IV Therapy and Specialty Lab Services

  • IV Therapies
  • Specialty Lab Services (allergy, cancer, hormones, toxicity and more)
  • Genetic Testing
  • Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT)

NIHA offers on-site a number of specialty procedures including IV therapies and collects specimens for a wide variety of traditional and national specialty laboratories. Functional lab testing helps your physician to identify the underlying cause of symptoms in order to diagnose and treat you more effectively. Routine testing may include blood counts and chemistries while specialty labs make kits available that can provide more complex analysis with genetic markers, chronic illnesses and cellular functions. Testing may also include saliva, hair, or urinalysis specimens.

Health recovery requires a strong immune system and a body cleared of pollutants and infections. Many intravenous, or IV treatments available on-site are your physician's option to boost the immune system, detoxify harmful metals and chemicals from the body and replenish essential nutrients for the body. These services are provided in a comfortable and nurturing environment so you can rest as you receive your treatments.
 

IV Therapies

What is Intravenous Therapy (IV) and why is it used? 
Intravenous therapy (IV) involves giving a nutritional or therapeutic substance directly into a vein in an arm that will quickly enter the circulatory system. Intravenous administration provides a quick, direct and effective method for the body to absorb and utilize therapeutic substances. In some cases when the digestive tract is not properly absorbing nutrients, an IV solution will deliver the needed nutrients, and nutrients can be tolerated at levels thought by the integrative medical community to have therapeutic effects. These therapies can be formulated for specific health challenges, mobilize nutrients into cells by means of a high concentration gradient, and deliver higher doses than by mouth without intestinal irritation or limited absorption due to gastrointestinal disorders.

IV treatments:

  • Deliver substances more quickly and more effectively to the body than can oral solutions
  • Correct nutritional and biochemical deficiencies
  • Boost immune function
  • Detoxify and reduce inflammation

What conditions may benefit from IV Therapy?

Addictions

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/Fibromyalgia

Angina Cold and flu
Allergies Headache/muscle spasms
Asthma Infectious and viral diseases
Autoimmune disease Low energy and fatigue
Anxiety and depression Lyme Disease, where appropriate
Cancer Migraine
Cardiovascular diseases

Neurological disease


Are these treatments safe? Are there side effects?
Practitioners have been using many of these treatments for many years; your safety is an priority and every effort will be made to ensure your safety. Like any treatment, nutritional and other therapeutic IV's carry some risk.*  Your physician will help you consider the risks and benefits of therapy. It is important to inform your physician of any possible allergies you may have prior to your treatment. Being well hydrated and having a stable glucose level will definitely make the treatment more comfortable. Side effects remain infrequent. All patients are continuously monitored by the Lab staff while getting treatments to provide a safe and comfortable experience.

Nutritional and some of the other therapeutic IVs listed here are not widely practiced as part of conventional medicine, but have become a fairly widespread practice among physicians who practice integrative medicine.  Integrative physicians, who incorporate functional, complementary or alternative medical (CAM) approaches into practice, have found that many patients respond well to these IVs. This view is supported by a substantial body of clinical literature and many of these therapies are routinely taught in continuing medical education courses for integrative physicians. The body of evidence for some of these therapies, however, may not be considered sufficiently rigorous by mainstream medical institutions to support the widespread adoption of these practices.

 

NUTRITIONAL IVs

Nutritional IVs use vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that are administered directly into the vein. The IV use of nutrients bypasses the gastrointestinal tract (GI) to avoid GI side effects and gain quick absorption.

Type of IV Application
Vitamin & Mineral      Nutrient deficient diet, malabsorption issues, diarrhea and fluid loss, nutrient replacement; boosts the immune system. Treatment combines 15 ingredients in fluid including Vitamins B and C along with minerals such as potassium and zinc.
Vitamin C     Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant and promotes healing. It is more effective to take intravenously if one is ill and needs a higher dose. Adjunctive treatment for cancer; ideal for toxicity, hepatitis, mononucleosis and other chronic viruses, fatigue and weakness; immune system problems.
Myers Cocktail  Acute asthma attacks, migraines, fatigue, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, fibromyalgia, acute muscle spasm, upper respiratory infection, sinusitis, seasonal allergic rhinitis, adrenal support; causes immediate relaxation and release of anxiety. Depending on the doctor's order, treatment may include 8-16 vitamins and minerals including B5, B6, vitamin C, folic acid, potassium, zinc, taurine and selenium.
Magnesium & B Vitamin   Fatigue, fibromyalgia, migraine, muscle spasm, addiction, PMS, and PTSD symptoms. Patients with these conditions and symptoms are often depleted in these vitamins.
Amino Acids  Specialty lab testing may indicate the need to provide essential amino acids for the body to support brain and organ functions.
Glutathione    Glutathione plays a key role in detoxification in the body and for and effective immune response. Plays a critical role in the development of an effective immune response when there is a need for higher concentrations of antioxidants.

 


THERAPEUTIC IVs

Certain medical conditions, lab work results and patient needs may benefit from practitioners ordering IVs designed to help fight infections, remove toxins or boost the immune system.

Type of IV Application
Antibiotics IV administration of antibiotics is available as needed for the clinical condition of the patient.
Hydrogen Peroxide Used for antiviral, antifungal and antibacterial conditions.
Sodium EDTA/Calcium EDTA Prevents and reduces cholesterol deposits; removes calcium from atherosclerotic plaques; eliminates heavy metal toxicity; makes arterial walls more flexible. Read more

 

Specialty Lab Services

The hallmark of an integrative approach to health care is the determination to identify root causes of illness and seek treatments that go beyond symptom relief.  This requires a sophisticated array of tests for blood, urine and other sampling that can provide the diagnostic capacity to "drill down" and evaluate multiple factors simultaneously. NIHA makes a wide array of national lab testing available, and provide numerous specialty blood, urine and other kits, with skilled phlebotomists available to draw, prepare and ship specimens to the numerous labs our practitioners utilize. Additionally, NIHA offers its patients the convenience of having a LabCorp in-house blood draw station.


ALLERGY TESTS
Are foods making you sick, tired or fatigued? Allergy tests can identify your sensitivities to foods and additives that may trigger potentially harmful immune reactions.


HORMONE TESTS
Cortisol, DHEA, estrogen, progesterone and testosterone are some of the key hormones that regulate our physiology and behavior. Specialty labs can identify specific levels of hormones using both blood and saliva.


NUTRITIONAL TESTS
NIHA works with many different laboratories to identify metabolic imbalances that may contribute to underlying chronic conditions. Testing may include core nutrients, antioxidants, B vitamins, digestive support, essential fatty acids, amino acids and minerals. Numerous tests are also available for celiac and gluten sensitivities.


INFECTIOUS DISEASE
NIHA works with laboratories that perform state-of-the-art clinical and research testing for Lyme Disease and co-infections or associated tick-borne diseases, among other infectious agents.


TOXINS
We can become sick after acute or chronic exposure to toxins in our food, homes, outdoors and/or in the personal products we use. Mold, heavy metals (such as mercury) and air pollution are but a few toxins that can make us sick, or prevent us from healing. NIHA physicians offer blood testing to identify a multitude of possible toxins.


CANCER
NIHA works with specialty cancer laboratories that perform some of the newest testing for cancer markers (monitoring) along with cancer diagnostic testing.

 

Genetic Tests

These genetic tests identify changes in chromosomes, genes or proteins. Genes called SNPs can create vulnerabilities to many kinds of allergic, infectious, immune, toxic, nutritional and psycho-emotional stress. Getting to the genetic root cause provides important data to prevent and treat chronic medical conditions and psychiatric disorders. NIHA offers specialty kits from national labs that will confirm or rule out suspected genetic conditions and risk factors. Examples of these tests include MTHFR (methylation pathways), BRAC 1/BRAC2 (breast cancer), and Pharmacogenetic Testing (PGx), for your unique genetic response to medication.

Pharmacogenetic Testing (PGx)  - Find the right medication for you

We highly recommend for all patients a genetic test that analyzes how your genetic makeup affects your response to medication. This test is called Pharmacogenetics, or PGx. This test is an important step toward personalized medicine. It will determine your medication sensitivity and reduce the chance of a possible adverse drug reaction.

By testing only a dozen genes, we can determine which medications are right for you. If you have SNPs (single nucleotide polymorphisms) which break down a medication too quickly, it will not work. On the other hand, SNPs which metabolize a medication too slowly can cause it to build up to very high levels in your body and cause severe adverse reactions or even death. Medication mortality rates from adverse drug reactions (ADRs) are between the 2nd to 4th leading cause of death, ahead of pulmonary disease, diabetes, AIDS, pneumonia, accidents and automobile deaths, depending on the research one believes. PGx is generally insurance covered.

Why we are testing?
In many patients, certain drugs/medications don't work as well as expected, while in other patients they cause toxic effects, even at a lower dosage. The reason may be genetic.
How well your body metabolizes medication is an important consideration in prescribing medication and the chances of a positive outcome. With PGx testing, you will know which ones you may have a sensitivity to, and the practitioner will be able to determine the right medication for you, and the right dose.

Read more and watch video: Why our doctors think the Pharmacogenetic Test is so important.

Cancer genomics- Cancer risk for common cancers

Cancer genomic tests for SNPs, which create risks for 8 common types of cancer by assessing 41 SNPs, and is often insurance covered.. If you have a family history of cancer this important test can assess risk, and suggest that more frequent early detection radiology and bloodwork should be performed to catch cancer at its earliest development when it is more easily treated. Also, by knowing the exact SNPs which put you at risk for cancer, certain nutritional supplements and lifestyle changes may alter genetic expression and decrease risk.

Cardiogenomics- Heart disease and risk factors

These panels can assess for various kinds of heart disease and risk factors for cardiovascular disease, such as hypertension. The proper drug to reduce risk based on these genetic factors can be chosen, and nutritional and lifestyle interventions can be adopted which match your genetic makeup so that the risk of various kinds of heart disease can be negated.

Alpha -1- Genetic test for Antitrypsin (AAT)

This is test for AAT deficiency which can cause emphysema and liver disease, even when lifestyle risks are not occurring, such as alcohol or tobacco abuse. Adults with emphysema, COPD, asthma, poor lung function or risk factors (smoking, occupational exposure, etc.) may wish to be tested. This test involves a finger stick blood sample.

23 and me - Ancestry geneology

23andMe is recommended for every patient, but it is a consumer test that you do on your own (we can’t order it for you). Go online to 23andMe.com and order the kit ($199). It will arrive by mail. Follow instructions for saliva collection, mailing and registering the test online. The 23 and me information will suggest that this test is only for ancestry geneology, but for an additional $30, we will show you how to convert the raw data link into a few hundred genomic SNPs. Important information on neurotransmitter-related genes for psychiatric vulnerabilities and addictions and many other problems can be revealed by this test.

MTHFR  Test - Methylation and detoxification issues

MTHFR enzyme(methylenetetrahydrofolate reductase) blood test is used to detect two relatively common mutations in the MTHFR gene that are associated with elevated levels of homocysteine in the blood. Those with the mutation may have trouble with methylation and eliminating toxins from the body.

Related Information:

Methylation 101: What it Means for Your Health

Methylation 102: A Deeper Look at the MTHFR Gene
 

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT)

Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy (HBOT) is a medical treatment in which a patient breathes 100% oxygen in a total body chamber. These soft chambers provide low atmosphere, hyperbaric pressure. While the use for HBOT for wound healing, certain tissue infections, burns and other conditions is well-recognized, integrative medicine views HBOT as useful to promote  healing in the brain or tissue, improve cognitive function or as adjunctive therapy for stroke or many other conditions.
Read more

 

APPOINTMENTS

IV Therapy and Specialty Lab Services are available Monday-Friday from 8:30AM-5:30 PM


Appointments are necessary. Once the physician has ordered your specialty lab kits or IV's, please call 202-237-7000, ext. 145 or 110 to schedule an appointment.
 

* Adverse reactions such as discomfort, swelling and bruising at the injection site, inflammation of the vein, dizziness, feeling faint, or decreased blood sugar or blood pressure during or following some types of treatment. These side effects are generally temporary and resolve quickly, if they occur. There is also a low risk of infection, and while rare, particularly when using nutraceutical products, any infusion into the body has some risk of allergic reaction which can either cause symptoms at the site of the infusion or systemic problems that in very rare cases can be serious.