Intravenous Nutrient Therapy
Almost everyone can benefit from Intravenous (IV) Nutrient Therapy. For people who are healthy and just need an infusion of energy, or extra protection from viral infection, a 20-minute Myer’s Cocktail infusion is rejuvenating. For people with medical conditions, IV Nutrient Therapy is safe, effective and restorative. IV Nutrient Therapy has been used for years as an anti-aging treatment.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the most common questions we get about IV nutrient therapy:
- Why take IV Vitamin C instead of taking a pill?
- What is a Myer’s Cocktail?
- What other IV therapies does Pacific Naturopathic offer?
- Are there any contra-indications to IV Nutrient Therapy?
- What can I expect in an IV Nutrient Therapy session?
- What does IV Nutrient Therapy cost?
- Is IV Nutrient Therapy covered by medical insurance?
- How do I get started with IV Nutrient Therapy?
IV Nutrient Therapy is the process of giving vital nutrients to the body via the bloodstream by accessing a vein in the arm with a small needle. The nutrients can be administered in a small amount that is pushed in slowly with a syringe in about 20 minutes, or bag that is dripped slowly over a period of 45 minutes to 4 hours, depending on the solution. Most drips take 1-2 hours.
IV Nutrient Therapy quickly delivers accurate therapeutic doses of vitamins, amino acids, minerals and other nutrients into the bloodstream. This takes no work on the part of the digestive system, an immense benefit for those who have digestive issues or who cannot tolerate oral supplementation. There are also times when the body is so deficient that oral supplementation is not enough. Using IV allows the maximum concentration of nutrients to reach tissues that need them the most.
The nutrients in IV solutions are absorbed directly by your cells without the nutrients having to go through the digestive process. Nutrients are absorbed more quickly and at higher concentrations than with oral supplementation. Due to the high concentration of nutrients in the IV solution compared to that of the cells in your body, the “concentration gradient” allows rapid and efficient active transport of the nutrients into your cells, thus stimulating your cells to achieve optimal health.
IV Nutrient Therapy provides a rapid increase in the nutrient levels in the center of the cells where the nutrients are most needed. Cellular healing begins when the cells have the nutrients they need to function properly. People often feel much better immediately after an infusion. Nutrients, fluids and medications which patients can’t take orally can be administered by IV.
Although anyone can benefit from IV Nutrient Therapy, this course of treatment can have a positive effect for people with any of the following health concerns:
- Advanced aging
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Autoimmune disorders
- Cancer treatment
- Cancer prevention
- Crohn’s disease
- Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS)
- Chronic pain
- Colds and flus
- Congestive heart failure
- Enhanced athletic performance
- Environmental toxicity
- Fatigue or lethargy
- Fatty liver
- General health maintenance
- Hangover recovery
- Heart disease
- Heavy metal toxicity
- High blood pressure
- Immune system disorders
- Inflammatory conditions
- Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
- Joint replacement candidates
- Liver detoxification
- Low functioning immune systems
- Lyme disease
- Macular degeneration
- Malabsorption syndrome
- Migraine headaches
- Multiple sclerosis
- Parkinson’s disease
- Peripheral vascular disease
- Respiratory infections
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Serotonin increase
- Stroke patients
- Surgical patients
- Ulcerative colitis
- Viral infections
- Wound healing
- And more…
Can IV Vitamin C help treat cancer?
Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid) is an essential nutrient and a powerful antioxidant. A number of major studies suggest that IV Vitamin C can provide significant benefit in a number of cancers, including those that often have a poor prognosis, such as liver cancer, melanoma, and pancreatic cancer.
This isn’t new. High-dose Vitamin C has proven to be extremely toxic to a wide variety of cancer cell lines, while leaving normal, healthy cells undamaged. IV Vitamin C also boosts the effectiveness of several common chemotherapy drugs. In human trials, IV Vitamin C has been shown to significantly improve quality of life for breast cancer patients and for patients with other cancers.
A recent study showed that IV Vitamin C significantly reduced inflammation markers in 76 percent of cancer patients (low inflammation markers can predict a better prognosis). Just as impressively, the same trial showed that IV Vitamin C decreased tumor markers in 77 percent of prostate cancer patients and 73 percent of breast cancer patients. It’s a powerful nutrient.
Studies clearly indicate that cancer patients who begin IV Vitamin C therapy early in their illness tend to respond better, as do patients who undergo a greater number of Vitamin C infusions.
Can IV Vitamin C treat other conditions?
People experiencing colds and flus, chronic fatigue, allergies, wound healing, inflammation, and some neurologic conditions respond positively to Vitamin C infusions. As IV Vitamin C can raise neurotransmitter levels, it can help depression. We continue to discover additional applications.
Does IV Vitamin C have any side effects?
IV applications of Vitamin C have demonstrated few adverse effects. A small group of people, mainly those of Middle Eastern descent, may have a disorder called G6PD deficiency, which precludes IV Vitamin C treatment. We rule out this condition through a simple blood test before treatment.
Why take IV Vitamin C instead of taking a pill?
High-dose oral Vitamin C is notorious for causing gastrointestinal discomfort. In addition, very little of an oral dose is usually absorbed. IV Vitamin C results in much higher plasma and intracellular levels. While IV Vitamin C will not solve all of your problems, a vast body of scientific evidence shows outstanding safety and efficacy in the prevention and treatment of a wide variety of conditions.
What is a Myers’ Cocktail?
The Myers’ Cocktail is the most common type of IV Nutrient Therapy. It is a synergistic blend of vitamins and minerals, consisting of magnesium, calcium, and vitamins B and C. It’s named after John Myers, a physician from Baltimore, Maryland who treated patients with IV Nutrient Therapy for more than 25 years. Since then, thousands of patients have received benefit from this cocktail.
The Myers’ Cocktail has been used to treat symptoms of aging, general fatigue, immune system problems, chronic fatigue syndrome, Lyme disease, Epstein Barr virus, hepatitis, acute asthma attacks, upper respiratory tract infections, chronic sinus infections, seasonal allergies, migraine headaches, muscle spasms and menstrual cramps, as well as to support recovery from endurance athletics. It has been used to help manage the pain associated with chronic degenerative arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and fibromyalgia. It can also lessen depression, anxiety and insomnia. Many healthy patients choose to receive periodic Myers’ Cocktail injections to enhance their well-being.
One of the best times for a Myers’ Cocktail is when you are run down, fatigued, under moderate to severe stress or coming down with something. Beneficial effects may last anywhere from days to several months. As many as 50 percent of those given an IV Myers’ Cocktail for an oncoming flu, cold or respiratory bug get immediate relief, and even resolution of their illness. Others get a significant reduction in the length and severity of an illness.
Patients with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) or fibromyalgia also often improve with weekly or twice monthly IV treatments. In some cases, the improvements are after the first IV, others after 3-4 treatments. Some patients become progressively healthier and eventually stop treatment. Other patients require periodic infusions to help themselves function better and to restore energy.
Drips usually take 60-90 minutes, while pushes with a syringe take about 20-30 minutes.
What other IV therapies does Pacific Naturopathic offer?
In addition to the conditions covered by IV Vitamin C and Myers’ Cocktail, we offer IV protocols that specifically address the cardiovascular, immune, respiratory, digestive and detoxification systems, as well as neurotransmitter metabolism, inflammatory, skin and eye conditions, and nutrient absorption. These include (but are not limited to):
- Amino acids
- Vitamin C
- Myers’ Cocktail
- Anti-microbial agents
- Chelating agents
- Sodium bicarbonate
- Herbal and homeopathic medicines
Are there any contra-indications to IV Nutrient Therapy?
Most people can tolerate most IV nutrient therapies. Occasionally, an individual may have an allergy to a nutrient and therefore should not receive infusions containing that nutrient. Kidney disease, heart disease or high blood pressure may preclude the use of some the nutrient IVs, and those with G6PD deficiencies can’t receive IV Vitamin C. Otherwise, these therapies are very safe. Ingredients used in the IV nutritional therapies at Pacific Naturopathic do not contain any preservatives.
What can I expect in an IV Nutrient Therapy session?
First of all, an IV will be placed in a vein in your arm. The needle used is a tiny 24 gauge, so there is very little pain involved. When the needle is withdrawn, a soft catheter remains in place for the remainder of the treatment. The infusion is more comfortable than an ordinary blood draw.
Depending on the infusion, you may experience local warmth and either an increase in energy or a relaxation effect. An improved sense of calm and wellbeing accompanies many infusions, especially Vitamin C or magnesium infusions. Many people report subsequently improved sleep.
The length of treatment depends on the nutrient mix and concentration being infused. We have a dedicated infusion room that is relaxing and peaceful. You may read, watch TV, listen to music, take a nap or work on your computer. You may also get up and use the rest room, if necessary.
It is best to eat before having an IV infusion as some infusions affect blood sugar. If you are diabetic, you should monitor your insulin dosage and bring snacks with you to your appointment.
Please come well hydrated and let our staff know if you have any allergies.
What does IV Nutrient Therapy cost?
Pricing varies depending on the specific protocol and the number of treatments purchased, and ranges from $150 to $320 per treatment. The price does not include the cost of the comprehensive initial assessment or required laboratory work, which are the first steps for all new patients.
Is IV Nutrient Therapy covered by medical insurance?
IV nutritional therapy is generally not covered by medical insurance. However, flexible medical savings accounts may reimburse for these therapies. A medical invoice (superbill) or medical necessity letter will be provided upon request.
How do I get started with IV Nutrient Therapy?
For all new patients requiring IV Nutrient Therapy only, the first step is to schedule a 30-minute office call with Dr. Marcel or Dr. Corrine. Patients desiring more comprehensive care (including IV Nutrient Therapy) may schedule a 90-minute office call with Dr. Connie, Dr. Corrine, or Dr. Marcel.
The doctor will take a detailed health history and discuss your specific issues with you. Because we require a comprehensive blood test to determine if IV therapy is appropriate and safe for you, the doctor will review any existing lab work and order any necessary lab.
In the second step, you will have a 30-minute visit with Dr. Marcel Hernandez or Dr. Corrine Wang, our IV specialists, who will devise an IV therapy treatment plan for you.
Established patients who have had either a Hernandez Wellness Panel or comprehensive blood work (including all components of our pre-IV blood work) within the past six months should pick up a requisition form for a G6PD blood test and have it performed before scheduling a 30-minute visit with Dr. Marcel or Dr. Corrine to discuss a treatment protocol. If you don’t have recent blood work, you should pick up a requisition form from the front desk for pre-IV blood work, and have it drawn before scheduling the 30-minute visit with Dr. Marcel or Dr. Corrine.
Dr. Marcel and Dr. Corrine are both trained in intravenous therapeutic protocols and hold State of California Naturopathic Board certification for performing IV therapy.