Treatments for this virus are categorized by symptom:
NOTE: this page is very detailed, and if you just require a quick recommendation for medications that help with the symptoms of this virus, then you might want to try: yeast-free selenomethionine (a form of selenium) 400 mcg daily, and N-acetyl-glucosamine 750 mg once or twice daily, both taken on an empty stomach.
The Jarrow brand of N-acetyl-glucosamine is good value and good quality. A US supplement supplier with good prices is iHerb. In the UK, Health Monthly has good prices. Amazon and eBay also have good prices.
This web site is about a (possibly new) respiratory virus which can cause potent biochemically-induced mental symptoms in individuals who catch it — symptoms such as extreme anxiety states, anhedonia, depression, mild psychosis, some social withdrawal, memory problems, as well as physical symptoms such as a permanent sore throat, permanent nasal/sinus congestion and thick mucus production, periodontal disease, skin changes, hearing loss, weak legs, and many other symptoms. The mental symptoms are not a direct result of any difficulties in your life, but rather are generated by the biochemical action of this virus in the brain (but of course, personal difficulties in your life might further exacerbate the anxiety state, naturally).
The supplements and drugs detailed below on this page have all proved to be very helpful in treating and alleviating the symptoms of this virus, especially the horrible mental symptoms. These treatments have been tried and verified by many readers of this website.
Note that the list of medications on this page is fairly extensive because unfortunately there is no single supplement or drug that treats all the symptoms produced by this virus. This page has one section for each symptom precipitated by this virus, with each section listing the medications that work for that particular symptom. The medications listed first in each section are generally the most efficacious.
Some surprisingly effective medications for the mental symptoms seem to be N-acetyl-glucosamine (NAG), flaxseed oil, and low-dose amisulpride (more details given below). So for those suffering severe anxiety and the other mental symptoms precipitated by this virus, you might start by trying these medications. Amisulpride is a prescription drug; N-acetyl-glucosamine and flaxseed oil are supplements generally available online.
If you have any questions about these treatments, please ask them by posting a comment on this website. If you decide to try these treatments yourself, I’d be grateful for your feedback on how they work for you.
If you are suffering from the extreme constant anxiety states precipitated by this virus, the following supplements and drugs have proven very helpful at treating this anxiety. These medications will significantly lower or even completely eliminate anxiety symptoms.
These anti-anxiety supplements and drugs are listed roughly in order of effectiveness (with most potent placed towards the top of the following list). Most of these supplements or drugs will start acting within an hour or two of taking them. You may need to experiment with several supplements before you find the ones that work best for you; and you may need to take three or more of these medications simultaneously in order to fully eliminate the anxiety symptoms produced by this virus (just one medication alone is probably not going to be powerful enough to treat the anxiety symptoms).
Flaxseed oil 1 tablespoon (15 ml) daily (taking more may cause diarrhea)
Low-dose amisulpride 12.5 to 25 mg daily. Available without prescription from overseas pharmacies: here and here. Amisulpride is normally a prescription drug, so check with your doctor first.
Turmeric 1000 mg twice daily
Arginine pyroglutamate 1 heaped teaspoon twice daily
Taurine 2 grams twice daily
Citrulline malate 3 grams twice daily
Vinpocetine 10 mg daily
Vitamin A 25,000 IU daily
Also very useful for anxiety: Saccharomyces boulardii yeast probiotic 3 capsules daily, Jarro-Dophilus EPS probiotic 5 capsules daily, prebiotics (such as inulin) 3 heaped teaspoons daily, imipramine (a tricyclic antidepressant drug) 10 to 25 mg daily, inositol powder 2 heaped teaspoons (15 grams) daily, choline bitartrate 500 to 1000 mg once or twice daily (treats social anxiety quite well), aloe vera juice 1 tablespoon (15 ml) twice daily, transdermal Epsom salts applied once or twice daily (this is a concentrated saturated solution of Epson salts in water, applied to the skin all over the body), horsetail herb extract 600 mg daily (contains 10 mg of silica), evening primrose oil 5 ml (4000 mg) twice daily, pregnenolone 25 to 50 mg daily, propolis 4000 mg twice daily (but don’t take before bed, as it may keep you awake), curcumin 1000 mg once daily, Terminalia chebula herb 1500 mg twice daily, grape seed extract 500 mg once daily, acetyl-L-carnitine 500 mg twice daily, L-carnitine 1000 mg twice daily, Bacopa monnieri herb 1 to 2 grams daily, phosphatidylserine 300 mg once or twice daily (works best with omega 3 oil), cetirizine (Zyrtec) or loratadine 10 mg daily (antihistamines have anti-anxiety effects), piracetam 1000 mg has an anti-anxiety effect, especially in combination with choline bitartrate.
Notes on these anti-anxiety supplements and drugs:
• Several of the above listed supplements are anti-inflammatory, thereby helping to reduce brain inflammation, which in turn reduces the mental symptoms such as the anxiety states. I have noticed that any anti-inflammatory drugs or supplements that reduce COX-2 and/or NF-kB mediated inflammation work quite well to lower anxiety. Propolis, Terminalia chebula and curcumin are reasonably potent inhibitors of COX-2 inflammation, and grape seed extract and curcumin will lower NF-kB mediated inflammation.
• On days when the sinusitis due to this virus was worse, my anxiety levels would shoot up. My theory is that the sinus inflammation may be causing the anxiety symptoms. Perhaps inflammatory cytokines in the sinuses spill over into the brain (which is situated just next to the sinuses), thus precipitating brain inflammation, which in turn leads to the anxiety symptoms. I observed that that N-acetyl-glucosamine dramatically reduced my sinus inflammation, and so this may be the mechanism by which N-acetyl-glucosamine eliminates the anxiety symptoms.
• Probiotics powerfully increase antiviral and antibacterial defenses, and are also anti-inflammatory. Probiotic bacteria will boost the antibody responses of your immune system: they boost neutralizing antibodies by 200%, they boost IgG antibodies by 220%, and they boost IgA antibodies by 400%. 1 For this very reason, often you may find that other health problems, like recurrent bladder infections, sinusitis, etc will clear up once you start taking good doses of prebiotics and probiotics, which is a nice benefit. Saccharomyces boulardii is also a powerful booster of IgA antibodies in the mucous membranes of the intestines.
• NMDA receptor inhibitors can be beneficial for lowering anxiety. High dose magnesium is a good NMDA-receptor inhibitor, taken as transdermal Epsom salts, or as magnesium oil cream. I found this magnesium skin treatment liquid also fixes the heliotrope red rash on the chest, when applied to the chest. Another good NMDA-receptor inhibitor that also works to reduce anxiety is taurine.
• Some people with anxiety and depression do well on SSRI drugs like citalopram, paroxetine and sertraline, but both myself and another person with this virus had bad adverse reactions to SSRI drugs, specifically: horribly increased depression and suicidal ideation within hours of taking these SSRI drugs. However, I found low doses (10 to 25 mg daily) of the tricyclic antidepressant drug imipramine worked reasonably well to reduce the anxiety, depression and anhedonia symptoms.
Further information on these various anti-anxiety treatments, and the theory behind them, can be found in my two threads on the Phoenix Rising forum here:
Anhedonia is defined as a lack of feelings of pleasure or reward from life’s normal activities. The reward circuits of the brain are not working properly in anhedonia, so the experience of pleasure and satisfaction is much reduced or absent. There are actually two forms of anhedonia: consummatory anhedonia, which is where you don’t feel much reward or satisfaction on completing a normally enjoyable activity; and anticipatory anhedonia, which is where you don’t get any good feelings when you look forward to doing an activity that is normally enjoyable. I found that I developed both forms of anhedonia after catching this virus.
Healthy people will experience some satisfaction and reward even after doing something as simple as tidying their desk, cleaning the bathroom, or going for a walk. However, once you have consummatory anhedonia, you find that the sense of reward is just not there when you complete a normally enjoyable task. When you complete a normally enjoyable task or activity, you just get the most awful feeling of mental vacuum instead. Metaphorically it feels like working at your job from Monday to Friday, only to find that your boss pays you nothing at the end of the week; ie, there is no reward for your efforts. But that metaphor does not really fully capture to horrendous sense of vacuum and meaningless emptiness you get with anhedonia.
Anhedonia will bring on thoughts of suicide very quickly, as I have observed in myself. Decades ago, I had quite bad clinical depression for a couple of years, but never once did the thought of suicide cross my mind during that entire depressed period. But when I got severe anhedonia, even though I only had mild depression, I just was hoping every day that I would drop down dead. It’s hard to explain this to someone who has not experienced anhedonia; anhedonia feels like all you reasons for living have been taken away.
For some people, anhedonia is a major mental symptom produced by this viral infection. Some supplements that I have found helpful in reducing the anhedonia symptoms produced by this virus are:
Vinpocetine 10 mg
Phosphatidylserine 300 mg daily + fish oil 2000 mg
Colostrum powder 2 heaped teaspoons (14 grams) on an empty stomach
Horny goat weed (Epimedium) herb 3000 mg
Bacopa monnieri herb 1000 mg
Acetyl-L-carnitine 1000 mg or L-carnitine 1000 mg
Choline bitartrate 500 mg + vitamin B5 500 mg
He shou wu (Polygonum multiflorum) 3 grams
Korean ginseng 500 mg
The anti-anhedonia effects of all these supplements will kick in quickly, within an hour or so of taking them (except colostrum, which can take a few days to start working).
Colostrum is quite good at improving both the anhedonia and depression symptoms this virus causes, as well as providing more energy. Smaller doses of a few grams of colostrum have little effect; you need to take a good quantity of colostrum. Note: colostrum is around 10 times cheaper bought as a bulk powder, compared to buying it in capsules.
Vinpocetine and horny goat weed seem to also work for the sexual anhedonia (low libido) produced by this virus (lack of sexual desire often accompanies general anhedonia). Chromium picolinate 200 mcg daily also seems good at treating the low libido, I found.
The tricyclic antidepressant drug imipramine at a low dose of around 10 mg to 25 mg a day can be very helpful for the anhedonia, depression and anxiety symptoms created by this virus. I find that you can take imipramine as and when needed, to get you through bad days where you feel more depressed than usual. Imipramine kicks in quickly (in an hour or so), and its effects last for around a day. Low doses of tricyclic antidepressants such as imipramine have been shown beneficial for chronic fatigue syndrome patients, with tricyclic antidepressants boosting not only mood, but energy levels as well (though for CFS patients it must be low dose, as higher doses can be too stimulating)
Very low dose amisulpride (12.5 mg daily) also helps to treat anhedonia.
Emotional Flatness Treatments
After a year or two with this virus, symptoms of emotional flatness begin to appear. Emotional flatness (more precisely called “blunted affect”) is a condition in which your normal emotional responses have become weak or absent, and your mind seems emotionally dried out, because you no longer seem to feel much in circumstances that would normally give rise to feeling emotion. So for example, if you watch an emotional drama on TV, you tend to experience the drama in a cold, often cynical way, as you don’t really engage with the emotions in the story.
Emotional flatness is slightly different from anhedonia, though people often confuse the two. In anhedonia, the experience of pleasure from daily activities, and the sense of reward on completing tasks, is weak or absent. Whereas in emotional flatness, life’s normal emotional responses (love, sadness, compassion, guilt, anger, joy, surprise, etc) are weak or absent.
Supplements that I have found help return some emotional strength and responsiveness to the mind include:
Royal jelly 1500 mg + vitamin B5 500 mg seems to bring my emotions back online quite strongly, but temporarily (it only lasts for 3 or 4 hours)
Myrrh essential oil 10 drops mixed in 30 ml of a carrier oil (like baby oil), and rubbed on the skin of the body, where is it is slowly absorbed transdermally (not be taken by pregnant women)
Terminalia arjuna herb 7 grams — induces emotions around 5 hours after taking it
He shou wu (Polygonum multiflorum) 3 grams
Carnosine 1000 mg
Glutamine powder 2 heaped teaspoons (12 grams)
Choline bitartrate 500 mg + vitamin B5 500 mg
Vinpocetine 10 to 20 mg
Bacopa monnieri herb 2 grams
Bael fruit powder (bilva powder) 3 grams
Lack of Motivation Treatments
Lack of motivation is a symptom that can appear to a degree with this viral infection, and results in a reduced inclination to start or engage in tasks. Lack of motivation differs from anhedonia: lack of motivation means you do not tend to initiate into tasks and purposeful activity; anhedonia simply means that you don’t get the feeling of reward or satisfaction on completion of a task, which the mental “payoff” we all like to feel when we have done something useful. Lack of motivation is due to problems in the motivational circuitry of the brain; anhedonia is due to problems in the reward system of the brain.
Vitamin B2 (riboflavin) 50 mg, taken two or three times daily, seems to significantly boost motivation, I have found (dry or cracked lips are a sign of vitamin B2 deficiency, incidentally). A low dose of the drug pramipexole, say ½ of a 0.18 mg tablet daily, also seems to work wonders for these low motivation symptoms. Within an hour of taking it, vitamin B2 or pramipexole will quickly change me from being apathetic to being focused and task oriented. So vitamin B2 and pramipexole are very useful tools for breaking through any motivational stagnation; with their help, you can get tasks done.
Supplements and drugs that were found helpful in alleviating the depression that this virus triggers include: imipramine (a tricyclic antidepressant drug) 10 to 25 mg daily, inositol powder 2 heaped teaspoons (15 grams) daily, colostrum 2 heaped teaspoons (14 grams) twice daily on an empty stomach, saffron (Crocus sativus) 30 to 60 mg of dried Spanish saffron twice daily, NADH 5 mg daily, co-enzyme Q10 200 mg twice daily. You can take two or more of these supplements in combination, to get a stronger antidepressant effect. All of these supplements kick in within an hour of taking them (except inositol, which takes a good 12 hours before the mood boost appears).
Antidepressant SSRI drugs like citalopram, paroxetine and sertraline can be helpful for many people, but be careful if you try SSRI drugs, as in certain individuals, these can bring on increased depression and suicidal thoughts. Stop taking these SSRI drugs if this happens. Both myself and another person with this virus had bad adverse reactions to SSRI drugs, specifically: horribly increased depression and suicidal ideation within hours of taking an SSRI drug. However, I found low doses (10 to 25 mg daily) of the tricyclic antidepressant drug imipramine worked reasonably well to treat the depression, anhedonia and anxiety symptoms produced by this virus.
Social Withdrawal Treatments
One of the symptoms this virus can induce is social withdrawal, where an individual becomes less inclined to socialize (this can occur to varying degrees). This social withdrawal seems to be driven by the various mental symptoms all caused by this virus: the anhedonia mental symptom seems to greatly diminish the pleasure that normally arises from seeing friends, maintaining a friendship, or making new friends; the emotional flatness symptom makes your emotions weak, so you lose the emotional bonding and emotional dynamics with friends; you also find that the general mental frailty can simply make the energies and presence of others overwhelming and exhausting for the soul; and finally the anxiety symptoms often produced by this virus will generally increase stress and mental tension, so you find you cannot relax in company. In addition, after a few years with this virus, irritability can become a prominent mental symptom too, such that, like it or not, you develop more annoyances with people. All these various mental symptoms seem to add up, fermenting a tendency for social withdrawal.
Note: the social withdrawal caused by this virus is NOT to be confused with the condition called social anxiety. In social anxiety, individuals may withdraw from social life a little due to apprehension or worry about interactions with other people, and how other people will evaluate them; however, such concerns are NOT the reasons for the type of social withdrawal precipitated by this virus.
In terms of treatments for the social withdrawal caused by this virus, I find the supplement choline bitartrate, 1000 mg once or twice daily, is a helpful treatment for the social withdrawal, anhedonia and emotional flatness. The beneficial effects of choline bitartrate kick in within an hour or so. Choline bitartrate is in fact a known treatment for anhedonia. This supplement is best taken with high dose vitamin B5. Some of the anti-psychosis treatments listed below, such as amisulpride, N-acetyl-glucosamine (NAG) and flaxseed oil, also help for social withdrawal, especially amisulpride. Social withdrawal can be an early symptom of psychosis.
It is well-known that very high anxiety can lead to some mild psychosis states. Psychosis is defined as a loss of contact with reality (confused or disorganized thoughts, lack of self-awarenes, lack of insight, unwarranted suspiciousness, paranoia, false beliefs).
To treat these unpleasant mild psychosis states, try the dietary supplement N-acetyl-glucosamine 750 mg once or twice daily. I discovered that N-acetyl-glucosamine is an astoundingly good treatment for the unpleasant mental symptoms of mild psychosis and anxiety that can appear as a result of this chronic viral infection.
Flaxseed oil 4 teaspoons (20 ml) daily (taking more may cause diarrhea) also seems surprisingly effective at treating the symptoms of anxiety and mild psychosis.
Low doses of the atypical anti-psychotic drug amisulpride 12.5 mg to 25 mg daily (one ¼ to ½ of a 50 mg amisulpride tablet) are also particularly effective. Although amisulpride is an anti-psychotic drug when taken at high doses, taken at low doses, amisulpride has a different set of capabilities, and is used to treat depression, ADHD, social anxiety, emotional imbalances, and chronic fatigue syndrome. Low dose amisulpride is something of a wonder drug in this respect. Interestingly, I discovered that 12.5 mg of amisulpride a day noticeably reduces the chronic sore throat symptoms caused by this virus too. I started a thread about the many benefits of amisulpride here:
Niacinamide 1000 mg three times daily can also help treat mild psychosis. Niacinamide, a form of vitamin B3, has a long history of use in treating psychotic states. Note: niacinamide is also called nicotinamide.
Another interesting anti-psychotic is vitamin C, taken at a dose of 3 grams, two to three times a day. Vitamin C has been shown to have similar effects to the anti-psychotic drug haloperidol. 1
Note that the supplement L-tyrosine can increase psychosis, so this is best avoided.
Brain Fog Treatments
More or less everyone with chronic fatigue syndrome experiences “brain fog”, more properly known as cognitive dysfunction, and many people with this virus seem to experience some degree of brain fog. Brain fog is typified by: poor short-term memory (for example, you may constantly forget what you were just about to do, or what you just did), poor working memory (so you cannot grasp or juggle more that a few facts or figures in your mind at one time), anomia (problems recalling words or names), slips of the tongue (saying a different word to the one you intended), miscategorization of environmental stimuli (like answering the phone when the doorbell rings), lack of focus (difficultly in keeping focus on the task at hand), confusion (very easily perplexed by situations), and a general lack of awareness (a little oblivious to the things going on around you).
Treatments to help fix brain fog include: piracetam 1000 mg daily, choline bitartrate 500 to 1000 mg once or twice daily, L-carnitine 1000 mg twice daily, alpha GPC 1000 mg daily, vinpocetine 10 to 20 mg daily, vitamin B12 5000 mcg daily (this B12 must be as a sublingual tablet, and must be a good brand like Jarrow Formulas Methyl B12 5000 mcg). These supplements work better when taken in combination.
Dealing with Fatigue and Low Energy
The best supplement I found for reducing the fatigue caused by this virus is yeast-free selenomethionine (a form of selenium) 400 mcg daily, taken on an empty stomach. This is quite effective. See this thread for more details:
Note that when you start taking selenium, the boost to your energy levels from selenium will take around 7 to 10 days to appear. So be patient.
Another supplement that seems to work well for boosting energy levels is iodine at a dose of around 12 mg daily. Again, I have found it takes around 7 to 10 days for the increased energy to manifest once you start taking iodine.
The low energy levels (the mental and physical fatigue) that may result from this virus can also be improved by supplements such as: L-carnitine 1000 mg twice daily, alpha GPC 1000 mg daily, NADH 5 mg daily, malic acid 500 mg twice daily, co-enzyme Q10 200 mg twice daily.
Irritability Symptoms Treatments
After you have had this viral infection for a few years, irritability can become a prominent mental symptom, such that, like it or not, you develop more annoyances with things, both situations and people. This is not a very nice disposition to have, but fortunately there are a few medications that seem to help: vitamin B2 (riboflavin) 50 mg twice daily is particularly good at clearing irritability, I find. Lack of vitamin B2 is known to cause irritability, so perhaps there is some deficiency present (vitamin B2 deficiency can manifest as chapped, cracked and dry lips). Low doses of the drug amisulpride 12.5 to 25 mg daily are also pretty good at reducing irritability, I have noticed. (Atypical antipsychotics like amisulpride are known to be effective treatments of irritability and aggression symptoms in autism). Supplements that reduce TNF-alpha, such as cat’s claw (standardized extract) 200 mg also seem to have a good effect on reducing irritability.
Sinus Congestion Treatments
I have an idea that the extreme anxiety symptoms induced by this virus in some people may, in part, be underpinned by the chronic nasal/sinus inflammation, congestion and mucus production (sinusitis/post nasal drip) caused by this virus. This virus seems to have strong affinity for forming chronic infections and inflammation in the mucous membranes of the body (which includes the mucous membrane linings of the nasal and sinus cavities).
I suspect that inflammatory cytokines from the nasal and sinus cavities may be exacerbating inflammation within the brain, and it is the brain inflammation which then leads to the anxiety symptoms. Recent research has demonstrated that inflammatory cytokines arising in the peripheries of the body (such as the sinuses) can actually precipitate inflammation in the brain, and inflammation in the brain has been linked to various mental symptoms, including anxiety and depression. (Interestingly, certain sinus cavities are located right next to the amygdala, the main brain center involved in anxiety disorder). It has also been well documented that chronic fatigue syndrome patients who cure their sinusitis may experience a substantial improvement in their mental and physical symptoms.
You may well find that your anxiety symptoms improve when you treat your sinus inflammation and congestion.
Supplements I found effective in treating the chronic nasal/sinus inflammation and congestion include: N-acetyl-glucosamine (NAG) 750 mg once or twice daily (NAG significantly reduces the sinus inflammation created by this virus — it appears to act as a nasal/sinus decongestant — and NAG greatly reduces the general sense of inflammation you feel within the head), propolis 1000 mg twice daily, grape seed extract 300 mg daily, reishi 1000 mg twice daily, echinacea 1000 mg twice daily, cat’s claw 1000 mg twice daily, vitamin A 25,000 IU daily.
In addition, avoiding dairy products (no milk, butter, cream, cheese, yogurt) can help reduce sinus infection. Dairy products tend to increase mucus production, which then blocks your sinuses, and so causes more sinus inflammation. Thus you may find that by cutting out dairy products, your sinus congestion is reduced, and then your anxiety and other mental symptoms improve too. You might want to try cutting out dairy for a few days, to see if it helps.
Chronic Sore Throat Treatments
The following supplements and drugs noticeably reduce the sore throat symptoms and throat inflammation: the antidepressant drug bupropion (Wellbutrin) at a dose of 75 to 150 mg daily is very effective at reducing and almost eliminating the chronic sore throat symptoms (this may be due to bupropion’s ability to inhibit interferon-gamma); the drug amisulpride 12.5 mg to 25 mg daily works quite well in reducing the chronic sore throat; Gynostemma pentaphyllum herb (jiaogulan) 300 mg twice daily is helpful; selenium 400 mcg daily is helpful, pau d’arco 500 mg twice daily is helpful.
Slow Healing Wound Treatments
Slow healing or non-healing wounds seems to be a characteristic symptom of this virus. Minor skin cuts or grazes can sometimes take months to heal, once you have this virus. A topical treatment that works quite well to get a non-healing wound to heal is zinc powder. Zinc powder can be obtained by crushing up zinc supplement tablet. You dab a tiny amount of this zinc powder on the skin surrounding the wound.
Lower Back Pain
Some people begin to suffer with lower back pain once they catch this virus. This back pain tends to arise only infrequently, but when it does arise, it can last for a week or so, before spontaneously disappearing again. This lower back pain is caused by a spasm in the back muscles. Muscles spasms are underpinned by muscle inflammation, and a very good treatment for this back pain is over the counter anti-inflammatories such as ibuprofen. An hour or so after taking ibuprofen, you will notice major reduction in the back pain pain. So this is a pretty effective treatment.
Paresthesia (Pins and Needles) Treatments
Paresthesias – the “pins and needles” or “prickly feelings” under the skin caused by this viral infection – can be effectively treated with benfotiamine (a lipid-soluble form of vitamin B1), at a dose of around 150 mg to 200 mg, taken twice a day.
The virus described on this website has been observed to precipitate myocarditis (inflammatory cardiomyopathy) and pericarditis in some people.
Deficiency in selenium, vitamin E and copper have be shown in mouse models to increase the heart damage and viral virulence that occurs in coxsackievirus B myocarditis. So if you have coxsackievirus B myocarditis, taking the following doses of these supplements may be a good precaution against such heart damage: selenium (selenomethionine) 200 mcg daily on a empty stomach, vitamin E 400 IU daily, copper 2 mg daily. 1 2 3 4
The following herbs may have an antiviral and protective effect for coxsackievirus B myocarditis: Emblica officinalis (Phyllanthus emblica, amla) root 500 mg three times daily, Astragalus membranaceus daily 12:1 extract 100 mg three times daily. 1 2
There is a good chance that the virus described on this site is an enterovirus, such as a coxsackievirus B, or an echovirus. Unfortunately, enteroviruses are very hard to treat, as there is not much in the way of effective antiviral drugs for enterovirus infections.
Dr John Chia (an infectious disease clinician and expert in enterovirus infections) found that intravenous interferon therapy can fight off an enterovirus infection in chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) patients, but the virus and its symptoms generally return within six months or so (and interferon is very expensive, costing around $15,000 for the three month course of interferon treatment).
Dr Chia found the combination of interferon and ribavirin effective against coxsackievirus B3 infections, but found these drugs were not effective against coxsackievirus B4 infections. 1 So the antiviral efficacy of drugs and supplements can often depend on which particular serotype of coxsackievirus B or echovirus you have.
Dr Chia has had better long term success using an extract of Sophora flavescens root called oxymatrine for his patients with ME/CFS and chronic enterovirus infections: around 25% of these patients find oxymatrine works well for them. Relapses in symptoms can occur on discontinuation of oxymatrine. The dose is one oxymatrine 300 mg tablet, taken 1 to 3 times a day (start with 300 mg daily, and over the weeks, slowly increase to 3 x 300 mg tablets daily). Dr Chia talks about his oxymatrine treatment in this video presentation.
I tried oxymatrine for this virus, but in my case, it did not help. However it is worth trying oxymatrine for a few months to test it.
Selenium and vitamin E are recommended for coxsackievirus B infection, as deficiency in either of these nutrients leads to increased virulence of coxsackievirus B. 1 I have observed that taking 400 mcg of selenium a day noticeably combats the fatigue produced by this virus. If you try selenium, you should find that after a week or so of daily selenium 400 mcg supplementation, you will experience increased energy. Out of the various selenium supplements available, selenomethionine is recommended, as it has the highest bioavailability. There are two types of selenomethionine: yeast-free and yeast-derived. The yeast-free selenomethionine is suggested, as the yeast-derived selenomethionine seems to cause problems for those with ME/CFS (I find yeast-derived selenomethionine causes significant depression as soon as I take it, but I have no side effects whatsoever from yeast-free selenomethionine). Selenium is best absorbed when taken on an empty stomach.
More info on my selenium treatment:
Latent herpes family virus infections in the body may reactivate as a result of the immunosuppressive action of the virus described on this website, and may therefore be contributing to the overall symptoms. My blood tests showed reactivation of several herpes family viruses after catching this immunosuppressive enterovirus. These herpes family viruses are treatable to a degree with drugs such as valacyclovir (Valtrex) 500 mg to 1000 mg twice daily or famciclovir (Famvir) 250 mg to 500 mg twice daily.
There are several other drugs and supplements that have some efficacy against coxsackievirus B and echovirus, which are listed as below. But note that I did not have much success with these, so they are listed here just for reference.
Antiviral Drugs for Coxsackievirus B
ribavirin (antiviral drug) 1
arbidol (antiviral drug) 1
amiloride (diuretic drug) 1
fluoxetine (antidepressant drug) 1
valsartan (ARB blood pressure drug) 1
olmesartan (ARB blood pressure drug) 1
lovastatin (statin drug) 1
Antiviral Drugs for Echovirus
Antiviral Supplements for Coxsackievirus B
Terminalia chebula (haritaki, He Zi) antiviral for CVB3 and CVB5 1
Emblica officinalis (Phyllanthus emblica, amla) root antiviral for CVB3 1 2
Trichosanthes root (Tian Hua Fen) antiviral for CVB3 1
Rhodiola rosea (golden root) antiviral for CVB3 1
curcumin potently antiviral for CVB3 1
emodin (from Japanese knotweed) antiviral for CVB3 and CVB4 1 2
Astragalus membranaceus antiviral for CVB3 1
Spatholobus suberectus Dunn (Ji Xue Teng) antiviral for CVB3 1 2
ursolic acid antiviral for CVB1 1
Bupleurum kaoi (Chai Hu) antiviral for CVB1 1
Glycine max (black soybean extract, Dan Dou Chi) antiviral for CVB1 1
DHEA (dehydroepiandrosterone) antiviral for CVB4 1
sodium selenite (a form of selenium) antiviral for CVB5 1
Epimedium (horny goat weed) antiviral for CVB4 and CVB5 1 2
baicalein (found in Scutellaria baicalensis, Chinese Skullcap) antiviral for CVB3 1
acemannan (aloe polymannose from aloe vera leaves) antiviral for CVB3 1
Aegle marmelos Corr (bael fruit powder, bilva powder) antiviral for CVB1 to B6 1
Azadirachta indica (neem leaf) antiviral for CVB1 to B6 1
Sophora flavescens root (Ku Shen) antiviral for CVB3 1 2
oxymatrine (from Sophora flavescens root) immunomodulator for coxsackievirus B 1
Isatis tinctoria (dyer’s woad, Da Qing Ye, Ban Lan Gen) antiviral for CVB3 1
shuang huang lian (Chinese herbal formula) antiviral for CVB3 1
yakammaoto (Chinese herbal formula) antiviral for CVB4 1
cinnamaldehyde (cinnamon essential oil is about 90% cinnamaldehyde) antiviral for CVB3 1
hyaluronic acid antiviral for CVB5 1
simalikalactone D (from Quassia amara) antiviral for coxsackievirus 1
Rheum palmatum root (Chinese rhubarb, Turkish rhubarb) antiviral for CVB3 1
raoulic acid (from Raoulia australis) antiviral for CVB3 1
fatty acid synthase inhibitors (amentoflavone, oleic acid, keemun tea, Parasitic loranthus, EGCG) antiviral for CVB3 1 2
selenium deficiency increases virulence of CVB3 1
vitamin E deficiency increases virulence of CVB3 1
copper deficiency increases virulence of CVB3 1
Antiviral Supplements for Echovirus
Betulin (from birch bark) antiviral for EV6 1
Spatholobus suberectus Dunn (Ji Xue Teng) antiviral for EV9 and EV29 1
shuang huang lian (Chinese herbal formula) antiviral for EV11 1
garlic antiviral for EV11 1
latex from fig fruit (Ficus carica) antiviral for EV11 1
beta-lapachone (from Lapacho) antiviral for EV19 1
Antivirals for Enteroviruses and Picornaviruses in General:
itraconazole (anti-fungal) antiviral for enteroviruses 1
nicotinamide (niacinamide) antiviral for enteroviruses 1
EGCG (extract from green tea) antiviral for enteroviruses 1
hinokitiol (found in hiba oil) antiviral for picornaviruses 1
guanidine potent but toxic antiviral for picornaviruses 1 2 3
My Experiences with these Antivirals
I have tried nearly all of these antiviral supplements and drugs, often taking up to a dozen of these simultaneously as an antiviral cocktail. Although I noted some improvements in my ME/CFS symptoms when taking these anti-enteroviral cocktails, I did not notice any significant benefits (although I only tested these supplements for a month or so, and have not tried them for a longer term test; ideally they should be tested for around 3 to 6 months in order to properly gauge their effectiveness).
From the studies cited above, the following information is of interest:
Spatholobus suberectus extracts have remarkable anti-CVB3 activity in vitro. CVB3 messenger RNA (mRNA) is significantly inhibited by Spatholobus suberectus. Amiloride strongly inhibits the RNA replication of CVB3. Curcumin potently inhibits coxsackievirus replication through dysregulation of the ubiquitin-proteasome system (UPS). Trichosanthes kirilowii (the ethyl acetate extract) has a significant protective effect on HeLa cells infected with CVB3 (an in vitro study). Aegle marmelos Corr (bael fruit powder, bilva powder) has been shown to have similar efficacy to ribavirin. Marmelide, the antiviral compound in from Aegle marmelos Corr, interfered with early events of the replicative cycle such as adsorption and penetration.
Able to Cross the Blood-Brain Barrier?
Since ME/CFS may involve an enteroviral infection within the central nervous system, anti-enteroviral compounds that can penetrate the blood-brain barrier might be of particular benefit. I found studies showing that the following antiviral compounds can cross the blood-brain barrier:
Icariin from Epimedium (horny goat weed) might traverse the blood-brain barrier into brain tissues. 1
Baicalein from Chinese Skullcap is able to penetrate the blood-brain barrier. 1
Indirubin from Isatis tinctoria herb (Da Qing Ye), and from Indigo naturalis powder (Qing Dai), is able to cross the blood-brain barrier. 1
Anti-Enteroviral Drugs in the Research Pipeline
The following pharmaceuticals have shown anti-enterovirus or anti-picornavirus activity, and are currently under research, but are not as yet generally available: BTA-798 (vapendavir), TTP 8307, V-073, SCH 48973, Ro 09-0179, SDZ 35-682, MDL-860, Rupintrivir, BTA-798, Picovir (pleconaril), R77975 (pirodavir), LY-122772 (enviroxime), WIN 51711 (disoxaril), WIN 54954, T-705 (favipiravir, Avigan).
Non-Cytolytic Enteroviruses: the Intracellular Side of an Enterovirus Infection
Part of the difficulty in treating a chronic enterovirus infection is that this virus can exist in two distinct forms in the body: the regular enterovirus form, and the non-cytolytic enterovirus form. The infection begins with the normal regular enterovirus, but then some of these regular enteroviruses actually turn into non-cytolytic enteroviruses within the body as the infection progresses. Thus you effectively have two different infections going on in your body simultaneously: one infection with regular enteroviruses, and simultaneous second infection with non-cytolytic enteroviruses.
Non-cytolytic enteroviruses live within human cells on a long-term basis, and do not kill the cell they live in. Inside the cell, these non-cytolytic enteroviruses consist of strands of dsRNA and ssRNA which can replicate themselves within the cell. By contrast regular enteroviruses do not remain inside a human cell for long (they just enter a cell, replicate themselves inside that cell, then kill and break out of the cell through lysis, and wander off in the bloodstream to infect more cells).
There is some evidence to suggest that non-cytolytic enteroviruses may be able to jump into and infect adjacent cells: this study demonstrates that a coxsackievirus B seems to be able to induce cellular protrusions (tentacle-like arms) to grow out the cell it lives in, and these protrusions may act as a cell-to-cell tunnel that allows non-cytolytic viruses to move into and infect new cells in close proximity; there is actually a time-lapse video of these coxsackievirus B-induced cellular protrusions that you can watch (see file 1 in the study’s supplemental material).
Non-cytolytic enteroviruses are also called by other names, including non-cytopathic enteroviruses, defective enteroviruses, and terminally-deleted enteroviruses.
It is thought that non-cytolytic enteroviruses may be a major problem in ME/CFS. 1
I am not sure if any of the above antivirals will have any effect against these non-cytolytic enteroviruses, though amiloride inhibits the RNA replication of coxsackievirus B inside human cells, and Spatholobus suberectus inhibits coxsackievirus B messenger RNA (mRNA).
Dr John Chia said 1 that some new hepatitis C drugs under development may be able to kill the non-cytolytic enteroviral dsRNA that is likely causing havoc in ME/CFS.
More info on non-cytolytic enteroviruses here: How Non-Cytolytic Enteroviruses May Spread.