Updated: Sep 5
What do 'Long Haul Covid 19' (LHCS) and MCAS have in common?
(What even is MCAS?!)
Are you experiencing lasting side effects from the Covid-19 vaccine?
So many questions!!
I am about to enlighten you, and show you that there IS hope; there IS medical help available.. it's just a matter of knowing where to look and who to ask because as always, our current systems are way behind on research and treatment protocols.
As a nutritional therapist I am free from the restrictions our NHS professionals are shackled to in order to receive their salaries from HM Gov.
It usually takes around 10 years for research, drug development and treatment protocols to filter through to GP's due to bureacratic red tape and the inevitable financial interests of 'Big Pharma'.
I am fortunate to be able to do my own research and find effective protocols to give to my clients with THEIR best interests at heart, so it comes as no suprise that I have discovered safe, proven and effective treatments for LHCS within the private medical establishment.
I am now able to collaborate with health professionals to deliver a combination of nutraceutical and pharmaceutical approaches to the latest chronic health crisis which has developed since the Covid-19 pandemic began; LHCS, or 'Long Covid'.
I first learned of the physiology of LHCS back in July when I attended a seminar on the topic. I heard experts from the fields of functional medicine, genetics and general practice talk about the latest research showing the striking similarity of LHCS; a post-viral collection of symptoms, to MCAS; Mast Cell Activation Syndrome.
What is MCAS?
It is a little known condition which involves a cluster of symptoms caused by dysfunctional mast cells. Basically a dysregulated immune system which leads to inflammation, and the numerous conditions associated with that.
Mast cells are found in large numbers in the parts of the body which interface with the outside world; eg. Eyes, ears, nose, mouth, sinuses, gut, lungs and are also located on blood vessels.
Symptoms common to these areas include dry itchy eyes similar to hayfever, rashes, runny nose, sinus problems, food intolerances, digestive problems, abdominal pain, bloating, diarrohea, nausea, breathing difficulties, asthma and coughing/sneezing fits.
Other symptoms associated with a mast cell inflammatory response include headache, migraine, tinnitus, fibromyalgia, cardiovascular events such as hypotension, POTS (postural tachycardia), arrythmia's, palpitations etc.
Neurological symptoms such as headache, migraine, brain fog, tingling sensations, lost sense of taste and smell, anxiety, panic attacks, and insomnia.
Fatigue, post exercise malaise, irregular temperature, menstrual pain and worsening of existing inflammatory conditions such as Psoriasis, Urticaria, Eczema, and Rosacea are also common.
It's a pretty long list!!
But you don't have to tick ALL the boxes to qualify for LHCS or MCAS. However if you feel you have developed more of these symptoms since a Covid infection, or indeed since having the vaccine, then the chances are it's not a coincidence.
So why isn't this being detected and reported by NHS health professionals?
Why hasn't your Doctor heard of, or accept MCAS as an actual condition? It's a sad state of affairs when someone complaining of these symptoms and has had regular tests which prove there's 'nothing wrong with you', that the assumption is that anti-depressants are the answer.
The truth is, MCAS wasn't on the curriculum when our Doctors trained. Mast cells were not considered important as far as the immune system was concerned; far too general in their approach to infection. There are more specific elements of the IS which specialise in responses to various forms of attack on the organism which seemed more worthy of study... until NOW that is!!
Mast cells have since been elevated in status due to their association with the inflammatory effects of Covid-19. Mast cells are being found in numbers at the site where Covid causes most problems; the lungs.
Commonly known to be activated by allergic triggers, they can also be released in response to a pathogenic attack such as the spike protein Sars Cov-2.
When MC's are dysfunctional (up to 17% of the population is reported to have mutations in a gene which causes this), they have the capacity to completely overwhelm the immune system with pro-inflammatory cytokines resulting in a cytokine storm, ultimate organ failure and sadly, death.
MCAS is a state of hyper activated mast cells, so it would seem is LHCS, and the good news is that both are responding to a variety of pharmaceuticals and Nutraceuticals including type 1 and 2 anti-histamines, Ivermectin (not yet licenesed for prescription in the UK), and natural approaches such as a low histamine diet, probiotics, Vitamins C, D, B3 and minerals magnesium, zinc and selenium.
Physiology lesson over, I hope you have come to understand the importance of mast cells within the immune system, and how crucial it is to identify MCAS in people with suspected LHCS, and suffering post vaccine.
Indeed MCAS is worth identifying in order to prevent an acute response to Covid19 on exposure to the wild virus this winter flu season.
Why? Because MCAS AND LC can be treated, and multi-therapeutic approaches are now being applied succesfully by physicians and functional medicine practitioners working together for the greater good, providing welcome relief to 'Long Haulers'.
There are many other post viral/bacterial infection conditions which may also respond to this approach and more research is currently being done to investigate this hypothesis. Conditions such as CFS (chronic fatigue syndrome), ME, Lymes disease may be addressed by regulating the immune system using this therapeutic model which is great news for those who have been suffering with these conditions for years.
But as with anything, don't just take my word for it, do your own research.
I've provided some links for you below to back up everything I've talked about.
Help is out there, and if you need to speak with someone please do contact me.
I will work with you and your Doctor to make sure you get the help you need.