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Chronic Fatigue Immune
Dysfunction Syndrome (CFIDS)
(Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) (CFS)


The official mainstream medicine line on chronic fatigue immune dysfunction syndrome (CFIDS) is that it is a "chronic inflammatory illness of undetermined origin that is suspected, but not proven, to have an autoimmune component, as many of those diagnosed with CFIDS have circulating antinuclear autoantibodies."

This misguided understanding of what CFIDS actually is explains why mainstream medicine has been of no use to people with this "syndrome." In fact, the use of the word "syndrome" belies the fact that they do not understand the causation or treatment. When a doctor tells you that you have a "syndrome" you can know that no help is forthcoming. Typically, such doctors recommend "antidepressants." Patients leave their offices with diminished respect for medicine because they know what they have is not depression.

Many alternative medicine practitioners, on the other hand, grasp that CFIDS has something to do with toxicity and they approach the illness with various methods of "detoxification." However, the illness is not that simple and this explains why these practitioners achieve sometimes fair, but temporary, results. Usually a patient with chronic fatigue ends up self-treating because no one seems to understand the illness.

One possible symptoms of CFIDS is chronic oppressive muscular pain, a condition which has been termed fibromyalgia.

In fact, the cause of CFIDS is a condition of heavy metal (usually mercury) toxicity/overload complexed with an intestinal gut wall chronic inflammation. That is the briefest of definitions which does not even hint at the complexity of treatment and surely requires explanation.

But, before I explain the cause and proper treatment of this disorder, let me list possible symptoms of CFIDS (no one has all of these symptoms, but if you have CFIDS, you will recognize many of these in yourself):
  • constant relentless fatigue, helped little by rest
  • reduction of activity by 50% or more
  • severe muscular weakness
  • chronic pain in muscles
  • attention deficit
  • difficulty concentrating
  • difficulty calculating
  • memory disturbance
  • spatial disorientation
  • getting lost in familiar locations
  • difficulty judging distances
  • often saying wrong word
  • often forgetting a common word
  • sleep disturbance
  • headache
  • changes in visual acuity
  • seizures
  • numbness
  • tingling
  • lightheadedness
  • feeling spaced out
  • difficulty with balance
  • difficulty moving tongue to speak
  • ringing in ears
  • paralysis
  • blackouts
  • photophobia
  • alteration of in sense of taste
  • alteration of in sense of smell
  • alteration of in sense of hearing
  • sleep is non-restorative
  • decreased libido
  • twitching muscles

Conventional medicine was very slow to recognize the existence of CFIDS and many rigid doctors still deny that it exists. Those conventional doctors who do try to treat it use drugs, treating CFIDS as if it were depression, using anti-depressants. This approach is not only incorrect (i.e. the cause of CFIDS is not insufficient quantities of the latest drug pushed by the pharmaceutical industry), it is also ineffective.

How CFIDS Develops

Let me walk you through how CFIDS develops and this will make the treatment of the illness comprehensible. The lining of the gut is a delicate membrane and the wall of the gut behind it contains 80% of the immune system. These patches of immune or "lymphoid" tissue are called "Peyer's patches" for Dr. Peyers who described them over 100 years ago. When the digestive/immune system complex works correctly, the microflora (bacteria) in the food passing through the gut is closely regulated. Secretory A is an antibody which is placed on the surface of the gut wall and it kills off "bad" bacteria, fungus, and yeast. The integrity of the immune system in the gut wall depends on the integrity of the gut lining. If the gut lining breaks down and lesions appear, these lesions serve as entry points for pathogenic bacteria, fungus, and yeast. Once embedded in the gut wall, the toxicity these bacteria produce renders the immune system incapable of regulating the microflora still in the lumen of the gut and this produces "dysbiosis" (overgrowth of the "wrong" or "bad" organisms). The toxins released by this dysbiotic condition account for the symptoms of CFIDS.

Now, having said that, we come to understand the danger involved in "bad habits." Here are the bad habits which can lead to breakdown of the gut wall: (1) having dental work which involves metals, (2) overuse of antibiotics, (3) long-term and frequent consumption of coffee, (4) long-term and frequent consumption of alcohol, (5) smoking, and (6) stressing oneself and allowing this to go on for extended periods. In people who are susceptible (and this has something to do with genetics and "constitution") the gut lining (which is one cell layer in thickness and is called the "endothelium") develops tiny holes large enough to admit micro-organisms. The development of these tiny holes is called "leaky gut." In some rare individuals this is a constant state of affairs and can actually be measured by lab tests. In most people these tiny holes are rapidly repaired, however not before the opportunity for invasion by micro-organisms has occurred.

Once in the gut wall, micro-organisms invade Peyer's patches and quickly disable the immune system - not completely, but enough that the organisms can live in the gut wall. This is a kind of "Mexican stand-off." If two men are both armed with knives ready to strike, no one should strike since both will die. Thus, the chronic infection which develops in the gut wall does not kill the patient, but merely disables him/her. As the immune system hits the skids and dysbiosis takes over, the symptoms in the list above begin to appear.

How To Treat and Cure CFIDS

Understanding the "pathogenesis" of CFIDS allows us to shut it down. Here are the steps:

(1) The offending agent or agents must be eliminated. Mercury and other metals, antibiotics, coffee, alcohol, cigarettes, and excessive stress all have to go. That sounds easy, but when the patient has a mouth full of dental metals, it become a big expensive project and here one encounters dentists who have no idea of the damage they are doing to some people by installing tons of dental metals. There is no dental work which cannot be done free of metals, but there are dentists who can't do that work and there are other dentists who refuse to do that work. Here we encounter the existence of institutionalized ignorance and take it from me, you will not be able to educate or change your dentist and his/her point of view. What you have to do is find a "metal free dentist" and they are rare. Those dentists trained in the Netherlands are a good choice as it is illegal to install mercury in human beings in that culture, but those people are not commonly found in the U.S. (although we have one here in Santa Rosa). Also, when metals are drilled out, they vaporize ("sublimate") and part of it is inhaled. Therefore, one should have the dental work done and then go straight to a doctor (and these are also rare) who can give an IV to chelate out the inhaled metals within two hours - before it is methylated by the liver and deposited in the brain and spinal cord.

(2) When the mouth is free of metal, it is time to test for the "residual metal burden." The source of metal may have been the dental work, but the real problem (where the rubber meets the road) is the metal that has migrated to the rest of the body over those years of exposure. This test is called a "Challenge Test." A chelating agent is given (usually intravenously) and a six hour urine collection is then analyzed for the toxic metals excreted. A plain blood or urine test will be negative unless exposure to large amounts of mercury or other metals has occurred in the last two days because of the fact that toxic metals are stored inside cells and are not available for measurement in blood or urine. (Many doctors do not understand this point.)

(3) When the results of that test are in, the doctor will better be able to prescribe oral or intravenous chelation to bring down the levels of toxic metals. The higher the levels revealed by the test, the lower should be the dose of oral or IV chelation. The reason for this is the fact that too rapid removal of metals can raise the blood levels to intolerable heights. (Metals have to traverse the blood when they come out of cells in order to reach the kidneys and liver to be excreted.) The process of metal detox will require anywhere from one to eight months.

(4) When metal detox is complete (and completion is proven by another Challenge Test), the final phase of treatment can begin. This involves the SanPharma Protocol, a use of the SanPharma Remedies devised to regenerate the immune system. Until this is accomplished, the patients with CFIDS will not recover and unless this last step is taken, there is little reason to do the first three steps. The SanPharma Remedies are a German product and they are classified as "isopathics." American medicine has nothing in this category, so we are indebted to the Germans for developing these wonderful remedies. They consist of specific compounds isolated from pathogenic bacteria which safely and effectively train the immune system to deal with these organisms. The protocol requires eleven weeks and for most people there is a small maintenance program which prevents CFIDS from making a come-back.

(To look deeper into this phenomenon, read this article: mercury, gut wall infection and fatigue.)

When all these steps are complete, patients commonly report to me "I have my life back." Those of us who do not have CFIDS have a hard time understanding what this means, but those with CFIDS know exactly what this means. Imagine that you just had surgery and that you are waking up from the anaesthesia. You are "half in and half out." Now, imagine that you become stuck in that condition. That is how it feels to have CFIDS.


The information in this article is not meant to be medical advice.
Treatment for a medical condition should come at the recommendation of your personal physician.

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by Ron Kennedy, M.D. Santa Rosa, CA.
(For an appointment with Dr. Kennedy in
Santa Rosa, CA, write to nexus@sonic.net)