Overload

Immunosuppressants

Category: Medicines

Type

Involuntary

Introduction and description

 see below for credits on all photos on this page

I would like you to imagine that a kind and gentle lady from a distant planet visits the earth. 

She knows, because she is from a civilisation far in advance to ours, that the body is a perfect thing, its workings complete and perfectly designed.  She too has an immune system, just like ours. 

On her planet, they have long since realised that the cause of illness is always external to the body, but it manifests in different ways.  They have no toxins on their planet because they were not so silly as to invent them.  They have never mined for heavy metals either so these are two pathogens she knows nothing of, but they do have bacteria, parasites, viruses and fungi

On her planet, a world of intimate houses connected to small temples in sacred landscapes, surrounded by beautiful plants that help heal and raise the soul, they know no illness.  They have long since learnt how plants can help them if they should inadvertently let a pathogen into their bodies.  They use plants to boost the immune system and plants to provide nutrients that will make their bodies heal afterwards.  And they use love to help heal the sadnesses of the soul that depress the immune system and that enable pathogens to spread. Sadness still exists on their planet because they love so deeply.  Their poets sing of it all the time.

She knows that symptoms are a sign of a pathogen having entered the body and from that point all activity is centered on healing. The symptoms - itching, pain and swelling, tiredness, weakness are ignored because she knows that they are the way used by the body to warn her that her body is being attacked, telling the person to go to a healer for plants and then sleep, so that the immune system can work its wonders. The symptoms are for her a good sign because she knows they are also a by-product of the immune system working.

 

There, people die of old age or when they feel they have fulfilled their destiny.  They die well, they die in peace and they die without pain.

She has come to earth out of curiosity.  It looks from afar to be a beautiful place, full of plants and magnificent animals and insects and a blue blue ocean also full of plants and animals. 

But she lands in a very ugly soulless city that looks not dissimilar to the pictures of hell her temple high priestess has shown her.  Well, she says, so hell does exist and it is here on earth. 

How sad. 

She meets a man holding a box of pills, he looks ill and weak, and in pain.  Her heart goes out to him.  'What are you doing?' she says.

'I'm ill' the man says 'the doctor has given me immunosuppressants to help me get rid of all these annoying symptoms'.

 A little history

 

At one time the only use for immunosuppressants - drugs that suppress the workings of the immune system was in patients who had had an organ transplant.  The body rejects all transplants of organs that it considers to be not its own, as being just another form of pathogen, so the stronger the immune system, the greater the chance of rejection.

Once we had started to transplant organs, immunosuppressants became a sort of necessary evil, and it was recognised they were a necessary evil. 

When a transplant patient is given immunosuppressants, they are nurtured in environments as free from pathogens as they can be until the body starts to realise this organ may be more of a friend than a foe and grudgingly accepts it.  Then the quantity of immunosuppressants is reduced a bit, but the person is nearly always in a position where the immunosuppressants are needed and they are told strictly to keep away from all pathogens.  And by doing so [if they can] many survive a wonderfully long time in the circumstances, because they have no need for an immune system.

But some not so clever researcher then invented the concept of the auto-immune disease.  The idea that the body attacks itself.  This idea largely sprung from the scientific 'rationalists' view that Nature is to be fought.  The reasoning goes, 'we are plagued by symptoms that are annoying and are preventing us doing what we want.  There has to be a culprit, the culprit must therefore be the body.'

In fact, to call this reasoning may be stretching things a bit.  It is using the idea of mechanical systems as an analogy.  Cars break down, man made engines break down, the body is a machine, therefore it breaks down too.  It is a faulty machine.  It also ties in with the scientific view that no greater Intelligence designed the body, there was no 'super designer', we are simply an evolutionary accident.  Once you have lost all reverence for the Designer Intelligence and the body itself, the idea of auto-immune diseases can flourish.

 

If you look at the section on so called Auto immune diseases you will find a list so long, one begins to question what is not now classified as an autoimmune disease.

Immunosuppressants are now used for all these - multiple sclerosis, skin diseases like psoriasis,  systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn's disease, myasthenia gravis, sarcoidosis, focal segmental glomerulosclerosis, Behcet's Disease, pemphigus, and ulcerative colitis.  The list is increasing every day.  Anti-histamines are a form of immunosuppressant.  And these are sold over the counter as 'medicines' and are used in everything from cough medicines to nasal sprays.

Even the writers of Wikipedia seem a little nervous about their spread and use:

Wikipedia

Immunosuppression is a reduction of the activation or efficacy of the immune system. .....A person who is undergoing immunosuppression is said to be immunocompromised. An immunosuppressant is any agent that weakens the immune system, including immunosuppressive drugs.

Administration of immunosuppressive medications or immunosuppressants is the main method of deliberately induced immunosuppression. ….., all immunosuppressive drugs have the potential to cause immunodeficiency. Immunodeficiency may manifest as increased susceptibility to opportunistic infections and decreased cancer immunosurveillance.

Cortisone was the first immunosuppressant identified, but its wide range of side-effects limited its use. The more specific azathioprine was identified in 1959, but it was the discovery of cyclosporine in 1970 that allowed for significant expansion of kidney transplantation to less well-matched donor-recipient pairs as well as broad application of liver transplantation, lung transplantation, pancreas transplantation, and heart transplantation.

After an organ transplantation, the body will nearly always reject the new organ(s) due to differences in human leukocyte antigen haplotypes between the donor and recipient. As a result, the immune system detects the new tissue as "foreign", and attempts to remove it by attacking it with recipient white blood cells, resulting in the death of the donated tissue. Immunosuppressants are given as an attempt to prevent this rejection; the side-effect is that the body becomes more vulnerable to infections and malignancy, much like in an advanced HIV infection.

 

So giving immunosuppressants is like giving someone HIV.

And the Wikipedia writers are also very honest about the side effects as they perceive them:

because the majority of immunosuppressant drugs act non-selectively, they result in increased susceptibility to infections [leading to]  …… hypertension, dyslipidemia, hyperglycemia, peptic ulcers, lipodystrophy, moon face, liver and kidney injury [etc etc] ........ The immunosuppressive drugs also interact with other medicines and affect their metabolism and action.

Types of drug

The main types of drug are as follows, the link takes you to the science section which has a definition, all observations, however, have been kept within this one activity, so that you can see the pattern and the 'bigger picture':

 There are other classes, but there is not much point in listing them all, as how they work at the very detailed level has little bearing on the number of deaths or the hallucinations experienced from these drugs - they suppress the immune system - full stop!

 Side-effects

 

I hope it should be clear that if you suppress the immune system and thus open yourself to pathogens, the side effects will be entirely dependent upon which pathogens enter your system or are already there. 

If you are exposed to bacteria, viruses, parasites, fungi, and toxins - all will enter because you have no defences - you have suppressed the only defence you have.

There may indeed be some pathogens already in your system that were the original cause of your illness and suppressing the immune system will simply allow them to flourish. 

People die relatively quickly when they take immunosuppressants, and they die – without being too emotive – in great pain, and often suffering, truly suffering from numerous co-combined illnesses.  And it is clear that the causes of the death are rarely investigated.

Interestingly, doctors do not appear to be submitting Adverse Drug Reports in cases where the effects are known and accepted – that is in organ transplants.  Furthermore they are not submitting them in cases where the use is extremely short [such as in cataract surgery] or their use is mediated by the nature of the intervention -  in stents for example.     Instead doctors are submitting Adverse Drug reports for the so called auto-immune diseases like multiple sclerosis and psoriasis, rheumatoid arthritis and asthma – and we have not made a mistake here, these drugs are being used for asthma and allergies in children, to suppress the child's immune reaction to pathogens entering its lungs.

It makes the statistics on deaths all the more chilling.  In order to at least give some idea of how people die we have chosen a drug which is not at all atypical, but which has now been withdrawn from the market.  This description is from Wikipedia:

 

Efalizumab (trade name Raptiva, Genentech, Merck Serono) is a formerly available medication designed to treat autoimmune diseases, originally marketed to treat psoriasis. …. It acts as an immunosuppressant by inhibiting lymphocyte activation and cell migration out of blood vessels into tissues. …In the four years it was for sale, the known side effects included bacterial sepsis, viral meningitis, invasive fungal disease and progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML), a brain infection caused by reactivation of latent JC virus infection. Due to the risk of PML, the European Medicines Agency and the FDA recommended suspension from the market in the European Union and the United States, respectively.   In April 2009, Genentech Inc. announced a phased voluntary withdrawal of Raptiva from the U.S. market.

Phased being the operative word, because there were still people dying in 2010.  In the four years it was on the market, doctors reported that 3,326 people had had side effects and 32 people had died.

Now let’s make it more personal – from eHealthme, the fallout from the drugs....

Asked by marysmom on Jul, 20, 2013 at 8:26 pm
since my daughters death 6 years ago I have been extremely fatigued, no energy for anything, dizziness chronic and have fainted about 7 times in the past 18 months, severe panic when leaving my home to the point of choking and vomiting, also wake up with flashbacks to my childs death nightly. Have been on antidepressants for 5 years stopped them about a year ago but no improvement. Nothing works can not locate a Dr to assist. whats wrong with me?

Nothing Mary, you are grieving, truly grieving.

Summary information

The large number of drugs in this category as well as the proliferation of side-effects has meant we have been unable to list them here, instead there is a list in the Science section if you follow the LINKIn summary the Total deaths as of Early September 2015 for this class of drugs

 41,373 deaths [excl antihistamines]

the figures come from eHealthMe.com the American medical analysis website launched in 2008.  Thus the figures are for the US only and for the period measurement has been taken.  As anti-histamines are also a form of immunosuppressant we can add the deaths caused by these - [Total anti-histamine deaths = 3,043] and we get a total of

 44,416 deaths

We now need to take a look at the number of people for whom an Adverse Drug Report has been submitted in the USA for this class of drugs during this short time span, first excluding histamines and using the eHealthme site as the source [see the link again for the detail].  ADR total

1,465,290 [excluding anti-histamine ADRs]

  Now if we add to this figure the Total people reporting anti-histamine side effects = 190,458 we get a grand total of

1,655,748 [incl antihistamine ADRs]

 These are people not reports.

References and further reading

 

All the photos on this page are by Monchak Yaroslav and were chosen for their originality and beauty. 

Monchak was born and raised in Stry (Lviv region) in the Ukraine.  He currently lives in Lviv. 

He specialises in portrait photography and commercial photography. 

We like  his work so much that more examples also appear on other pages.
Email: smonchak@gmail.com
Website: monchak.net
Blog: facebook.com/jaroslav.

 

Observations

The number of halklucinatiins caused by these drugs is derived from the Adverse Drug Reports submitted to the FDA and SEDA by doctors and recorded on eHealthme.  The link takes you to the ehealthme site where up-to-date figures side effects can be viewed

Drug

No of hallucinations

Accolate  - Zafirlukast, Accoleit and Vanticon

14 

Azathioprine – Azasan, Imuran, Azamun and Imurel

22 + 17 = 39

Beclometasone - Clenil, Qvar, Vanceril Beconase, Alanase, Vancenase,Propaderm, and Clipper **

8 + 8 + 34 =50

Betnesol and Betamethasone

1

Budenoside, Symbicort and Uceris, Pulmicort, Entocort

82 + 29 + 94 +30 + 3 = 238

Ciclosporin and Sandimmune

34

Cortisol and hydrocortisone, Cortef, Cortril

20 + 44 + 1 + 4 = 69

Cortisone

28

Dexamethasone and Decadron

219 + 195 = 414

Fludrocortisone acetate and Florinef

7 + 41 = 48

Fluticasone and Flonase etc

119 + 202 + 57 = 378

Fluticasone furoate and Veramyst

5

Triamcinolone   - trade names Aristocort, Nasacort, Kenacort, Tri-Nasal, Triaderm, Azmacort, Trilone, Volon A, Tristoject, and Tricortone etc etc

33 + 11 + 16 = 60

Nasonex and Mometasone

80

Prednisolone, Methylprednisolone; and Methylprednisolone Acetate, Methylprednisolone, Medrol and Solu-Medrol

297 + 1 + 48 + 30 + 14 + 6 + 33 + 85 = 514

Prednisone

633

Tacrolimus - trade names Prograf, Advagraf, Protopic

29 + 42 + 4 = 75

Sirolimus - Rapamycin trade name Rapamune

14 + 4  = 18

Infliximab trade names Remicade, Remsima, Inflectra

66

Rimexolone and Vexol

1

Rituximab trade names Rituxan, MabThera and Zytux

15

Singulair and  Montelukast

371 + 38 = 409

Paclitaxel  - trade name Taxol

44 + 47 = 91

Thalomid (Thalidomide)

65

Lenalidomide marketed as Revlimid

139

Humira

60

Enbrel

111

Everolimus,  Zortress and Certican  and Afinitor

8

Zileuton and Zyflo

1  [3664 running total]

Leflunomide and Arava

8 + 38 = 46

Mycophenolic acid, Myfortic and CellCept

5 + 10 + 84 = 99

Methotrexate and Trexall

208 + 1 + 10 = 219

Temsirolimus and Torisel

16

Eculizumab and Soliris

3

Certolizumab pegol and Cimzia

4

Golimumab and Simponi

3

Omalizumab trade name Xolair

10

Orthoclone okt3 [Muromonab-CD3]

3

Efalizumab Brand Name Raptiva

2

Belimubab and Benlysta

6

Ipilimumab and Yervoy

5

Natalizumab and Tysabri

174

Tocilizumab, Atlizumab trade names Actemra and RoActemra

8

TOTAL

4,262

 

** This drug has many many other trade names, too many to list

 

Umirolimus and Zotarolimus are mTORS, used in stents.  Both are  ‘drug-eluting stents’. Stents are bound by a membrane consisting of polymers which not only slowly release the drugs and their derivatives into the surrounding tissues but also suppress inflammatory response by the body.  In effect they prevent rejection of the stent and are thus a form of immunosuppressant.  It is impossible to make the link between a stent and an hallucination, even if one exists.

Teriflunomide (trade name Aubagio,) is an ’immunomodulator’ .  The TENERE head-to-head comparison trial reported that "although permanent discontinuations [of therapy] were substantially less common among MS patients who received teriflunomide compared with interferon beta-1a, relapses were more common with teriflunomide." The drug was approved by the FDA on September 13, 2012 and in the European Union on August 26, 2013.  As such it is too early for reports to appear on eHealthme

Gusperimus trade name Spanidin is not sold in the USA

Pomalidomide trade name Pomalyst in the US and Imnovid in Europe,  is a derivative of thalidomide approved in February 2013 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and by the European Commission in August 2013.  It is thus too ealry for figures to have been accumulated

Related observations