Sepsis is a condition caused by inflammation that is frequently triggered by an overwhelming infection in the body. It can lead to multiple organ failure and kills more people in the hospital than any other disease. But perhaps now, hope is on the horizon.
A study from Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, Va., has reported some remarkable success in treating patients who were at high risk of sudden death from the condition.
In January of 2015, Dr. Paul Marik was running the intensive care unit at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital when a 48-year-old woman came in with a severe case of sepsis, “Her kidneys weren’t working. Her lungs weren’t working. She was going to die. In a situation like this, you start thinking out of the box.”
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Since Marik had recently read a study by researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, about moderate success treating septic people with intravenous vitamin C, he decided to give it a try.
With the Vitamin C he added a low dose of corticosteroids (sometimes used to treat sepsis) along with a bit of the vitamin thiamine. The next morning he assumed she would be dead but she was on the road to recovery.
From the article:
“Marik tried this treatment with the next two sepsis patients he encountered and was similarly surprised. So he started treating his sepsis patients regularly with the vitamin and steroid infusion.
After he’d treated 50 patients, he decided to write up his results. As he described it in Chest, only four of those 47 patients died in the hospital — and all the deaths were from their underlying diseases, not from sepsis. For comparison, he looked back at 47 patients the hospital had treated before he tried the vitamin C infusion and found that 19 had died in the hospital.”
In order to be able to call this a treatment more study needs to be done and that involves trials. So, Dr. Berry Fowler submitted a grant to the NIH to study the role of vitamin C in sepsis and was awarded a $3.2 million grant “to run a carefully controlled study of vitamin C to treat sepsis, with all the usual conditions: It includes placebos; the scientists don’t know who’s getting the active drug; and it’s being conducted at several universities.”
The study hopes to wrap up later this year. That study could wrap up later this year. Fowler says some patients in the trial will probably have been given corticosteroids, as Marik’s patients were, but that’s not a formal part of the study.
We know the power of intravenous vitamin C and are happy that Western Medicine is starting to understand its value as well. We will keep you updated as more information on the results of the study become available.