How is it that a safe, natural substance, one found to bring patients back from the brink of death numerous times, could be dismissed as hype and nonsense when it comes to the Coronavirus?
Such is the case with vitamin C – specifically high-dose amounts administered in an IV.
Not that this treatment is totally foreign to all U.S. doctors. In many hospitals IV-C has been used to save patients, some fully expected to die from sepsis as well as other life-threatening conditions (more on that in a minute).
No so in China. A recent press release from Orthomolecular* Medicine News Service (OMNS), reports that not only are doctors in China using IV-C to successfully treat COVID-19 (the official Coronavirus name adopted by the World Health Organization), but that the government of Shanghai has officially announced it most definitely should be used, for both those with a milder form of the virus as well as patients in serious condition.
Where are the “breaking news” reports on that? Instead, what you’ll find are authoritative-sounding statements (even one reprinted by the rumor-busters at Snopes) that claim reports of vitamin C being a viable COVID-19 treatment are dangerous rumors.
But the news from Andrew Saul, PhD., author and editor-in-chief of the OMNS, tells another story, one to which health professionals worldwide need to be paying attention.
Issued what now seems like a very long time ago – back on March 3rd – Saul reports that Shanghai officials recommend that COVID-19 patients be treated with doses of IV-C ranging from 4,000 to 16,000 mg for adults, depending on the severity of their condition. He quotes from a statement from the Xi’an Jiaotong University Second Hospital that states “[H]igh-dose vitamin C achieved good results in clinical applications,” and that for patients with severe pneumonia and those who are critically ill, “vitamin C treatment should be initiated as soon as possible after admission. …Numerous studies have shown that the dose of vitamin C has a lot to do with the effect of treatment,” and that it can “prevent and treat acute lung injury.”
Two prominent Chinese doctors also recommend oral vitamin C for COVID-19 prevention. Imagine that one being announced on our 24/7 Coronavirus coverage. The pharmaceutical companies who sponsor all this programming would have a meltdown.
But for the OMNS, this isn’t exactly a newsflash. They have been issuing statements about the effectiveness of IV-C in treating COVID-19 since the end of January. In a March 1st release Saul quotes from Chinese-American physician Richard Z Cheng that “We need to broadcast a message worldwide very quickly: Vitamin C (small or large dose) does no harm to people and is one of the few agents (if not the only one) that has a chance to prevent us from getting, and can treat, COVID-19 infection.”
Apparently, however, that message was only “broadcast” to a limited audience.
As reported in a March 11th story in Forbes, “How the rich are protecting themselves against Coronavirus”, writer Ollie Williams tells that at a private medical facility in London’s Arts Club, members are taking advantage of infusions of high-dose IV-C, for a mere $387.
But as mentioned, IV-C isn’t a wacky therapy for rich folks in the UK or a far-away Chinese medical facility, but rather a proven, life-saving treatment right here in the U.S.
Dr. Paul Marik, who practices at the Sentara Norfolk General Hospital in Virginia, has been using high dose IV-C to save countless patients from dying from sepsis (which, by the way, kills a whopping 300,000 Americans each year).
His use of IV-C, first reported three years ago on NPR, has had some remarkable successes. One involved a patient whose kidneys and lungs had already failed, and who was not expected to live through the night. But after an infusion of IV-C, one that included a low dose of steroids and thiamin, in his words, he got “the shock” of his life upon returning the next day to find his patient over her crisis and recovering.
Since then Marik has used IV-C on hundreds of other patients with great success. As he commented several years ago about the difficulty in having IV-C go mainstream, “Nobody’s going to make money from this.”
Other doctors have since used the “Marik cocktail,” as it has been dubbed, with similar lifesaving results. One, Dr. Craig Coopersmith, a critical-care surgeon at Emory University, told of a sepsis patient with a near “100 percent chance of dying.” After receiving an infusion of high-dose vitamin C, however, the patient had recovered enough in a week to be moved out of the ICU.
Currently, several trials called VICTAS (which stands for vitamin C, thiamine and steroids) are in the works, one being conducted by Johns Hopkins. That’s the good news. The bad news is the estimated completion date is December 2021.
As doctors from around the country, including those from Johns Hopkins, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, and the National Institutes of Health write about the VICTAS trial, “(b)ecause the components of this therapy are inexpensive and readily available and have very favorable risk profiles, demonstrated efficacy would have immediate implications for the management of sepsis worldwide.”
And that’s wonderful. But what about COVID-19? How this inexpensive therapy might help us right now is the big question.
Certainly, you’re ahead of the curve if you already have a naturopathic physician or a health-care professional who thinks outside of the norm. And you can always look for one using searches such as this < https://naturopathic.org/search/custom.asp?id=5613> from the American Association of Naturopathic Physicians.
Without doubt, the very thought of vitamin C effectively treating COVID-19 challenges everything Big Pharma stands for. Let’s just hope that its greed and avaricious practices don’t effectively bar the door to keeping this therapy from reaching those who need it the most.
*Orthomolecular is a term coined by Nobel Prize-winning doctor and researcher Linus Pauling meaning a type of alternative medicine that prevents and treats disease with “optimal amounts of substances which are natural to the body.”