The medical procedure used to remove heavy toxic metals from a person's body is called chelation therapy. This is done through the use of chelating agents that bind with the metallic ions and make them chemically less reactive. This process then allows the metallic compounds formed to be excreted from the body without causing any further harm.
Conditions such as lead poisoning, iron poisoning, mercury poisoning, plutonium poisoning, and arsenic poisoning can all be treated with various forms of chelating agents. These heavy metals can be very detrimental to the body. They need to be removed within a certain period of time before the metal that has entered the body enters the bloodstream and other tissues and causes damage to them.
This therapy is used intravenously, orally or through injections to the muscles. It is a therapy that has also been used to treat coronary artery disease as well as other degenerative diseases.
EDTA (ethylenediaminetetraacetic acid), a natural amino acid, as well as DMSA (Dimercaptosuccinic acid), are the chelating agents used to treat lead, mercury and arsenic poisoning. The purpose behind the use of these agents is to allow them to form a bond with metal ions that have entered the bloodstream and reduces their ability to form chemical bonds.
This agent creates water-soluble solutions that the bloodstream is then able to eliminate through a natural process. There has been some debate as to the efficacy of oral chelation therapy, as it has been found only five percent of the EDTA or other chelating agent is absorbed by the body. The remaining agents then absorbs other nutrients like copper, zinc, and chromium from undigested food, leading to deficiencies that can cause other health problems.
EDTA is considered safe to use as a drug, and it can be useful in removing any accidentally ingested heavy metals. Accumulated heavy metal can cause kidney failure and depression of bone marrow. Chelation therapy can be very beneficial for those who suffer from any poisoning by heavy metals, that can otherwise lead to death.
This therapy is proven, and its use for many other forms of alternative medicine for things like atherosclerosis or autism is showing positive results in medical circles. Metals have a charge that can allow them to react with substances in the body and lead to reactions that are not desirable. In chelation, organic molecules surround the metal and nullify this reactive charge.
This is a process that has always been occurring in nature, and the chelation process was discovered in the early twentieth century and converted into a therapy for use in metal poisoning. Chelation chemistry examples that occur naturally are chlorophyll, a chelate of magnesium, Vitamin B12 a cobalt chelate, and hemoglobin, an iron chelate.
Chelating agents are best introduced into the body of the person suffering from metal poisoning where they remain suspended and surround the metal ions that they have attracted. The organic molecule, which is the chelating agent, surrounds the metal ion, and they both remain suspended in the bloodstream and find their way out of the body through the kidneys.