WHAT IS GLUTATHIONE?
Glutathione is a very powerful anti-oxidant. It rids the body of free radicals, toxins and oxidants. Glutathione also assists with detoxification pathways of the liver, and prevents oxidative damage.
What is Inhaled Glutathione?
Glutathione is found in the lower respiratory system of the lungs and is considered to be the first line of defense against oxidative damage. Oxidative damage or stress is caused when there is an imbalance of antioxidants to oxidants. Oxidants are known as reactive oxygen species.
Oxidants or reactive oxygen species cause oxidative stress and/or damage. Examples of oxidants or reactive oxygen species are: cigarette smoke, pesticides, herbicides, organophosphates, bipyridyl herbicides, organochlorines, excessive alcohol intake, air pollution, inhalable quartz, metal powders, mineral asbestos fibers, soot from gasoline and diesel engines, etc.
Production of reactive species promote the onset of lung diseases.
The oral route of glutathione has been found to be ineffective at increasing plasma levels. Therefore intravenous or inhaled routes are preferred. Although one study also found the intravenous route to be ineffective at raising glutathione levels in the epithelial lining fluid of the lungs. Therefore inhaled glutathione is considered the best route of administration.
What conditions is inhaled glutathione good for?
Research has found inhaled glutathione to be beneficial for the following conditions:
Chronic Otitis Media with Effusion
HIV positive individuals
Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis
*have been linked to lower levels of glutathione in the epithelial lining fluid of the lungs and therefore inhaled glutathione could also benefit these populations.
Who is not a candidate for Inhaled Glutathione?
Those with sulfite sensitivities or asthma are not candidates for this therapy. Inhaled glutathione contains a sulfite base and if sensitive patients can react. Inhaled glutathione for asthma patients could cause bronchoconstriction.
A simple urine test is performed prior to administration to determine if the patient has sulfite sensitivities. If the patient is not positive for sulfite sensitivities the treatment can then be administered.
What are the side effects of Inhaled Glutathione?
Transient cough and an unpleasant smell are side effects of this therapy.
How is inhaled glutathione administered?
Inhaled glutathione is a treatment administered in office by utilizing a nebulizer mask, nebulizer and a nebulizing glutathione solution. First the patient will be assessed via a urine test to ensure there are no sulfite sensitivities. Treatment can take anywhere from 15-30 minutes and treatments can be offered once a week or several times a week depending on the severity of the patient’s condition.
Villegas L, Stidham T, Nozik-Grayck E. Oxidative Stress and Therapeutic Development in Lung Diseases. J Pulm Respir Med. 2014;4(4):194. doi:10.4172/2161-105X.1000194
Valavanidis, A. et al. Pulmonary Oxidative Stress, Inflammation and Cancer: Respirable Particulate Matter, Fibrous Dusts and Ozone as Major Causes of Lung Carcinogenesis through Reactive Oxygen Species Mechanisms. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2013, 10(9), 3886-3907;
Prousky J. The treatment of pulmonary diseases and respiratory-related conditions with inhaled (nebulized or aerosolized) glutathione. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2008;5(1):27–35. doi:10.1093/ecam/nem040