What is Chelation Therapy?
EDTA chelation therapy is a cost-effective method for avoiding surgery, enhancing the health of the arteries, removing pathologic calcium, improving elasticity, and thus improving circulation.
Chelation therapy has been around since the 1940's. Although it was first used to treat heavy metal poisoning, chelation has since proven valuable for the treatment of heart disease and other circulatory disorders. It consists of an intravenous infusion of a "chelating" compound, commonly EDTA
How Does Chelation Therapy Work?
The first step is to have an initial, 30 minute visit with Dr.Irfana Akther who is trained in Chelation Therapy. She will take a full history, physcial exam and request specific tests needed to ensure this is a safe therapy for you.
Chelation Therapy involves the intravenous administration of a powerful antioxidant called ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA). EDTA enters the bloodstream and latches onto heavy metals such as lead, iron, and cadmium that can cause free radical damage to the arteries. By binding to these heavy metals and carrying them out of the body through the urine, EDTA reduces the body’s toxic metal burden and helps slow the process of atherosclerosis.
The typical treatment in our clinic is a chelation push that takes approximately 15 minutes to administer. Even if you don’t like needles, you’ll find the chelation push to be a workable treatment because the needle used is very small and the infusion is quick and practically painless. Longer intravenous treatments of 1½ and 3 hours are also used, depending upon your condition.
A complete course of EDTA chelation therapy consists of about 30 treatments, usually done one to three times per week.
How does Chelation Therapy Enhances Blood Flow?
Atherosclerosis -- the narrowing and stiffening of arteries due to the accumulation of pathologic calcium and plaque -- is a primary cause of diminished circulation and oxygen to our cells.
EDTA removes excess calcium from artery walls, making them more responsive and better able to dilate. Since calcification of the arteries is a major factor in atherosclerosis, this is yet another way in which chelation restores the integrity of arteries and enhances blood flow. As an added benefit, EDTA chelation has blood-thinning effects and discourages the formation of potentially dangerous blood clots that can cause a heart attack or stroke.
Chelation Therapy - A Surprising Discovery"
EDTA chelation therapy was originally designed as a treatment for heavy metal poisoning, and its effectiveness for heart disease and circulatory disorders was discovered only by accident in the 1950s. As World War II veterans afflicted with lead poisoning from painting battleships underwent chelation to “get the lead out,” physicians noticed that those who had chest pain or leg pain due to atherosclerosis were experiencing almost unbelievable improvement in these symptoms.
During the past 50 years, over a million patients have undergone chelation therapy for a wide range of circulatory problems. Chelation has given heart disease patients an alternative to invasive heart surgery and has enabled patients with intermittent claudication to increase their walking distance. It has been used to alleviate angina, to reduce high blood pressure, and to spare diabetic patients from limb amputation.
Chelation has an impeccable record of safety. An FDA safety review spanning 30 years revealed no evidence of significant toxicity. And of over 500,000 patients nationwide treated with chelation therapy using the protocol established by the American College for the Advancement of Medicine (ACAM), not a single fatality has occurred. Compare this to coronary artery bypass surgery, which has a fatality rate of 4 percent. This means that for every 500,000 patients who undergo bypass surgery, an estimated 20,000 will die.
Safety is one thing, but effectiveness is another, and this therapy is effective. A 1993 review of 40 published and 30 unpublished studies involving over 25,000 patients who underwent EDTA chelation demonstrated that 87 percent benefited from this therapy.
What Conditions Benefit From Chelation Therapy?
Virtually any condition in which atherosclerosis or poor circulation are contributing factors can benefit from chelation. Here is just a partial list:
- Cardiovascular disease
- Cerebrovascular disease
- Diabetic complications
- Heavy metal toxicity
- Intermittent claudication
- Memory disorders
- Peripheral neuropathy
- Peripheral vascular disease
- Slow healing wounds
The most recent study looking at chelation therapy, the National Institute of Health's TACT Trial (reported Nov 2012), found that patients with previous heart attacks who received sodium EDTA IV chelation therapy were 18% less likely to require bypass surgery, have another heart attack, have a stroke, die, or be hospitalized for angina. Patients with Diabetes who received chelation seemed to benefit more than average, as these patients were 32% less likely to require bypass surgery, have another heart attack, have a stroke, die, or be hospitalized for angina.
As well, it was determined to be a safe therapy, as adverse events were extremely minimal. This was a very large study, and the results further support the use of sodium EDTA chelation in heart disease.