What Is Chelation Therapy and How Does It Work?

We are constantly exposed to toxins through air, water, food, and household products. Over time, these toxins can accumulate in the body, leading to uncomfortable symptoms that make daily life less enjoyable and hinder overall well-being.

Chelation therapy helps remove heavy metals and other harmful substances from the bloodstream. At Dr. Christopher Calapai’s practice in Garden City, NY, we offer this therapy to help patients improve their health and quality of life, targeting and eliminating these toxins and supporting the body’s natural detoxification processes.

Heavy Metals and Their Impact on Health

What Are Heavy Metals?

Heavy metals are elements that occur naturally and are characterized by their high atomic weight and density, which is at least five times greater than that of water. While certain heavy metals like iron and zinc are vital for biological processes in trace amounts, others such as lead, mercury, and cadmium can be harmful to the body, even at low concentrations.

Common Sources of Heavy Metals

Heavy metals can enter the body through various sources, including contaminated food and water, industrial emissions, and household products. For instance, lead can be found in old paint and plumbing systems, while mercury exposure often comes from certain types of fish and industrial processes. Cadmium can be present in batteries and cigarette smoke, posing risks to both smokers and those exposed to secondhand smoke.

Toxicity Levels and Health Risks of Heavy Metals

The toxicity of heavy metals depends on their concentration and the duration of exposure. Chronic exposure to heavy metals can lead to a range of health issues, including neurological disorders, cardiovascular diseases, and kidney damage. The risk of toxicity increases with higher levels of exposure and can be particularly dangerous for vulnerable populations such as children and pregnant women.

Symptoms of Heavy Metal Poisoning

Symptoms of heavy metal poisoning vary depending on the specific metal and level of exposure. Common symptoms include abdominal pain, nausea, and vomiting. Long-term exposure can result in more severe symptoms like cognitive decline, memory loss, and muscle weakness. For those experiencing such symptoms, IV chelation therapy can be a potential treatment option to help reduce the body’s heavy metal burden and alleviate associated health risks.

How Does Chelation Therapy Work? 

What Is Chelation Therapy?

Chelation therapy is a medical treatment aimed at eliminating heavy metals and other toxins from the body. It involves the use of chelating agents, which are substances that attach to heavy metals in the bloodstream, aiding in their excretion and diminishing their detrimental effects on health.

Types of Chelating Agents

  • EDTA: Ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid (EDTA) is the primary chelating agent used in IV nutrient therapy and the one that we use most often in our treatments. It binds to heavy metals like lead and mercury and facilitates their removal from the body. EDTA is widely used due to its proven record and efficacy in treating heavy metal toxicity.
  • DMSA: Dimercaptosuccinic acid (DMSA) is another chelating agent used in chelation therapy. It is often administered orally and is particularly effective in removing lead from the body. DMSA is known for its ability to chelate metals without significantly affecting essential minerals.
  • DMPS: Dimercapto-propane sulfonate (DMPS) is used in IV therapy to treat heavy metal poisoning, especially mercury. Administered intravenously, DMPS binds to heavy metals, allowing for their excretion through the kidneys. It is chosen for its potency and rapid action in acute cases.

How Chelation Therapy Works

Chelation IV therapy introduces chelating agents into the bloodstream where they bind to heavy metals and form stable complexes. These complexes are then filtered out of the blood by the kidneys and excreted in the urine. This process reduces the toxic load in the body and helps restore normal biological functions that may have been disrupted by heavy metal accumulation.

Administration Methods of Chelation Therapy

IV nutrient therapy is the most common method of administering chelation therapy. This involves infusing the chelating agents directly into the bloodstream through an intravenous drip for immediate and effective distribution throughout the body. Oral administration is another method, though it may be less effective and slower to act compared to intravenous infusions. 

Both methods bind and remove heavy metals, but the choice of administration depends on the patient’s specific needs and the severity of metal toxicity. We use chelation therapy because of its effectiveness and ease of administration.

What Can Chelation Therapy Treat? 

Heavy Metal Toxicity

Chelation therapy binds to metals like lead, mercury, and arsenic and facilitates their removal from the body. This treatment helps alleviate symptoms such as fatigue, headaches, and cognitive difficulties, improving overall health and well-being.

Cardiovascular Disease

One benefit of chelation therapy is its potential to improve cardiovascular health. By removing heavy metals that contribute to arterial plaque buildup, this therapy can enhance blood flow and reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes. Patients may experience better cardiovascular function and overall heart health.

Neurodegenerative Disorders

IV chelation therapy can support the treatment of neurodegenerative disorders by reducing the body’s heavy metal burden, which is linked to conditions like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Lowering metal toxicity may slow the progression of these disorders and help maintain cognitive function.

Chronic Inflammatory Conditions

Chelation IV therapy can aid in reducing chronic inflammation by removing metals that trigger inflammatory responses in the body. This can be beneficial for conditions such as arthritis and other inflammatory diseases, potentially reducing pain and improving joint mobility.

Poor Immune System

Enhancing the immune system is another benefit of chelation therapy. By eliminating toxic metals that can weaken immune responses, chelation therapy helps bolster the body’s natural defenses, leading to improved resistance against infections and diseases. Patients may notice fewer illnesses and a more robust overall health.

How Often Can You Do IV Chelation? 

The frequency of IV therapy for chelation depends on the individual’s health condition and the severity of metal toxicity. Typically, patients may undergo treatments once or twice a week initially. After one or two months, the frequency may be reduced to maintain the results. Always consult with a healthcare provider to determine the most appropriate treatment schedule tailored to your specific needs.

Is Chelation Therapy in Garden City Right for You? 

Chelation therapy can be a valuable treatment for reducing heavy metal toxicity, improving cardiovascular health, and supporting neurological and immune function. At Dr. Christopher Calapai in Garden City, NY, we offer this therapy to help patients address various health concerns related to metal exposure. To learn more or to schedule a consultation, please contact us or call (516) 794-0404.

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