The 3 Most Important Concepts to Understand if You Want to Heal From Mold

by Dr. Donald Dennis, MD

I am an Ear, Nose, and Throat surgeon, so it should come as no surprise that I came to recognize mold-triggered illness in my patients by way of chronic sinusitis. I had a contingent of patients who were difficult to treat and who did not get better no matter what we did–in other words, medications, antihistamines, decongestants, nasal irrigations, nasal sprays, steroids, antibiotics, allergy shots, and even sinus surgery did not provide long-term relief for this particular group. These patients would continue to suffer from sinusitis without much reprieve and also had other chronic and autoimmune conditions that robbed them of quality of life, and valuable emotional and financial resources. As a physician, I wanted to get to the bottom of why these patients were not healing, and I struggled with not being able to truly help.

Then, I had my “Aha Moment” that opened my mind and my eyes to the insidious nature of mold and mycotoxins. When I truly understood that all environmental mycotoxins are breathed in through the nose and deposit the highest mycotoxin levels in the sinus mucosa, my medical career was forever changed. Your chronic sinusitis and your body cannot heal if your air is full of toxins–mold or otherwise. Period.

The Nose is the Mold Highway to the Rest of the Body

Being an ENT surgeon, the major treatment I offer for systemic toxic mold exposure (mycotoxicosis) in my clinic is surgical endoscopic antifungal irrigation of all eight sinuses. This treatment is effective because we use a special surgical device called a Cyclone that suctions as it irrigates; therefore any mycotoxins rinsed from the sinus mucosa cannot become liberated to enter the bloodstream to affect the body. This treatment is also addressing the largest source and reservoir of mycotoxin exposure, the nasal passages, and sinuses. All of the environmental mycotoxins are breathed in through the nose and deposit the highest mycotoxin levels in the sinus mucosa. These toxins together with microbial volatile organic compounds or MVOC’s (think of these as the toxic gases emitted by some molds) pass from the sinus mucosa directly into the brain. This toxic exposure works much like sniffing glue fumes which go directly into the brain from the nose to create neurological symptoms and impaired nervous system/brain function.

Mold spores are also deposited into the sinus mucosa and act as a manufacturing facility to make more mycotoxins that enter the brain; this occurs sometimes even after a mold-free environment is secured.  These compounds are toxic to the brain and all of its functions. They can cause a wide variety of neurological symptoms from slight to profound dysfunction. The most common are cognitive decline, memory loss, concentration difficulty, OCD, hearing and vision dysfunction, muscle weakness and atrophy, paralysis, nerve pain, tremors, balance dysfunction, dizziness, gut motility decrease, digestive issues, GERD, destruction of the pituitary gland that causes a decrease and/or loss of any or all hormones, most commonly, thyroid, cortisol, growth hormone, sex hormones, ADH with frequent urination, and severe immune suppression with multiple secondary infections such as Lyme, Epstein Barr, CMV, and herpes viruses, MRSA, and multiple sinus infections. Most commonly the mold exposure precedes secondary infections, and secondary infections cannot be controlled long term without mold- and mycotoxin-free air due to immune suppression from the fungus.

I have now had the privilege of treating and assisting thousands of people suffering from mold-triggered illness and fungal sinusitis in their healing so that they can regain their lives. But, even with the many miraculous recovery stories that I have witnessed, I recognize that there are still those who struggle to heal and who would like some answers as to why. That is the purpose of today’s article. I would like to address the 3 most important concepts to understand in order to heal from toxic mold exposure. I believe every mold sufferer should fully understand these concepts before starting any treatment or before initiating any surgical interventions for mold illness. It is my belief that if these concepts are known, healing will not be so elusive and can be finally achieved.

The 3 Most Important Concepts to Understand to Improve Your Health From Toxic Mold Exposure

Before I go any further, I want you to know that improving your health is 90% what YOU do and 10% what your doctor does. Mold can be difficult to treat for this reason alone. YOU, the patient, are in charge of 90% of your recovery. I realize that may sound overwhelming, especially if you are very sick. But the good news is that YOU are in charge of 90% of your recovery! You CAN heal if you understand what is required to do so.

1. The single most important thing to accomplish in order to recover from toxic mold exposure is getting into a safe place where you KNOW you are improving.

Accomplishing this step often means not taking anything with you from the moldy environment. If this step is financially or physically impossible to take immediately, use the environmental treatment protocol (ETP) to stabilize your current environment to make it as safe as humanly possible.

2. Understand and address the 3 most common causes of treatment failure.

Those causes of treatment failure are as follows. I have also linked these causes to previous, more detailed articles on how to address each one.

  • Remaining in a moldy environment known or unknown. (READ MORE)
  • Eating sugar, refined carbohydrates like bread, rice, potatoes, sweets, fruits. (READ MORE)
  • Pituitary damage especially cortisol, Thyroid, and Growth hormone because it is responsible for making new cells. (READ MORE)

3. You must address the nasal entry point for mold and mycotoxins, and sometimes this may require sinus irrigation surgery when urine testing shows high levels of mycotoxins.

You take in 2,904 gallons of air per day through the nose. Imagine pouring  2,904 gallons of water into your nose each day! That is how much environmental air is breathed through your nose into your sinuses and your body each day. No medication, surgery, or any treatment can compete with 2,904 gallons of mold- and mycotoxin-contaminated air per day. As I stated earlier, this is why the highest concentrations of mycotoxins reside in the sinus mucosa. In the sinuses, the mycotoxins also easily cross the blood-brain barrier and appear in the urine testing.

To heal, you must incorporate nasal rinsing with an antifungal as part of your sinus regimen. If leaving the moldy environment, and rinsing and sprays are not moving the needle, you may require sinus irrigation with an antifungal.

The two reasons for opening the sinuses and irrigating them with an antifungal using a Cyclone during endoscopic sinus surgery are 1.) to open all sinuses to remove infection and/or fungal polyps and to then give the patient the ability to wash out all 8 sinuses in the future which cannot be achieved without surgery, and 2.) to remove all the mycotoxins inside the sinuses to stop them from entering into the brain. For patients with severe neurological or psychological symptoms, this direct and physical removal of the mycotoxins that are making them sick allows brain function and neurological symptoms a chance to improve.

In Conclusion

I hope you will take these concepts and run with them. If you take nothing else from this article, though, please know that breathing clean air is the MOST important thing you can do for your healing and continued recovery. You cannot clean up a sick body in a sick environment.

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