Vitamin C therapy linked to better survival rates after sepsis

Vitamin C therapy linked to better survival rates after sepsis

Vitamin C therapy linked to better survival rates after sepsis

Researchers discovered that intravenous vitamin C therapy reduced mortality in septic patients from 46% in the placebo group to almost 30% in the vitamin C group at day 28.

On average, the vitamin C group spent three fewer days in the ICU (seven days compared to 10) at day 28 and a week less in the hospital overall (15 days versus 22) by day 60 than the placebo group.

#vitaminc #sepsis #septic

Alpha A. Fowler, Jonathon D. Truwit, R. Duncan Hite, Peter E. Morris, Christine DeWilde, Anna Priday, Bernard Fisher, Leroy R. Thacker, Ramesh Natarajan, Donald F. Brophy, Robin Sculthorpe, Rahul Nanchal, Aamer Syed, Jamie Sturgill, Greg S. Martin, Jonathan Sevransky, Markos Kashiouris, Stella Hamman, Katherine F. Egan, Andrei Hastings, Wendy Spencer, Shawnda Tench, Omar Mehkri, James Bindas, Abhijit Duggal, Jeanette Graf, Stephanie Zellner, Lynda Yanny, Catherine McPolin, Tonya Hollrith, David Kramer, Charles Ojielo, Tessa Damm, Evan Cassity, Aleksandra Wieliczko, Matthew Halquist. Effect of Vitamin C Infusion on Organ Failure and Biomarkers of Inflammation and Vascular Injury in Patients With Sepsis and Severe Acute Respiratory Failure. JAMA, 2019; 322 (13): 1261 DOI: 10.1001/jama.2019.11825

Vitamin c, ascorbic acid, intravenous, survival, treatment, organ, hospital stay, better, Acute respiratory distress syndrome, ARDS, vitamin C infusions, cure, Vascular Injury, lung injury

Medical Examiner keeps thousands of brains for ‘tests’ families call needless

  • Last Updated:  12:56 PM, October 28, 2012
  • Posted: 10:30 PM, October 27, 2012


It’s the great brain robbery.

The city Medical Examiner’s Office has kept the brains of more than 9,200 deceased New Yorkers — from the elderly to newborns — in the past eight years, records obtained by The Post show.

The stunning revelation comes as three families publicly question whether the city is yanking brains so rookie pathologists can “practice,” for scientists’ experiments, or for no good reason at all.

“Vasean’s organs were removed for ‘testing’ without any investigative or medical necessity,” charges a suit by the family of Vasean Alleyne, an 11-year-old Queens boy killed by a drunken driver. Months after his burial, his mom was shocked to read in the autopsy report that her son’s brain and spinal cord had been taken.

Brooklyn mom Cindy Bradshaw was stunned to learn she had buried her stillborn son, Gianni, without his brain. The ME kept it — though an autopsy found his death was caused by an abnormality in her umbilical cord and placenta.

“Do they really want to know what happened to the person, or are they just experimenting?” Bradshaw asked.

“The death had nothing to do with the brain,” said her lawyer, Daniel Flanzig. “It’s unconscionable — and unlawful — for the Medical Examiner not to return it to the family for a complete burial.”

Others suspect organs are used as a training tool.

“I think they collect brains to allow a new neuropathologist to practice on various body parts,” said Anthony Galante, a lawyer for the family of Jesse Shipley, 17, who was killed in a car crash in 2005. Friends gawked at his brain in a labeled jar on a class trip to the Staten Island morgue — two months after his funeral.

“When it comes to investigating deaths, the law gives the Medical Examiner’s Office broad authority, including the retention of tissue at autopsy for further testing,” said a city Law Department spokeswoman, declining further comment. The ME also declined to comment.

In November 2010, a judge ruled the city must notify families of seized organs. The ME began giving kin a form with three options: wait to claim the body pending “further testing” of organs; collect the organs later; or just let the city dispose of the organs.

The disposal method is not mentioned. But an internal ME document spells it out: “Medical waste is incinerated. Please do not tell NOK (next-of-kin) that unclaimed organs are ‘cremated. . .’ ”

Under The Post’s Freedom of Information Law request, the ME gave a list of 9,200 brains and 45 spinal cords removed between Nov. 1, 2004, and July 1, 2012. Some 7,700 brains were taken before the notifications began.

The ages of the decedents range from 99 to fetuses.

Brains harden in formaldehyde several weeks before they can be “cut” by scientists.

In Staten Island, ME staff delayed tests for “months” until a half-dozen brains were ready — to make a pathologist’s trip from Manhattan “worth his while,” according to testimony in the Shipley case.

But Jesse’s death was no mystery: “He was killed in an auto accident. His skull had multiple fractures,” lawyer Galante said.

Two days after Bradshaw’s son was stillborn, April 28, an ME pathologist told her, “The autopsy was complete and I could pick him up any time,” she said. The cause of death was a pregnancy complication, the autopsy confirmed. “He was a healthy baby.”

But the ME called back hours after the May 4 funeral.

“I forgot to tell you, the brain is still here,” the pathologist said.

The only explanation given Bradshaw, she said: “It’s routine.”

Donor network ‘pressured medics to declare patients dead so organs can be harvested’

‘This kid is dead, you got that?’ Donor network ‘pressured medics to declare  patients dead so organs can be harvested’

  • The New York Organ Donor Network accused of  bullying doctors into declaring patients brain dead when they are still alive so  they can strip them of their organs
  • Whistleblower Patrick McMahon says one in  five patients are showing signs of brain activity when they’re cut  up
  • Donor network earns ‘millions and millions’  from selling everything from hearts to skin and eyes to hospitals and insurance  companies
  • Staff required to meet quotas for organs and  can qualify for Christmas bonuses if they convince enough families to  donate

By Daily Mail Reporter

PUBLISHED:09:05 EST, 26  September 2012| UPDATED:17:55 EST, 26 September 2012

Plaintiff: Patrick McMahon, pictured, is suing the donor network for sacking him because he spoke out 

Plaintiff: Patrick McMahon, pictured, is suing the donor  network for sacking him because he spoke out

New York hospitals are routinely ‘harvesting’  organs from patients before they’re even dead, an explosive lawsuit is  claiming.

The suit accuses transplant non-profit The  New York Organ Donor Network of bullying doctors into declaring patients brain  dead when they are still alive.

Plaintiff, Patrick McMahon, 50, reckons one  in five patients is showing signs of brain activity when surgeons declare them  dead and start hacking out their body parts.

‘They’re playing God,’ said McMahon, a former  transplant coordinator who claims he was fired just four months into the role  for speaking out about the practice.

He said that the donor network makes  ‘millions and millions’ from selling the organs they obtain to hospitals and to  insurance companies for transplants.

‘Hearts, lungs, kidneys, joints, bones, skin  graphs, intestines, valves, eyes — it’s all big money,’ he said.

The Air Force Combat veteran and former nurse added that  financially strained hospitals are easily influenced to declare a patient brain  dead because they’re keen to free up bed space.

The lawsuit, filed in Manhattan Supreme Court  on Tuesday, cites a 19-year-old car crash victim who was still struggling to  breathe and showing signs of brain activity when doctors gave the green light  for his organs to be harvested.

Network officials including director Michael  Goldstein allegedly bullied Nassau University Medical Center staff into  declaring the teen dead, stating during a conference call: ‘This kid is dead,  you got that?’

But McMahon said  he believed the 19-year-old could have recovered.

CEO: The network's CEO and president, Helen Irving, pictured, is mentioned in the lawsuit 

CEO: The network’s CEO and president, Helen Irving,  pictured, is mentioned in the lawsuit

Bully: Network dirctor Michael Goldstein, pictured, is accused of saying 'this kid is dead, you got that?' 

Bully: Network dirctor Michael Goldstein, pictured, is  accused of saying ‘this kid is dead, you got that?’


The lawsuit cites three other examples of  patients who were still clinging  to life when doctors gave a ‘note’ – an  official declaration by a  hospital that a patient is brain dead, which, as well  as consent from  next of kin, is required before a transplant can take  place.

The suit claims that a man was admitted to  Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn, a month later, again showing brain  activity.

It claims McMahon protested but was  blown  off by hospital and donor network staff, and the man was declared  brain dead  and his organs harvested.

In November 2011, a woman admitted to Staten  Island University Hospital  after a drug overdose was declared brain dead and  her organs were about  to be harvested when McMahon noticed that she was being  given ‘a  paralyzing anesthetic’ because her body was still jerking.

‘She was having brain function when  they  were cutting into her on the table,’ McMahon told MailOnline. ‘He  had given her  a paralyser and there’s no reason to give someone who is  dead a  paralyser.’

He said he confronted the person who gave it  to her and he was speechless.

Lawsuit: The suit claims a 19-year-old car crash victim was still alive when doctors at Nassau University Medical Center, pictured, declared him brain deadLawsuit: The suit claims a 19-year-old car crash victim  was still alive when doctors at Nassau University Medical Center, pictured,  declared him brain dead

‘Finally he said he was told to do it because  while they were cutting her chest open she was moving her chest around. And a  paralyser only paralyses you, it does nothing for the pain,’ he said.

McMahon added that surgeons ‘took everything’  with regards to body parts.

‘They took her eyes, her joints. She was  right there when I was having the conversation. They were inserting the plastic  bones where the real ones had been.’

According to the lawsuit, when  McMahon probed further on the disturbing  case another network employee told hospital staff he was ‘an untrained  troublemaker with a history of raising frivolous issues and  questions.’

‘I had a reputation for raising a red flag,’  he said.

McMahon has accused the donor network of  having a ‘quota’ system and hiring ‘coaches’ to teach staff how to  be more  persuasive in convincing family members to give consent to organ donation.

He said ‘counselling’ staff are like sales  teams who are pressured to meet targets and threatened with the loss of their  jobs if they fall short.

‘If you don’t meet the quotas then you’ll get  fired – that’s a fact. I saw it happen,’ he said.

‘You’re not there for grief  counselling,  you’re there to get organs. It’s all about sales — and  that’s pretty much a  direct quote from the organisation. Counsellors are required to get a 30 per  cent consent rate from families.’

Lawsuit: The New York Organ Donor Network has been accused of bullying hospitals into declaring patients brain dead when they're still alive so organs can be harvested (stock photo)Lawsuit: The New York Organ Donor Network has been  accused of bullying hospitals into declaring patients brain dead when they’re  still alive so organs can be harvested (stock photo)

McMahon added that staff members who collect  the most organs throughout the year qualify for a Christmas bonus.

‘If counselors do well by getting a lot of  organs they are given a bonus in December,’ he said.

The veteran – who worked at the donor network  between July and November last year – said there are about 30-40 staff who are  out in the field, going to hospitals and trying to get signatures and  donations.

He said other workers concentrate on managing  the candidates or the patients who are brain dead.

McMahon claims that on November 4, he told  the network’s CEO and president, Helen Irving, that ‘one in five patients  declared brain dead show signs of brain activity at the time the Note is  issued.’

But the suit says, she replied: ‘This is how  things are done.’

He told MailOnline the next day he was  sacked.

‘My job was to make sure people were doing  things right and when I spoke up I got punished,’ he said. ‘It was disgusting to  me. There was such complacency and a lack of concern. They say ‘these organs  save people’ but what if that person was alive. I witnessed the fact they were  alive.’

The network could not be reached by  MailOnline for comment but spokesman Julia Rivera told The New York Post that  McMahon’s claims of a quota system were ‘ridiculous. There are no  quotas.

Read more: Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

Vitamin C: A potential life-saving treatment for sepsis

Contact: Kathy Wallis 519-661-2111 x81136 University of Western Ontario

Vitamin C: A potential life-saving treatment for sepsis

Physicians caring for patients with sepsis may soon have a new safe and cost-effective treatment for this life-threatening illness.  Research led by Dr. Karel Tyml and his colleagues at The University of Western Ontario and Lawson Health Research Institute have found that vitamin C can not only prevent the onset of sepsis, but can reverse the disease.

Sepsis is caused by a bacterial infection that can begin anywhere in your body.  Your immune system goes into overdrive, overwhelming normal processes in your blood. The result is that small blood clots form, blocking blood flow to vital organs. This can lead to organ failure. Babies, the elderly and those with weakened immune systems are most likely to get sepsis. But even healthy people can become deathly ill from the disease.

According to Dr. Tyml, a professor at Western’s Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry, patients with severe sepsis have a high mortality rate, nearly 40 percent, because there is no effective treatment.

“There are many facets to sepsis, but the one we have focused on for the past 10 years is the plugging of capillaries,” says Dr. Tyml.  Plugged capillaries prevent oxygenation and the supply of life-supporting materials to your organ tissue and stop the removal of metabolic waste product.  Plugged capillaries are seen in organs of septic patients.  These organs may eventually fail, leading to multiple organ failure and death.  Dr. Tyml’s lab was the first to discover this plugging by using intravital microscopy, a technique Dr. Tyml pioneered in Canada.

According to Dr. Tyml’s most recent publication, oxidative stress and the activated blood clotting pathway are the major factors responsible for the capillary plugging in sepsis. Through his research, Dr. Tyml has discovered that a single bolus of vitamin C injected early at the time of induction of sepsis, prevents capillary plugging.  He has also found that a delayed bolus injection of vitamin C can reverse plugging by restoring blood flow in previously plugged capillaries.

“Our research in mice with sepsis has found that early as well as delayed injections of vitamin C improves chance of survival significantly,” explains Dr. Tyml.  “Furthermore, the beneficial effect of a single bolus injection of vitamin C is long lasting and prevents capillary plugging for up to 24 hours post-injection.”

Dr. Tyml and his colleagues are eager to find appropriate support to move this research from the bench to the bedside to see if these findings translate to patients with sepsis.

The potential benefit of this treatment is substantial.  “Vitamin C is cheap and safe. Previous studies have shown that it can be injected intravenously into patients with no side effects,” says Dr. Tyml.  “It has the potential to significantly improve the outcome of sepsis patients world-wide.  This could be especially beneficially in developing countries where sepsis is more common and expensive treatments are not affordable.”

* Reposted for Category Submission