Tara’s Story – Healing from Levaquin Effects

Taraheadshot2015

*The following is an individual’s story of surviving fluoroquinolone toxicity. It is not medical advice. Please see the disclaimer at the bottom of the story. Thank you, and please be cautious with all treatments. 

Healing from Fluoroquinolone Toxicity

In August 2015, I took Levaquin for a sinus infection. School had just started and my oldest went into 6th grade and I was about to homeschool my youngest in 2nd grade. 11 days into the 14 day prescription, I unfortunately found out what FQ toxicity is – I wasn’t able to walk and my Achilles tendons both swelled and I had muscle weakness in my legs – then it felt like my head started to “lift” off, I began hallucinating, my heart started beating oddly (I believe it was prolonged QT intervals), I became nauseous, and I either passed out or went to sleep. Thank God, I woke up the next morning…I didn’t know if I would and remember thinking, “I don’t want to die and leave my kids”.

I did a lot of research the next day and found out that it was called FQ toxicity and like many of you, read the horror stories and prepared myself. I prayed that God would help me through it. Three days later, a rush went over my head and through my face and symptoms began. I called the doctor the next morning and was barely able to use a phone. I couldn’t get words out that I wanted to say and felt like I was walking in a fog. I had panic attacks and anxiety out of the blue – which I knew from my training in clinical psych to breathe calmly and think positive thoughts such as “there is no real danger, the antibiotic is tricking my brain, but I’m fine” – eventually this stopped happening – it breaks the cycle of panic attacks. My neck wouldn’t hold up my head (later, my chiropractor told me I was experiencing neurotoxicity) and over the next month or two, I got better from some symptoms, while others emerged like short term/long term memory loss, trouble processing info, couldn’t read or focus, had an asthma attack, apparently due to lots of toxins in the lungs, developed TMJ as a result of the nerve and CNS damage.

My doctor said he couldn’t help me. A naturopath said she couldn’t help me and some symptoms might be permanent. Another doctor gave me corticosteroids, which I took and yes, it made symptoms worse. I later read absolutely don’t do that. I agree. I also tried a steroid inhaler when I developed asthma symptoms and it made symptoms worse also. I gave up on doctors for the moment.

Yes, it was scary and crazy to me that during the worst time of my life- emotionally, mentally, and physically-  there was not a doctor to turn to for info and help on how to treat FQ toxicity.

However, I did find a wonderful chiropractic office that incorporated nutrition, detox, physical therapy, and chiropractic care. The chiropractor had a specialty in functional neurology and was able to explain the symptoms to me and what was happening, which was incredibly helpful.

Another chiropractor at the office specialized in nutrition and was able to help me get on the right supplements to detox and heal the gut and introduced me to fasting – which was the most useful tool I found for healing the brain. I was able to think better after each fast – I’m doing one every 20 days. After my last 5-day fast, I was able to read and focus again. Proper diet and fasting does amazing things for the body and brain. There are great articles on why and neurologists are now saying “if you want to heal the brain, heal the gut”. I had leaky gut as well as neurological symptoms, so for me, this was a crucial and must needed step to heal from FQ toxicity symptoms. Note: In my fasting program, I drank lemon juice and real maple syrup with spring water during the fast as well as spring water by itself to keep minerals and nutrients high even while fasting. I also still had bone broth.

Most of all, being surrounded by people telling me I could and would heal and caring for me in the process, was just as important as anything they actually did to help me. Support is healing.

Lots of symptoms and lots of losses occurred in those couple of months. I love to run, read, drink coffee and wine, be social, play with my kids, and volunteer – but this all needed put on hold to heal. I kept hearing the phrase, “my people are destroyed for lack of knowledge” so I dove into all the research I could read and books I could find.

After many hours, days, and months of research and reading the books, articles, blog posts, etc available on FQ toxicity, below is the regimen I finally ended up on to heal from FQ toxicity.

Of all the books, articles, etc, I would recommend reading The Fluoroquinolone Toxicity Solution by Kerri Knox. It can be found at http://www.fqtoxicity.com/.

Supplements I take (I order most from pureformulas.com):

B12 Methyl –  5,000 mg daily (for energy and neurological symptoms)

NAC – 500mg morning and night (increases antioxidant glutathione)

Alpha Liporic Acid (ALA)– 600mg daily (helps heal nerve damage)

(Dr. David Perlmutter, neurologist, addresses FQ toxicity and says he uses the above 3, B12 methyl, NAC, and ALA to stop the progression of nerve damage and heal)

MitoQ – 5mg daily (it’s a 3rd generation of CoQ10, but supposed to be 872x more potent at getting into your cells and healing mitochondria – FQ toxicity causes oxidative stress to mitochondria, so taking either this or CoQ10 is needed if at all possible). I order it from http://www.mitoq.com/ – it ships from New Zealand.

Neuro-mag – 144mg daily (this is the only form of magnesium that crosses the blood brain barrier to deliver magnesium to the brain – some issues with FQs is that the brain calcifies and prevents sleep, etc)

Multivitamin – I made sure it had calcium, magnesium, Vitamin D3, Vitamin E (d-alpha kind), selenium, zinc (those 3 supplements– vitamin E, selenium, and zinc were shown to reverse tendiopathy in mice), iodine, B12 methly, vitamin A, vitamin K, vitamin B6 (I use Thorne Research brand, Nutri-Fem)

Extra Magnesium- until I get 700-800mg daily

Kelp drops (I bought these at whole foods) – to get enough iodine to equal 1600mcg, even though my multi vitamin has 225mcg, I still do extra because FQs are fluoride and fluoride robs the thyroid of iodine – which causes thyroid problems.

Homeopathic supplement from Dr Recommends called Fem Liquitrophic – which my chiropractor ordered for me to help with my hormones going crazy (menstrual cycles was starting and stopping all the time after FQ toxicity)

Probiotics – at least 20 billion. I order ortho biotic powder by Ortho Molecular Products from pureformulas.com. This one has the strain Saccharomyces boulardii that the book the Fluoroquinolone Solution recommends because it helps combat C-dif infection– a risk after taking FQs.

Collagen Protein – FQs attack ligaments, collagen, etc. and although bone broth is the best way, I believe I have seen benefits by also adding in this powder. I get it from https://store.draxe.com/collections/supplements/products/collagen-protein.

(I make a smoothie everyday and add to it the collagen protein, probiotics, a spoonful of coconut oil, calcium, avocado, kale or other dark greens, and frozen cherries or other berries, with protein powder from https://www.thorne.com/products/dp/medipro-vegan-all-in-one-shake-chai. I found it an easy way to be able to get in all the recommended nutrients and supplements.)

 Other Important things I do:

Switched to Spring water only – this was huge in my healing. Tap water has fluoride and turned out to be the reason for the bladder conditions I’ve had for years including overactive bladder and interstitial cystitis. I highly recommend doing this step immediately!

Dry saunas, as often as possible 4-6 times a week – they also detox fluoride.

Infared sauna weekly for 12 weeks– detoxes metals and other toxins – this was a part of my detox program.

Niacin body wrap weekly for 12 weeks – also part of the detox program.

The supplements I use for the 3 month detox program is from Solutions 4 and is a candida diet program.  http://www.solutions4.com/products/programs/12-week-candida-2/. Candida was high on blood tests for me.

Take Epsom salt baths – Epsom salt is magnesium and it pulls out toxins from organs, plus nourishes your body with needed magnesium. I read a clinical study that said your body only takes in as much magnesium as you need from Epsom salt baths, so this reduces the likelihood of toxicity when you get magnesium this way.

Magnesium oil – For the sore spots on my legs and feet and Achilles heel, I rub this oil into them and it really does help. I got this at http://www.ancient-minerals.com/products/magnesium-oil/.

I cut out any meat with antibiotics.

Eat a paleo diet. No sugar, no alcohol, had to cut out coffee – hoping to be able to add in coffee someday, but my CNS system cannot handle it after FQ toxicity. I was already following The Wahls Protocol by Dr. Wahls, which is now recommended as a diet for FQ toxicity.

If you are able, I highly recommend finding a chiropractor or some other health care professional on your team who is able to help and is saying “you can heal”. Chemical drugs hurt and do not help with these symptoms so I’d recommend finding someone who knows about supplements and nutrition instead.

I originally took Levaquin for a sinus infection: I now use a netti pot, with the saline packets and up to ½ tsp of Johnsons baby shampoo a few times a week for maintenance and 2x daily if I think I’m getting an infection. My ENT recommended the baby shampoo as it has been shown in clinical studies to be highly effective against mucus. This has been huge for me.

Did food allergy testing – so further inflammation wouldn’t be caused adding to the stress of my body.

I order Manuka honey UMF 15+ from http://www.happyvalley.co.nz/umf-manuka/ – it’s supposed to be as effective as antibiotics or more. We used it for the last round of sickness that would usually have ended us up on antibiotics and we did not have to go to the doctor!

I eat bone broth daily – adding in chicken feet seems to be helping my Achilles tendons and legs more than anything I’ve tried! I can walk 30 minutes now, but did earlier make the mistake of trying to do too much and hurt my tendons again. Since, I’ve read not to do anything for months even if they look and feel fine. I still walk, but that’s it for right now. Looking forward to jogging again.

Read the book “Letting Go” by David Hawkins

Tried to stay positive and truly believe for healing. Prayer and talking to God helped me tremendously. He was telling me I would heal back to total health and I believed him and still do! I recommend daily readings of supportive promises from God and holding onto the message of love and hope. Stress makes symptoms much worse and positive emotions make symptoms better.

I’m 4 months out and still healing but truly every week is better than the one before and that’s what I hold onto- the hope of a better, healthier life. I’m so much more informed about the true consequences of taking drugs and how to actually live a healthy life from now on.

You can heal and things can get better! Believe it!

I’m praying for all those with FQ toxicity.

Tara

** The story above is truthful, accurate and told to the best of the ability of the writer. It is not intended as medical advice. No person who submits his or her story, nor the people associated with Floxie Hope, diagnoses or treats any illness. The story above should not be substituted for professionally provided medical advice. Please consult your doctor before trying anything that has been mentioned in this story, or in any other story on this site. Please also note that people have varying responses to the treatments mentioned in each story. What helps one person may not help, and may even hurt, another person. It is important that you understand that supplements, IVs, essential oils, and all other treatments, effect people differently depending on the millions of variables that make each of us unique. Please use appropriate caution and prudence, and get professional medical advice.

 

 

26 thoughts on “Tara’s Story – Healing from Levaquin Effects

  1. Susan Kanen January 5, 2016 at 9:33 am Reply

    Tara, your symptoms are much like mine. I didn’t take fluoridated drugs, but was overexposed to fluoridated water, food, etc and from on the job at a water treatment plant. Your emphasis on avoiding fluoride is excellent. Thanks for sharing.

    • Wellness Coach February 25, 2016 at 7:58 pm Reply

      That’s interesting – I did find out that cutting out all fluoride – cooking, bathing, etc. healed many symptoms.

  2. Linda January 5, 2016 at 12:49 pm Reply

    Good info. Just want to mention that sometimes the breathing problems have nothing to do with the lungs, but perhaps damage to autonomic nervous system and/or mitochondrial damage to the heart muscle. I know because I have asthma and had to wean off my prophylactic steroid inhalers, while getting H2O2 Ivs. The breathing problem has gotten better but it is still there—but remarkably when I test my peak flow, my “asthma” is now better controlled than when I was on pharmaceuticals!

  3. dan January 7, 2016 at 10:34 am Reply

    dear tara, what were all your neurological symptoms did you miss any? any numbness spams, twitching etc.. thanks.

    • Wellness Coach February 25, 2016 at 8:04 pm Reply

      I did have numbness, tingling, stabbing pains in my head and face – felt like I was wearing a helmet – it’s hard to remember all of them now b/c brain fog and memory problems were a huge problem for me. I also was not able to read and write for awhile and my short term and long term memory were affected.

  4. Pete January 17, 2016 at 5:16 am Reply

    Hi Tara, I wonder if you can say how you are getting along now, and if you have any further advice on what you thought specifically was the most useful supplement, it seems there are lots in there and it would be best to build up?

    • Wellness Coach February 25, 2016 at 8:09 pm Reply

      I wish I knew which ones are actually helped me heal – but I do know B12 Methyl continues to be needed. I backed off of the supplement and was incredibly dizzy and not functioning well – my memory was affected also. I believe (though I can’t be sure) that NAC, ALA, and MitoQ along with magnesium, a multi-vitamin, and iodine were all needed based on the research out there.

  5. Rose Casanova March 3, 2016 at 3:52 pm Reply

    Hi Tara,
    I got the Hawkin’s book you mentioned. Maybe it’s the “right time right place” kind of thing, but reading it so far has been very powerful. Thanks for mentioning it.

    • Tara March 13, 2016 at 6:12 pm Reply

      Glad you are liking it!

  6. Amy R March 13, 2016 at 10:33 am Reply

    Tara,

    When you did the dry saunas to detox the fluoride, did symptoms ramp up for you? I’d like to try this approach to heal quicker, but I’m nervous about a possible downcycle of symptoms. Also, did you have insomnia? Do you have metal filings in your mouth? I also heard ALA can draw the mercury out from the teeth and into the brain.

    Amy

    • Tara March 13, 2016 at 6:25 pm Reply

      Hi Amy, I replied to your comment below.

  7. Tara March 13, 2016 at 6:25 pm Reply

    I started doing dry saunas right away.This link is a very good one from Fluoride Toxicity Research Collaborative that describes the role fluoride plays in people with FQ toxicity: http://www.slweb.org/ftrcfluoroquinolone.html. It describes what fluoride poisoning is and what to do about it – specifically for fluoroquinlones. I discovered this info and have since followed the advice to take out all fluoride to recover. I stopped exposing myself in any way to fluroide including bathing, washing, cooking, etc. They were right – within a few weeks, many of my symptoms were gone (not all – as some of my symptoms are from the drug itself apparently). I also started using Detoxodine which is Nascent Iodine I ordered from Global Healing Centers – it’s supposed to be a very good form of iodine and excellent at detoxing fluoride. I use the recommended amount on the bottle. Also, my doctor gave me a homeopathic med called Halogens from Dr. Recommends that detoxes fluoride – but WARNING – it detoxed it so well, I ended up re-poisoned by fluoride and it took weeks to recover. So, I now only use 1 drop a week of the Halogens. The Fluoride Toxicity Research Collaborative warns to detox slowly from fluoride.
    I do not have metal fillings – I didn’t know that information though – thanks for sharing!

    • heyyoshimi March 13, 2016 at 6:53 pm Reply

      I’m about one month out from two doses of Levaquin for a sinus infection. I did take Cipro back in November for a UTI, about a week-long treatment. I’ve switched to only drinking and cooking with spring water but I don’t see how it’s practical for bathing to completely avoid fluoride. It’s in my city’s water. How did you manage this?

      Did you exercise before doing the dry saunas? I know you said you did them 4-6 times a week. How long did you keep that up for?

      Amy

  8. SP April 12, 2016 at 10:43 am Reply

    Hi, I took LQ for 14 days (also in 8/15 for a sinus infection). The only noticed side effect at the time was terrible joint pain…even my fingers, but that resolved a few days after stopping LQ. However…. Sept menses was late and since Oct I get awful sinus pressure during day 1-3 of menstrual cycle. It’s as painful as the original sinus infection. I’ve tried Florjen3 probiotic for the past 45 days….no change on sinus pressure during periods. I take coq10 and lots of fish oil as well as many other vitamins (have been taking for years).
    Before and after my period I feel fine. ..no sinus pressure at all or other issues. I am not certain if this is from LQ or what but it’s awful.
    Has anyone else had this effect? Or any advice or suggestions for resolution of this monthly sinus pressure?

    • Tara May 3, 2016 at 7:49 pm Reply

      Im sorry – that sounds awful for you. I dont have those symptoms – maybe a naturopath would be able to help?

  9. Alexandra April 24, 2016 at 7:57 pm Reply

    Thanks for sharing your story, Tara. I’m 21 and I was recently floxed in January and the brain fog has been the worst symptom for me by far. Do you mind explaining the brain fog that you had in further detail? And how many months did it take for the fog to recede and for you to be able to focus again? I’m currently taking many of the supplements you mentioned, but any additional information would help.

    • Tara May 3, 2016 at 7:47 pm Reply

      Hi Alexandra, I had brain fog and had trouble processing info, reading, and memory. I also had trouble understanding what others were saying. Fasting helped immensely for me and also, the final puzzle piece for me was that I not only had fq toxicity but that levaquin had caused me to have fluoride poisioning. Cutting out all fluoride of any kind made the brain fog completely disappear- it unfortunately took me 6 months to realize every time I took a bath I was re-poisoning myself – or anytime I cooked with tap water. I would definitely look into that – google fluoride poisioning symptoms and see if any of those match with what Youre experiencing!

      • Erin May 23, 2016 at 8:49 am Reply

        How did you avoid bathing in flouride?

  10. B November 30, 2016 at 5:37 am Reply

    Dear Tara,

    Thank you for sharing, your information is extremely valuable and brings so much hope for us. I just got poisoned a week ago 11/22/2016. I am a 41, engineer, very healthy mom and I never took before this medication. I live in Atlanta, GA, so please if you guys know of a good practitioner in this area please let me know.

    I have the same situation as yours. I had a sinus infection, Dr prescribed Levofloxacin 75 my for 7 days, after day 2 I had a severe reaction including a panick attack, feeling unable to breathe and swallow, like having a balloon on my face ready to explode, blood pressure went up to 160, heart went up too, blurry vision and auditory issues. Went to ER and they asked me to stop Levo.
    As the days passed by I am getting worst, fatigue, panick attacks, memory issues, slow speech, dizziness, severe tendinitis in Achilles and rotators, all body really. Voice getting hoarse, auditory issues persist

    I started a detox program, all raw for now, juicing, wheat grass 4oz daily, hyperthermia baths daily too, NAC, Mg, methyl B, turmeric, omega 3, collagen, glucosamine and IVs with vitamin B and C

    I will start taping Achilles and rotators tomorrow, they hurt so much. Ultrasound is just showing tendinitis.

    I wonder if gluthatione IVs would help? I am also researching about PRP and ozone therapy for extra oxygenation

    I have my precious 5 years old for whom I will not let this event to steal our day by day memories and happiness.

    I have taken PTO from work and I am expecting to come back in 2 weeks, I pray for no short term disability, my work is in the engineering field and it is demanding, I will do my best to take it easy and heal, we will see…

    I am wondering what we’re you able to do during 1st month of toxicity? Where you able to drive? Cook? Groceries? Take care of your kids? What strategies would you recommend?

    Blessings,

    B

    • Lisa November 30, 2016 at 7:05 am Reply

      Hi B,

      There is a medical center in Atlanta that has treated several “floxies.” Both Bill and Richard used it. It’s called Progressive Medical Center – http://www.progressivemedicalcenter.com/. Several of the doctors there are familiar with fluoroquinolone toxicity.

      Regards,
      Lisa

  11. Elise January 30, 2017 at 5:25 pm Reply

    What supplements did you take for the candida?

  12. B February 25, 2017 at 12:46 pm Reply

    Tara how are you doing now? It will be really helpful to know the evolution of your symptoms and your best practices. Your story has helped and inspired so many of us. Thank you in advance for your generosity in sharing.

  13. Jeremi March 11, 2017 at 12:30 pm Reply

    Dear Tara, thanks for your writing. I also do wonder, how are you now?

    Just in case: one note to the supplement amount:
    You wrote “B12 Methyl – 5,000 mg daily “.

    Shouldn’t be B12 Methyl – 5,000 mcg daily ? (micrograms rather miligrams).

  14. […] Tara’s Story – Healing from Levaquin Effects […]

  15. Susan Richards September 2, 2017 at 8:27 am Reply

    Hi Tara – I believe I read somewhere that you’re in the KC area. I live here too. Did you go to True Health? My symptoms so far are severe anxiety, panic, severe insomnia, and brain fog. I have a pre-existing neuro condition (essential tremor) that I’ve had since my 20s (I’m 58 now). So I’m looking for someone knowledgeable about neurology. Thanks.

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