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Learn More About Bladder-Q™

Learn More About Bladder-Q™Bladder-Q™ Provides Relief in a Natural Way

Bladder-Q™
is a preservative free, all natural proprietary blend of herbs, enzymes, amino acids and Quercetin. Our unique Herbazyme™ process is used to blend Quercetin and the enzymes bromelain and papain in precise ratios that promote optimal absorption from the GI tract. Five additional herbs and one amino acid create a synergistic formula that is extremely effective on symptoms yet gentle on the body.




Quercetin: Quercetin belongs to a class of water-soluble plant pigments known as flavonoids. It is found in many common foods (apples, onions, broccoli, squash) and in many common herbs (Ginkgo biloba, St. John’s Wort, Elder). Quercetin has been the subject of numerous studies and appears to have many beneficial effects on human health, including cardiovascular protection, anti-cancer activity, anti-ulcer effects, anti-allergy activity, cataract prevention, antiviral activity and anti-inflammatory effects.

Quercetin has remarkable abilities in preventing and reducing inflammation. It inhibits the release of histamine from cells known as mast cells and basophils1,2 It has inhibitory effects upon inflammation-producing enzymes (cyclooxygenase, lipoxygenase). This activity contributes to a reduction in the chemicals that mediate inflammation, chemicals known as leukotrienes and prostaglandins3,4.

In a study published in 1999, Quercetin, given at a dosage of 500 mg twice a day, was found to markedly improve symptoms in a group of patients with a chronic pelvic pain syndrome. Remarkably, some patients even had complete resolution of their symptoms5. In a different study using a proprietary formulation that included Quercetin, 500 mg twice a day, patients with Interstitial Cystitis were found to have significant symptomatic improvement after four weeks of therapy.6

In June, 2001 an abstract was presented at the annual meeting of the American Urological Association entitled “Treatment of Interstitial Cystitis with a Quercetin Containing Compound: A Preliminary, Double-Blind Placebo Control Trial.” The study was conducted using a proprietary formulation that contained Quercetin. Significant symptomatic improvement, including decreased abdominal and vaginal pain, was demonstrated in patients with Interstitial Cystitis.7

Bromelain and Papain: Quercetin is not particularly soluble in water and various studies indicate that its absorption may be variable.8 A study published in the Journal of Clinical Pharmacology in May, 2001 has further advanced our understanding of the bioavailability of Quercetin.9 Bromelain is proteolytic enzyme which by itself possesses anti-inflammatory properties. It has been used to increase absorption of a wide variety of compounds including antibiotics.10 Combining proteolytic enzymes with flavonoids such as quercetin is not a new idea.11 Quercetin / Bromelain blend is commonly used in treating people suffering from allergies. Papain is another proteolytic enzyme, commonly used with bromelain, which is anti-inflammatory and aids in digestion. Our state of the art facility employs our unique Herbazyme™ process to calculate and blend Quercetin and the enzymes bromelain and papain in precise ratios to promote optimal absorption from the GI tract.

Valerian: Valerian is a tall perennial herb with hollow stems that bear white or reddish flowers. A 1985 study conducted in the Netherlands found that didrovaltrate, and valeranon, components of the herb, produced a pronounced smooth-muscle relaxant effect on parts of the body. The researchers concluded that certain valerian preparations may produce a calming effect indirectly through local spasmolytic activity.

Passionflower: Passionflower is an herb rich in alkaloids and flavone glycosides. Recent studies have pointed to the flavonoids as the primary constituents responsible for its relaxing and anti-anxiety effects. The effects of passionflower in earlier studies were believed to be primarily on the nervous system. It is also said to have an anti-spasmodic effects as well.

Gotu kola: Gotu kola has been used as a medicinal herb for thousands of years. It is listed in the Susruta Samhita, an ancient Indian medicinal text. In China one can find references to Gotu kola in the 2000-year-old Shennong Herbal. Legend has it that the healer Li Ching Yun lived 256 years by taking a tea made from Gotu kola and other herbs.

Gotu kola has a number of reported benefits, including prevention of and relief from varicose veins, reduction in skin inflammation and wrinkles, cellulite reduction, ulcer prevention, stress and anxiety reduction, improvement in energy and memory and promotion of restful sleep. Gotu kola should not be confused with Kola nut- Gotu kola has no caffeine and is unrelated. There has been a great deal of research done on Gotu kola in the modern era. In an article published in Phytomedicine in October 2000, it was noted that this herb “has been subjected to quite extensive experimental and clinical investigations” and it was noted to have multiple beneficial health effects in “studies done in accordance with standardized scientific criteria”.12

Gotu kola is extremely beneficial in the arena of tissue regeneration and wound healing. In various parts of the world extracts of Gotu kola are used as drugs for the treatment of wound healing defects. Studies have demonstrated that Gotu kola stimulates collagen synthesis, crosslinking and tensile strength.13-15

Importantly, three different components of Gotu kola have been definitively shown to stimulate the synthesis of glycosaminoglycan (GAG).16 Normally, the lining of the bladder is protected from toxins and irritants by this GAG layer. While no one knows the exact cause of Interstitial Cystitis, it is widely believed that some factor or set of factors lead to a breakdown of this protective GAG layer. This allows harmful substances to come in direct contact with the bladder lining, leading to inflammation and the symptoms commonly seen in patients with Interstitial Cystitis. Gotu kola contains three different triterpenes- asiatic acid, madecassic acid and asiaticoside. Each was purified from Gotu kola and tested, and each of the three was found to stimulate GAG synthesis. Gotu kola appears to have a similar action in the protective layer of the stomach. A study published in October 2000 found that Gotu kola prevented gastric mucosal lesions by “strengthening the mucosal barrier and reducing the damaging effects of free radicals”.17 Another study published in 2001 found that Gotu kola increased the production of the protective glycoprotein layer leading to the belief that its effect in protecting against ulcers was from “strengthening of the mucosal defensive factors”.18

Usnea barbata: Usnea barbata is not actually a plant but a fruticose lichen- a combination of two different organisms, fungus and algae, growing together in a symbiotic relationship. This union produces an organism with remarkable properties, an organism that does not resemble either component. The use of Usnea barbata as a medicinal can be traced to ancient China, Egypt and Greece, and continues to the present day. Researchers continue to uncover its beneficial properties, and a comprehensive study published in 1993 documents the antibiotic, anti-inflammatory, anti-tumor and immune-stimulating properties of the species.19

Usnea contains mucilage, which has the beneficial property of becoming thick and slippery when in contact with water. In this manner, mucilage is able to coat irritated or inflamed internal tissue, providing a soothing effect. It is able to protect sensitive membranes from irritation, acidity and inflammation.

Usnea also possesses antibiotic activity- in some cases even more powerful than penicillin. It has been tested to be active against strep, staph, pneumococcus, Trichomonas, Candida and even Mycobacterium tuberculosis. What is more amazing is that it does this without killing beneficial bacteria normally found in the intestines and vagina, a problem seen so often with modern antibiotics.

Althea officinalis: This plant, found in Europe, Asia and North America is also known as Marshmallow. The name comes from the Greek word “altho” which means “to cure”. The authoritative German Commission E Monographs categorize althea officinalis as a demulcent- an herb that soothes and protects irritated and inflamed tissues. The herb contains high levels of large molecules making up mucilage, which in the presence of water acts to coat and protect tissues from irritation.

Althea officinalis has been employed in treating disease safely for thousands of years. In the modern era its soothing properties are well recognized. Among other things, it has been widely used to treat painful or difficult urination, inflammation of the bladder, inflammation of the urethra and inflammation of the vagina.

L-Arginine: L- Arginine is an amino acid that the body can produce in the liver. However, in certain times, such as childhood growth, pregnancy or periods of stress, additional dietary arginine is needed and it is then considered an essential amino acid. Arginine has several important functions. It is essential to the metabolism of ammonia; it is needed for nitrogen transport; it influences a variety of hormonal functions; it has a positive effect on the immune system and it is a precursor for the production of nitric oxide.

Multiple studies have been done looking at the use of oral L-Arginine in patients with symptoms of Interstitial Cystitis. A group from Yale University published a report in the Journal of Urology in 1997. They state that the study “provides evidence that long-term oral L-Arginine improves interstitial cystitis related symptoms.”20

Another study from Yale University published in the Journal of Urology in February 1999 reported on a randomized, double-blind trial of oral L-arginine for the treatment of interstitial cystitis. Greater global improvement was seen in the L-arginine group with a decrease in pain intensity and improvement in urgency and frequency of pain. While not every person responded, it was felt that “Oral L-arginine may decrease pain and urgency in a subset of interstitial cystitis patients.”21

A randomized double-blind placebo-controlled crossover trial of L-arginine in the treatment of interstitial cystitis was published March 2000 in the British Journal of Urology International. Patients on placebo showed no difference in symptom score over baseline, while those taking oral L-arginine had a “statistically significant reduction in the overall symptom score” compared to baseline.22

References

1. Fox CC, Wolf EJ, Kagey-Sobotka A, et al: Comparison of human lung and intestinal mast cell. J Allerg Clin Immunol 1988; 81:89-94.
2. Bronner C, Landry Y: Kinetics of the inhibitory effect of flavonoids on histamine secretion from mast cells. Agents Actions 1985; 16:147-151.
3. Della Loggia, Ragazzi E, Tubaro A, et al: Anti-inflammatory activity of benzoppyrones that are inhibitors of cyclo-and lipo-oxygenase. Pharmacol Res Commun 1988; 20:S91-S94.
4. Kim HP, Mani I, Ziboh VA: Effects of naturally-occurring flavonoids and biflavonoids on epiderman cyclooxygenase from guinea pigs. Prostaglandins Leukot Essent Fatty Acids 1998; 58:17-24.
5. Shoskes, DA: Use of the Bioflavonoid quercetin in patients with longstanding chronic prostatitis. JANA 1999; 2:18.
6. Katske F, Shoskes DA, Sender M, et al: Treatment of interstitial cystitis with a quercetin supplement. Tech Urol 2001; 7(1):44-6.
7. Rodriguez LV, Janzen N, Raz, S, et al: Treatment of interstitial cystitis with a quercetin containing compound: a preliminary, double-blind placebo control trial. J Urol 2001 (Abs); 165:S67.
8. Hollman PC, Katan MB: Absorption, metabolism and health effects of dietary flavonoids in man. Biomed Pharmacother, 1997; 51(8):305-10.
9. Graefe EU, Wittig J, Mueller S, et al: Pharmacokinetics and bioavailability of quercetin glycosides in humans. J Clin Pharmacol 2001, 41(5): 492-9.
10. Bodi, T: The effects of oral bromelain on tissue permeability to antibiotics and pain response to bradykinin; double-blind studies on human subjects. Clin Med. 1965; 72:61-65.
11. Tarayre JP, Lauressergues H.: Advantages of a combination of proteolytic enzymes, flavonoids and ascorbic acid in comparison with non-steroid anti-inflammatory agents. Arzneimittelforschung, 1977; 27(6):1144-9.
12. Brinkhaus B, Lindner, M, Schuppan D. et al: Chemical, pharmacological and clinical profile of the East Asian medical plant Centella asiatica. Phytomedicine 2000; 7(5):427-48.
13. Bonte, F, Dumas, M, Chaudagne, et al: Influence of asiatic acid, madecassic acid, and asiaticoside on human collagen I sythesis. Planta Med 1994; 60(2):133-5.
14. Suguna L, Sivakumar P, Chandrakasan G: Effects of Centall asiatica extract on dermal wound healing in rats. Indian J Exp Biol 1996; 34(12):1208-11.
15. Sunilkumar P, Shivakumar H: Evaluation of topical formulations of aqueous extract of Centella asiatica on open wounds in rats. Indian J Exp Biol 1998; 36(6):569-72.
16. Marquart F, Chastang F, Simeon A, et al: Triterpenes from Centella asiatica stimulate extracellular matrix accumulation in rat experimental wounds. Euro Journal of Dermatology 1999; 9(4):289-96.
17. Cheng CL, Koo MW: Effects of Centella asiatica on ethanol induced gastric mucosal lesions in rats. Life Sci 2000; 67(21):2647-53.
18. Sairam K, Rao C, Goel R: Effect of Centella asiatica linn on physical and chemical factors induced gastric ulceration and secretion in rats. Indian J Exp Biol 2001; 39(2):137-42.
19. Dobrescu D, Tanasescu M, Mezdrea A, et al: Contributions to the complex study of some lichens-Usnea genus. Pharmacolgoical studies on Usnea barbata and Usnea hirta species. Rom J Physiol 1993; 30(1-2):101-7.
20. Smith SD, Wheeler MA, Foster HE Jr, Weiss RM: Improvement in interstitial cystitis symptom scores during treatment with oral L-arginine. J Urol 1997; 158(3 Pt1):794.
21. Korting GE, Smith SD, Wheeler, MA, et al: A Randomized double-blind trial of oral L-arginine for treatment of interstitial cystitis. J Urol 1999; 161(2):558-65.
22. Cartledge JJ, Davies AM, Eardley I: A randomized double-blind placebo-controlled crossover trial of the efficacy of L-arginine in the treatment of interstitial cystitis. BJU Int 2000; 85(4):421-6.

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