New Scam In The Medical Industry : Intravenous(IV) Vitamin Therapy Or Vitamin Drips
Despite being around for more than a decade, Intravenous Vitamin Therapy is again coming back as a new wellness or regenerative fad that every celebrity, successful executive or socialite must have. Despite warnings from various medical regulatory boards from around the world about claims that can be made, a lot of greedy doctors and wellness clinics are using discreet modes to market these Vitamin Drips as a cure all for various conditions or purposes ranging from detoxification, antiaging, skin complexion boosting, strengthening the immune system, even curing cancer, parkinson’s disease, macular degeneration, depression and even pain and even fibromyalgia. All of which have no proven scientific or medical research to back any one of these claims.
Medical Councils everywhere are closing an eye as its an opportunity for their fellow medical collegues to make money from a somewhat grey area. Most of these wellness clinics or even anti-aging centres advertise these services and claims via the social media or through brochures that are only available at their centres. Its is big money making enterprise especially in countries like US, Canada, Australia, China and elsewhere in Asia.
A single Vitamin IV procedure can costs you anything from US$ 250 to US$ 3000 and normally you are required to sign up for a package of a minimum of 6 sessions (as some specialists claims that you can only see results after that! ) There is also chelation therapy (a solution of ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid) which these charlatans claim can remove toxic metals and other compounds from your body and is similarly associated with IV Drips (these too have been receiving lots of negative press of late due to long term negative effects associated with the therapy.) Patients can kick back in comfy leather chairs while they're hooked up to IVs in the infusion lounge, watch Netflix and have some tea. Most of the time, these patients are merely paying for expensive urine.
Intravenous vitamin therapy involves administering vitamins and minerals directly into the bloodstream via a needle that goes directly into your vein. These physicians claim this enables you to obtain more nutrients as you avoid the digestion process. Providers of these injections say they customise the formula of vitamins and minerals depending on the perceived needs of the patient. Most contain Vitamin C, Zinc, The B Complex and others. What is even more disgusting is that you have certain fellow partners in the scam and questionable reputations of Medical Or Health Publications and Medical Tourism Entities that even give awards to these so called wellness and anti-aging centres.(further encouraging the scamming of unknowing patients!)
Lack of any evidence it works.
IV Vitamin therapy itself is not new and has been used in the medical profession for decades, commonly used to hydrate patients and administer essential nutrients if there is an issue with gut absorption, or long-term difficulty eating or drinking due to surgery. Single nutrient deficiencies like vitamin B12 or iron are also often treated in hospital with infusions under medical supervision.
However the "cocktails" IV vitamin therapy clinics create and administer are not supported by scientific evidence. There have been no clinical studies to show vitamin injections of this type offer any health benefit or are necessary for good health. In fact, there are very few studies that have looked at their effectiveness at all. There has only been a single review about the use of the "Myers' cocktail" (a solution of magnesium, calcium, vitamin C and a number of B vitamins). But it just contains a collection of anecdotal evidence from singular case studies.
Another trial looked into the effectiveness of IV vitamin therapy in reducing symptoms of 34 people with the chronic pain condition fibromyalgia. It found no significant differences between those who received the "Myers' cocktail" once a week for eight weeks and those who did not. In fact, the authors noted a strong placebo effect. In other words, many people said their symptoms improved when they were only injected with a "dummy" cocktail.
Risks of IV vitamin therapy
Even when it comes to vitamins and minerals, you can have too much of a good thing. For example, if you take in more of the fat soluble vitamin A than you need, your body stores it, risking damage to major organs, like the liver.
IV vitamin therapy "cocktails" also often contain significant levels of the water soluble vitamins C and B. These are processed by the kidneys and excreted into urine when the body cannot store any more. This makes for some very expensive urine.
There is a risk of acidosis which can be fatal , there is the risk of cardiac shock when receiving IV treatments especially for the first time, there is possibility of contracting epidermal necrolysis in some patients, there is possibility of kidney damage or failure and there are side effects like developing IBS symptoms, abdominal cramps, fogginess, etc
There is also the risk of infection with IV vitamin therapy. Any time you have an IV line inserted, it creates a direct path into your bloodstream and bypasses your skin's defence mechanism against bacteria. Individuals with certain conditions like kidney disease or renal failure should not have IV vitamin therapy because they cannot quickly remove certain minerals from the body. For these people, adding too much potassium could lead to a heart attack. People with heart, kidney or blood pressure conditions should also avoid IV vitamin treatments as there is risk of fluid overload without consistent monitoring. The consequences of fluid overload in these patients can include heart failure, delayed wound healing, and impaired bowel function.
For most people, the quantities of vitamins and minerals needed for good health and well being can be obtained by eating a healthy diet with a wide range of foods and food groups. Obtaining vitamins and minerals from your diet is much easier, cheaper, and safer. Unless you have a medically diagnosed reason for getting a vitamin infusion and it was prescribed by your doctor, you are always better off obtaining vitamins and minerals through food. Stay away from so called “snake oil” treatments proposed by so called “wellness” or “antiaging or regenerative medicine” doctors, you will be surprised when you actually check the credentials of these doctors, some might be just ordinary GPs or Dermatologists or even Radiologists with some certificates in wellness or antiaging obtained through online learning and certified by entities not recognized by the main medical accreditation bodies.