For anyone practicing neural therapy, the subject of mercury toxicity comes to the fore sooner or later. Mercury toxicity is a common cause of poor response to treatment; it may block regulation; it may underlie "too many" interference fields, and it sometimes is a complication when neural therapy is directed at interference fields with sequestered mercury, (e.g. the oral cavity and face). In this situation, the patient is actually made sick by the neural therapy. Mercury toxicity is a large and important topic discussed (in a limited way) in chapter 9 of my book on neural therapy: http://www.neuraltherapybook.com/
It is also a difficult subject. Unlike acute mercury toxicity, chronic mercury toxicity is subtle and cannot be detected with the usual laboratory methods.
Most physicians suspecting this condition have come to rely on chelating agents such as DMPS and DMSA to uncover the toxicity. A test dose is administered orally or intravenously; the chelating agent circulates through the body binding mercury and other divalent cations and is then excreted in the urine. The amount excreted is said to represent the "body burden" of that particular toxin.
However, clinicians quickly observe that the correlation between the amount excreted and the health of the patient is poor. Relatively healthy patients sometimes excrete large amounts; tired and sick patients sometimes excrete little, even though the history, examination and other lab parameters strongly suggest mercury toxicity. The tendency then is to blame "impaired detoxification".
A new commercial lab has just appeared on the scene that shows promise in resolving some of these quandaries. Quicksilver Scientific http://www.quicksilverscientific.com/, founded and operated by Christopher Shade, PhD offers two unique services:
Dr Shade demonstrates (using published literature almost 20 years old) that serum mercury levels are actually a good measure of the body's burden in the chronic state, i.e. the serum concentration is in equlibrium with that in the tissues. The problem for clinicians is that most labs do not offer measurements at a low enough range for this knowledge to be applied. Quicksilver lab does.
The second breakthrough that Quicksilver Scientific seems to provide is an assessment of the body's ability to excrete mercury through the liver and kidney pathways. This is done by firstly "speciating" the mercury i.e. measuring independently the methyl and inorganic forms of mercury in the serum, and secondly measuring mercury concentrations in hair and urine. Since the mercury in hair is primarily in the methyl form and the mercury in urine is primarily inorganic, calculations can be made to determine how well (or poorly) each excretory pathway is functioning. It is assumed that hair levels reflect excretion of methyl mercury through the liver-bowel route.
This has some obvious therapeutic implications, and especially for those practicing neural therapy. Not only do rational, individually‐tailored detoxification strategies need to be designed, but interference fields need to be identified and treated, especially in the kidneys, liver, gut and associated autonomic ganglia.
I have been starting to use the Quicksilver lab and have so far found the results useful. Sometimes even knowing that a patient's excretory pathways are working well is valuable knowledge! However as valuable as this information may be, I see one potential pitfall in Quicksilver lab's basic assumptions.
Serum mercury is said to "reflect the body burden" because in the chronic condition blood mercury levels are in equilibrium with those in the tissues. This assumes equal availability of mercury for diffusion from all tissues, but those experienced in neural therapy know this is not the case. Mercury is often sequestered in tissues with reduced blood flow, typically those with chronic inflammation or interference fields of various types including somatic dysfunction. This is evidenced by neural therapy (or "deep" osteopathic manipulation of longstanding major somatic dysfunction), mobilizing mercury that would otherwise not be reflected in the steady state equilibrium of tissues with serum.
The question of mercury toxicity vs mercury sensitivity is another remaining dilemma (and too large a subject to be discussed here) but despite these limitations, I feel that Quicksilver lab's new services are promising additions to the clinician's armamentarium. I look forward to seeing how this plays out in not only my own practice but also those of other clinicians.
Robert F. Kidd, MD, CM