Are you dealing with a plethora of symptoms that have your primary care doctors scratching their heads? Your symptoms range from digestive issues to brain fog to even sensitivity to light.
Well, your providers may be missing a key part of the puzzle. Hidden mold toxicity and other underlying infections could be causing damage on a cellular level, manifesting into Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS).
This article will answer the question, “What is CIRS?” and address how it can be successfully treated with integrative and functional approaches.
What is CIRS?
Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome is a biotoxin illness or mold sickness that impacts multiple systems of your body. Biotoxins attach to cell membranes, impacting their function, and can cause dysfunction to your immune response, causing the overproduction of cytokines and other inflammatory chemicals.
Over time, this can cause worsening symptoms and can leave your body more susceptible to additional illnesses.
However, mold isn’t the only way you can get CIRS. It can also manifest from tick-borne illnesses like Lyme disease and co-infections like Bartonella.
How do people get CIRS?
People usually get CIRS from toxic mold that grows in damp or wet buildings. However, don’t think you’re in the clear if you haven’t been knowingly exposed. Mold could be hiding behind walls, air conditioning systems, and underneath carpets, showers and floors. Mold can release biotoxins that you may then inhale.
The biotoxins have the ability to circulate and accumulate in the body, causing havoc on cells, the immune system, and, really, any organ in your body….unless the mold toxicity is addressed and the toxins are detoxed properly.
Symptoms of CIRS
Since CIRS is a multi-system condition, there are many potential symptoms. This makes it frustrating and difficult to get a true diagnosis. CIRS symptoms can manifest as:
- Body aches
- Joint and muscle pain
- Shortness of breath
- Red irritated eye
- Memory changes
- Vertigo or feeling lightheaded
- Muscle cramps
- Mood swings
- Depression and anxiety
- Digestive issues
- Brain fog
- Icepick-like pains
- Changes in vision
- Sensitivity to light
- Food sensitivities
- Hormone imbalances
- Chemical sensitivities
- Weight gain or swelling
- Coughing and wheezing
You can see that these symptoms of CIRS can range from mild to debilitating. As time progresses, these symptoms can even intensify if not treated appropriately.
Diagnosing Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome can be difficult and some people may go years without a proper diagnosis. This is because many conventional doctors aren’t trained in treating these cases and often misdiagnosis them for something else.
However, CIRS is becoming more common because our environment is becoming more toxic, exacerbating the impacts of mold toxicity, making them even more severe and debilitating for individuals.
To get a true diagnosis, we use functional lab testing and advanced diagnostic testing that includes looking at blood markers, genetic tests, and mycotoxin urine analysis. With this insight, we can investigate if mold or another underlying trigger is the cause of your CIRS.
Since multiple factors can contribute to CIRS, it’s vital that underlying dysfunctions/infections are addressed in the proper order to see relief and to allow your body to heal.
A personalized treatment protocol can be designed to address your infections, imbalances, and dysfunctions in the correct order, with the main issue being the primary focus.
Why do some individuals become more ill than others?
Why do some people develop CIRS and others don’t?…even when they live in the same house and eat primarily the same diet? Well, up to a quarter of the population has the HLA gene, making it harder to detox, which makes them more susceptible to biotoxin-related health issues.
Since these individuals can’t detox biotoxins like mold, the toxins accumulate in the body, progressively causing more and more damage with time. They become more sensitive to the harmful effects of mold and other infections and is why they could be bedridden with symptoms, while their loved one is fine.
Additional Toxic Exposure
Other toxic exposures can also impact the severity of CIRS. If you are exposed to toxins every day via beauty products, household cleaners, pesticides, and other hidden toxins, it can burden your cells and detox systems even more, exacerbating the severity of your immune dysfunction. This leaves your body more susceptible to illnesses compared to other individuals.
Nutrient levels can also impact a person’s susceptibility to illnesses. Since your immune system requires certain minerals and vitamins to carry out functions, if your body doesn’t have adequate amounts, it could leave your body more susceptible to pathogens taking over the body.
Treating CIRS looks differently for each person. It depends on your genetic makeup, current nutrient levels, and the type of triggers your body is facing. However, there is an approach we like to take when treating CIRS, that follows Dr. Neil Nathan’s Protocol.
1. Remove from Ongoing Exposure
If you do have mold show up on your tests and suspect it’s hidden in your home, you’ll need professional mold remediation. We need to make sure your body isn’t going to continue to be exposed to something we are trying to get out of your body.
2. Remove Biotoxins
Next, we will use specific binders and protocols to help eliminate the mold from your body. This will be done with close supervision from us, as it can cause symptoms, and we want to ensure we are detoxing your body with the least amount of discomfort.
3. Optimize Nutrition
We will optimize your nutrition plan so it addresses your body’s unique needs to strengthen your gut health and immune system. This way, your body can defend itself from foreign invaders, keeping you healthy and more resilient to future pathogens and stressors. By optimizing your health, you’ll be able to recover from your debilitating symptoms and continue to stay well for the long term.
Are Your Symptoms from Mold Toxicity? Let’s Find Out
Are you frustrated because you’re not getting lasting relief from your health issues? Contact us today and we will get to the root of your symptoms. We will run state-of-the-art lab testing and create personalized treatment plans for you. There is hope. We can help.
Dr. Cheri Dersam
Dr. Dersam is board certified in both Integrative and Emergency Medicine and fellowship trained in Functional Medicine. Dr. Dersam focuses on a personalized approach that empowers each patient to achieve optimal health in mind, body and spirit.