I’m beginning to feel that I’m flogging a topic a bit too hard again. Usually, this happens primarily when I’m on a roll over some particularly tasty ridiculous tidbit of antivaccine nonsense. This time around, it’s not so much antivaccine nonsense (although some did manage to slip its way into the discussion) but rather Ebola virus disease. In particular, it’s the conspiracy theories and quackery that have sprung up in the media like so much kudzu smothering rational and science-based discourse, revealing the depths of distrust based on politics, pseudoscience, and just plain nonsense that our public health officials have to deal with. There really are people out there who believe that the CDC, the WHO, the government, big pharma, and medicine itself are in cahoots to inflict a virus that kills more than half the people it infects on poor people in Africa and allow it to spread to more developed countries, all in order to create a market for drugs and vaccines against it to enrich our pharma overlords. There really are people who believe that President Obama actually wants Ebola to become established in the US because he wants to infect white people in order make the US more like his “home” in Africa.
Then there’s the quackery, so much quackery. Be it homeopathy, high dose vitamin C, “natural biopreparedness” kits, or essential oils being sold to cure Ebola, truly outbreaks bring out the worst in people as demonstrated by increasingly outlandish conspiracy theories and quackery.
Enter Patrick Timothy Bolen, most commonly referred to as “Tim” (although he is most commonly referred to by skeptics as Hulda Clark’s bulldog and ridiculous defender of quacks). You remember “Tim” Bolen (who, for some inexplicable reason, always uses “Tim” instead of his first name Patrick), don’t you? Most recently, I’ve been enjoying his attacks on various antivaccine luminaries, particularly his claims that he—and only he—with the assistance of his “millions of health freedom fighters,” can “fix” the autism advocacy movement. Now, apparently, he also thinks he has the cure for Ebola, and, as is always the case whenever Bolen puts something on his website, hilarity ensues.
This time around, Bolen is advocating an “Ayurvedic approach” to stopping Ebola, introducing the article on this approach with a statement about its author, “Big Pharma would have us all believe, through their stranglehold on US media, that the drugs, vaccines, drugs, vaccines, drugs, and more drugs and vaccines approach is ALL there is in the world. But the fact is, there are MANY other approaches to health care on planet earth. Ayurvedic Medicine, for instance, has been around for over three thousand years, so read THIS interesting approach to dealing with Ebola… TR Shantha MD is a former client of mine who, after a major assault on his practice, completely cleared his name – although you’d never know it from Quackwatch.com’s article on him. You can read about that situation here.”
Interestingly, “TR Shantha” (also listed as Totada R. Shanthaveerappa, M.D.) shows up on Quackwatch for his promotion of something called “Intracellular Hyperthermia” (ICHT) through Integrated Chemotherapy Specialists in Stockbridge, Georgia back in 2004. It’s a bit of quackery that even the American Cancer Society doesn’t approve of apparently originally promoted by Nicholas Bachynsky and involving injecting substances to cause a fever, such as DNP (chemical name 2-4-dinitrophenol) in order to cause a fever and/or heating the tumor, along with low dose chemotherapy. The version of his site from 2004 (courtesy of the Wayback Machine) shows, intermingled with more conventional therapies, a veritable cornucopia of quackery, including (but not limited to):
- High dose Vitamin C therapy Intravenous, up to 100 grams
- Endorphin receptor therapy, using Naltrexone if the person is not on narcotics*
- Detoxification, colonics, Coffee enema, message, aromatherapy as needed*
- Chelation to detoxify the body if needed
- Laetrile IV* if patient is interested
- Oral urea carbomate, 20-30Grams* as well as intratumor injection
- Hansii, iv, Local, oral*
- Nutrition: Vegetable diet with fruits and fish
- Enhance healing and the immune system with intravenous medications oral Alovera, nutritional supplementation, vitamins, glutamine, B complex, zinc, Cesium, flax oil, selenium, immune26, essential fatty acid, N-acetyl cysteine and other needed supplements.
- Oral PoyMVA therapy- will find the source if patient want the therapy *
- High dose Methotrxate rescue therapy with insulin potentiation therapy (IPT) and combining with other cancer killing chemotherapeutic agents up to 3 infusions.
- IPT-Insulin potentiation therapy with low dose appropriate anticancer medication that kill the cancer without any horrendous toxic effects.
- Intra tumor injection of intracellular metabolic uncoupling agents which induce intracellular hyperthermia, combined with various chemotherapeutic agent.
Currently, T.R. Shantha lists himself as a “research scientist, author, and medical practitioner” who is apparently a scientific advisor for a company called Wedge Therapeutics selling a medical device called the Sphenoid and Olfactory Nerve Stimulation (SONS*) System, which claims to be able to do this:
Where physiological functions are impaired due to a breakdown in biochemical activity of the intracellular organelle, and nerve function, Wedge believes that is feasible to attempt to therapeutically re-activate those physiological functions electronically by the use of SONS therapy. The main object of SONS is to deliver the electrical impulses to activate the Alzheimer’s afflicted brain and reset the function of the CNS at the neuronal and synaptic level (by increasing the electrical conductivity and by reducing the inflammation).
This time around, though, Shantha is promoting urine therapy for Ebola:
My therapy to curtail and cure the Ebola virus infection is simple and inexpensive besides taking all preventive measures to come in contact. It is a precursor of a vaccine with production of auto-antibodies within the body of the infected patients. The therapy is called “auto urine therapy” (AUT). That is the infected person drinking his or her own urine.. Follow the guidelines below and call me if one needs further guidance.
As soon as the disease is suspected or diagnosed, before waiting for any therapy:
Start drinking all the urine that comes out the first day no matter what the condition of the patient is. If the patient is averse or has social stigma regarding this therapy, use a naso-gastric feeding tube to feed the urine. Collect the urine in a clean glass and feed the urine as soon as it is evacuated from the bladder through the urethra. Do not change the taste or save it to drink later.
The next day feed all the urine that comes out in the morning. Then feed in the afternoon and before going to bed. Follow the urine therapy with a drink of water.
The third day drink the urine all morning and drink the urine after mid afternoon.
Fourth day drink the urine all morning. Then continue to drink urine in the morning for 11 more days and continue for one or more weeks. Morning urine drinking is necessary to get the benefits of AUT.
During urine therapy, drink clean water. Avoid eating meat and heavy meals. Continue all other supportive therapy.
Uh, no. Just no. There is no evidence that drinking your own urine will help you rid yourself of Ebola, should you be unfortunate enough to become infected. One wonders if he decided that urine therapy would be a good thing, given that a decade ago he thought urea therapy would be good for cancer. Let’s be fair, though. Let’s see what sort of rationale he uses to justify this quackery:
The Ebola virus particles as they are broken down in the body by the immune system are passed in the urine with other metabolic products including protein components, enzymes, and hormones. There are dozens of medicines we swallow to curtail and cure diseases which are extracted from urine. When you drink the urine, the broken down fragments of the Ebola virus pass through the intestines. The intestines are lined with B-lymphocytes (and lymphocytes producing lymph nodes called Peyers’ patches) which mature into antibody producing Plasma cells on the entire length of the gut wall (first line of immune defense). It is estimated that there are 180,000 immune antibody-producing white blood cells (Plasma cells) for every cubic millimeter of the wall. There are billions of these antibody synthesizing white blood cells in the wall of the gut. These plasma cells pick up the virus and their fragments, and synthesize antibodies against the Ebola virus. By the tenth day, billons of antibody particles are produced and circulating in the body, attaching to the Ebola viruses in the body, killing them, and clearing them from the body as you continue the AUT. Thus AUT cures the condition. It costs nothing and it is simple to adopt. Anyone can use the therapy whether in a village or in a hospital anywhere in the world. Starting therapy earlier can lead to decreased morbidity and mortality. It is only a theory and based on what I know about it, it will work.
I have been exposed to urine therapy since 1965. Urine contains more than 200-300 components of metabolites and other components from the body and they can help cure many diseases including this dreaded Ebola infection. There is hardly a disease that cannot be treated with auto urine therapy as primary or adjuvant therapy. Morarji Desai, the prime minister of India practiced AUT daily until he died in his nineties. It is part of a Hindu system of Yogic therapy that has been in practice for thousands of years. I would love to travel to the African countries, if anyone can fund, to treat these patients, and save lives with this simple therapy.
Does anyone see a problem here? Here’s Shantha’s idea. Because Ebola virus proteins come out through the urine, drinking urine, according to him, will allow the viral proteins to be epxosed to the Peyer’s patches and provoke an antibody response. Here are the problems. First, from my reading, I find that patients with Ebola can shed the virus in the urine, meaning that the urine is potentially infectious. While one might think that drinking the same virus one is infected with couldn’t do any more harm, all it does is introduce more virus contact with the mucous membranes of the mouth, with the potential for worsening the illness. Second, and more importantly, any viral proteins would be broken down to single amino acids, or, at best, di- and tri-peptides. In the stomach proteins are broken down by acid and and a protease known as pepsin. As soon as they hit the small intestine, proteins are broken down further still by other enzymes until they are broken down to (mostly) single amino acids. It’s a very efficient process. Very little protein gets through without being hydrolyzed to di- and tripeptides (two or three amino acids) and single amino acids, and this is how they are absorbed. These Ebola virus proteins would be broken down to forms that can’t provoke an immune response before ever getting to the gut’s immune system, given that Peyer’s patches are found in the ileum (more distal small intestine), not in the jejunum, which is where most protein digestion and absorption take place.
Geez. Didn’t this guy take basic anatomy and histology when he went to medical school? Or maybe he forgot, particularly if he thinks that “auto-urine therapy” can in any way result in an immune response against Ebola sufficient to have an effect on the outcome.
No wonder Bolen thinks it’s an “interesting” idea.
83 replies on “An old "friend" thinks Ayurvedic "auto-urine therapy" can cure Ebola”
If you provide Pattimmy Bolen enough of an incentive, he’ll recommend any quackery to his readership.
Auto Urine Therapy? Seriously? You must be kidding.
I also read things which seem ridiculous sometimes coming from the medical world and sometimes from the laymen but what i would be worried about if i were you, is the universal distrust in the medical profession .This is not unfounded since there have been quite some vaccine scandals and there are Dr Death’s walking around their study paid for by the people, their study outcomes alas, for Big Pharma and against the people.To tell you the truth ( and i used to be a science is holy type of person,ratio above emotions ),if i became terribly ill and would have to pick a healer and had the choice between a shaman and a med. big Pharma boy, i with what i’ve learned would go for the shaman at least he would present the most ethics of the two.
And this being said, it really hurts to see the world has become a place where diseases can be bought or sold for political reasons, population controle or what ever insane psychopathic reason might be invented by powers that be ,which i wish never where and since they think out all kind of schemes to remove people out of the equation, i have a better and cheaper solution,why don’t they move themselves out of the equation,they have the money, the power and the technology… or am i to conclude it’s just a zest for killing and powerplay.. some sort of “because we can”.
Can we perhaps start a Kickstarter to realize that man’s dream? I’d love to hear how he thanks the pledgers for that chance.
We could add a stretch goal for buying a camcorder and funding an internet connection at the site, so that he could report the results live!
NO EFFIN’ WAY.
The original misc.health.alternative smackdown lives on.
A one-way ticket YYZ–BRU–DKR–CKY is a mere $2162 in steerage. (Naturally, the grateful African states would repatriate him in F.) I’m going with its being a moral certainty that Patty would plead lack of a passport should anyone do him the favor.
I suppose if having one’s Georgia medical license revoked and pleading down to just one federal count of healthcare fraud constitutes “clearing” one’s name, sure.
“He has multiple patents on the light bulb, also.”
Well, there’s this mass of underwhelming.
^ “I’m going with its being a moral certainty that Patty would plead lack of a passport should anyone do him the favor.”
Shantha, whatever. Shirley he would need a helper.
Yes, I’ve communicated with the real Tim Bolen, who, sadly (to him), is related to Patrick Bolen.
“He has multiple patents on the light bulb, also.”
Which reminds me of a chap I once encountered on one of the San Francisco trams who was the *real* inventor of peanut butter but had been robbed of the credit and the profit from that invention through the machinations of vast international conspiracies.
I think it was the F-line.
This guy sounds like a real whiz.
Sorry, I’ll go home now.
I can see where this comment thread is going… 🙂
I’m sorry to see you’ve deluded yourself into creating absolutely ridiculous notions of power-play going on behind some seriously impervious curtains. You really think any group is powerful enough to silence EVERY employer out there, ever? You realize how difficult it is to carefully monitor large systems and all smaller power-dynamics? You think it’s more likely that an enormously complicated power-structure is (lol) actually feasible and is conspiring towards pulling the wool over your eyes, than there might be good reasons to question alot of the rhyme and reason of gut-based-medicine (ie. quackery). You have invented an elaborate explanation for a much simpler problem.
In defense of Shantha, he may have glommed on to one idea to lower risk of Ebola transmission.
He comments “I have been exposed to urine therapy since 1965”. Put that slogan on a t-shirt, and it’s a good bet people will sit as far from you as possible on public transportation, thus lessening your risk of catching Ebola.
@ Jasmine # 2
Conspiracy element aside, I believe you are creating a false dychtomy. Yes, sometimes Pharma acts in unethical manner or pushes products that may not work as advertised. Yet, there are control systems in place to curb such behaviours as much as possible. Often maligned FDA (and its equivalents in other countries) for example.
Additionaly if a pharmaceutical med turns out to not work/be dangerous/there’s better replacement, it gets phased out of use, sometimes in the air of scandal. If alternative therapy fails in similar manner it is fault of the patient for not wanting to be healthy hard enough or of evil Big Whatever for destroying body’s ability to heal or some such silliness. But it is never because therapy is just bad. (I personally think, that if there are so many factors that can disturb the miraculous cure, it is not all that miraculous, but what do I know).
So when you compare MD with Shaman and ascribe the latter more integrity it is a meaningless comparison. I’d take a selfish businessman who’ll sell me a meds that to the best knowledge of everyone involved actually do something over honest shaman who’ll give me scarf made from goat’s intestine.
As Ben Goldacre said: “Repeat after me: pharma being shit does not mean magic beans cure cancer.”
[email protected]: Thanks for linking that smackdown. So Patrick “There Are Some Who Call Me Tim” Bolen has been bringing shame and disgrace to his family name for over a decade now, as the real Tim Bolen noted. I wouldn’t want to admit it if he were my relative, either (luckily for me, he’s not).
I’m going to guess from the name that T. R. Shantha does have a passport, which he uses on occasion to visit the old country. As much as the idea of buying him a one-way ticket to Conakry so that he can test his theory intrigues me, I find the risk that he would return to North America–or worse, India–a bit too high.
Pat/ Tim’a site, the Bolen Report, is a hilarious excursion and walking tour deep into the never-never land of wishful thinking: he proudly associates himself with ‘millions of health freedom fighters’ successfully battling the corrupt, entrenched establishment blithely on the road to Paradigm Shift- and yes, they ARE winning! They include regional allies in most English-speaking countries and Germany!
Since late August, he’s added a few new articles- including reports on the ‘whistle blower’ and the Health Freedom Congress: it seems that anti-vaxxers are scurryi…. RALLYING to his leadership- probably because they have finally learned what a fiasco their movement remained without his sage guidance. A new article instructs them to avoid the mainstream media: anti-vaxxers were disappointed that their recent Twitter bombs and facebook faves went virtually unnoticed by the mainstream- no problem, says Pat Tim, they are worthless anyway whilst his side has Russian TV ( RT), the right wing barkers’ sites, George Noory and Chris Hedges!
If you peruse his site, be forewarned that within, there are many dead links.
And the ones that work are on their last legs as well.
Check your data. According to the Gallup poll, 3 of the top 4 most highly rated professions for honesty and ethics are nurses, pharmacists, and doctors. See http://www.gallup.com/poll/1654/honesty-ethics-professions.aspx.
Perhaps you were thinking of members of Congress instead?
If you have data to show that the medical profession is universally distrusted, please share.
Well palindrom, if we’re going there then…
This brings a whole other meaning to ‘taking the piss’.
I don’t know if urine therapy can cure ebola, but it has worked for many ailments. Don’t knock it until you’ve done the research and put it to the test. Go to http://www.aquariusthewaterbearer.com. Click “Water Library” and scroll down for free online books on urine therapy. My favorites are “The Water of Life” and “Your Own Perfect Medicine.” Also, check out the “Resources,” “Testimonials,” and “Videos” sections. You can hear the audiobook of “The Water of Life” here for free:
This year I got sick with the worst sinus infection I’ve ever had, and I put this therapy to the test and did a urine fast similar to the protocol described in “The Water of Life,” only I used coconut water, too. I healed myself with no doctor’s visits and no cost, except the cost of distilled water and coconut water. I am absolutely serious.
If you’re infected with an incredibly infectious virus that sheds in your body fluids, what’s the best thing to do?
Find ways to redistribute those fluids, and hence the virus, around your body! Spread it around as much as possible!
I dread to think what they’d do for cancer….
And while we’re on the subject of guest writers for Pat:
Jake appears to be unhappy with former BFF Hooker because he like Andy more or suchlike.
( Autism Investigated)
“who, for some inexplicable reason, always uses “Tim” instead of his first name Patrick”
Your statement also sounds like it is some sort of conspiracy or nefarious reason. My parents chose for me to go by middle name because they liked it better than my first name.
Also, are you certain that a majority of protein amino acids are broken down to single amino acids? I thought that there was a peptide transporter in the small intestine which had low affinity for di and tri peptides, but which was very fast. I thought I recall being taught that this transporter moved the majority of amino acids.
One notes that di- and trip-peptides are highly unlikely to provoke a protective immune response. If that isn’t enough to see why the urine idea is wildly implausible, more importantly, they’re all absorbed before they ever get to the ileum, where dwell the Peyer’s patches.
I am deeply regretting that the ScienceBlogs platform does not allow photographic images in the comments.
As to PaTimmy — he is a malevolent creep.
Please provide a link to a substantial, well researched, double blinded, placebo controlled trial showing a significant clinical benefit to drinking one’s own urine. Thanks.
I have no doubt you’re serious. However, I’ve known people who recovered from sinus infections with no treatment whatsoever. What makes you think that your use of distilled water, coconut water, and urine was a substantial improvement over no treatment at all?
Is anyone else reminded of John Cleese evaluating wines in very knowing tones, only to be told that each is wee wee?
MO @28 — All I know, is that a lot of people in this country pooh-pooh Australian table wines.
Also chez Patimmy: Ken Stoller MD, who promotes the use of hyperbaric oxygen for autism; he seems to have a regular gig at Bolen’s. The article is called Ebo-Lie.
@palindrom – what, even Melbourne Old-and-Yellow, a good fighting wine which is particularly heavy and should be used only for hand-to-hand combat?
@MO’B: Cleese was ahead of his time. I have seen a number of reports casting doubt on the ability of supposedly knowledgeable wine tasters to reliably distinguish grand cru from vin ordinaire. Perpetrators of wine fraud have taken advantage of the situation.
“This is not a wine for drinking. This is a wine for laying down and avoiding.”
I don’t understand the fuss about Bolen going by his middle name rather than his first. That’s a legitimate and pretty common choice – my partner and both of my parents do the same thing. It seems a little childish to criticize him for something so innocuous when he’s telling people to drink their own piss to cure the damn Ebola virus…
I noticed a link to this in one of my emails and thought I would share it.
Nigeria and Senegal are apparently officially free of Ebola, although it is still a major problem in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone.
I think it was just a minor observation that is distracting from the main point. If he prefers his middle name, that’s fine. It’s his choice.
My mother goes by her middle name. Her first name is rather unusual. And, I have six cousins in California who all go by their middle names. Probably parental preference, because the names all start with D and that’s what we called them as kids.
So T.R. Shantha thinka drinking your urine is the #1 step for preventing Ebola. Dare we guess what he’ll propose for #2?
The first time a pediatric patient voided on me as a medical student, the attending remarked “remember, urine is a sterile body fluid….well, most of the time.”
Sadmar — I was dreading/waiting for someone to go their.
“THERE.” Geez. I *can* spell.
“i with what i’ve learned would go for the shaman at least he would present the most ethics of the two.”
Why do you think a shaman has more ethics than a physician? You must know that alternative therapies are a multi-billion dollar business, just like Big Pharma, and those people lie and make mistakes at least as often. The only difference is that physicians present evidence-based medicine but shamans only rely on tradition because of tradition’s sake. If your friend or relative was a physician, would you tell him/her that his/her ethics are poor because they’ve studied several years at university and continued their scientific education after graduating, in order to HELP people?
Does Patimbo profit directly his web site(s) and their activities? I don’t see any advertising at his “Report” site.
Bolen has been invited to testify in both State and Federal Courts
I’d be interested in seeing the actual wording of those “invitations.”
@Orac – wow, very interesting read.
Sad as well.
Patrick Timothy Bolen, an uneducated individual got his start by being cancer treatment quack Hulda Clark’s “publicist” from which he derived income. After Clark’s demise from cancer (multiple myeloma), Patimmy needed another source of income. That source of income appears to be derived from every disgraced and discredited doctor, whose quack treatments and cures Bolen promotes on his website:
Is it any wonder then, why his cousin Tim Bolen who is an educated and respected epidemiologist, resents Patrick Timothy Bolen’s nom de blog?
Why is it that alties believe in mantras like “listen to your body”, the vital importance of “detoxification” and so on, but totally ignore the body’s efforts to discharge wastes by consuming them, forcing the body to go through the detoxification process all over again?
Your body _is_ telling you something, nitwits! Don’t drink your own waste!
You’re talking about someone who thinks that his coinage “homoskeptuals” is a memorable achievement.
Proteins have a better chance of getting to intestinal epithelial lympocytes intact if administered rectally rather than swallowed. Don’t these guys love any excuse for an enema?
What a pissant.
This year I got sick with the worst sinus infection I’ve ever had
I look forward to the inevitable convergence of urine therapy and Neti pots.
Herr Docktor, I’m not sure whether to congratulate you on the depth of your imagination, or decry you for giving them ideas. 😛
@ Shay #39, 40
Ha! I have a weird disconnect that leads me to mix up ‘their’ and ‘they’re’ all the time in typing, though I absolutely know the difference and never do that writing by hand. My brain-to-finger mis-wiring also frequently puts apostrophes before the ‘s’ in plurals…
Maybe that’s why you read my mind!
To honor the real Tim Bolen, we could call the other guy P. T. Bolen as that Ebola cure gives new meaning to “There’s a sucker born every minute.”
Or Pee T. Bolen…
Or we could call him ‘Pitter Pat’ and leave the surname free of the wet stains of PTB’s yellow ‘journalism’. I’ll bet every time he thinks he’s getting a leak from the CDC, he just winds up with that burning feeling… Maybe that’s why there’s no streaming media on The Bolen Report site.
OMG! I am so dumb! You were waiting for someone to GO there! Brilliant! Or may I say Golden!
“Or Pee T. Bolen”
While ridiculing someone’s name is pretty shallow, some opportunities must be seized, crass or not.
Perhaps Pee Tea Bolen
You know, a few weeks ago I had the unforfunate opportunity to smell fumes of urine- deposited over years- wafting upwards in an alcove of a train station despiye it being only about 70 degrees F:
that was my first thought when I glanced over your juxtapositioning of ‘urine therapy’ and ‘neti pots’…
which would probably be even worse than my memory.
The name is appropriate.
I’m sorry but that is just gross. I don’t know why alties are obsessed with enemas and drinking your own urine. Please people stop the madness! on the other hand the comments have been quite hilarious. And the takedown of Pat by Tim was great.
Nurses, doctors and other medical professionals are highly respected in Canada and the UK as well (as of 2012)
I have healed several nasty sinus infections by instilling warm salt water into my nasal passages. Less repulsive than urine and cheaper than coconut water. This is standard medical treatment.
If someone told me to drink my own urine, I would certainly listen to my body, because my body would say “Retch.”.
The Hampton Grease Band demonstrated great foresight in such matters:*
* My transcription, but with reference to the small number of discrepant versions floating around. I have no confidence whatever in “Jodas”
I don’t know what all of you have against drinking your own pee. I do that every time I’m stranded in a small boat on the ocean and run out of other things to drink.
Three hours of bluff seaman’s talk about picking the weevils out of biscuits and drinking urine is not my idea of a good time.
I suppose there must be some reason why your body wants to get rid of urine and I don’t think that reason is to ingest it again.
Are those the same people who are into detox?
What gets me about the proponents of Ayurvedic medicine is that they tout a 1000 year history without thinking what that implies. If it was even slightly therapeutic they would have perfected it in those 1000 years and India would have been the healthiest nation on the planet. And yet is wasn’t, and still isn’t.
The communities with Ayurvedic medicine are no more healthy than the non-urine swilling and mercury swallowing communities working it with no medical help.
Re: irrigating one’s sinuses
Flushing one’s nasal cavities is apparently a validated procedure and, indeed, water is enough.
Just be sure the fluid is sterile; the olfactive nerves make a direct passage from the sinuses to the brain and some pathogens seek to take advantage of that.
See this old cartoon from Maki from science.org.
In the same way that there is the Randi challenge for pseudoscience, we need to specifically create one for proposed miracle cures. Perhaps call it the “Aceso Prize” after the greek goddess of healing.
There should be a standing offer to anyone who claims cures for things such as Ebola where we offer to fund their travel and cost of medicine to go into the hot zone with their miracle cure.
If these people truly believe their own BS, they should jump all over the chance to have an all expense paid trip to see hundreds if not thousands be healed. Sounds like a sure-fire Nobel prize to me, all they have to do is apply what they are so adamant is working…
Helianthus: also, you apparently need to be careful that you’re not using a neti pot all the time. It does a great job of removing excess mucus, so good that if you use it for too long, you can strip the mucus away entirely and leave your nasal passages chronically irritated. But that’s also the usual advice for decongestants — if you have to take it for a prolonged period of time, talk to a doctor to figure out what’s really going on.
On a more serious note, there’s a column in The Guardian today about political [email protected] pissing about Ebola. Of course, the pols whooping up the scare are the same that cut the CDC funding delaying efforts to develop a vaccine.
We could add a stretch goal for buying a camcorder and funding an internet connection at the site, so that he could report the results live!
He should go there, and then maybe try it on himself? As someone once said (this was related to tourists who like to go up next to erupting volcanoes) “If you die horribly on YT you didn’t die in vain. You entertained others”.
All the talk about drinking urine reminded me about this nut lady on cat forums back in the 90s who was promoting feeding their own urine to cats to prevent all sorts of illnesses and was upset that others didn’t take her seriously.
I wouldn’t use water, it hurts and leaves you with inflamed nasal passages. Normal or slightly hypertonic saline with a little sodium bicarbonate is best. That’s what I am using several times a day, post sinus surgery, in a NeilMed bottle designed for the purpose.
More bullsh!t about Ebola Virus outbreaks from the Bolen’s poison pen. He’s claiming that the virus was manufactured by Americans, relying on Russian news sources and the racist conspiracist Louis Farrakhan:
“….Sunday, October 19th, 2014
Just below you can find way much more information about Ebola and its precursors that you will EVER find in US Mainstream Media. From the article:
“Ebola: Manufactured disease by U.S. Federal Government – By Lord Howard Hurts
Louis Farrakhan, the leader of the Nation if Islam wrote this a few days ago, “Another method is disease infection through bio-weapons such as Ebola and AIDS, which are race targeting weapons. There is a weapon that can be put in a room where there are Black and White people, and it will kill only the Black and spare the White, because it is a genotype weapon that is designed for your genes, for your race, for your kind.” In essence Mr. Farrakhan said that the U.S. Federal Government is behind the Ebola virus outbreak. Mr. Farrakhan is incorrect, as his usual, in many respects dealing with the issue of the Ebola virus, but he is correct about Ebola being a ‘manufactured’ disease by the U.S. Federal Government. Here is the true story about the Ebola virus.
There are three types of internal hemorrhaging viruses in the world today. The main one, and it impacts more than 500,000 African’s in Central, and sub-Sahara Africa, is the Lassa fever virus. This virus is responsible for death in about 20% of those who are infected, and it was ‘discovered in 1969 when two missionary nurses died from this disease. This disease had been around for many years, but it was not defined as a specific type of virus as the world did not care about ‘fever deaths’ in the African population. This virus, Lassa, is transmitted by way of rat urine or feces, and once in the human body it can be further be transmitted by bodily fluids which also complicates the situation because then it can become an air born disease (so far it seems that it can not be transmitted by insect bites, but this is not confirmed).
The second internal hemorrhaging virus is called the Marburg virus. It was first recognized in 1967, when strangely enough there were simultaneously outbreaks at research laboratories in Marburg, and Frankfurt, Germany. This virus was thought to be brought to these laboratories by way of monkeys from Uganda. This outbreak of the virus was contained and not heard about again until sometime in 1974
Strangely enough, that is if you believe that the world is flat, in 1976, and after the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Diseases (USAMRIID) build a bio weapons laboratory in Kenema, Sierra Leona, Africa, the Ebola virus suddenly came into being. This ‘newly discovered’ internal hemorrhaging virus was the ‘bomb’. It was developed with the covert aid of Tulane University, New Orleans, Louisiana. The USAMRIID is always looking for some type of weaponry with which to inflict death and destruction on an enemy, and this new Ebola virus seemed the perfect weapon of war. Then as often happens with that type of research, and development, the virus ‘escaped’ and suddenly was a threat to an unsuspecting African population, and ultimately to the populations of the world.
The world is now told that this Ebola virus is a ‘natural mutation’ when in fact it is a completely manufactured mutation of the Lassa fever virus. The world is also told that there is no current cure for this virus when in fact there is a quite inexpensive treatment available, but it is not some patented drug owned by a big pharmaceutical company. And because this treatment is not something that a big pharmaceutical company can use to ‘rake in’ excessive profits, this cure is relegated to the ‘back pages’ of the Internet. So let me give you the information that you might need should this Ebola virus outbreak not be controlled and you become infected.”
To read the rest of the Pravda article click here. Go read it now – then come back here…..”
Sigh. When you’re making stuff up, you should at least look at a map. It’s more that 6,000 km from Kenema to where Ebola was discovered.
“Naegleria fowleri infections have been reported when people submerge their heads or irrigate their sinuses (nose) using contaminated tap water.”
[email protected] — I’m not sure how it happened, but I’m giving a presentation on Ebola to the state NAACP conference on Saturday. I’m not looking forward to it, and not only because I only got four day’s notice.
I just want to see Dr. Shantha drink his own piss.
[…] of panic (often with tragic results); we have seen Ebola response become a political issue, and as pointed out recently by that redoubtable scienceblogger, Orac, a ghastly profusion of conspiracy theories and quackery has crawled out of nooks and crannies, […]
That guy sounds like a troll in real life:
“LOLZ!!! I can’t believe I tricked people into drinking their own piss! LOLOLOL!!!”
Shay, you will do fine when you make your presentation about Ebola Virus outbreaks.
The CDC (and perhaps your own State), has some excellent reader-friendly Ebola virus fact sheets and brochures:
‘Cause, as an historian, I can’t resist…
“Now you’re Spanish: in the country of Spain what each man pisses, he’s used to brushing his teeth and red gums with, every morning, so the fact that your teeth are so polished just shows you’re the more full of piss.”
Lilady, we’ve got an Ebola presentation already put together “just in case” so I only need to tweak it a bit. I’m just hoping no one in the audience took Farrakhan seriously.
This thread needs a like button for many of the comments.
[…] it’s not any more depressing than usual, with the usual unending stream of pseudoscience, quackery (particularly of the Ebola type), and, of course, antivaccine nonsense to deal with. Then, as […]
[…] pissy approach is also endorsed by Tim Bolen a guy known for his quackish ways. The problem is, urine will contain complete virus, not just bits […]
[…] And don’t even get me started on “auto-urine” therapy for Ebola. […]