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Toxic Metals and Chronic Disease

Toxic Metals and Chronic Disease

  
Introduction 
 
We all know if a child swallows a lead bracelet or drinks the mercury from a thermometer they will get very sick andSeptember-toxic-metals possibly die.  This is acute metal toxicity.  Throughout history humans, animals and plants have been exposed to toxic metals.  Toxic metals accumulate over time by being stored in the body in various locations such as the brain, heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, bones and other sites, indefinitely.  The toxic effects of most metals can be traced to their ability to disrupt the function of essential biological molecules, such as proteins, enzymes and DNA.  This is chronic metal toxicity. 
 
  
Semantics 
All heavy metals are not toxic, e.g. molybdenum, and all toxic metals are not heavy, e.g. beryllium.  I am using toxic metals to describe metals with no known biological function that, even at low concentrations, may disrupt essential physiological processes, as mentioned above. 
  
Toxic Metals 
Here is a list of toxic metals: Aluminum, Antimony, Arsenic, Barium, Beryllium, Bismuth, Cadmium, Chromium, Cobalt, Gadolinium, Gallium, Lead, Manganese, Mercury, Nickel, Palladium, Platinum, Polonium, Plutonium, Silver, Thallium, Tin, Thorium, Tungsten, Uranium and Vanadium. 
  
Research and Clinical Experience 
There has been a great deal of research done on toxic metals and we are starting to see more being done linking toxic metals to chronic disease.  There is either scientific support or clinical experience to support the role of toxic metals in, but not limited to, some cancers (e.g. cadmium in prostate cancer), heart disease, enlarged heart, fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus erythematosus, macular degeneration (dry), hypertension, autism, decreased IQ and peripheral vascular disease. 
  
Testing and Diagnosis 
A patient comes to the office with signs, symptoms or a diagnosis of one of the aforementioned conditions.  Or there is a history of chronic exposure to toxic metals, for example, from smoking or having dental amalgams.  First we discuss removing the source of the metal toxicity, if it still exists.  For the most part, chronic metal toxicity will not show up in blood samples therefore I recommend a provocative urine test.  I give them a metal binding agent, such as EDTA, usually intravenously.  This pulls the toxic metal out of the body’s tissues and deposits it in the urine.  I have them collect a six hour urine sample and send a specimen to the laboratory.  The toxic metals we find in the urine will give us the information we need to design a therapeutic regimen using metal binding agents. 
  
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September-2010-dr-smithJames E. Smith, D.O. 
Medical Director of Dr. Jim’s Center for Advanced Medicine 
Diplomate in the American College of Clinical Metal Toxicology
 
Dr. Jim Smith is a fully licensed Osteopathic Physician with 20 years experience in Family and Emergency Medicine.  He has been doing Integrative - Advanced Medicine for 15 years.  He is certified in Family Medicine and Clinical Metal Toxicology.  He serves on the Board of the International College of Integrative Medicine (www.icimed.com) and the American Board of Clinical Metal Toxicology (www.abcmt.org).  He is a member of the American College for Advancement in Medicine (www.acam.org), the Advanced Medical Education and Services Physician Association (www.amespa.org) and the American Osteopathic Association (www.osteopathic.org).  He is presently the Medical Director of  Dr. Jim’s Center for Advanced Medicine in West- chester, Ohio. 
 
 
 
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