Most of us have heard the amazing story of how Penicillin came to be discovered, right? A microbiologist named Alexander Fleming came back from a long family vacation during the month of August, 1928 (YOU try a month in Summer with all your little kids at Disneyland and see if going back to work doesn’t seem a relief to you!). When he checked all his petri dishes of staph aureus, he found that some pesky mold was accidentally growing in one of them. But he also noticed that the dish was surprisingly free of bacterial growth immediately around the mold. Well that “Eureka!” moment was a bit slow in coming, but penicillin saved a whole lot of lives for the allies in WWII and led to a Nobel Prize in Medicine for “Sir” Alexander Fleming in 1945.
After WWII, penicillin and its later derivatives went into very heavy use in the public sector (before it had been mostly for wounded soldiers). Doctors started giving penicillin shots to almost anyone with any illness, and an entire generation grew up thinking such a shot was a cure for anything that ailed them. But Fleming had already seen the appearance of penicillin resistance in his laboratory early on and warned against injudicious use of his precious discovery.
Overuse of pharmaceutical antibiotics has been a growing problem now for almost 70 years. We are now seeing the painful results to that abuse in the form of highly resistant organisms in hospitals and now in the community. Such bacterial evolution before our eyes is a reality. Those who argue against this process need only watch a petri dish with antibiotic discs on it to see it occur. Somewhere between 50-85% of all prescriptions written for oral antibiotics are unnecessary and harmful in the long run. Yet if your doctor doesn’t prescribe them for you when you feel sick, he must not really like you, right?
So what is the answer?
Four of us from the office recently attended the annual meetings of the American Functional Medicine Association in Atlanta. I was stunned to hear a speaker describe how she developed a formulation of antimicrobial herbs 26 years ago that is more effective in treating bacterial infections than all oral antibiotics tested! At the time she was living in Tennessee and gave her product to local doctors to try with their patients. One of those doctors was so impressed by the results that he forwarded a bottle to a reference laboratory for testing. In a week he got a call from the lab director asking, “What is THIS STUFF??” It had greater antimicrobial effect than any penicillin derivative, cipro, even levaquin without the formation of any bacterial resistance. It was on display at the seminar in Atlanta. I listened to the talk and looked at the research and ordered 3 cases. It is on the shelves in our front office now.
It is called BIOCIDIN.
It contains multiple herbs and oils including bilberry, Noni, milk thistle, Echinacea, Goldenseal, Shitake, White Willow bark, Garlic, Grapeseed extract, black walnut, raspberry, gentian, Tea Tree and Lavender Oils, and oregano. Last week I prescribed it for a woman with a positive strep test. Three days ago I sent it home with a mother with chronic sinus infections with MRSA (a highly resistant staph) and a daughter with recurring bladder infections. I called Mom last night and found that both are doing well already. The concoction has a shelf life, even after being opened, of over 2 years.
So once again, by looking to serve our patients better, we have stumbled onto a dramatic change in the dogma that has dominated antimicrobial therapy for over 70 years. Now you can be treated more effectively and safely in a new/old and natural way. The same treatments are not good enough for our patients at Upper Valley Family Practice and Urgent Care. We are happy to be searching for something better for your family, and proud of what we have found. Sort of like Sir Alexander Fleming.