Dr Toni Bark; MD and Helen Gracie, CEO of Scenar Health, have volunteered on a medical mission in Haiti during April 2010.

Contributors

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Video from Toni

Toni has asked me to post this video of the work of Amurt and Amurtel: a grassroots Haitian initiative helping survivors overcome trauma.

cheers
Elizabeth (Helen's sister)

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

How Long Can Heaven Last ?

My 13 year old son, Ayal recently had his bar-mitzvah.

Part of this ceremony and event is doing charitable work, and a part is speaking about the Torah and Haf Torah portions that the child chants from the Torah.

My son told a story that went like this:

There once was a pious man who died. As he faced entering heaven, he asked G-D if he could first see hell so he could compare it to heaven.

G-D complied.

The man entered hell with an angel, he saw a beautiful and grand dining table with hundreds of people sitting around it, on top of which was glorious food of all kinds and luscious wines.

The man was amazed and commented to the angel that this looked like his idea of heaven.

The angel instructed the man to look closely at the people.

As the man looked closely at the people, he noticed that everyone was missing their arms, and in their places were long forks and spoons.

He also noticed that no one could feed themselves, as the forks and spoons did not bend and everyone was wasting away from starvation.

The man told the angel he had seen enough and was ready to go into heaven.

As the man was brought into heaven, he saw hundreds of people sitting around a beautiful and grand dining table with glorious foods and luscious wines on top of it.

As he looked closely, he noticed they too also were missing their arms and had forks and spoons in their places.

But here, everyone was feeding the person sitting across or next to them, no one was starving and everyone looked happy.

At the moment, Haiti is this heaven.

From the Haitians working without pay, to the construction workers, nurses, doctors educators and consultants who fly in from their clean homes in the first world, to volunteer their time, Haiti is heaven.

How long can heaven last?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

How SCENAR Was Seeded in Haiti

The word got out, and soon people were showing up at our compound, we were treating the monks, were were treating family members of the workers, we were treating the other volunteers for their injuries old and new with the usual amazing success.

We realized, we had to leave a device with someone who was staying long term at the AMURT compound and who'd be up in the hills where the people are sick but rarely get a visiting doctor.

We trained Sarita, a lovely pixie of a woman who overseas all the children"s programming and will be in Haiti for at least another year. We trained Jane, another truly lovely woman who's land and home up in the mountains in Kenscoff, was opened
to us for two days of clinic (Jane has locals showing up daily for medical help).

We held a small lecture for those interested in using the device to treat patients in the future. One of the attendees was a middle aged Haitian gentleman who was a traditional haitian doctor taught by his father and grandfather. He seemed the most astute and had the right questions.

We've seeded Haiti with the knowledge and some devices, now we need to develop an on going program and possibly Haiti will be ahead of some of the more developed nations with this wonderful and elegant technology.

Monday, April 19, 2010

A Typical Day in Haiti on our Medical Mission

Each morning at 5 am, I would hear the dada's (male monks) begin to chant in their kirtan (chanting/meditation session).

I would get up and come down from the roof to make myself my one real luxury for the day; a cup of Okumidori sencha tea from leaves that I brought from my stash at home.

Once the dada's finished at 6 am, I would often head into the meditation room with my yoga block and mat and do yoga, if the room was occupied, I would head back up to the roof and do standing poses. I could see the locals getting up out of their tents in front of their homes. I would hear the vendors who would start yelling out their goods by 6 am.

At 7 am, our cook Shambu would set out the home made yoghurt, bread and granola, as well as set out the oatmeal he just prepared, and the chadique he just sliced (a type of grapefruit).

All the volunteers and the Haitian teachers who lived with us in tents would pile in the dining room to eat breakfast and to see if the internet of electricity was working. We often had one or two computers that would connect and we'd take turns skyping and checking emails. (the amount of kbytes used was controlled by the NGO, as the internet would shut off if they went over their limit).

By 8 am, our interpreters would arrive to eat breakfast and to help us pack our truck with our pharmacy and water. We often aimed to leave by 8:30, but often there were obstacles like; a broken horn, low fuel, someone needing a ride in another direction etc. So, most often, we didn't hit the road until 9:30.

We'd all pile in the vehicle, taking up all the seats, and we'd head over to the didi's (female monks), to pick up our nurse and her assistant, or another medical volunteer. Now, there were often 10 or 11 of us in a vehicle that seats 8.

It's a good thing that none of us were overweight as we were often sitting on each other and on the area between the two front seats.

The road was often unpaved and full of rubble as well as markets and tents. We'd part a sea of people that were just living their life; walking to work, buying produce, chatting with friends.

By 10:30, we'd reach our destination, and set up our clinic for the day; the area for seeing patients (often just chairs facing each other), the pharmacy (often a table placed on concrete bricks) and a tarp if there wasn't already one waiting.

People had typically already been given numbers, or they were in line, first come, first serve and then given numbers.

If there was only one physician (me), we'd only hand out 50 to 70 numbers, if we had a medical resident or another physician as we did in the first part of my stay, we'd hand out 120 numbers or so.

We always saw more than the numbers, as many adults took a number and brought 1,2, or 3 children with them.

The common complaints were pain syndromes from either crush injuries during the quake, or presumably from the emotional shock, vaginal infections that were often mistaken for STD's (sexually transmitted diseases) but were more often candidiasis,
scabies and coughs. I saw the usual asthma, migraine, diarrhea and gastritis patient.

But, occasionally, I'd see something very unusual like a patient with hundreds of growths on their skin and scoliosis (neurofibromatosis), or the 50 year old woman who had been pregnant for the past 10 years (embryolith or stone baby), a woman with a possible lepromatous growth on her foot, a young girl with bumps under her chin which turned out to be tuberculosis.

Again, the most common complaint was pain. Often, "full body pain" or FBP as we all coined it.
These patients would get treated by me and Helen, once she arrived, with the SCENAR reflex biofeedback device.

We helped everyone who complained of pain. They would leave our clinic with a smile on their face and without medications.

By 3:30 or 4 pm, we would pack up our pharmacy and clinic and all pile back in the car for our ride back home.

We would all be hungry, tired and hot, but this did not stop us from chatting and laughing the whole way.

On my first few days, we would listen to the music that was in the cd player; versions of "baba nam, kivalam", AMURT's chanted mantra. every cd had the same few words repeated over and over and over.

After the first three days, I could not listen to the same words and I told the driver he could put the radio on. He picked a station with rap. I rapped "baba nam kivalam" to the music, which put the whole group into hysterics.

We would arrive back at the compound hungry and needing bucket showers.

There were left overs saved from lunch for us; curried lentils or stewed beans, brown or basmati rice or polenta, freshly stewed vegetables with spices. I occasionally made seaweed salad to go with this as our raw greens. The food tasted excellent and Shambu's cooking was always appreciated.

The evenings consisted of bucket showers, popcorn and the few nights we had access to electricity, I hooked up my IPOD to
an amplifier and either taught a Haitian dance class to the surprise of the Haitians, or we all would salsa dance.

Most of us were in our tents by 9 pm.

I thoroughly enjoyed lying in my tent, listening to the pouring rain hitting my rain tarp and reading the steamy novel my sister Marla shoved in to my hand before I left. My other sister, Caryn also handed me a book for the trip, but I didn't really get to that one until the last few days. I was often too tired to read by the time I lied down and would just take in the surrounding noises for a while, once I had enough, I'd stuff ear plugs in my ears and roll over.

My Meeting With Alison Thompson

You heard Helen's voice on this subject, now to mine:

My team arrived at the JPHRO ER tent after we drove through a narrow lane from the bottom of the Pentionville country club tent city.

This new city houses, or tents, 40 thousand people. driving through this felt terrible that we were disrupting their daily ives with our noisy 4wheel drive.

We had no choice, we had brought medical supplies and were not allowed to come in from above, as the army is stationed there.

Allison immediately came out to shake my hand and greet the visiting doctor (me) and her team

She had her naturally white blond hair in Heidi braids and had an unbelievable smile on her face.

It's as though the heat and the suffering just doesn't touch her. She is the only person I have ever met who can stay unscathed
through such harsh conditions.

It's not that I didn't keep my humor and wit while working in less than optimal conditions, it's that I looked remarkably
disheveled most of the time while Alison looked as though she had just been graced by a film stylist; her hair in perfect braids, her clothes stylish, pressed and clean. Also, Alison had been in Haiti since the disaster and planned on staying the year, I knew I was going back soon to my family and dark chocolate.

Meeting Alison Thompson

There have been many amazing experiences this week, however a highlight for me was meeting a fellow Australian in a makeshift ER on the top of a hill in Port Au Prince. The extraordinary thing is that we were born 24 hours apart in the same city - yet we meet 43 years later in Haiti.

Alison is a dedicated, experienced and selfless person and I plan to now follow her volunteer experience for the rest of 2010. She is working for the Jenkins Penn organization and is directing the medical program. Working with a rotating shift of volunteers every 14 days, running a 24/7 facility, living on rice and beans and sleeping in a tent, life is not easy. Yet she spends most of her day smiling and somehow manages to work through all the logistics of running the medical program and making sure the best of care is available to the camp residents who rely on the medical services she co-ordinates.

I am in awe.

Helen

Friday, April 16, 2010

Pentionville Country Club

We have had an extremely busy few days. After our morning at Bobs, we were again being sent out on " strike " team clinics. This means we all pile into the transport and go out into a camp where they may have had a doctor recently or they may not. In these clinics Toni has been doing outreach community medicine for STD, yeast infections and general family issues. Scabies and fungal infections are also a huge problem. We see many people with full body pain since the earthquake and these patients Toni refers over to me to give them a general reflex biofeedback treatment. The results have been 100% successful within a 10 - 15 minute treatment using simple protocols.

The day before yesterday was our busiest so far because we were assigned to the ER at Pentionville Country Club run by the JPHRO organization......
(
(change to the voice of Toni)
I walked into an actual emergency room setting with several beds and medications sites, as well as a larger pharmacy. There were highly competent PA's and nurse practitioners running the place. There was no physician overseeing patients that day, so my presence was extremely welcome. It was doubly welcomed when I arrived with my own crew and a few thousand condoms to pass out.

During the course of the day, I diagnosed cardiac angina, tuberculosis, sexual abuse, and six cases of carbon monoxide poisoning as five family members were brought in all unconscious. There was a delivery of a healthy baby and I had to run an a toddler down by "ambulance" to the University of Miami hospital for suspected aspiration.

There were several cases in between, infections, heat collapse etc.

The most remarkable issue was the family that suffered carbon monoxide poisoning as a nurse ran and reported to me while I was sitting in the mess hall, that all family members suffered from seizures and were unconscious or delirious but had decent oxygen levels on simple pulse oximetry machines.

Upon hearing that the family had been cooking and realizing we were having a torrential down pour, I assessed all as having carbon monoxide poisoning, they all came to with oxygen masks.

We eventually found a ride back to our camp around 9 pm, after working an 11 hour day and exhausted.

Another day awaits...

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The Internet cafe without coffee or internet

The access to internet on our compound has been limited at best, non existent often.

Helen and I have been frustrated that we could not work on our blog and check our emails. To make up for our frustration, we we've reciting lines from our favorite Australian television show; Kath and Kim.

As I complained about the internet issue along with waiting yet again to get out to our clinic for the day, I was told there was an internet cafe just next door to our compound called Bob's internet cafe.

Helen and I were ecstatic with our anticipation of sipping skinny lattes and chinos while writing in an air conditioned cafe.

We couldn't believe that there was an internet cafe in the midst of the rubble and mayhem we were living around.

We approached the cafe to find it a small front hallway of a house, crammed with six stations, filled with old computers.

Where was the barrista? where was the cappucino machine? where was the air conditioning?

We realized the word "cafe" was used very loosely.

Just as I managed to get my mac hooked up, the internet went down. I notified Bob.

He pointed to a woman sitting on a cement block who was talking on a portable phone.

He explained that there is no internet when someone rents phone time.

I payed Bob quadruple the asking price of 60 cents per half hour in order to not rent the phone until Helen and I finished our work.

Bob gladly agreed.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Another album from Haiti from Toni and Helen

This was actually the first to come through, so I've uploaded them out of order.

Second Album from Toni

More wonderful photos here.

Dr Toni Bark uploads pictures from Haiti

Toni and Helen have had only limited connectivity in Haiti, but Toni did manage to upload some pictures to her Facebook page. (First of 3 albums.)

Haiti Nights

The first two nights were completely sleepless.

There were ongoing cacauphonies of dogs barking.

I heard voices singing throughout the night carried on the wind.

They were ghost-like as they appeared out of nowhere, even at four in the morning.
I imagined them to be the voices of the lost ones in the rubble.

I shared this with the other doctor whose term I overlapped with, he had said that others had made the same remark.

The third morning here, I told the head dada, about the voices. He stated there were all night churches and the singing was group song and prayer. I haven't heard the voices since.

The next three nights, there were torrential downpours. THe first night of the downpours, I was on my way back from seeing patients in the mountains. My tent was open, oops! I slept on the only dry area on my air mattress with a borrowed dry woolen blanket.
The next two nights were dry in my tent in spite of the torrential pours.

Sunday in Port Au Prince

Early Sunday morning we awoke to the souns of Haitian singing, barking dogs, crowing roosters and the slow sounds of the only day of the week that the team rests. A lazy morning with delicious breakfast of sweet grapefruit and freshly baked bread was a lovely way to start my stay here after such a long journey. There are no children at the school today, and SUnday is the only day where the medical team does not go out to conduct clinics so the Monks invited us to attend a prayer meeting/ Kirtan at the nuns or Didi's place. 8 of us in a the Toyota Prado ( this was a light load apparently!) negotiated the streets of Port Au Prince, avoiding streets that are stil blocked by rubble of by US Army soldiers conducting road clearing and demolition removal exercises.

Once we arrived at the Didi's we were welcomed by the nuns and met some of the orphans they look after. ONe little girl; Malika captured my heart. She is almost 3 years old, appears to be only 18 months and she was being walked around with one of the volunteers supporting her arms so she could practice walking. Malika had been found, close to death by an amazing Haitian woman called Jane who had brought her to the Didi's.THrough careful nurturing and daily attention and nutrition, Malika is now recovering well and regaining her ability to move her body. When she was found she could not even lift her head.  I ahve some footage of Malika to post when I get to somewhere I can upload it - you will see what wonderful work the women have done for her. 

AMURT and AMURTEL run Child Friendly Space programs throughout the city. These centers are tented areas where children can come to participate in dance, art and music and the program is designed to facilitate a transition from trauma to readiness to learn. They plan to reopen the schools in August. At the moment - there is no point in reinstating an educational program - the kids need to feel secure and accept routine again before academic programs are introduced. I am very impressed with their work and believe that the 10 emergency spaces they have set up which provide services for 4000 children 6 days a week will be an important part of rebuilding this community.

After we left the Nuns, we were given a car tour of th devastated downtown area. The footage we have of this is unbelievable. The town is starting to come back to life, however it is hard to see how the chaos of the rubble and precariously warped half collapsed buildings can be rectified any time soon.

The National palace is a monument to the disaster. A stately beautiful buidling - ruined. All around it appears like a war zone after heavy artillery fire.  Through all this though - we see people starting to do business on the streets, selling food and clothing and we see a glimpse of the recovery process.

So much more help is going to be needed. When a country loses this much infrastructure - it is difficult to make headway quickly.

When we arrived back at the school we were pleased to see that Jane and Georgina had arrived to start training in the refelx biofeedback device; SCENAR. After seeing Toni use it at the clinic earlier in the week, they are keen to be trained so that they can continue the work after we leave. Both are Haitian and speak excellent English and have computer and internet access so we are confident that the training will go well.

We started the training by treating both Jane and Georgina themselves and they both immediatley responded with a change in their pain. This was a great start to the first training session.  At the conclusion; Jane ( the lady who had found Malika) hugged me and told me she loved me. The love in her embrace was so profound that I immediately felt love for her too and pledged to help her to look after her community. Jane is situated in Kenscoff; in the mountains about 2 hours from Port Au Prince. The medical team report that the people in Jane's community are the poorest they have seen, they have also had an influx of refugees from Port Au Prince so the strain on local services which were almost non existent to begin with cannot possibly cope with the medical problems locally.

Supporting Jane to implement a longer term solution is something I am very motivated to do.

This morning we are heading out to a camp to conduct a medical clinic.......more later.

Helen

Saturday, April 10, 2010

The First Days

As I mentioned in my first entry, I flew in to Haiti first class as that was the only available seating if I wanted to use my miles.

I sat next to a public planner doing volunteer work who was on her way to meet with Clinton and the Prime Minister of Haiti across the aisle was the CNN reporter Gary Tuchman who covered the earthquake from the very onset of the disaster.

I was offered wine and champaign on the flights, but felt I would need my wits once I got onto Haitian soil, and that the Ananda Marga monks of the NGO I was going to, would be none too pleased to have the smell of alcohol on my breath (the monks take vows of chastity, and refrain from alcohol, meat of any kind, eggs, onions or garlic).

I had been assured that someone would be at the airport waiting for me upon my arrival, WRONG, not only was there no driver, dada,didi or whatever,, I had my cart accosted by several porters who swiftly moved my bags out of the gates of the safe airport arrival area. Each of whom wanted a tip in order to give my bags back to me. I had to move my cart with my few hundred pounds of donated goods, camping gear and personal belongings back into the airport arrival area


Port Au Prince

The Americam Airlines flight was full from Miami to Port Au Prince today with groups from all over the world on various missions, US army personnel , diplomatic staff and Haitians returning home. After landing we were transported by bus to a large temmorary customs hall that was most likely  some sort of storage area before the quake. The oppressive heat, crowds and noise of the hall held a hopeful energy for the work to be done.

Karl from AMURT was waiting for me outside the customs hall and quickly escorted me to his vehicle and we made the short trip across town to the school where we are based. AMURT is extremely lucky to have this partially completed school intact and it is a very comfortable base. I had time to meet some of the children taking some recreational martial arts class in the compound and also get the tour  of the compound so I could start to feel at home. I pitched my tent, texted home and then met some of the other volunteers.

We do hav sporadic internet access and we will be able to upload a few photos - however due to bandwidth limits here - we have to keep the uploading to a minimum.  I will make sure I load the rest when I get back to Miami.

At 6pm Toni arrived back from her full day at a camp clinic today....however Toni will tell you all about it.

Helen

Friday, April 9, 2010

Helen has arrived in Miami - meeting with Toni tomorrow

Well I can definitely say that a 40 hour journey from Sydney to Miami door to door is more than enough to make a private tent on the roof of a school where I can stretch out to sleep - a  very attractive option!

I had not given much thought to the conditions we will be living in - mainly because it is temporary.

I travel almost every month to the USA from Australia for business and I do not suffer jetlag because my body can adapt.

Having said that - one night in a bed before I head off to Haiti tomorrow is welcome..


I want to make a special mention of my husband, children, mother and extended family/friends who believe that we will make a difference and be able to instigate some longer term self sustaining solutions for Haitians.
I can't wait to see Toni  tomorrow and see what the next steps are....Helen

..

Monday, April 5, 2010

I Scored Big Today

I received an email from the person who will be the nurse assigned to me. She requested more vitamins and throat lozenges.

She noted that sexually transmitted diseases are increasing as something the teams have been treating in Haiti.

I inquired as to how many condoms we have left. "we ran out" was the answer.

So now I have 48 hours to score some condoms, big time.

I started my day by appealing to some more local Whole Foods for lozenges and vitamins, then I called Planned Parenthood of Illinois, Chicago chapter. They were willing to sell me a box of a thousand latex condoms at their cost, $65.00.

I headed down there as quickly as I could and found myself in what appeared to be the planned parenthood office.

The patients in the waiting room were not what I would have expected; older men and women dressed conservatively reading readers digest.

As I asked for the box of condoms that was set aside for me, we all realized that I had walked into the wrong office. I was actually in a dental office adjacent to the planned parenthood.

I managed to walk out with my dignity, and head into the correct office where the box of "Proper Attire" condoms was waiting for me (that is really the name).

I stopped at the local whole foods and was given 30 packs of zinc lozenges and 10 boxes of powdered children's vitamins.

I scored big today!

Peer reviewed research that supports SCENAR and Ultra Low Doses

497 
0007 -4888/09/1483􏰀0497  © 2009  Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 
Effect of Artrofoon and SCENAR Therapy on Parameters 
of LPO and Antioxidant System of the Blood in Patients 
with Peritonitis in Postoperative Period 
A. V. Tarakanov, S. Kh. Luspikayan, 
N. P. Milyutina, and A. V. Rozhkov 
Translated from Byulleten’ Eksperimental’noi Biologii i Meditsiny, Vol. 148, Suppl. 1, pp. 136-139, September, 2009 
Original article submitted August 1, 2008 
Administration of artrofoon in combination with SCENAR therapy to patients with localized sup- 
purative peritonitis in the postoperative period considerably reduced plasma MDA level, stabilized 
ceruloplasmin activity, and increased catalase activity in erythrocytes compared to the correspond- 
ing parameters in patients receiving standard treatment in combination with SCENAR therapy. 
Key Words: suppurative appendicular peritonitis; artrofoon; self-controllable energoneu- 
roadaptive regulator (SCENAR); lipid peroxidation; antioxidant enzymes 
Department of Urgent Medicine, Rostov State Medical University, 
Rostov-on-Don 
Pronounced endogenous intoxication accompanying 
suppurative peritonitis (SP), mixed-type hypoxia, and 
hypovolemia lead to signifi cant activation of free-ra- 
dical LPO processes, which becomes a leading com- 
ponent in the pathogenesis of cell alteration [6,7]. The 
course of the infl ammatory process is interrelated with 
the state of plasma membranes, which undergo destruc- 
tive changes [8,12]. Destruction of membranes under 
the effect of endogenous and exogenous factors trig- 
gers pathochemical processes affecting the functions 
of various systems and the whole organism [3]. LPO 
processes play a role of a molecular trigger mecha- 
nism during the formation of adaptation mechanisms; 
activation of these processes is a universal response 
of the organism to extreme exposures. Antioxidant 
system regulates the intensity of LPO processes in the 
blood and cells and the concentration of endogenous 
lipoperoxides [1,18]. 
Correction of LPO is an essential, but little stu- 
died method of SP treatment. Apart from drug therapy, 
other methods of LPO correction are known. For in- 
stance, information infl uence by means of bioregulated 
low-frequency pulse electrotherapy, in particular, with 
self-controllable energoneuroadaptive regulator SCE- 
NAR [11] is a promising method [11]. 
Acute suppurative infection is accompanied by 
enhanced production of cytokines and LPO activa- 
tion. TNF-α, one of the most active mediators, triggers 
a cascade of proinfl ammatory cytokines. It activates 
macrophages and interferes the process of respiratory 
burst in phagocytes. Addition of artrofoon, a prepara- 
tion containing antibodies to TNF-α in ultralow doses, 
to complex therapy of patients with SP is advisable 
against the background of excessive inflammatory 
process. We found no published data on the use of 
artrofoon in SP, administration of this preparation in 
short courses, and its effect on the parameters of LPO 
and antioxidant system. 
Here we studied the effect of artrofoon as a com- 
ponent of complex therapy with the use of SCENAR 
on parameters of LPO in the blood and erythrocytes 
and activity of the main antioxidant enzymes in pa- 
tients with suppurative appendicular peritonitis in the 
postoperative period. 
MATERIALS AND METHODS 
We examined 99 patients (76 men and 23 women, 
age 17-74 years) operated for acute appendicitis com- 
Bulletin of Experimental Biology and Medicine, Vol. 148, Suppl. 1, 2009 ULTRALOW DOSES
498 
plicated by localized SP. The diagnosis was made 
on the basis of clinical examination and biochemical 
blood tests. The patients were randomly divided into 
3 groups. During the postoperative period, group 1 
patients (n=42) received standard therapy; in group 
2 patients (n=38) this standard treatment was sup- 
plemented with SCENAR-therapy. Group 3 patients 
(n=19) received artrofoon (1 sublingual tablet 4 times 
a day, every 6 h) in addition to complex therapy pre- 
scribed to group 2 patients. Artrofoon treatment was 
performed until elimination of fever (5 days on aver- 
age) and attaining clinical improvement. SCENAR 
procedure consisted in stimulation of the skin on palms 
(thenar and hypo thenar) and feet (zone under fi ngers 
regio plantaris pedis) with remote electrodes (12 cm2
in the F-Sw mode (10 min for each zone) followed by 
treatment of the skin projection of the liver (including 
F 
13 и F14 points of the liver meridian). The strength of 
stimulation was chosen individually [11]. 
The control group comprised 38 age-matched heal- 
thy individuals. 
Blood plasma, 1% hemolysate, and erythrocyte 
suspension were analyzed. Chemiluminescent (CL) 
analysis in the H 
2O2–luminol system [13] was used; 
the intensity of LPO was evaluated by accumulation 
of molecular products in chloroform extract of lipids 
[16]; the content of diene conjugates (DC) [9], MDA 
[10], and Schiff bases [15] and activity of SOD [17], 
catalase [5], and ceruloplasmin by the method of Re- 
vin with modifi cations [4] were measured. The studies 
were carried out in biochemical laboratory of Research 
Institute of Biology, South Federal University, on days 
3-5 after surgery (initial data) and on day 5 after the 
start of complex treatment. 
The data were processed statistically using Stu- 
dent t test. 
RESULTS 
The initial biochemical parameters in 3 groups re- 
fl ected enhanced generation of reactive oxygen spe- 
cies, potent LPO inductors (Table 1). In all groups, 
the amplitude of fast fl ash, parameter of induced CL, 
surpassed the normal value by 29.9-42.6%. The total 
CL yield refl ecting the rate of utilization of lipid radi- 
cals due to their interaction with other lipid radicals 
or endogenous antioxidants was signifi cantly elevated 
only in groups 1 and 2. 
The plasma level of DC in all groups before the 
start of treatment was signifi cantly elevated by 43.4- 
55.1%. In groups 1-3, the content of MDA was sig- 
nifi cantly increased by 60.8, 82.8, and 55.1%, respec- 
tively, and the content of Schiff bases was increased 
by 51.5, 61.6, 24.2%, respectively. 
MDA-type LPO products are bifunctional cross- 
linking agents inducing the formation of high-molec- 
ular weight end-products, Schiff bases. This leads to 
considerable and sometimes irreversible changes in the 
structure and function of membranes. 
More pronounced changes in LPO intensity were 
observed in erythrocytes (Table 2). In contrast to blood 
plasma, where the initial scatter of data was observed, 
TABLE 1. Intensity of H 
2O2-Luminol-Induced CL, LPO, and Activity of Antioxidant Enzymes in Blood Plasma in the Studied 
Groups (M±m) 
Parameter Control 
Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 
initial 
value after 
5 days initial 
value after 
5 days initial 
value after 
5 days 
Fast CL flash 
amplitude, mm 43.8±4.1 62.5±11.0 71.9±7.5* 60.9±7.5* 53.5±4.2 56.9±4.1* 47.4±8.3 
CL yield, ×104
rel. units 84.1±2.1 120.0±30.6 164.5±21.3* 136.1±13.3* 153.3±33.7* 93.7±11.9 83.7±9.9 
DC, nmol/ml 14.5±1.8 20.8±1.0* 20.3±1.6* 21.1±1.4* 18.2±0.5*+ 22.5±1.1* 19.2±2.6 
MDA, nmol/ml 25.0±1.8 40.2±2.9* 47.2±2.9* 45.7±2.2* 39.6±2.0*+ 36.8±2.8* 29.7±2.2+o 
Schiff bases, 
rel. units/ml 0.99±0.05 1.5±0.1* 1.30±0.07* 1.6±0.2* 1.3±0.1* 1.23±0.09* 1.34±0.08* 
Ceruloplasmin, 
μmol/liter 1.2±0.1 1.4±0.1* 0.90±0.08*+ 1.1±0.1 1.0±0.1 1.6±0.1* 1.5±0.1*o 
Catalase, 
nmol H 
2O2/ml 14.9±0.9 11.8±1.1* 14.5±2.0 12.4±1.7 17.2±3.2 10.90±1.81* 15.4±0.40 
+ 
Note. Here and in Table 2: p<0.05 compared to:*control, +initial value, ogroup 2. 
Bulletin of Experimental Biology and Medicine, Vol. 148, Suppl. 1, 2009 ULTRALOW DOSES
499 
parameters of erythrocytic LPO in all groups underwent 
pa rallel changes. The plasma level of DC in all groups 
before the start of treatment was signifi cantly elevated 
by 123.6, 112.8, and 133.2%. MDA content surpassed 
the control by 53.1, 48.2, and 53.1%, respecti vely, 
and the content of Schiff bases was increased by 26.3, 
22.8, 28%, respectively. Excessive peroxidation con- 
siderably modulated cell functions [2]. 
In patients with SP transferred from intensive care 
unit to surgical ward, the generation of reactive oxy- 
gen forms possessing a wide range of cytotoxic effects 
remained elevated, the intensity of LPO considerably 
increased. LPO induced a vicious circle of disturbanc- 
es in cell bioenergetics and homeostasis, which, if not 
broken, leads to cell disintegration. 
The intensity of free-radical oxidation reactions 
depends on the state of the antioxidant system in tis- 
sues and biological fl uids, e.g. blood plasma. In our 
study, components modulating the mechanisms of 
sanogenesis were added to the complex treatment of 
patients of groups 2 and 3. 
Standard therapy (group 1) did not eliminate oxi- 
dative stress in blood plasma on day 5. CK further 
increased to 64.1% compared to the normal and to 
15% compared to initial value. In groups 2 and 3, 
this parameter tended to decrease by 12.1 and 16.6%, 
respectively. The concentrations of DC and MDA also 
decreased in groups 2 and 3 (in group 1 these parame- 
ters did not decrease). Signifi cant contribution to these 
changes was made by artrofoon: on day 5, the content 
of MDA in group 3 only insignifi cantly surpassed the 
control level (by 18.8%) 
This decrease was accompanied by signifi cant chan- 
ges in activity of antioxidant enzymes. In group 1, initial 
ceruloplasmin activity was increased by 16.6%, but af- 
ter 5 days this parameter signifi cantly decreased (-25%). 
In group 3, this activity was initially high (+33.3%) 
and remained elevated at later terms (+25%). Increased 
activity of ceruloplasmin is a defense and compensatory 
reaction, because it regulates LPO intensity by entrap- 
ping both superoxide anion radical and hypochlorite; 
moreover, ceruloplasmin ex hibits ferroxidase activity 
and reduces the level of Fe2+. Catalase activity in groups 
2 and 3 returned to normal and surpassed it, which was 
not observed in group 1. 
Acute process during the development of localized 
ap pendicular SP against the background of satisfactory 
general health status determines more rapid recovery 
of the status of LPO and antioxidant system. In all 
groups, the content of MDA and Schiff bases signifi - 
cantly decreased (Table 2). DC production remained 
high in group 1 and decreased by 32.9 and 38.3% in 
groups 2 and 3, respectively. 
SOD activity increased in all groups. In group 3, 
the pronounced increase in catalase activity made a 
great contribution into the effect of treatment. In groups 
1 and 2, catalase activity decreased by day 5, while in 
group 3 it signifi cantly increased by 7.7% compared to 
baseline and 22.1% compared to group 2 (р<0.05). 
Thus, postoperation period of localized appendicular 
SP was characterized by enhanced generation of reac- 
tive oxygen species, which was seen from consider ably 
increased parameters of induced CL and eleva ted content 
of molecular LPO products in the plasma and erythro- 
cytes; catalase activity in the plasma and SOD activity 
in erythrocytes decreased under these conditions. 
Standard therapy did not eliminate the symptoms 
of oxidative stress, which was confi rmed by high CL 
parameters and increased MDA content in the plasma. 
SCENAR therapy decreased oxidative stress by day 
5 and decreased the content of DC and MDA in the 
plasma and erythrocytes. 
The use of SCENAR therapy and artrofoon in 
the complex treatment reduced oxidative stress in the 
blood, signifi cantly decreased plasma MDA, content, 
and increased plasma catalase activity. The contribu- 
TABLE 2. LPO Intensity and Activity of Antioxidant Enzymes in Erythrocytes in the Studied Groups (M±m) 
Parameter Control 
Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 
initial 
value after 
5 days initial 
value after 
5 days initial 
value after 
5 days 
DC, nmol/mg Hb 7.16±0.72 16.01±0.49* 14.43±0.48*+ 15.24±0.72* 10.22±0.81*+ 16.7±1.1* 10.30±1.52+ 
MDA, nmol/mg Hb 3.46±0.36 5.32±0.31* 4.53±0.24+ 5.13±0.31* 4.21±0.19+ 5.30±0.31* 3.90±0.20+ 
Schiff bases, 
rel. units/mg Hb 0.57±0.05 0.72±0.04* 0.60±0.06 0.7±0.1 0.59±0.04 0.73±0.06* 0.60±0.03+ 
SOD, U/mg Hb 3.35±0.11 3.10±0.23 3.41±0.15 2.80±0.21* 3.24±0.21 3.22±0.20 3.54±0.12 
Catalase, 
nmol H 
2O2/mg Hb 26.40±1.07 31.60±3.28 31.10±1.34* 34.5±3.9* 30.80±1.82* 34.90±4.30 37.60±3.90* 
o 
A. V. Tarakanov, S. Kh. Luspikayan, et al.
500 
tion of artrofoon consisted in a signifi cant decrease in 
MDA content in the plasma, maintenance of cerulo- 
plasmin activity, and elevation of catalase activity in 
erythrocytes. 
REFERENCES 
 1. A. Sh. Byshevskii and O. A. Tersenov, Biochemistry for Physi- 
cians [in Russian], Ecaterinburg (1994). 
 2. Yu. A. Vladimirov, Soros Educational Journal, 6, No. 12, 13- 
19 (2000). 
 3. Yu. A. Vladimirov, O. A. Azizova, A. I. Deev, et al., Advances 
in Science and Technology, Biophysics, 29, 1-249 (1991). 
 4. V. G. Kolb and V. S. Kamyshnikov, Clinical Biochemistry [in 
Russian], Minsk (1982), pp. 290-292. 
 5. M. A. Korolyuk, L. I. Ivanova, I. G. Maiorova, and V. E. To- 
karev, Lab. Delo, No. 1, 16-19 (1988). 
 6. M. Ya. Malakhova, Efferent. Ter., 6, No. 6, 3-14 (2000). 
 7. I. M. Mel’tser, A. F. Potapov, L. V. Everstova, and B. M. Ker- 
shengol’ts, Anesteziol. Reanimatol., No. 2, 49-51 (2004). 
 8. E. B. Men’shikova, V. Z. Lankin, and N. K. Zenkov, et al., 
Oxida tive Stress, Oxidants and Antioxidants [in Russian], Mos- 
cow (2006). 
 9. I. D. Stal’naya, Modern Methods in Biochemistry [in Russian], 
Moscow (1977), pp. 63-64. 
10. I. D. Stal’naya and T. G. Garishvili, Modern Methods in Bio- 
chemistry [in Russian], Moscow (1977), pp. 66-68. 
11. A. V. Tarakanov, SCENAR Therapy in Urgent States [in Rus- 
sian], Pt. 1, Rostov-on-Don (2005). 
12. Yu. N. Shanin, V. Yu. Shanin, and E. V. Zinov’ev, Antioxi- 
dant Therapy in Clinical Practice [in Russian], St. Petersburg 
(2003). 
13. V. A. Shestakov, N. O. Boichevskaya, and M. P. Sherstnev, 
Vopr. Med. Khimii, 51, No. 2, 132-137 (1979). 
14. O. I. Epshtein, Byull. Eksp. Biol. Med., Suppl., 10-15 (2003). 
15. W. R. Bidlack and A. L.Tappel, Lipids, 8, No. 4, 203-207 
(1973). 
16. E. G. Bligh and W. J. Dyer, Can. J. Biochem. Physiol., 37, No. 
8, 911-917 (1959). 
17. R. Fried, Biochemie, 57, No. 5, 657-660 (1975). 
18. В. Halliwell, Am. J. Med., 91, No. 3c, 14S-23S (1991). 
Bulletin of Experimental Biology and Medicine, Vol. 148, Suppl. 1, 2009 ULTRALOW DOSES

Saturday, April 3, 2010

another generous donation

We have received a very generous offer from ITZ Australia to create, host and maintain a website if required for a long term initiative. At this stage we will wait and assess if this is necessary and what local programs and organizations could link in to gain a wider audience for ensuring the interest and assistance continues until Haiti rebuilds.

Toni's passion for the people of Haiti inspired me to help her without a seconds thought - it is an honor to share her experience and offer whatever help I can in documenting the important work she will be doing in the coming weeks.

Helen

Thursday, April 1, 2010

preparing for our trip

Hi all, this is now the voice of Toni.

I have been preparing for a month for this voyage, obtaining many needed supplies via donations.
So many people have been generous and supportive, I hope this can continue until Haiti can rebuild itself and the wounds can heal.

The devastation there was too overwhelming for me to just observe on CNN, the urge to help too strong to just sit by and read about it in the NYTimes, I had to go. I knew I'd be going to Haiti from the moment I saw the first footage on television.

Initially, I emailed Helen, the CEO of the SCENAR company requesting her to donate several devices and then later she agreed to accompany me when my photographer had to cancel.

We are staying in tents on the roof of a school and do not have access to a shower, only a cold water spigot. There are not many people who would agree to this, so I was surprised when Helen offered it up.

I posted on my facebook page the desire to bring toothbrushes, lollipops and tea tree oil, I immediately received messages from several of my friends for donations.

One friend sent 144 toothbrushes and 5lbs of lollipops (the kids will need to brush after all the candy)
Another friend sent 144 colorful toothbrushes to hand out. Another offered oils.

 Lush is donating a large amount of the oil, however, getting the oil into the country is proving to be tricky, as mail and shipping into Haiti is still a problem.

Similasan USA has sent me 15lbs of combination remedies, Hahnemann pharmacy sent a trauma kit, whole foods has set aside 24 boxes of emergency and several containers of vitamins and electrolyte packages for rehydration, Biocodex has sent me 200 boxes of Florastor samples and washington homeopathic pharmacy is sending me calendula ointment.

My sister has agreed to pay for the extra baggage,  and money for all the other expenses has been donated by the owners of MK, a hot restaurant in chicago, as well as the owner of Harlequin designs. (both of these sources are close friends).

I used miles in order to purchase my airline ticket, not an easy feat as the flights leave from Miami and tickets to Miami in the midst of spring break is not an easy thing to come by. I am flying business class as there were no seats available in coach that I could use miles on.

There were offers of shoes, books and clothes, but these things are too unwieldy to bring.

So here I am, reluctantly spraying my tent and clothing with premethrin (to ward away mosquitoes as malaria is a real issue), and packing the doxycycline that will be used as an antimalarial.

I went to my office today and took supplies like surgical gloves, ointments, ear speculums for my otoscope and vitamins.  I stopped at the bank to get cash, my personal banker asked me if my trip to Haiti was a "vacation", I stopped and looked at her and then we both laughed when she realized what she had asked.

I will have bags of supplies, camping gear, utilitarian clothing, but I'll be flying business class. It will be the one aspect of my voyage that will seem "luxury".

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