Floxed by Fluoroquinolone Toxicity

Floxed refers to the devastating effects of a class of antibiotics called fluoroquinolones (FQs) and may include symptoms of extreme fatigue, tendon rupture, joint and muscle pains, nerve pains, and nervous system disturbances.

The symptoms may resolve after stopping the FQs, persist for years, or wax and wane as time goes by.  I’ve witnessed the symptoms appear immediately when starting the FQs, or worse yet the symptoms can also appear long after the FQs are taken or only after multiple rounds of FQs, thus making the diagnoses of FQ side effects tricky.

The offending FQ medicines include ciprofloxacin (Cipro), gemifoxacin (Factive),  levofloxacin (Levaquin), moxifloxacin (Avelox), norfloxacin (Noroxin), and ofloxacin (Floxin).  There are subtle differences in the side effect profiles, but for sake of this article we’ll lump them together as FQs.

FQs kill bacteria by preventing bacterial DNA from unwinding and duplicating.  Unfortunately, like most medications, there are a host of unwanted side effects in the host, that being the person taking the drug.

FQ Toxicity

In summary, FQs can cause:

  1. Tendon Rupture
  2. Nervous system disturbances
  3. Heart, kidney and liver damage
  4. Diabetes
  5. FQ Associated Disability (FQAD)

The main mechanisms of toxicity appear to involve:

  1. Oxidative stress
  2. Binding of metals (Magnesium, Calcium, Zinc, Copper, Manganese, Iron, and likely Selenium)
  3. Damage to mitochondria
  4. Disruption of cellular energy pathways
  5. Damage to DNA

FQ Associated Disability (FQAD)

In 2016 the term FQAD was coined to describe the long term symptoms observed in some patients after taking FQs.

It is uncertain, but suspicious, that FQs can bind to cellular components and linger in the body for years.  This may be part of the ongoing symptoms associated with FQAD. It’s hard to say if “detoxing” FQs from the body is a relevant issue as it’s not certain they are still present shortly after stopping the drug.  But, for certain, the lingering symptoms are due to the damage to the body which is difficult to repair.

Treatment of FQAD

  1. Antioxidants
  2. Mineral replacement
  3. Mitochondria repair
  4. Restoring cellular energy

Our treatment protocol, in general and aimed specifically at the FQ issues, involves combinations of intravenous NAD, ozone, nutrients (Myers) and antioxidants (glutathione), along with numerous supplements aimed at targeting the 4 areas above.  We’ve helped numerous patients recover from being floxed and reclaim their health!


This is a difficult, highly scientific read, but well worth at least an overview.  Credit to the authors for much of the information shared in my article above.

Treatment of FQAD: The Pathobiochemical Implications

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