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Recognizing the Significance of Excess Iron in the Brain

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Big news! I am drowning in emails from people advising me that today, November 21, 2009, there is to be a special program on the Canadian CTV channel literally about “iron on the brain!” I’ve had to take my phone off the hook!

It has long been known that iron can indeed accumulate in the brain. In 1989, the late Dr. Leslie Valberg and others, of the University of Western Ontario, published an article on "Abnormalities in Iron Metabolism in Multiple Sclerosis" (Can J. Neurol.Sci, 16: 184 – 186). It is also commonly known that there is iron in the brain of the Parkinson’s patient, and that malaria and cancers need iron to survive as well.

I have personally written reams about the effects of high iron stores on and IN the brain, and I wrote an article about this in the newsletter of the Canadian Hemochromatosis Society in August, 1993.

Hope For Treatment

So it is not that the facts concerning the effects of iron are new. What is sensational is the possibility of a procedure for removing it. As I wrote in 1993, "Chelators and phlebotomies are not effective, because the iron is stored beyond the blood-brain barrier." (Youdim, Ben-Schahar, Riederer, Jellinger of Germany, Israel and Austria). Now from Italy comes news that offers hope.

The rationale is that narrowed veins carrying blood to the brain do not permit the blood to flow through easily (perhaps like a blocked drain), making it difficult for the iron carried in that blood to move through quickly enough; thus, in the same way as it builds up in the bodies of people with hemochromatosis, what I invariably refer to as "that evil with the grinning face of virtue” (a.k.a. iron) is the culprit. If it can be filtered or blood flow can be improved, the build-up could be prevented.

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About Marie Warder

Born in South Africa, became a journalist and later trained as a teacher before establishing my own school - "Windsor House Academy, of which I remained the principal until I emigrated to Canada. Love to write, and have published 27 books. Played the piano in my husband's dance band for 33years. Founder and President Emerita of the the Canadian, South African and in International Association of Hemochromatosis Societies, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marie_Warder
  • ROWENA BLAKE

    Amazing! Possibly spells hope for my husband! Thank you. Couldn’t believe my eyes.I intend to ask for an appoinment with our physicican as soon as his office opens tomorrow morning.

  • Frederick Holman – a grateful Canadian

    Reading this suddenly kindled anger against Sarah Palin for her criticism of Canada’s Health Plan. I’d be bankrupt by now if I had had to pay for the thousands and thousands of dollars worth of hospital visits, MRIs etc. I had have been privileged to undergo.
    What a blessing it is to think that once this procedure for helping Parklinson’s patients becomes available, we won’ have to take out mortgages to afford it!

  • sean

    Yes the possibilities now are getting better. Im going to do some more research on this one..

  • help me please

    1o long years of tests.symtems bronz coler skin joint pain. inlarged liver@spline black stool@green.tire easy.had mri last week showed iron pocket billed up in my brain

  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marie_Warder Marie Warder

    Thank you for writing. My heart goes out to all of you!Please keep in touch.

  • Marie Warder

    Re: Help me please. What is the diagnosis?

  • Philida Blake

    This is not supposed t be a response to your preceding question re a diagnosis – IT’S SENSATIONAL NEWS!
    Just heard an announcement on TV to the effect that the Canadian Govt. will fund treatment! Thank you for alerting us to a possible treatment.