Gut treatment – Gut Training http://gut-training.com/ Wed, 18 May 2022 17:11:29 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://gut-training.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/11/profile.png Gut treatment – Gut Training http://gut-training.com/ 32 32 Niacin and depression: causes and treatment https://gut-training.com/niacin-and-depression-causes-and-treatment/ Wed, 18 May 2022 16:13:57 +0000 https://gut-training.com/niacin-and-depression-causes-and-treatment/ If you have a niacin deficiency, depression is a possible side effect. But there is no evidence that taking niacin supplements can treat all types of depression. Different medical and life circumstances can cause depression, including a lack of the B vitamin niacin. But depression is a complex beast that cannot be simply linked to […]]]>

If you have a niacin deficiency, depression is a possible side effect. But there is no evidence that taking niacin supplements can treat all types of depression.

Different medical and life circumstances can cause depression, including a lack of the B vitamin niacin. But depression is a complex beast that cannot be simply linked to niacin deficiency.

Still, some people believe that niacin supplementation helps treat depressive symptoms because there is a link between depression and niacin levels.

Let’s take a closer look at how niacin is linked to depression and how it might relieve symptoms.

Niacin (aka vitamin B3) is an essential B vitamin that you need for energy and cell maintenance so your body can function.

In particular, niacin helps convert your food into energy, makes and repairs DNA, and acts as an anti-nasty antioxidant. It also contributes to healthy skin, hair, eyes and nerves.

Depression is a mental health disorder characterized by persistent low mood and intense feelings of sadness and hopelessness. People with depression may lose interest in the things they enjoy and the symptoms may invade their daily lives.

If you don’t get enough niacin, you may develop side effects like fatigue, depression, and anxiety. Vitamin B deficiencies, in general, can also negatively affect mental health.

There is also evidence that people with depression may be deficient in B vitamins, such as niacin. But not everyone with depression has a niacin deficiency. Depression has many potential causes, including genetics, stressful life events, medications, and hormones.

And just like the causes, there are also many ways to treat depression.

If you ask Dr. Google, there are many anecdotal reports of people claiming that niacin supplements helped treat their depression. But there is no research to back up these claims when it comes to treating depression that is *not* linked to niacin deficiency.

What do we know? A 2020 animal study found that niacin reduced depressive behavior in mice by increasing levels of ATP (adenosine triphosphate). ATP helps supply cells with energy, and people with depression may have lower than normal amounts of it. But these results cannot necessarily be applied to IRL people.

However, if you are diagnosed with niacin deficiency taking a niacin supplement will treat your deficiency and all associated side effects, including depression.

If you feel weak or have other symptoms of depression, talk to your doctor about vitamin B and niacin deficiency before taking supplements.

Yes, in some cases a niacin or vitamin B3 deficiency can cause depression.

Niacin is involved in the formation of the neurotransmitter serotonin which, along with dopamine, helps regulate mood. Not having enough serotonin can lead to depression. This is why many antidepressants, including SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors), treat depression by increasing serotonin levels.

So, since low niacin levels can also lead to low serotonin, a niacin deficiency can affect your mood.

If you have a niacin deficiency, some common side effects may include:

Once someone takes a niacin supplement, these symptoms usually go away.

Severe niacin deficiency can lead to a condition called pellagra, also known as “the three D disease”. Why? Because it can lead to diarrhea, dermatitis and dementia if left untreated. In the worst case, it can even lead to death.

The recommended daily intake of niacin is usually 13 to 20 milligrams (mg) per day via food or supplements. But if you have a niacin deficiency, you’ll likely need more than 20mg to treat it via a supplement.

Your doctor can help you determine the right dosage if you have a niacin deficiency. If they suggest taking a supplement, you can find niacin in multivitamins, B-complex vitamins, and on its own.

Nicotinic acid and nicotinamide are the most common forms of niacin you’ll see on supplement labels. Be careful with niacin-only supplements, as these potent pills can contain 500mg or more per serving. This is much higher than the tolerable upper intake level (UL) of 35 mg per day.

As a general rule, a healthy diet should provide you with all the niacin you need. You can get niacin by eating foods like:

  • Liver of beef
  • beef
  • turkey
  • Salmon
  • Tuna
  • pork
  • peanuts
  • fortified breakfast cereals

If you take a niacin supplement and consume large amounts, you may experience side effects such as:

  • skin problems like flushing, itching, or a rash
  • nausea and vomiting
  • constipation
  • dizziness
  • drop in blood pressure

A common side effect of taking too much niacin is reddening of the skin (also known as niacin flush). Your skin basically turns pink or red, and you may also experience burning, stinging, and itching. Although it may sound weird, it is not dangerous.

If you take huge doses of 1000-3000mg per day, you may also develop severely low blood pressure, which can be dangerous and disrupt glucose tolerance and insulin resistance.

Taking too much niacin via high-dose extended-release tablets can also damage your liver. So don’t take more niacin than your doctor recommends.

If depression is getting you down and affecting your life, seeing a doctor and a therapist should be your first step in finding a treatment that’s right for you. There is absolutely no need to go through this alone or simply to “cope” with your feelings.

In addition to professional treatment and support, here are other ways to help you cope with depression:

  • Try to get enough sleep. Yes, depression can cause insomnia or excessive sleep. Your brain chemicals could be to blame, or anxiety and worry. If you want to fall asleep fast, try some soothing sleep tips. You can also try different ways to deal with anxiety to help clear your mind before sleeping.
  • Move your body. Exercise and calming movements like yoga can help improve mood and reduce stress levels.
  • Take care. Depression can leave you feeling hopeless and even guilty. Sometimes practicing gratitude can help you feel a little less empty or get busy with something else, like growing a plant.
  • Manage your moods. Depression can make you feel all over the place. Mood swings can mean tears one minute and anger the next. Try to practice mindfulness to allow yourself to feel the sensations and balance your emotions.
  • Relieve anxiety. Depression and anxiety often go hand in hand. Even though anxiety causes symptoms that don’t resemble typical depression, such as sweating, rapid breathing, and racing heartbeat, you can still be depressed. Try using the acronym HALT before doing anything impulsive. Ask yourself if you are hungry, anxious, lonely or tired. If so, address those needs and see how you feel.

Niacin is an important B vitamin that you need for energy metabolism, cell signaling, and DNA repair. You can find it in foods like beef, chicken, tuna, and peanuts.

If your levels are low, it could lead to mental health issues, including depression and anxiety.

It’s a good idea to talk to your doctor if you’re feeling low and ask about niacin for anxiety and depression. They can recommend any necessary supplements or prescribed medications. It is not necessary to fend for yourself.

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Patient diagnosis and early treatment of atopic dermatitis https://gut-training.com/patient-diagnosis-and-early-treatment-of-atopic-dermatitis/ Tue, 17 May 2022 20:23:21 +0000 https://gut-training.com/patient-diagnosis-and-early-treatment-of-atopic-dermatitis/ Raj J. Chovatiya, MD, PhD: This question is for both of you. Do you remember, along the way, everything that worked, things that absolutely didn’t work? Do you remember recommendations that took a long time and weren’t very helpful? There must have been a huge impact on trying all these different things throughout your life. […]]]>

Raj J. Chovatiya, MD, PhD: This question is for both of you. Do you remember, along the way, everything that worked, things that absolutely didn’t work? Do you remember recommendations that took a long time and weren’t very helpful? There must have been a huge impact on trying all these different things throughout your life.

Taylor Caps:I tested these creams. They worked to some degree, but never to the point that the atopic dermatitis went away completely. I would use them for a few weeks and then it would come back. I would constantly apply these creams. I’d be relieved for things like an oatmeal bath, but it wasn’t until I realized I had food allergies that caused a lot of it. My mom can talk a little better about it, but at 19 I found out I was allergic to peanuts. She constantly asked if we could do some food testing to see if there was anything she was allergic to. I started to feel some relief removing the items I was allergic to, especially in my mouth and on my face. I saw some relief, but it was constantly going on. The thing that gave me completely clear skin without any breakouts in the last year was when I was able to take dupilumab [Dupixent].

Raj J. Chovatiya, MD, PhD: You have highlighted some interesting points. I’ll turn it over to Tina first, and then Taylor can comment. You talked a bit about food allergies. We will talk a bit about the overall burden of atopic dermatitis. We know there are many other diseases that people think of in the context of atopic dermatitis and eczema, things like asthma, obviously food allergies, seasonal allergies. Do you remember any of the other medical conditions that Taylor was dealing with that, in hindsight, might have been related to what was going on?

Tina Caps: As a younger child, she always had a clear runny nose. We would discuss this in relation to allergies. At age 7, she constantly complained of stomach aches, so we went to see a pediatric gastroenterologist. At that time, they said they saw nothing wrong. They diagnosed him with an anxious stomach. I kept saying she had a happy childhood. I couldn’t figure out why there was anxiety there. I asked if there might be any food allergies, I often wondered if there might be lactose intolerance – because she ate dairy and then had an upset stomach – but there was a lot of pushback. I could never convince a doctor to agree to test her at a young age because they said children’s allergies often change with food. As she said, when she was 19, an allergist agreed to come and do the tests. There were many things that could have made his life much better.

Transcript edited for clarity

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Sunderland mum launches sea moss skincare range after developing treatment for son’s eczema https://gut-training.com/sunderland-mum-launches-sea-moss-skincare-range-after-developing-treatment-for-sons-eczema/ Mon, 16 May 2022 12:39:17 +0000 https://gut-training.com/sunderland-mum-launches-sea-moss-skincare-range-after-developing-treatment-for-sons-eczema/ Register to our daily newsletter Lisa Jackson created Moss Minerals using sea moss in beauty products. Moss Minerals is a new skincare line that uses natural sea moss in a range of moisturizers, serums and other skincare products. It’s the brainchild of Sunderland mum Lisa Jackson, who was looking for skincare solutions for her son. […]]]>

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Lisa Jackson created Moss Minerals using sea moss in beauty products.

Moss Minerals is a new skincare line that uses natural sea moss in a range of moisturizers, serums and other skincare products.

It’s the brainchild of Sunderland mum Lisa Jackson, who was looking for skincare solutions for her son.

“My son has eczema and I was looking for skincare products for him,” she explained. “I started doing things to her with turmeric and sea moss that really helped her skin.

Lisa Jackson created Moss Minerals using sea moss in beauty products.

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“Soon my friends and family started asking me to make products for them and it went from there. I tried different things, applying it externally in products as well as in smoothies and people swear by it.It comes in a range of different varieties and is totally organic.

Lisa went into business with Elaine Lowes, an aromatherapist and holistic practitioner, to launch Moss Minerals as a company.

She said: “All of our products are 100% organic with no parabens or chemicals. I also grow my own herbs which I infuse into the products.”

Lisa says during the shutdowns people started to focus more on health care.

Lisa Jackson created Moss Minerals using sea moss in beauty products.

“I think people’s opinions have certainly changed during lockdown and they’ve started looking at what’s in products and investing in their health.”

She added: “We also launched a shampoo and conditioner because a lot of people have had problems with their hair due to stress.

Sea moss, a species of algae, is said to have a number of health benefits, including thyroid and gut health, as well as overall immunity.

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Objectives of diagnosis and treatment: endometriosis and uterine fibroids https://gut-training.com/objectives-of-diagnosis-and-treatment-endometriosis-and-uterine-fibroids/ Fri, 13 May 2022 16:06:19 +0000 https://gut-training.com/objectives-of-diagnosis-and-treatment-endometriosis-and-uterine-fibroids/ Neil Minkoff, MD: Let me keep pushing a little. I want to open this to everyone. I’m not trying to pick on you, Steve. I am the primary care physician. I am the emergency department [ED] doctor. I see patients in my clinic or in my emergency department for heavy menstrual bleeding and pelvic pain. […]]]>

Neil Minkoff, MD: Let me keep pushing a little. I want to open this to everyone. I’m not trying to pick on you, Steve. I am the primary care physician. I am the emergency department [ED] doctor. I see patients in my clinic or in my emergency department for heavy menstrual bleeding and pelvic pain. This may be too simple a question. When should I think of endometriosis versus fibroids? What should help steer me one way or the other in terms of achieving my track record?

Ayman Al-Hendy, MD, PhD: I agree 100% with Steve that endometriosis is a real challenge. As he said, there is a huge delay, but it is a real scientific challenge. We don’t have a good diagnostic tool for endometriosis. The only definitive diagnosis is pathology confirmed by biopsy. Biopsy means you had a laparoscopy to do the biopsy. It is very invasive and usually comes late in the patient’s journey. I can enjoy the challenge there. Steve covered the options for making a tentative or empiric diagnosis and even starting empiric treatment. If the patient is better, that’s circumstantial evidence. We will come back to this later.

However, I see no excuse for missing fibroids. Fibroids are easy to diagnose and there is a delay. It’s much less than endometriosis, but most studies average more than 3 years, 3.2 years. It’s inexcusable, in my opinion. Most of the time what happens is that the patient goes to the emergency department or the primary care doctor’s clinic and says, “I have heavy menstrual bleeding.” Before she can finish her sentence, she has a prescription in her hand for ibuprofen or maybe a contraceptive, and she’s out. Do an ultrasound. Order a transvaginal ultrasound. Many fibroids are delayed in diagnosis because of this, and it’s very easy to diagnose. I agree that endometriosis is a real challenge, and I hope we get a chance to cover different approaches, but fibroids are easy to diagnose. Then, of course, you can process it.

Neil Minkoff, MD: I want to go over those choices in 1 second, but let me ask you 1 more question before I do. Are there different treatment goals from how you look at a patient with fibroids or endometriosis in terms of pain control or menstrual bleeding? How would you define these differences?

Ayman Al-Hendy, MD, PhD: Yes. Heavy menstrual bleeding is the #1 symptom of fibroids. Most patients with fibroids, about 85%, will complain of heavy menstrual bleeding. The remaining 15% complain of the so-called massive symptoms, specifically the basketball fibroid that Kevin mentioned. They complain of a mass if they are thin. They complain of feeling a lump, protrusion, or bulge. Or they complain of urinary symptoms, frequent bathroom breaks because the fibroid is pressing on the bladder, or constipation and discomfort during bowel movements because the fibroid is pressing on the bowel or colon. About 15% have primary mass symptoms.

Severe pain is not a typical symptom. There’s cramping, dysmenorrhea, that sort of thing, but intense, excruciating pain isn’t a typical symptom of fibroids, unless there are issues like degeneration or torsion of a pedunculated fibroma. It’s different from endometriosis. It’s almost the opposite. Pain is the main symptom of endometriosis, that intense pain that Steve was talking about, which is almost career ending, where some patients don’t finish school or can’t keep a job. This quality of pain, degree of intense pain, is typical of endometriosis. Heavy menstrual bleeding may also be present in a patient with endometriosis, but certainly less than in a patient with fibroids. The goals of the treatment are a little different.

Transcripts edited for clarity.

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Do probiotics help treat colic in babies? https://gut-training.com/do-probiotics-help-treat-colic-in-babies/ Wed, 11 May 2022 06:11:23 +0000 https://gut-training.com/do-probiotics-help-treat-colic-in-babies/ Although all babies cry, if your baby cries more often than not – and for no apparent reason – he may be suffering from colic. In a healthy infant, colic is defined as frequent, prolonged, and severe crying or restlessness. Episodes of colic often peak at around 6 weeks of age and drop off dramatically […]]]>

Although all babies cry, if your baby cries more often than not – and for no apparent reason – he may be suffering from colic.

In a healthy infant, colic is defined as frequent, prolonged, and severe crying or restlessness. Episodes of colic often peak at around 6 weeks of age and drop off dramatically after three to four months of age. Although frequent crying will eventually stop, managing colic adds a significant amount of stress to your newborn’s care. Colic can be particularly difficult for parents because these incidents frequently occur in the evenings when parents are often exhausted.

How rare is colic?

Colic is quite common, affecting around one in five babies under three months old.

What are the symptoms of colic?

Parents commonly report that babies with colic have unpredictable crying episodes and are difficult to calm down. These episodes frequently occur in the late afternoon and evening. Sobbing newborns may appear to be in agony because they frequently raise their legs, arch their backs, and let in the wind, which is usually caused by swallowing air while crying.

What causes colic in babies?

Despite years of research, no one knows why babies get colic. Some people think this is the culmination of typical newborn crying. Some think it is due to pain coming from the intestines. Others believe it is due to the baby’s temperament, which is influenced by the mother’s emotions. None of these theories have been scientifically verified.

What colic treatments are currently recommended?

There is currently no effective treatment for colic. Breastfeeding or switching to a dairy-free formula can sometimes help a small fraction of colicky babies, who usually have other symptoms besides crying, but it doesn’t work for all colicky babies. Because there is no cure for colic, parents often receive conflicting and confusing advice. This is embarrassing for parents who are already exhausted and anxious.

Colic and probiotics

What are probiotics and how can they help colicky babies? Probiotics are live bacteria that have been shown to provide health benefits. They are supposed to modify the intestinal flora, reduce intestinal inflammation and therefore possibly relieve stomach pain.

By giving your baby a daily probiotic, you can help rebalance their sensitive digestive system. Probiotics have also been found in research to improve vitamin absorption, digestion, and the formation of a healthy immune system.

When to consult a doctor

Excessive, inconsolable crying can be colic or an indication of a disease or condition that is causing pain or discomfort. Make an appointment with your child’s health care provider for a thorough examination if your baby experiences excessive crying or other signs or symptoms of colic.

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Ulcer: Doctors reveal the causes, the symptoms to never ignore, the treatment | Health https://gut-training.com/ulcer-doctors-reveal-the-causes-the-symptoms-to-never-ignore-the-treatment-health/ Sat, 07 May 2022 09:19:00 +0000 https://gut-training.com/ulcer-doctors-reveal-the-causes-the-symptoms-to-never-ignore-the-treatment-health/ Open painful sores in the lining of the digestive system, i.e. the stomach lining or the upper part of the small intestine or esophagus, among others, are known as ulcers peptic or stomach ulcers which can lead to internal bleeding and sometimes end up meaning that you will need blood transfusions in hospital. Health experts […]]]>

Open painful sores in the lining of the digestive system, i.e. the stomach lining or the upper part of the small intestine or esophagus, among others, are known as ulcers peptic or stomach ulcers which can lead to internal bleeding and sometimes end up meaning that you will need blood transfusions in hospital. Health experts point out that although some patients may not show any symptoms, some may experience discomfort or a burning sensation, so this should be diagnosed and treated early as it affects the patient’s quality of life.

Cause :

In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr. Anish Desai, Doctor of Nutraceutical Medicine, Founder and CEO of IntelliMed Healthcare Solutions, said, “Peptic ulcer is most commonly found in the stomach and proximal duodenum. Peptic ulcer affects approximately 500,000 people each year, with 70% of patients developing it between the ages of 25 and 64. Helicobacter pylori, long-term aspirin, or use of anti-inflammatory drugs (ibuprofen) are common causes of ulcers. An ulcer can be made worse by stress and spicy foods.

Elaborating on the same topic, Functional Nutritionist Mugdha Pradhan, CEO and Founder of iThrive, explained, “Ulcers can be caused by a variety of factors, including H.Pylori infection, which can be spread through food. , water and bodily fluids throughout the body; strong painkillers, smoking, and drinking alcohol can all increase the risk of ulcers.

Symptoms you should never ignore:

According to Dr. Anish Desai, an unhealthy gut can be linked to various symptoms in the body. These symptoms include:

1. Pain in the upper abdomen: A symptom such as severe pain is the most common cause of an ulcer and usually occurs between the belly button and the breastbone.

2. Feeling of nausea: The ulcer affects the chemistry of the digestive fluid present in the stomach and causes a feeling of nausea in the morning.

3. Unexplained vomiting: Nausea due to ulcer becomes severe as it can lead to vomiting.

4. Blood in stool: The appearance of blood in the stool with abdominal pain is a sign of an ulcer.

5. Heartburn after meal: The presence of an ulcer can cause frequent heartburn or severe chest pain after any meal.

6. Loss of Appetite: Ulcer patients tend to consume less food, have occasional vomiting and unexpected weight loss.

Stating that these ulcers are more difficult to identify due to their location, nutritionist Mugdha Pradhan pointed out that their symptoms are similar to those of other digestive problems. She echoed: “Symptoms of peptic ulcers include pain in the abdomen and a burning sensation, loss of appetite due to pain and difficulty sleeping. Ulcers are usually identified by pain or a burning sensation in the stomach.

She added: “Mild ulcers often go unnoticed as symptoms are minor or disappear within minutes. Changes in body gain, bleeding in feces, vomiting blood or dark vomit, fainting, nausea, and other symptoms can occur in extreme situations, such as when ulcers begin to bleed.

Treatment:

In the case of ulcers, nutritionist Mugdha Pradhan recommended that you perform tests to determine the existence of H. Pylori and the amount of bacteria present. She suggested oregano oil, raw garlic cloves, cinnamon and turmeric, coconut oil, mastic gum and olive leaf extract as some strategies to prevent or treat the adverse consequences of H. Pylori.

Dr. Anish Desai emphasizes nutraceuticals which she believes play a vital role in the treatment of peptic ulcer, once they can prevent, treat or even alleviate symptoms involving a condition. Emphasizing that the use of nutraceuticals can become helpful in managing ulcer symptoms as they are effective and have fewer side effects, he advised:

1. Probiotics: Consuming a high-quality probiotic tailored to your specific needs can help the body replenish its good bacteria.

2. Putty eraser: Mastic gum is extracted from the resin of a tree and has been used for many years to aid digestion.

3. Glycyrrhizinate Licorice: DGL can stimulate mucus production in the stomach, providing an extra layer of protection for the ulcer.

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Can antivirals help in the treatment of long COVID? https://gut-training.com/can-antivirals-help-in-the-treatment-of-long-covid/ Thu, 05 May 2022 23:00:02 +0000 https://gut-training.com/can-antivirals-help-in-the-treatment-of-long-covid/ Let me start by stating some basic emerging facts: COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective in combating COVID-associated mortality COVID-19 vaccines could reduce risk of getting long COVID by 50% Of all people infected with COVID-19 after vaccination, 15-30% will develop long COVID There is insufficient evidence to show that COVID-19 vaccines help relieve long pre-existing […]]]>

Let me start by stating some basic emerging facts:

  1. COVID-19 vaccines are highly effective in combating COVID-associated mortality
  2. COVID-19 vaccines could reduce risk of getting long COVID by 50%
  3. Of all people infected with COVID-19 after vaccination, 15-30% will develop long COVID
  4. There is insufficient evidence to show that COVID-19 vaccines help relieve long pre-existing COVID symptoms
  5. We need different strategies to treat long COVID because vaccines do not fully protect against infection

My Experience with Mild Acute COVID-19: Persistent Symptoms

That said, allow me to share my experience. I am an immunologist studying how SARS-CoV-2 infection programs T cell responses differently in patients with long neuro-COVID compared to healthy convalescents. I am also a female in her 30s with an autoimmune disease and on immunosuppressants, and first became COVID positive in December 2021 when the Omicron wave began in the United States. Luckily, my symptoms were mild: persistent headaches, intense fatigue, and trouble sleeping that lasted 2-3 weeks.

I was on the lookout for the development of long COVID symptoms as my demographic is overrepresented among the patients we see in our long COVID clinic. Unsurprisingly, I continued to experience severe fatigue, headaches, and trouble sleeping for over 3 months after my initial COVID-19 infection. My symptoms came and went: at times they were severe enough to interfere with my ability to work in the lab, but then receded to manageable levels before returning. I was also testing positive for SARS-CoV-2 by nasal swab rapid antigen test for over 3 months after my initial positive test (I tested regularly 2-3 times a week), including after I received my booster dose of the vaccine Moderna in early February.

Testing a hypothesis: Could Paxlovid help me with my long-lasting COVID symptoms?

At this point, 6 weeks after my booster dose, I decided to put my knowledge and experience as an infectious disease immunologist working on long COVID to the test. I thought there was substantial evidence that SARS-CoV-2 can persist in the body long after the acute infection phase based on my own data showing long COVID patients having a T-cell signature recalling a possible chronic viral infection. Recent reports have revealed that even patients with mild COVID-19 who died of other causes showed viral persistence in the brain and other extra-respiratory tissues for up to 230 days after acute infection. Other studies have shown that patients with long-term COVID also had the virus in breast and appendix tissue more than a year after acute infection, and that the virus could be detected in feces for up to 7 months after diagnosis. Based on this data and the fact that there was no treatment available for long COVID, I decided to see if taking a SARS-CoV-2 specific antiviral might help ease my persistent symptoms.

I was lucky to have a doctor who would work with me to test my hypothesis. I was prescribed nirmatrelvir/ritonavir (Paxlovid) at the end of March based on the following criteria: I continued to test positive for SARS-CoV-2 on the day of my appointment and I am immunocompromised. I took the 5 day course with minimal side effects and waited to see what would happen.

Consistent with my original assumption, my symptoms of fatigue, headaches, and trouble sleeping slowly faded and completely disappeared about 3 weeks after my nirmatrelvir/ritonavir course ended. At this point I also tested negative rapid antigen for the first time in 4 months. It was very exciting for me initially – it’s rare that we get to test hypotheses in such a personal way, and some reports have suggested that the antiviral could help treat long-lasting COVID symptoms. However, some of my headache and sleep disturbance symptoms resurfaced 4 weeks after treatment ended, and I started testing positive again on a rapid antigen test. Curiously, the symptoms of fatigue remained at bay. Viral reactivation has been observed in some cases after taking nirmatrelvir/ritonavir, and I suspect this may also be a cause of symptom relapse in long-term COVID patients, highlighting the urgent need for clinical trials.

Where do we go from here?

Having studied long COVID since the start of the pandemic, I often hear people with long COVID say they want treatments for their often debilitating conditions. Many people suffer from chronic symptoms that significantly affect their quality of life and ability to work.

Unfortunately, I have no illusions about the difficulty of finding treatments for long COVIDs. For one thing, I don’t think viral persistence is the only underlying cause of post-COVID sequelae. Studies have implicated blood clotting problems and a new autoimmune disease as other possible causes. Still, SARS-CoV-2 antivirals will likely be very important to add to the treatment arsenal after more research into their safety and effectiveness.

We have many questions that need to be answered as a research community. Mechanically, we need to know the proportion of long-term COVID patients who might have a persistent viral reservoir through repeated testing of nasal swabs and stool specimens. We also need to determine whether the viral life cycle of SARS-CoV-2 differs in subtle ways depending on the cell type it infects (lung vs gut vs brain, etc.); this could point us towards new antiviral targets. Finally, we need to differentiate how long COVID immune disruptions may be related to viral persistence versus autoimmunity. Clinically, there is a clear need to test Merck’s antiviral nirmatrelvir/ritonavir and molnupiravir in clinical trials to treat long COVID. We need to find out, initially, if changes in dosing strategies or duration of treatment can eliminate long COVID symptoms. However, both antivirals target only one aspect of the SARS-CoV-2 intracellular life cycle and may not be useful in treating all cases. Greater investment in clinical research should be devoted to the development of new SARS-CoV-2-specific antivirals that target multiple aspects of the viral life cycle. This type of research should be undertaken by both public (NIH-funded) and private (pharmaceutical-funded) initiatives, much like what has been done so successfully for the HIV epidemic.

COVID-19 has been incredibly difficult for us to navigate as a society. As an infectious disease immunologist, I believe that the only way to find a way out of this pandemic will be to invest more in treatments rather than limiting ourselves to the development of vaccines alone. I sincerely hope that our medical and scientific communities can face this moment with the urgency it deserves.

Lavanya Visvabharathy, PhD, is a postdoctoral research associate in neurological manifestations of COVID-19 in the Department of Neurology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago.

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How the Gut Microbiome Affects Cancer Treatment https://gut-training.com/how-the-gut-microbiome-affects-cancer-treatment/ Wed, 04 May 2022 17:37:20 +0000 https://gut-training.com/how-the-gut-microbiome-affects-cancer-treatment/ The gut microbiome, home to hundreds of thousands of bacteria, fungi, viruses and other microorganisms, may play an important role in how people respond to cancer treatment. In a recent paper, published in JAMA Oncology, researchers from Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston suggest that targeting the microbiome may improve therapeutic response to cancer surgery, […]]]>

The gut microbiome, home to hundreds of thousands of bacteria, fungi, viruses and other microorganisms, may play an important role in how people respond to cancer treatment. In a recent paper, published in JAMA Oncology, researchers from Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston suggest that targeting the microbiome may improve therapeutic response to cancer surgery, chemotherapy, immunotherapy, and more.

“We know that a healthy gut is key to our overall health,” lead author Khalid Shah, MS, PhD, of the Center for Stem Cell and Translational Immunotherapy in Brigham’s Department of Neurosurgery said in a press release. “Our gut is so important that we often call it our ‘second’ brain. In recent years we have come to appreciate the many roles of the gut, including the gut-brain connection and the connection between the gut and our immune system. Conversely, intestinal dysfunction or dysbiosis can have a negative effect on our health.

An active area of ​​research is in immunotherapies such as immune checkpoint inhibitors.

Studies of bacterial species in fecal samples from responders and non-responders suggest that the types of microorganisms, or microbiota, may impact treatment response. Studies have also suggested that diet, probiotics, antibiotics and bacteriophages – viruses that infect bacteria – can influence the gut microbiome and, in turn, the response to immunotherapy.

But the role of the microbiome goes beyond immunotherapy. The review details how the microbiota can influence the response to chemotherapy and how, conversely, these cancer therapies can affect the microbiome and lead to unwanted side effects.

“Overall, these findings support the potential of influencing the gut microbiota to decrease the side effects of conventional cancer treatment,” Shah said. “There is strong evidence that the gut microbiome can positively influence cancer therapies,” Shah said. “There are still exciting possibilities to explore, including the influence of healthy eating, probiotics, new therapies and more.”

However, the authors advise cancer patients to exercise caution when using probiotic supplements and making dietary changes, as there is no ideal combination of bacteria.

To learn more about the link between gut microbiota and antitumor immunity, click here. For more on the microbiome and immunotherapy, see “The Frontier of the Microbiome”.


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Experts urge research for malaria treatment https://gut-training.com/experts-urge-research-for-malaria-treatment/ Wed, 04 May 2022 01:20:09 +0000 https://gut-training.com/experts-urge-research-for-malaria-treatment/ In a further quest to improve measures to control the trend of HIV/AIDS, science has come up with more drugs to enable people to easily comply with drug use.One of these drugs is “injectable pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), an addition to the PrEP group of drugs targeting key populations and those at risk of HIV infection.Disclosing […]]]>

In a further quest to improve measures to control the trend of HIV/AIDS, science has come up with more drugs to enable people to easily comply with drug use.
One of these drugs is “injectable pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP), an addition to the PrEP group of drugs targeting key populations and those at risk of HIV infection.
Disclosing this in an exclusive interview, Rivers State Center for Population Health Initiatives Medical Officer Dr. Azikpono Ozore explained that injectable PrEP is a development of the original PrEP, which is a drug that affected individuals take daily. .
“Initially it started as a medicine to be taken every day, but because research has shown that people complain of being HIV-negative, while taking HIV medicine daily, they see it as a burden.
“Therefore, science wants to ease this burden of daily medications and make sure people are still HIV-negative, which is why they introduced injectable PrEP,” he said.
Ozore, speaking on the sidelines of the first trimester prevention technical working group meeting in Port Harcourt, said that injectable PrEP, “is like an injection: you take it once every two It can prevent HIV in two months before you take the next dose.
“With this development, at least people will want to take the drug more,” he said.
Another development, according to Dr. Ozore, is “Vagina PrEP Rim”, which is usually inserted into a woman’s vigaina or cervix and acts as a medicine for the person.
He also revealed that scientists are currently carrying out tests on HIV drugs that will allow people to take the drugs weekly, instead of current drugs that are taken daily.
“These kind of groundbreaking advances are coming so that people can freely take their medications and we can actually prevent HIV.
“The goal for the future is zero new infections, and the only way to get there is when people take PrEP and use other protective mechanisms to make sure they stay negative,” a- he declared.
Speaking on the durability of the injectable, Rivers State Chairman of the HIV Prevention Technical Working Group, Professor Charles Tobin-West, said it was possible.
This, he explained, is because, like PrEP, injectable PrEP is only intended for the key population, including the high-risk population, and discordant couples, and not for the general population.
“It is offered to them in order to curb the spread of HIV/AIDS, because if we do not do it, these categories of people will be at the center of the spread to the general population.
“If this is allowed, everything we do to fight HIV will be destroyed,” he said.
He said the meeting was aimed at allowing various organizations involved in the fight against HIV/AIDS to take stock of their activities so far, saying that according to all the presentations made, the gap to zero infections to HIV in Rivers State has further reduced.
PrEP is a drug used by HIV-negative people who are at risk of contracting the virus. These people are considered the “key population”, which includes people at high risk (sex workers, men who have sex with men, people who inject drugs, etc.) and discordant couples: marriages in which a partner is HIV negative and the other is positive.

By: Sogbeba Dokubo

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A family returns from Ukraine to receive medical treatment for their daughter shortly before the Russian invasion https://gut-training.com/a-family-returns-from-ukraine-to-receive-medical-treatment-for-their-daughter-shortly-before-the-russian-invasion/ Tue, 03 May 2022 04:15:00 +0000 https://gut-training.com/a-family-returns-from-ukraine-to-receive-medical-treatment-for-their-daughter-shortly-before-the-russian-invasion/ CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) — In early February, the family of 5-year-old Maria Melnyk returned to the United States in search of better medical treatment for their daughter. Yuriy Melnyk, a Huntersville resident and Maria’s father, said he and his family were visiting relatives in the western part of Ukraine in the summer of 2021. He […]]]>

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) — In early February, the family of 5-year-old Maria Melnyk returned to the United States in search of better medical treatment for their daughter.

Yuriy Melnyk, a Huntersville resident and Maria’s father, said he and his family were visiting relatives in the western part of Ukraine in the summer of 2021. He said that during the trip, Maria started to feel ill and complained of stomach pains. When the pain did not subside, Maria was taken to the hospital. It was determined that his illness was caused by an infection. Melnyk said doctors then told her her daughter was suffering from kidney failure and needed to be taken to the intensive care unit of a hospital in Kyiv, the nation’s capital.

“We realized something big was going on and it was really, really scary,” Melnyk said.

He said his daughter’s condition deteriorated rapidly over the next few days and her medical issues began to worsen. She was hospitalized and over the past few months suffered from kidney failure, cardiac arrest and several strokes. Melnyk explained that at one point he and his family thought they would lose Maria.

“It happened very quickly. We were transferred to intensive care. They told us you had a few hours,” Melnyk said.

He explained that his daughter had continued to fight despite the worsening medical problems.

Melnyk said after coordinating with an air ambulance company and several hospitals, the family paid tens of thousands of dollars to bring the baby girl from Ukraine to their Charlotte-area home. He said their hope was that Maria would receive better neurological care in the United States than she would receive in Ukraine.

A Ukrainian doctor even offered to fly with Maria to the United States.

“Not just for him, I owe my life to these people,” Melnyk said of the Ukrainian doctors who treated his daughter.

Upon her arrival in the United States, Maria was transferred to Levine Children’s Hospital in Charlotte. The family returned home to Huntersville just weeks before the Russian invasion began.

“Me and my wife looked at each other and thought we were saving her, but it looks like she was saving us,” Melnyk said.

Maria Melnyk’s medical journey is ongoing. Her father said she was often heavily sedated, but doctors were trying to wean her off the sedatives.

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