Heavy Metal Testing, Chelation Provoked Samples & Irrelevant Reference Ranges

A number of laboratories offer testing for toxic metals (Pb, Hg, Cd, As, etc.) through blood, urine, hair and stool samples. Because they’ve been around longer than any of the synthetic chemicals, we know more about the health effects of heavy metals than any other group of toxins and a generous list of conditions and symptoms are being attributed to metal toxicities. These toxicities are real, and we all need to avoid new exposures and some people need therapy aimed at pulling these metals out of us. The trick is figuring out who that is.

Enter chelation. There’s little if any doubt that chelating agents (DMSA, EDTA, DMPS, etc.) bind to and increase the urinary and stool excretion of various metals (both toxic and non-). However, with only two recent exceptions (discussed below), the labs performing this testing have conventionally used some underhanded hokus-pokus to make the results look worse than they are. How did they do this? The labs have typically reported chelation-provoked sample results and unprovoked samples on the same reference range. That may not sound bad, but it’s a “big no-no” in medicine. The result of comparing chelation-challenged toxic metal testing to the “normal” unprovoked ranges (which themselves are internally established) is the common appearance of shockingly high levels of the poisonous metals. Continue reading “Heavy Metal Testing, Chelation Provoked Samples & Irrelevant Reference Ranges”