What is Vitamin C?
Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant with many biological functions. The body requires vitamin C to synthesize a variety of essential compounds, such as collagen and certain neurotransmitters (18). Antioxidants are substances that are able to prevent the formation and inhibit the activity of cellular waste products called reactive oxygen species (ROS) that can damage DNA through a process called oxidative damage (19). Under normal conditions, many cellular processes produce ROS as waste products, but the body can minimize potential oxidative damage through the use of numerous antioxidants, including vitamin C. As such, antioxidants are an extremely important component of the body’s defense mechanisms against oxidative stress.
The antioxidant properties of vitamin C have been widely studied in the context of immunity, cancer prevention and anti-aging treatments. By acting as a potent antioxidant molecule, Vitamin C supports many cellular functions of the immune system. Of the many roles vitamin C has in boosting immune defense, the ability of vitamin C to reduce viral yield and inhibit excessive activation of inflammatory responses to viral infection are particularly important when examining vitamin C in the context of long COVID (20).
Many clinical studies investigating the role of vitamin C in immunity utilize intravenous high-dose vitamin C supplementation because many of the immune-related benefits of vitamin C occur at serum concentrations only achievable with intravenous administration (21). As the vast majority of clinical trial patients who have received intravenous high-dose vitamin C infusions experience very few side effects, vitamin C IV therapy has a strong safety profile (22).
How does high-dose Vitamin C IV Therapy help reduce long COVID symptoms?
Research has suggested that the development of many diseases, such as cancer and cardiovascular disease, may be caused in part by the oxidative damage that occurs when the amount of oxidative stress exceeds the capacity of the body’s antioxidant mechanisms (23-24). Interestingly, many patients with long COVID experience chronic fatigue symptoms that are very similar to those described for cancer patients and cardiovascular disease patients (25). As such, recent research has focused on understanding how oxidative stress may contribute to the development of chronic fatigue symptoms associated with long COVID and developing long COVID treatment protocols that incorporate potent antioxidants, like vitamin C.
High-dose vitamin C IV therapy can significantly reduce fatigue and fatigue-related symptoms like sleep disturbances and lack of concentration in long COVID patients (26). Viruses can cause cellular and tissue damage by altering the level of oxidative stress in infected cells. SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes long COVID, causes tissue damage by increasing oxidative stress in infected cells. Though the exact mechanism by which this viral strategy causes long COVID symptoms remains unclear, research suggests that this oxidative imbalance may damage tissues implicated in fatigue-related long COVID symptoms (21, 27).
What happens during a High-Dose Vitamin C IV Infusion?
Vitamin C can be administered orally or intravenously, intravenous administration results in higher concentrations of vitamin C in the bloodstream (21). Prior to your infusion, you will have a consultation with your physician, who will carefully consider your medical history and present symptoms to determine if you are a candidate for High-Dose Vitamin C IV Infusion Therapy. If you are an appropriate candidate, our staff will help you get comfortably set up in one of our infusion rooms. During a High-Dose Vitamin C IV Infusion, one of our highly experienced staff members will place an IV which will remain throughout the duration of the therapy. Over the course of 45 minutes-1 hour, our unique vitamin C cocktail will be administered through an IV drip.