black mold exposure

What is Mold Toxicity?

Mold toxins are toxic gases produced by many indoor molds. Mold toxicity is an emerging illness that has become much more prevalent in the last 50 years.

What has changed? After the Arab oil embargo in 1973, we began building air-tight, energy-efficient homes and buildings. These air-tight, water-damaged buildings do not “breathe,” and therefore our indoor air becomes saturated with mold toxins.

Another change we made in the 1970s was the transition from plaster to drywall. This change in the use of building materials caused a spike in patients exposed to mold toxins, as molds tend to flourish on wet drywall. Overall, the advent of drywall and the production of energy-efficient homes in the 1970s caused a rapid rise in the number of Americans experiencing mold symptoms and suffering from mold illness.

Are You Experiencing Mold Toxicity Symptoms?

Coughing & Sneezing

Headaches or Migraines

Shortness of Breath

Irritation of Eyes

Chronic Fatigue

Vomiting or Nausea

mold effects brain

Mold Toxicity Treatment

At Sponaugle Wellness Institute, we have successfully treated thousands of patients who were suffering from undiagnosed mold toxicity because of their exposure to mold spores and toxic molds in water-damaged buildings. We have correlated 6,015 mold-mycotoxin levels with toxin-induced aberrations in our patient’s brain chemistry patterns and with abnormalities seen on their brain scans. The abnormalities seen on the brain scans of our mold-toxic patients correlate well with their neurological symptoms.

Dr. Sponaugle’s Own Personal Mold Toxicity Story

“In 2006, after leaving a fifth-floor Chief of Anesthesiology office for a much larger office on the ground level of a Tampa Bay Hospital, I started to suffer greatly,” said Dr. Sponaugle. “Hidden behind the wall of the ground floor office was a massive infestation of Stachybotrys “Black” mold.

“Like most patients suffering from mold exposure, I was sick from the Trichothecene toxins that were releasing gases from behind the wall. I attempted my own black mold exposure treatment, with oral detox regimens and Charcoal-based products, but I found them to be ineffective. For this reason I have worked diligently over the years to design and continuously advance intravenous therapy for treating mold toxicity.”

- Dr. Sponaugle

Additional Brain Disorders Caused by Mold Toxins

  • Depression

    In a healthy brain, the production of neurotransmitters that affect mood are self-regulated, naturally avoiding an imbalance that could lead to depression.

  • Paranoia & Anxiety

    Paranoia can often be caused by high levels of toxic molds, such as the trichothecene black mold toxin or the Ocratoxin-producing Aspergilus Mold.

  • Irritability and Rage

    Mold toxic patients often feel out of control in their own brain, describing the feeling by saying that it feels as if their brain is “hot wired.”

neurological symptoms of mold eposure
  • Parkinson’s Disease

    A Parkinson’s disease diagnosis often results in a feeling of hopelessness.

  • Short-term Memory Loss

    Do you ever walk into a room and think, “What did I come in here for?” Mold toxicity may be the reason.

  • Bipolar & Schizophrenic Tendencies

    Glutamate is an amino acid found throughout every part of the body. In the nervous system, however, glutamate is used as a neurotransmitter.

Mold Toxicity Treatment

In 2012, Dr. Sponaugle gave interviews for two very informative books, Suzanne Somers’ book “Bombshell” and Brenda Watson’s book “Heart of Perfect Health.”

“In both books, I described in great detail the mechanisms by which environmental toxins – particularly mold mycotoxins – cause multiple medical disorders,” Dr. Sponaugle said.

suzanne somers bombshell
brenda watson

“As of February 2015, I have performed analyses of 6,045 mold-mycotoxin levels from the Real Time Lab in Dallas,” Dr. Sponaugle said. “Through clinical research (described below), I have determined that the common denominator in most chronically ill, neurotoxic patients is HLA – DRB – DBQ genetics, which disallow effective removal of mold mycotoxins from the body. Some calculations suggest a 465 percent reduction of efficacy in removing mold toxins, the toxic gases produced by indoor mold spores.

“More importantly, I have correlated Trichothecene and Ochratoxin levels with the underactive Brain regions seen on PET Brain imaging and the neurological symptoms that these mold toxic patients were experiencing. I have also correlated 6,000 mold mycotoxin levels with changes seen in neurotransmitter patterns [9,000] and infectious bio-markers for Lyme Disease and other tick-borne infections.”

Validation of Advanced Intravenous Treatment for Mold Sickness

Chris from New Jersey

  • At 51.97 ppb, Chris’ original Trichothecene level was 260 times greater than what the federal government sets as critical (anything below 0.2 ppb is normal).
  • In one day, Sponaugle Wellness Institute’s Advanced Intravenous Treatment for Mold Illness dropped Chris’ Trichothecene level From 51.97 to 1.74!

(Click Reports Below to See This Success!)

lyme-disease-mold-toxicity-treatment-oldsmar-florida-sponaugle-wellness-institute
Before
lyme-disease-mold-toxicity-treatment-oldsmar-florida-sponaugle-wellness-institute
Two Years Later
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First Test Date
Next Day Test

Mold Toxicity Treatment Before and After

Research has enabled Sponaugle Wellness Institute to better determine whether the primary cause of an patient’s neurological symptoms is a Brain infection like Lyme disease or mold mycotoxin-induced, down-regulation of electrical activity in the brain regions that correlate with the neurological symptoms.

Sponaugle Wellness Institute now has a Brain Imaging database of 400 PET scans, 150 SPECT scans and 200 MRI studies in patients suffering from a combination of Mold Toxicity and Lyme Disease.

Common neurological symptoms caused by both Mold Toxicity and Lyme Disease include: memory loss, inability to grab words, slurred speech, stuttering, ataxia, loss of balance, dyscoordination, foot drop, limb weakness, resting tremor, intentional tremor and poor hand writing.

Mold Toxicity Causing Brain Cancer and Neurological Disorders

Mold mycotoxins can cause two types of Brain Cancer: Astrocytoma and Glioblastoma. Mycotoxins also cause severe destruction of Brain tissue. Some of the mechanisms of mycotoxin-induced neurological damage can be found further down this page.

When Mold Toxic patients begin experiencing neurological symptoms, they should immediately undergo quality treatment for mold exposure. It is important to prevent progression to neurodegenerative diseases like Multiple Sclerosis and Parkinson’s.

Removing mold mycotoxins from the blood stream is not sufficient treatment:  It is imperative to mobilize mold mycotoxins from the Brain to the bloodstream, where they can be effectively removed.

Through the years, Dr. Sponaugle has worked diligently to design and continuously advance intravenous neurological protocols to assist healing of mycotoxin-induced Brain damage and reverse mycotoxin-induced down-regulation of Brain activity.

Dennis – Louisiana

Below are the before and after PET Brain scans of Dennis, a neurological Lyme patient from Louisiana, who recently came to Sponaugle Wellness Institute. Bases on PET computerized calculation, three weeks of our neurological treatment produced tremendous improvement of his brain activity, including: 

  • 91 percent improvement in his Cerebellum
  • 90 percent improvement in his Posterior Cingulate
  • 69 percent improvement in his Caudate Nuclei
  • 52 percent improvement in global brain activity.
Dennis Symptoms of Lyme Disease
Dennis - Louisiana: Symptoms of Lyme Disease
Click Image To Enlarge

Using colors as a guide: dark blue/black is indicative of good Brain activity, light blue reveals suboptimal Brain activity and yellow reveals a severe reduction of Brain activity.

Through computerized calculation, PET scans provide numbers for more objective evaluation of Brain activity. The PET scan computer calculates the glucose metabolism by brain region. Glucose metabolism correlates with electrical activity.

The first day I met this extremely intelligent business man, he had difficulty grabbing words. In addition, he had a slight stutter that went away after three days of neurotoxicity treatment. His neurotoxicity was derived from Mold Toxins, Industrial Toxins and Lyme toxins.

My preference is to reduce the Brain’s toxin load before I commence kill protocols in neurological Lyme patients. Effective killing of Lyme spirochetes, Bartonella, Protomyxzoa and other infectious organisms releases lipopolysaccharide toxins from their cell walls. Killing before reducing the Brain’s toxicity will temporarily make the Brain even more toxic.

Furthermore, clearing the toxic effect on the brain scan “clears the picture;” making it easier to evaluate the Brain regions that are underactive from infection.

Amy’s Testimonial

Nine years ago, Amy was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. She credits the onset of her illness to her time spent assisting with humanitarian efforts in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.

According to Amy, she was exposed to quite a lot of black mold at that time. In the space of a month, she had begun to experience profound neurological interferences in her ability to walk. Eventually, Parkinsonian rigidity and episodic paralysis would find her bedridden and in desperate need of help.

After being unable to progress on traditional Parkinson’s medications, and with other integrative approaches, Amy tried Sponaugle Wellness Institute. Dr. Sponaugle’s management of her excito-neurotoxicity allowed her to turn a corner, and placed her on the path to progression that she was not finding elsewhere.

Mold Toxicity Causing Brain Disorders

Mold mycotoxins destroy the myelin sheath through lipid peroxidation and oxidative stress.

Mold toxins are lipophilic; fatty in molecular structure and fat soluble. The cell membrane of every cell in our body consists of a lipophilic structure. Therefore, these lipophilic toxins can travel uninhibited throughout the body. These fatty toxins move throughout our bloodstream, easily cross and destroy our blood-brain barrier, and then accumulate in our fattiest tissue; our neurological system thus, the term Neurotoxicity.

Our fattiest organ is our Brain which consists of 60 percent fatty content. The fattiest tissue in our body is actually the myelin sheath on Brain Neurons and peripheral nerves, it consists of 80 percent fatty content, 25 percent of which is cholesterol; another reason cholesterol levels below 180 are detrimental to our Brain and peripheral nervous system!

When lipophilic mold toxins saturate the myelin sheath, they displace healthy fatty acids like DHA and EPA from fatty acid chains, causing fatty acid oxidation and lipid peroxidation. Subsequent inflammation of the myelin sheath causes “burning” neuropathic pain, females in particular get burning pain in their feet and legs.

Inflammation of the myelin sheath disrupts the electromagnetic field surrounding neurons which causes a subsequent reduction of the electrical signal.

Multiple Sclerosis

Since 2008, I have espoused that lipophilic Mold Toxins were causing a significant increase of Multiple Sclerosis in America. Mocked by many unknowing neurologists, my theory was eventually validated by Japanese Neuroscientists at the Nippon Institute and the University of Tokyo in a 2011 article, International Journal of Molecular Sciences.
Mold mycotoxins destroy the myelin sheath through lipid peroxidation and oxidative stress.

The most sensitive organ to this toxin-induced reduction of electrical activity is, of course, our Brain. The most sensitive Brain region to toxin-induced down-regulation is our executive center, the prefrontal cortex or PFC.

The dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, which houses our shortest of short term memories, our four second-learning and processing memory, is most sensitive. Thus, when we initially become mold toxic, we first experience brain fog, difficulty focusing and difficulty remembering: “what was it that I came into the kitchen for, a knife or a screw driver”

Parkinsonian Symptoms

Furthermore, Japanese studies in mice have proven that Ochratoxin and Trichothecene destroy dopamine factories in the dopamine-driven Prefrontal Cortex and two specific dopamine-driven motor regions, the Caudate Nucleus and the Substantia Nigra; the “Parkinson’s region”.

Mold Toxicity Causes Excessive Brain Electrical Activity

Excitoneurotoxicity

Our unprecedented Brain Chemistry research has proven that mold toxic brains suffer from excessive electrical current. Glutamate and PEA, two powerful excitatory neurotransmitters, are frequently elevated, causing excitoneurotoxicity.

The slide below compares two SPECT scans; a healthy brain on the left to a mold toxic brain on the right.

Click Image To Enlarge

The red and white brain regions seen on her mold toxic brain, as compared to blue regions on the healthy brain, demonstrate excessive blood flow which correlates with excessive electrical activity.

The tests above were from a female college student, Susan, who was happy and healthy before going to college. Her personality changed after living six months in a moldy dormitory. She developed panic disorder which progressed to rage, and was subsequently misdiagnosed with Bipolar Disorder.

Our testing revealed Trichothecene levels that were twenty-fold the CLIA critical level. This excessive electrical brain activity was the true cause of her anxiety and Bipolar symptoms. After two weeks of our intravenous protocol for treatment for mold exposure, she no longer suffered symptoms of depression, fatigue, anxiety, panic and rage.

Additional Brain Disorders Caused by Mold Toxins:

Unknowing doctors prescribe addicting medications like Xanax and Klonopin for anxiety disorders that are often caused by mold toxicity. Mold toxic patients often use alcohol and sedating drugs like Xanax or OxyContin to calm their anxious brains, because their physicians fail to diagnose mold toxicity as the underlying cause of their anxiety disorder.

When discussing the spectrum of anxiety disorders from insomnia to panic disorder, we need to understand that the progression is simply dependent on the level of excessive electricity in the brain. During the initial onset of mold toxicity, patients may only notice insomnia when trying to sleep. As their brain continues to accumulate more mold toxins, the brain’s electrical current continues to rise, causing daytime anxiety in addition to night time insomnia.

With continued exposure to hidden mold, patients with the mold genetics accumulate more brain toxins over time. They eventually progress from a diagnosis of generalized anxiety disorder to a diagnosis of panic disorder.

We have successfully treated over 2,000 mold toxic patients who had been previously misdiagnosed with Bipolar disorder. Unfortunately, America’s psychiatrists are quick to throw out an arbitrary name, a diagnosis of Bipolar, without first looking for a medical cause.

Mold toxic patients are routinely prescribed anti-psychotic medication by psychiatrists who fail to look for an organic cause of the patient’s bipolar symptoms. Psychiatrists as a whole remain amazingly ignorant regarding neurotoxicity in general, especially mold toxicity.

Using our intravenous treatment for mold exposure, we can normally remove enough mold toxins in three weeks to return the mental function of these “bipolar-ish” patients to normal and get them off all of their bipolar medications.

Our Fibromyalgia research at Sponaugle Wellness Institute has proven that mold toxicity is a primary causation of Fibromyalgia in middle-aged women. Many of our Fibromyalgia patients are women who were previously misdiagnosed at 10 or more University Medical Centers.

Without a proper diagnosis, physicians simply prescribe medications that decrease the excess electrical current using drugs like Lyrica that simply treat the symptoms of Fibromyalgia, not the underlying cause of it.

Mold-toxic patients suffer with “total body pain” because of two primary mechanisms:

  1. They suffer from excessive production of the electrifying neurotransmitters, Glutamate and PEA, as was described under excitoneurotoxicity previously and,
  2. They suffer from fatty toxin inflammation of the myelin sheath which surrounds every nerve in the body.

Our extensive brain research in thousands of mold toxic patients has proven that as the brain becomes more saturated with mold toxins, the brain’s norepinephrine factory – the A-5 nucleus – becomes “too sick” to manufacture norepinephrine. The A-5 nucleus normally produces 90 percent of our norepinephrine.

The primary mechanism by which mold toxicity causes depression and chronic fatigue is the shutdown of the brain’s A – 5 Nucleus.

Dopamine runs the brain’s reward and pleasure center – the nucleus accumbens – which is located in our midbrain. Dopamine is manufactured in both our brain and in our adrenal glands.

Problematic is that Dopamine naturally converts to norepinephrine through an enzyme called Dopamine hydroxylase.

When mold toxins shut down norepinephrine production in the brain’s A-5 nucleus, more dopamine is converted to norepinephrine – it is essentially “stolen” to make more norepinephrine. This leaves patients with a relative dopamine deficiency and subsequently an underactive nucleus accumbens; thus, causing depression and brain fog.

Norepinephrine naturally converts to epinephrine, which is pure adrenaline. When mold toxicity shuts down NE production, there is less norepinephrine to convert to adrenaline. Thus, patients feel like they have a 20 pound cement block attached to each leg.

Norepinephrine and epinephrine deficiencies also cause dizziness upon standing too quickly.

A Mold Toxic Brain becomes “too sick” to properly stimulate the brain’s primary hormone factory, the pituitary gland.

Pituitary insufficiency results in deficiencies of brain hormones and, because the pituitary stimulates downstream hormonal factories – the thyroid gland, adrenal glands and the sex organs – mold toxic patients suffer global hormonal deficiencies.

Epinephrine {Adrenaline}, Nor-epinephrine {Nor-adrenaline}, and Dopamine are in a sense, first cousins; they belong to the adrenaline family called the catecholamines. These excitatory neurotransmitters cannot activate their brain and body receptors when the specific hormones Cortisol, Thyroid and Testosterone are deficient.

Mold toxicity patients suffer double jeopardy, toxin-induced deficiencies of neurotransmitters and the hormones that allow them to activate their nerve receptors. This double jeopardy is the primary cause of the severe depression, lethargy and chronic fatigue that these patients suffer from.

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