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Chelation therapy is the administration of chelating agents to remove heavy metals from the body. For the most common forms of heavy metal intoxication—those involving lead, arsenic or mercury—the standard of care in the USA dictates the use of dimercaptosuccinic acid (DMSA) or Dimercaprol.Other chelating agents, such as 2,3-dimercapto-1-propanesulfonic acid (DMPS) and alpha lipoic acid (ALA), are used in conventional and alternative medicine.
Cilantro (coriander) has been shown to suppress lead deposition and lead-induced kidney damage in mice, and is present in numerous alternative medications. Although cilantro was widely described as a chelator of lead, mercury, or other heavy metals in internet literature, and is often used as such, there is little research about such claims.
Chelation therapy was used by the British after World War II to remove arsenic, lead, and other metals. Patients' conditions improved as these metals were removed from their bodies. Treatment may be applied to the skin via a transdermal patch. Another treatment is administered intravenously, a process that takes 2-3 hours, costs about $100 per treatment, and 20-30 treatments are often required.
Some common chelating agents are EDTA ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid), DMSA (sodium 2,3 dimercaptopropane-1 sulfate), TTFD (thiamine tetrahydrofurfuryl disulfide), and DMPS (2,3 dimercaptosuccinic acid). EDTA and DMSA are only approved for the removal of lead by the Food and Drug Administration while DMPS and TTFD are not approved by the FDA. These drugs bind to heavy metals in the body and prevent them from binding to other agents. They are then excreted from the body. The chelating process also removes vital nutrients such as vitamins C and E, therefore these must be supplemented. A toxin, for example, entering the body, has disturbed frequency patterns which interfere with the body’s own regulatory powers and in turn impair the body’s functions.