The diarrhea is a good thing if it’s “detox diarrhea”

For more on this MMS “treatment” one post of many by Orac on the subject:

Let’s recap. MMS is bleach. Specifically, it is a 28% sodium chlorite in distilled water that generates chlorine dioxide when diluted with citric acid-containing or other acid-containing foods, as instructed. This is a chemical used for water purification that a quack—yes, quack—named Jim Humble has touted as a miracle cure for just about everything from cancer to AIDS to a wide variety of conditions, serious and not-so-serious. There is no currently known valid medical reason to give this chemical to anyone to treat anything. None of this is (or should be) in serious dispute from a strictly scientific, medical, or ethical standpoint.

The next fact that is not in serious dispute is that a woman named Kerri Rivera, operating out of a quack clinic in Mexico, has been touting MMS as a “biomedical” treatment for autism. As part of the treatment, she advocates feeding MMS to autistic children every two hours over the course of 72 hours (her “72-2 protocol”) and giving children MMS enemas three times a week. She admits that the side effects included at minimum diarrhea and fever. In fact, she says that the diarrhea is a good thing if it’s “detox diarrhea” and that the fever means the immune system is being stimulated, thus making it a good thing as well. What is also not in dispute is that Rivera brought this message of bleaching autism away to the yearly autism biomed quackfest known as Autism One last month, making even some die-hard supporters of autism quackery cringe. Again, there is currently no known valid medical reason to give this chemical to any autistic child to treat autism. Again, none of this is (or should be) in serious dispute from a scientific standpoint.

It’s terrifying. Why not just claim that razor blades are a “treatment” for autism and asthma and AIDS, or that motor oil is, or rat poison, or Drano, or a knife to the heart?

I’m wondering how people can get away with this.

I’m incorrigibly naïve.


  1. Blanche Quizno says

    All the “cleanse” thises and “detox” thats and “therapeutic” fasts are just a bunch of hooey. I asked my brother-in-law, who is an oncologist, for his perspective. He told me that in his field, they pretty much study fasting – their patients so often waste. So, since they’re losing so much weight, they’re effectively fasting – AND being examined in the hospital environment at the same time. He says that, when people fast/waste, nothing comes out of the body other than normal urine and fecal matter. No malignant cells are being shed; no heavy metals; nothing, in short, beyond routine urine and feces. Those people advocating poisoning autistic children need to be locked up.

  2. coragyps says

    I wonder if the victims of this scam would be at all impressed by the main safety precaution in my industry’s use of sodium chlorite: don’t let drips of solution dry out on wood or on dry vegetation. You’ll get spontaneous ignition of those substrates.
    And sodium chlorite is way safer than chlorine dioxide- it causes explosions.

  3. angharad says

    I had a colonoscopy a few years ago. The prep for those is extremely unpleasant, but if anything will detox you, that will. After all, it’s designed to completely clear out your insides, so the doctor can get a good look at them. And I certainly did not feel healthier or better afterwards. I didn’t feel any different to having had a massive bout of gastro…

  4. quentinlong says

    That Orac post dates back to 2012. Any particular reason it caught your eye now, Ms. Benson?

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