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Mast cell activation syndrome


Mast cell what? Don’t worry, we don’t blame you if you haven’t heard of it! First, let’s talk mast cells. Mast cells are a type of immune cell that originate in the bone marrow and are found in most tissues. They play a role in both health and disease, and are most commonly known for their role in atopic disorders (aka allergies) and anaphylaxis. When they’re functioning normally, mast cells release chemicals that help protect the body—they’re like first responders for your immune system. But when they’re not properly regulated, mast cells have been linked to several chronic allergic/inflammatory disorders, autoimmune diseases, and cancers. If you have mast cell activation syndrome (MCAS), your mast cells overreact and release chemicals when they shouldn’t. Often, they treat food, fragrances, temperature, and even stress as something to “defend against.” Depending on which chemical the mast cells release, you can experience a whole range of symptoms, including hives, diarrhea, shortness of breath, fatigue, brain fog, congestion, lightheadedness, and much more. MCAS may even cause anaphylaxis, a medical emergency. And it may pop up in people who have Ehlers Danlos Syndrome (EDS), which is a connective tissue disorder, or Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome (POTS). MCAS is difficult to diagnose and treatment response varies. If you have MCAS, try to avoid substances and environments that may provoke your symptoms. If a severe anaphylactic reaction occurs, call 911 right away—you’ll need to be treated emergently with epinephrine. Antihistamines, H2 blockers, mast cell stabilizers, and steroids are also used to help treat the symptoms. Your mast cells are just trying to do their job and keep you safe, but as is often the case, the immune system can take it too far!

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Never Bet Against Occam: Mast Cell Activation Disease and the Modern Epidemics of Chronic Illness and Medical Complexity

In 2008 Dr. Afrin started coming to understand that a newly recognized type of mast cell disease, now called mast cell activation syndrome (MCAS), was the underlying diagnosis in many patients he was seeing who were each suffering large assortments -- quite different from one patient to the next -- of chronic multisystem inflammatory illnesses of unclear cause. Dr. Afrin soon gained experience that MCAS is far more prevalent than the only mast cell disease previously known to medicine (the rare disease of mastocytosis) and that most MCAS patients, once accurately diagnosed, can eventually find significantly helpful medications targeted at the disease. The frequency and magnitude of the improvements Dr. Afrin has seen -- even the relief that comes from finally having a unifying diagnosis other than psychosomatism -- have spurred him to focus in this area, not only tending to the needs of his patients but also pursuing research to advance our understanding of the disease and helping to educate other professionals who in turn can help even more of the many people who have long been suffering not only the symptoms of the disease but also the natural concern of not understanding why one would be so "unlucky" to have acquired so many medical problems. As it turns out, such patients are not so unlucky and truly have just one root issue (and a very common one at that), which has the biological capability to develop, directly or indirectly, into most or all of their previously diagnosed problems. There is a great deal yet to learn about this, but even with just the present very limited understanding, the opportunity to diagnose and help patients with MCAS seems to be enormous and Dr. Afrin felt a description of the disease, written for the general public, might help lead some MCAS patients on a journey to diagnosis and improvement sooner rather than later. Dr. Afrin hopes this book will help people who might have, or do have, MCAS. A portion of the proceeds of purchases of this book will go to support research and education in this area.

Podcasts about Mast cell activation syndrome


BetterHealthGuys: Mast Cell Activation Syndrome with Dr. Jill Carnahan, MD

Why You Should Listen: In this episode, you will learn about Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS), what triggers it, and how it may be treated. About My Guest: My guest for this episode is Dr. Jill Carnahan, MD. Dr. Carnahan is board certified in both Family Medicine and Integrative Holistic Medicine. She completed her residency at the University of Illinois Program in Family Medicine at Methodist Medical Center and received her medical degree from Loyola University Stritch School of Medicine in Chicago. She received her Bachelor of Science degree in Bio-Engineering at the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana. Dr. Carnahan moved to Boulder Colorado in 2010 joining medical partner, Dr. Robert Rountree. She opened her own practice, Flatiron Functional Medicine in Louisville CO to expand the services that she offers to her patients. Dr. Jill Carnahan uses functional medicine to help you find answers to the cause of your illness and the nutritional and biochemical imbalances that may be making you feel ill. Functional medicine is personalized medicine that deals with root cause of disease instead of just treating symptoms. Dr. Jill will search for underlying triggers that are contributing to illness through cutting edge lab testing and tailor the intervention to the specific needs of an individual. She may use diet, supplements, lifestyle changes or medication to treat illness but will seek the most gentle way to help the body restore balance. She seeks to promote wellness and create hope, health and healing. Dr. Carnahan walks her talk. She is both a cancer survivor and recovered CIRS patient after she encountered mold in her practice. Key Takeaways: - What are mast cells and what do they do? - What does a mast cell produce when over-activated? - What are the symptoms of MCAS? - What triggers overactivation of mast cells? - What is the role of environmental toxins and MCAS? - Is there a connection between MCAS and POTS? - What role do food reactions and leaky gut play? - What is the link between MCAS and CIRS? - How is MCAS treated? - Are some probiotics bad for people with MCAS? - What mind-body tools may be helpful with MCAS? Connect With My Guest: http://www.jillcarnahan.com Related Resources: Umbrellux DAO - http://umbrelluxdao.com/ Interview Date: April 7, 2017 Disclaimer: The content of this show is for informational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any illness or medical condition. Nothing in today's discussion is meant to serve as medical advice or as information to facilitate self-treatment. As always, please discuss any potential health-related decisions with your own personal medical authority.


BetterHealthGuy: Mast Cell Master with Dr. T.C. Theoharides, PhD, MD

Why You Should Listen: Why You Should Listen: In this episode, you will learn about mast cell activation syndrome (MCAS) and some key considerations when treating this common issue seen in those with Lyme disease, mold illness, autism, and other complex conditions. About My Guest: My guest for this episode is Dr. Theo Theoharides. Dr. Theo Theoharides, PhD, MD has studied the regulation of mast cell activation and its role in neuroinflammatory disease for over 30 years. He holds a Masters in Neuroimmunology, a PhD in Pharmacology, and an MD from Yale University. He was the first to report that mast cells can secrete specific mediators selectively without degranulation, regulate blood-brain-barrier permeability, stimulate microglia, be activated by corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) secreted under stress to release VEGF selectively, be activated by synergistic action of CRH and neurotensin, be activated by IL-33 and substance P synergistically to secrete the pro-inflammatory cytokine TNF, secrete mitochondrial DNA extracellularly that is mistaken by the body as a pathogen resulting in inflammatory reactions, and communicate with microglia and are involved in inflammation of the brain. He discovered that mast cells are inhibited by certain natural flavonoids, especially luteolin and tetramethoxyluteolin. He has published over 400 peer-reviewed papers and is in the top 5% of authors cited in pharmacological and immunological journals. He is the developer of the well-known liposomal mast cell blocking nutritional supplement known as NeuroProtek and several other products. Key Takeaways: - What is the difference between mastocytosis and mast cell activation syndrome (MCAS)? - What are some conditions where MCAS may play a role? - What are some of the common symptoms of mast cell activation? - How do temperature or season changes impact symptoms? - What are the common triggers of MCAS?- What role does stress play in triggering mast cells? - What are the best ways to approach testing for MCAS? - Can Lyme disease itself be a trigger for mast cells? - What is the link between MCAS and brain fog? - What role does leaky gut play in MCAS? - How do EMFs impact mast cells? - What treatment options might be appropriate in MCAS?


Angels of the Light: Lyme Disease Alex Hudson Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS) with Jody Hudson

Alex Hudson was only diagnosed with Lyme Disease in the last year of her life. She carried the disease undiagnosed for 10 years. Doctors were unable to link her symptoms with the disease. Jody explains that dirty ticks carry multiple infectious diseases with them. Not only did Alex have the Lyme disease she carried multiple infections, Babesiosis, Ehrlichiosis, Bartonella, and Rickettsiosis. Each one of the infections carried their own symptoms and problems. If that wasn't bad enough she had Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS). Alex's mom Jody explains that she never took any pain relievers during the decade of attack. Alex wanted to be totally aware all the time and when it came time. Alex Hudson Lyme Foundation Jody set up the Foundation to extend awareness and education and raise money for Lyme Disease especially Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS). Jody writes about her daughter's story: On March 24, 2018, the world lost Alex Hudson to Lyme Disease and Mast Cell Activation Syndrome (MCAS). A vibrant 22-year-old girl, Alex had the whole world waiting for her. With a full ride scholarship to UCLA, Alex was eager to further her education and tackle the world with her energetic spirit and vibrant mind. Unfortunately, after a ten-year battle with Lyme and MCAS, her life ended abruptly; leaving a gaping hole in the hearts of everyone whom she met. For nearly a decade, Alex visited countless doctors, underwent numerous tests, received multiple misdiagnoses, and suffered immensely. While many medical professionals often deemed her a “medical mystery,” she never lost hope and finally received a proper Lyme and MCAS diagnosis in 2017. While her family and friends were grateful for concrete answers, many feared the disease had already taken a significant toll on her body. Alex passed away less than a year later. One of Alex’s last wishes was to help educate her community, and help fund proper testing, for those suffering from Lyme and MCAS. After she passed, Alex’s mother, Jody Hudson, and a team of women came together to help form The Alex Hudson Lyme Foundation. Dedicated to spreading awareness and educating others on Lyme and MCAS, the AHLF team is passionate about being advocates for those affected by such a tumultuous disease. If you would like to follow the latest in the foundation be sure to subscribe to the social media accounts.

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