very good at making customers and very bad at actually promoting health.
Anyhow, the theory that fluoroquinolones cause mitochondrial damage / oxidative stress and that mito damage / oxidative stress are behind all sorts of chronic diseases is the theory that I’m going with. Whether I’m right or wrong is yet to be seen. Even though my theory may scare the crap out of you, your support is still greatly appreciated. 🙂
If I’m wrong, the case against fluoroquinolones is still pretty damning. With fluoroquinolones, one can convert an acute problem, an infection, into a chronic syndrome that includes destruction of connective tissue (tendons, ligaments, cartilage, fascia, etc.) throughout the body, damage to the nervous systems (central, peripheral and autonomic), and more. Fluoroquinolone toxicity can develop slowly or quickly. It can last for months or years. Tragically, some people don’t recover. But most people do – with time.
How fluoroquinolones cause the damage that they do is hugely complex and difficult to understand. Part of the damage mechanism is mitochondrial damage and oxidative stress, hence the trip down chronic disease lane. Other aspects of how fluoroquinolones work – DNA adducts, RNA transcription errors, disruption of tubulin assembly, etc. are equally daunting and potentially harmful. Ugh. Bad news.
But people do recover from fluoroquinolone toxicity. I did. I’m fully recovered. So are the other people who have shared their stories on www.floxiehope.com. I wonder if the chronic disease prognosis for those who recover is any different from the prognosis for those who don’t, or for those who take fluoroquinolones but don’t have an adverse reaction. I don’t think that a study to answer that question has been done. It would be interesting to find out the answer.
Right now, we don’t know the answers though, so we have to make assumptions about our health and our future. If you’re going to make baseless assumptions about your personal health prognosis though, they may as well be hopeful ones. Try to believe that you will heal and that once you heal you will be as capable, resilient and durable as you were before a fluoroquinolone knocked you down. Or, better yet, believe that floxing gave you some sort of health super-powers. Here is a crazy thought – what if our floxing reaction was actually protective against damaged cells and the conversion of those cells into chronic diseases? What if our horrible reaction was because of mass apoptosis (programmed cell death), and in dying, those cells kept from reproducing and leading to a chronic disease at some later time? Now that is a far-fetched hypothesis, but I kind of like it. I just hope that my recovery doesn’t mean that my bad cells are sticking around now. :p
Back to fluoroquinolones being related to the chronic diseases – what if I’m right? What if fluoroquinolone caused mitochondrial damage and oxidative stress is behind all of the chronic diseases of modernity? Well, it’s a sad state of affairs. But people should know about it. They should hear about it. They have the right to know.
But you are going to be fine. Try to believe it.