Tags: chelation | diabetes | heart disease | healthcare

Who Can Benefit From Chelation?

Friday, 17 April 2015 04:00 PM Current | Bio | Archive

Like most cardiologists, I was skeptical about chelation for a long time. But some recent studies have finally persuaded me. I now recommend this therapy to certain types of patients, particularly those with diabetes.

One of my patients, Jim, is a 70-year-old man with advanced heart disease. He is also a diabetic, and has suffered greatly from complications of that disease — which can be deadly to the heart.

Jim had already undergone cardiac bypass surgery as well as stenting. But diabetes wreaks havoc on the rest of the body as well. So in addition to his heart problems, Jim suffered from severe peripheral vascular disease, which meant that the circulation in his legs was diminished.

He also had a foot that was so ulcerated and impossible to heal that his surgeon was recommending amputation. Sadly, this is not an uncommon occurrence in people with
longstanding, severe diabetes.

Jim was understandably distressed. “Isn’t there anything else that can be done?” he asked me.

I suggested he try chelation. And after 30 infusions, Jim’s foot had improved to the point where amputation was no longer necessary.

In addition to people with complications from diabetes, I’m inclined to recommend chelation for people who have inoperable heart disease — especially if they have severe symptoms.

However, I still reserve chelation for patients who have exhausted all other options. For the vast majority of my patients, I recommend conventional treatments that have more proven results.

Although I believe in the usefulness of chelation under certain circumstances, I do not see it as an ideal treatment for several reasons.

First, there is the issue of cost. On average, chelation runs about $5,000, which is paid out of the patient’s pocket, as the procedure is not generally covered by insurance or Medicare.

Chelation is usually administered in conjunction with high doses of antioxidant vitamins, which may be responsible for its positive effect.

But mostly I’m just not yet convinced that chelation is an antidote for coronary artery disease.

But I will keep an eye out for any additional research.

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Like most cardiologists, I was skeptical about chelation for a long time. But some recent studies have finally persuaded me.
chelation, diabetes, heart disease, healthcare
Friday, 17 April 2015 04:00 PM
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