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Intravenous Hydrogen Peroxide Therapy
Ron Kennedy, MD

Edited by Richard Gracer, MD (May 2005) and used by permission

Bio-oxidative medicine is the addition of oxygen directly to the tissues of the body in the form of singlet oxygen (lone oxygen atoms) in a highly reactive state.

In living systems oxygen (as O2) is transported by hemoglobin, a protein found in red blood cells. This is a highly efficient way of conducting oxygen from the lungs to the tissues of the body and insuring it does not react with anything along the way. Because it is bound by hemoglobin, it is unable to react to anything else until it is released by the hemoglobin (which then picks up carbon dioxide and transports it to the lungs).

In bio-oxidative medicine, oxygen is introduced directly into the body as hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) or as ozone (O3). Although ozone is used safely and with great benefit throughout Europe and in many other parts of the world, the medical establishment in the United States refuses to recognize it as a valid therapy, although new studies are underway in this country. Luckily, hydrogen peroxide is not treated in this way, even though it is an equally powerful oxidative approach.

The chemical reaction looks like this:
H2O2 becomes H2O + O-
This is chemical shorthand to indicate that in the body, hydrogen peroxide is converted to water and singlet oxygen. This singlet oxygen located at the end of this reaction is a powerful oxidizing agent. It is the active agent in hydrogen peroxide therapy.

In IV H2O2 therapy, Hydrogen peroxide is infused into the circulatory system through a vein in the arm. It drips in over a ninety-minute period. Five cc of pharmaceutical-grade, three-percent hydrogen peroxide are put in 500 cc five percent glucose in water as a carrier solution. Two grams of magnesium chloride are added along with a small amount of manganese to prevent vein sclerosis. (We are using higher doses of peroxide as part of our research study- Dr. G)

In the blood, it encounters two enzymes: catalase and cytochrome-C. Catalase drives the above reaction to completion immediately. That part of the hydrogen peroxide that binds with cytochrome-C, however, is not allowed to become water and singlet oxygen for a period of forty minutes. After forty minutes of being bound to cytochrome-C this enzyme begins to act like catalase and breaks down the hydrogen peroxide to water and singlet oxygen. By this time, the hydrogen peroxide/cytochrome-C complex has been spread throughout the body. In this way the benefits of hydrogen peroxide are made available to all cells.

The effect of singlet oxygen in the human body is twofold. It kills, or severely inhibits the growth of, anaerobic organisms (bacteria and viruses that use carbon dioxide for fuel and leave oxygen as a by-product). This action is immediate, on contact with the anaerobic organism. Anaerobic bacteria are pathogens, the organisms which cause disease. All viruses are anaerobic.

Aerobic bacteria (those that burn oxygen for fuel and leave carbon dioxide as a by-product – as humans do) found in the human intestine are friendly bacteria, which aid in digestion. These organisms thrive in the presence of hydrogen peroxide.

The second effect of hydrogen peroxide is that it provides singlet oxygen, which, in turn, transforms biological waste products and industrial toxins into inert substances by oxidizing them. This makes them easy to handle for the kidneys and liver. It doubles the rate of enzymatic metabolism in the mitochondria within each cell, thus enabling the body to cleanse itself of toxins and still have plenty of energy to handle the business of living from moment to moment. This increase in metabolism probably accounts for some of the antibacterial, anti fungal, and anti viral effects of hydrogen peroxide.

(Singlet oxygen is highly reactive and reacts with whatever bio-molecule it encounters. These include cell walls and proteins that circulate in the blood. When this happens, the body’s own antioxidant system is activated resulting in an outpouring of many anti-inflammatory compounds which “turn on” the body’s immune system and healing mechanisms. This is the effect that we are using to enhance the effect of the RIT injections in our research study – Dr. G)

Hydrogen peroxide is a part of normal metabolism. Your body produces it constantly. There are units in certain white blood cells called “peroxisomes,” which produce H2O2. These white cells then engulf bacteria which cause disease and mix them together with these peroxisomes. They both then disappear as the singlet oxygen from H2O2 destroys the bacteria or virus. This happens naturally, without any help from outside sources of hydrogen peroxide.

When an infective disease becomes obvious to the person who has the infection the hydrogen peroxide defense mechanism already has been overwhelmed by the number of viruses or bacteria involved, and the immune system is into its secondary line of defense: the tedious process of analyzing the invading organism and making antibodies, which deal specifically with that organism.

The invention of man-made antibiotics, beginning in the 1920s, was a revolution in medical science. However, as a strategy for fighting infection it is clearly second best, as the body itself demonstrates. When the body is challenged with an infection, it first turns to hydrogen peroxide. Only when this fails does it turn to its own antibody production.

Conditions which can be treated with H2O2 include those conditions which can be treated with antibiotics, but without the serious toxicity often associated with laboratory produced synthetic antibiotics. Some of these conditions are candidiasis (yeast), viral infections, influenza, the common cold, sinus infection, Epstein – Barr virus, and gangrene.

Hydrogen peroxide also has been found to dissolve cholesterol and calcium deposits associated with atherosclerosis. Therefore, it is a good treatment for vascular disorders. This can result in lessening or disappearance of angina, leg pain, and transient ischemic attacks to the brain, which causes dizziness. It also can help reverse some of the damage left over by a stroke, if treatment is instituted early enough.

Research in the 1960s at Baylor University showed conclusively that intra-arterial hydrogen peroxide dissolves plaque in large arteries. This makes H2O2 a wonderful complement to EDTA in the treatment of vascular disease, as EDTA has been shown to clear small vessels and create collateral circulation around large vessel blockages. This combination is called “Chelox Therapy.”

It also clears the lungs, in cases of emphysema, by producing oxygen bubbles in the alveoli (tiny air sacs in the lungs), literally lifting the mucus deposits up, so they can be coughed out.

Hydrogen peroxide has a remarkable clearing effect on the skin. After only a few intravenous treatments the skin takes on a translucent clarity usually seen only in children. In addition, hydrogen peroxide benefits asthma, leukemia, multiple sclerosis, degenerative spinal disc disease, and high blood pressure. It is particularly effective with asthma, arthritis, and back disorders.

All of these illnesses have a component of toxicity from accumulated pesticides, preservatives, and organic industrial pollutants. Often the clearing of these toxins is enough to allow the body to heal, or at least partially repair itself. Obviously, where there is anatomic change such as in disc disease, this anatomic change will not be altered. However, what the person with disc disease, arthritis, and other such illnesses is interested in is the disappearance of pain and the return of function. This often is possible with hydrogen peroxide.

Much more research needs to be done in this area. Claims of cure should not be made unless they can be rigorously substantiated with cause and effect proven beyond any reasonable doubt. At the present time, we can say only that the oxidative therapies are valuable, arresting disease processes, but not necessarily curative.

If hydrogen peroxide is so effective, why is it not made use of in “modern” medicine? The reason is simple. Hydrogen peroxide cannot be patented. It is present in the ocean, it is present in rainwater, it is present in vegetables, and it is present in every cell of your body right now. It must be classified as a food, because it is part of all fresh food of plant origin. Because it is produced in the human body, it is undeniably safe. Since it is a food and cannot be patented, there is no big profit to be made on it. .

People have been traveling to the baths at Lourdes, in southwest France at the base of the Pyrenees Mountains, since 1858 when a girl is said to have seen there a vision of the Virgin Mary. The waters at the baths in Lourdes are believed by many people to have miracle healing powers. Perhaps it is no coincidence these waters are loaded with, you guessed it, hydrogen peroxide. People go there to bathe in and drink the water.

How does one take hydrogen peroxide? You can go to Lourdes, or you can go to a good organic grocery store and buy a bottle of food grade (35%) hydrogen peroxide, dilute it and drink it, or bath in it. If you go to Lourdes, be prepared to shell out thousands of dollars. If you go to the grocery store, be prepared to pay a few dollars. Be sure to dilute it, because the 35% solution will cause burning of the skin on application, or internal damage, if you try to drink it. (I DO NOT SUGGEST THAT YOU TAKE HYDROGEN PEROXIDE ORALLY-Dr. G)

If you take it orally, you should dilute it approximately ten drops in an eight ounce glass of water, two or three times each day, on an empty stomach (three hours after your last meal). If you take it with food in your stomach, the hydrogen peroxide will react with the food, and you will not get the benefit from it. Even if you take it on an empty stomach it reacts to the cells of the stomach wall, as well as whatever food fragments still are present, and you receive not only hydrogen peroxide into your circulation, but also oxidation products of H2O2 plus sloughed off cells from the lining of your stomach and miscellaneous food.

Because of these considerations I cannot, and I do not, recommend you take H2O2 by mouth. I believe intravenous H2O2 to be far superior to the oral route of administration. However, because people do report good results with the oral route, I cannot recommend you absolutely do not take it by mouth. This is a gray area.

To benefit your body, the H2O2 must reach your circulation, where it can be broken down by catalase and bound by cytochrome-C for distribution throughout your body in the following forty minutes. You should not eat anything for at least twenty minutes after taking the H2O2.

You will notice hydrogen peroxide, even in this very dilute state, tastes terrible. It makes many people nauseated. You may be able to mask this effect by taking it with fresh lemon or berry juice or with aloe vera juice.

You also can bathe in hydrogen peroxide by putting a pint in your bath water. Be sure to stir it up well before getting in to avoid burning your skin. Many people with arthritis swear by this treatment.

If you are confronting a serious illness, or if oral and topical applications are not getting the job done, you can turn to intravenous infusion of hydrogen peroxide. Intravenous H2O2 is far more powerful than the oral ingestion or topical application. For this form of treatment, you must find a physician who is familiar with the proper preparation of pharmaceutical grade H2O2 in a bottle of sterile, isotonic intravenous fluid.

The infusion lasts ninety minutes. You will notice a warm feeling during treatment, not much more. The main effect of hydrogen peroxide infusions is that you regain your health through the increased ability of your blood to carry a high concentration of oxygen. In this sense, IV hydrogen peroxide therapy is an oxygen therapy. Treatments are one to three times per week, occasionally five times per week for an acute illness and, just as with chelation therapy with EDTA, the number of treatments needed depends on the nature of the illness with which you are dealing. From ten to fifty treatments will get the job done in most cases, and you should be able to maintain on oral hydrogen peroxide or the occasional intravenous infusion after that.

As I alluded to above, there is an exciting new development in the treatment of vascular disease, Chelox Therapy, which involves the combination of treatment with EDTA and H2O2, not in the same infusion however as they would oxidize/reduce each other. These two therapies work in different ways and cross react with each other, causing a thirty percent incidence of intravenous thrombosis. They can be given in combination to the same patient but not on the same day. The combination of these two therapies, given correctly, has been found to be more powerful than either one used alone.

Addendum by Richard I. Gracer, MD (May 2005):

We are using IV hydrogen peroxide as a method of increasing the healing action of Regenerative Injection Therapy (RIT). Our research protocol calls for the use of ozone major autohemotherapy to supplement the specific ligamentous injections that are performed with ozonated blood. Peroxide is much easier and less expensive to use. The co-author of my paper on this subject (in Medical Hypotheses to be published July 2005), Velio Bocci, MD, has started using this modality in his practice at the University of Siena and feels that it is very effective. Theoretically, they should do the same thing. Patient acceptance and tolerance is high. The main side effect is soreness in the veins. We are using manganese and magnesium to reduce this effect. Dr. Bocci uses higher doses than those in this paper. We are increasing doses carefully without any problems. Please see the protocol for more specific information.(Bocci, 2005)


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Bocci, V. 2005. Ozone: A New Medical Drug. Netherlands: Springer, Dordrecht.