30-60 Minutes Patient Downtime
0 Treatment Series
Weekly Procedure Type
What are high-dose vitamin C infusions?
You may have noticed at the store that vitamin C supplements are scarce – for a good reason. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant and is involved in a number of factors related to immune health. High-dose vitamin C infusions are just that. High doses of vitamin C that are given intravenously support immune health. While still early, studies have shown promise in the use of vitamin C infusions for treatment of Covid-19. We recommend this treatment to optimize lung function and boost immunity.
What is vitamin C?
Vitamin C, also known as L-ascorbic acid is a water-soluble vitamin that is naturally present in some foods, added to others and available as a dietary supplement. Unlike most animals, humans are unable to produce their own vitamin C, so it is an essential dietary component.
More than half a century of research has shown vitamin C to be a crucial player in various aspects of the immune system, particularly immune cell function. Recently, there has been a renewed interest in high dose intravenous vitamin C, particularly as adjunctive therapy for cancer patients receiving chemo and radiation. High dose vitamin C has also been linked to improved lung function, which could keep a patient off of mechanical ventilation or life support.
How does vitamin C help to modulate the immune system?
Vitamin C is an essential micronutrient and a potent antioxidant. It contributes to immune defense through supporting various cellular functions of both the innate and adaptive immune systems. To summarize, vitamin C:
Supports skin barrier function
Aids in microbial killing
Aids in the clearance of infectious debris
Enhances the differentiation and proliferation of B- and T- cells
Why can’t I take oral vitamin C in high doses?
In high doses, oral vitamin C causes GI upset and diarrhea. Since the vitamin C at Illuminate is infused, it skips your digestive system and relieves you of the discomfort that comes with oral ingestion of higher doses. Our therapies are formulated with dosages for optimal absorption, maximizing the overall efficacy of each and every infusion.
What are the side effects associated with treatment?
Side effects of IV vitamin C treatments are infrequent and usually minimal. The most common side effect is irritation at the IV site.
Who is not a candidate for high dose vitamin C therapy?
IV vitamin C is also not recommended in patients who have renal impairment or renal failure as prolonged treatment with vitamin C increases plasma oxalate concentrations in patients with renal failure.
Patients with glucose 6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency should not undergo high dose vitamin C therapy as they can develop intravascular hemolysis. If you are unsure if you have G6PD deficiency, our medical providers may recommend that you are tested for this enzyme prior to administration.