Sepsis Is A Global Killer. Can Vitamin C Be The Cure?
Mattie Safai in the House with Richard Harris yet another one of my favorite science correspondence must be all your favorite special. That's what my mother always said. You're all my favorite Richard. You have some serious business to discuss today. Indeed indeed I do yes. I'm GonNa Talk to you about sepsis right so for anybody who might not know. Sepsis is actually caused by the body's reaction to an infection basically the immune system overreacts causing this huge inflammatory response. Blood vessels get a leaky which messes up. How blood flows throughout the body body? In severe cases. Septic shock can set in. And that's when your blood pressure drops to dangerously low levels sometimes leading to multiple organ failure and in death doctors treat that initial infection and they can try to manage the dangerous symptoms of Sepsis. But there's no cure for it that's right and as a result assault is the single most expensive condition in. US hospitals best estimate is that it strikes one point seven million people a year in the United States and kills more than a quarter million. Wow so it's a huge toll right and one of the reasons. It's so common is because a lot of different types of infections can result in sepsis many roads into sepsis but even though it's a huge deal we don't really talk about it that much in. That's kind of weird isn't it is such a common condition but it isn't even bigger problem. Globally thirty thousand people die of it every single day. That's why it's a huge number. It's truly under appreciated disease. And why I'm telling you the story today is because the results have been published important new study on the treatment of Sepsis with the transfusion of simple mixture really vitamin C.. And Fireman thion which is vitamin B. One that's right and also some corticosteroids. These are all cheap and readily available drugs so today in the show the journey to find a cure for sepsis. Yes we hear the latest on this wild claim about a potential cure of vitamin C drug cocktail. Okay Okay Richard. When you were first telling me about this you said you actually got to talk to somebody a few years ago? Who received this newfangled treatment right? I was interested in really following how this evolved volve this this audacious idea and seeing where it would go and actually a number of doctors immediately started picking up and started using it at least on their most desperately ill patients and talked to one of them. This guy with an incredible story in Christopher Kelly who had this horrid logging accident this is out in Seattle I was cutting for a logging outfit up on these rock cliffs and fell about one hundred and fifty foot for tree into these maple trees. They add a bunch of dead tops we call them widow makers mhm tree came down the butt of it bounce toward him crushing him. I heard the bones crunch when it got me. It was pretty precarity Yell for a minute. And then I'd pass out and I guess my ribs were ripping. My lungs is the reason I I was only you know in and out of consciousness. And Amazingly he was there for a couple of hours before a couple of other men working in the area found him and got him on a Medevac helicopter to harborview medical center in Seattle in the Wendy says he wound up with a shattered pelvis all of his ribs. Broken twenty two bones and Dane. The day I met him. He developed a very high fever along with shock. That's one of Kelly's doctors at David car-bomb who realized that Sepsis was beginning to set in so sepsis is one of the big risks and injuries like this because infections sometimes time start on the wounds on the skin or from inside the lungs or internal injuries or whatever and the infection of course can turn into septic shock which is the nastiest form of this condition. When Oregon's start to fail that often leads to death and as we mentioned earlier? There's no known cure for SEPSIS. That's right car-bomb could treat the underlying infection with antibiotics Roddick's but he was also one of a set of doctors who had actually started experimenting with his new treatment of vitamin C and firemen and steroids and discuss it with his son and his son and was very amenable. We talked about The fact that it's a new therapy that there really wasn't very strong evidence but I felt that it was not a ton of risk and that this could be beneficial. How did it work Richard? Well hold on how quickly to respond. Usually patients very sick for a few days before responding antibiotics and him it took about a day his fever head cleared and he was off the medicines to support his blood pressure and looked remarkably better. But this is not actually a totally new new idea at all. I mean vitamin CS. Curative Properties have been batted around for decades and decades. A lot of. It's kind of Kooky so that actually works against this argument people initially and understandably skeptical about it but that said it is true that people who have sepsis have surprisingly low levels of vitamin C in their blood. So there's some biological logical plausibility to doing this right.