Frequently Asked Questions
What does Helminthic Therapy entail?
Helminthic therapy involves deliberately hosting a controlled number of carefully selected, harmless intestine-dwelling helminths such as Necator americanus (Na) and Trichuris trichiura (Tto).
How does Helminthic Therapy work?
Essentially, helminth symbionts modulate the human immune system in subtle yet complex ways, ‘regulating’ or ‘balancing’ overactive immune responses associated with allergic, inflammatory and autoimmune disorders.
What illnesses can Helminthic Therapy help with?
Symbiotic helminths may help with any inflammatory, allergic or autoimmune disorder including but not limited to:
Crohn’s Disease, Allergies, Asthma, Colitis, Coeliac Disease, Psoriasis, Eczema, Food intolerance, Multiple Chemical Sensitivity, Multiple Sclerosis , Eosinophilic Esophagitis, Rheumatoid Arthritis.
For more information see the success stories document.
Will Helminthic Therapy work for me?
It is claimed that as many as 80% of people who trial this treatment see an improvement in symptoms. But not everyone will necessarily benefit from the introduction of helminth symbionts. In a very small minority of cases it can take up to 2 years to see the benefits, and it may still be necessary to look at diet, exercise, mental health, stress levels etc., to attain optimum results.
Who shouldn't use Helminthic Therapy?
Due to a lack of clinical research we would not recommend the treatment for pregnant women, cancer patients or those with HIV.
Hookworm feed on the blood of the host so we would not recommend the treatment for those with bleeding or blood clotting disorders.
Because the helminths can temporarily increase inflammatory responses during colonization we would not recommend that those with severe intestinal strictures use this treatment.
We would recommend that anyone considering this treatment should ensure they are not anemic before proceeding.
Is Helminthic Therapy safe?
The small doses of helminths that we supply have been clinically proven to be safe and are usually asymptomatic beyond initial colonization. It is estimated that three quarters of a billion people worldwide currently host hookworms naturally.
The US Center for Disease Control recommends that healthcare providers do not need to treat light infections.
Helminthic Therapy is, however, a novel experimental treatment and as such cannot be considered free of risk. Known risk factors are anemia caused by heavy worm burden and the possibility that helminth colonisation could down modulate antiviral immunity. With the result that latent viral infections, such as the herpes virus, which causes cold sores, could be reactivated and symptoms experienced in some people. With an experimental treatment there is always a possibility of risk factors that are as yet unknown.
Will I be cured when Helminthic Therapy catches on?
Probably not. At this stage there is not much evidence to suggest that symbiotic immunomodulation can cure anyone of their illness. Even if you do find complete remission from your symptoms, you would need to maintain an active colony of Na and/or Tto to remain symptom free.
Are there any side effects from Helminthic Therapy?
In most cases, with the small doses we use, there is not much chance of experiencing any strong side effects.
However, anyone with a chronic infection such as Lyme, Hepatitis or Herpes etc., may see an initial exacerbation of their symptoms due to the immunomodulatory effect of helminth symbionts.
Some side effects may be noticed, especially following the first dose. These may include intestinal discomfort, diarrhoea, flu like symptoms, fatigue, fever, joint-pain and short-term exacerbation of existing inflammatory symptoms. But all these symptoms are invariably short lived. Side effects become less pronounced with each subsequent dose as your immune system gets accustomed to the probionts.
With each Na dose, there can be mild to severe itching and a rash at the entry site. This can be quite irritating for some people, however there are ways to reduce the severity, and the itching and rash mostly passes within days of applying the dose, even without intervention.
If you have any concerns about this please contact us and we can discuss options regarding limiting and/or treating possible side effects.
For more information see Treating a Hookworm Inoculation Rash.
How long will it take for Helminthic Therapy to work?
Though some people will see benefits quite soon after beginning the treatment, it is not usually fast acting and any benefits that appear in the 3 months following the first inoculation may not be consistent. The majority of people will see the most improvement after roughly 6 – 9 months and after adding a few supplementary doses at a minimum of 12 week intervals for Na or regular doses of Tto.
There have been cases of some people only seeing benefits after 18 months and many hosts have found their health continue to improve, years after starting the treatment.
How can I order Helminthic Therapy?
Your illness and how long you have had this
A summary of the issues you wish to treat and a history of any treatments already undertaken
Any previous experience with any species of helminth
Whether you are particularly sensitive to any supplements, foods or other substances, or you have been diagnosed with MCS (multiple chemical sensitivity), FMS (fibromyalgia syndrome), M.E./CFS (chronic fatigue syndrome), a mast cell disorder, eosinophilic esophagitis/ gastroenteritis, narcolepsy, or mitochondrial dysfunction
Any history of cancer, blood clotting disorder or serious infection such as Lyme disease, AIDS or other chronic illness
If you have or suspect you have intestinal strictures due to Crohn’s disease
If you are already, or intend in the near future to become pregnant
We accept payments by Bank transfer or PayPal.
For more information on the therapy you can book an online consultation.
How much does Helminthic Therapy cost?
The cost depends on the amount of doses you require to benefit from Helminthic Therapy. Most people will start seeing benefits 6 to 9 months into therapy but it can take up to 2 years to reach the full potential.
2 years of treatment with Na or Tto will cost €1200, or €50 per month, if you opt for our package deals. Maintenance dosing will cost €150 to €400 per year depending on the chosen package and required doses.
What percentage of people have seen benefits from the therapy?
It is hard to find exact numbers as most people are self treating experimentally. However the accepted percentage is between 65-80%.
How can I terminate Helminthic Therapy?
The probiotic helminths can easily be eradicated with a short course of an antihelmintic drug (Albendazole or Mebendazole).
Are there any substances I need to avoid while on Helminthic Therapy?
Yes, a few. Antibiotics may kill the Na larvae, but, in most cases they will only stop them working for up to 8 weeks. We encourage everyone to take protective measures for the microbiome when using antibiotics. A microbiome shift can cause a spike in inflammation and it might resemble the symptoms of a lost probiotic helminth colony.
Trichuris trichiura are less likely to be affected due to the way they feed and attach to the colonic mucosa.
Some forms of natural substances that are known to be antibacterial or antihelminthic (e.g. some concentrated herbal tinctures or extracts) may also affect the worms as would any known antihelminthic drug.
For a comprehensive list of substances that may affect Na larvae, please see the Human Helminth Care Manual.
You can always contact us in case you have questions about a certain substance.
Where do you ship to?
We ship to almost anywhere in the world. Express shipment is not available to every country. Please contact us for up-to-date shipping policies and guidelines.
Are there any shipping restrictions?
Na larvae are quite susceptible to extreme temperatures so, depending on where you live, and especially in the coldest/hottest months of the year, you may need to ensure that your package arrives to a temperature controlled, indoor mailbox or P.O. Box.
Tto are less susceptible to extreme temperatures and will in almost all cases be viable on receipt.
All our packages contain temperature monitors for a convenient check of the temperature during transit. If you have any concerns about your shipment please contact us.
How long will it take for the shipment to arrive?
Depending on where you live, standard shipments should normally arrive within 4 – 21 days of being sent.
Express shipment takes 1 to 4 days from shipment date.
What happens if the larvae are not viable on application?
Most people will normally notice at least a slight itch and rash on their skin after applying the larvae, however, this is not always the case. Please contact us if you are concerned the larvae have not made it intact and we will help you to decide on the best course of action. As it is possible, with the first dose especially, to have no itch or rash even though the larvae have penetrated the skin, it is essential that you wait at least 3 weeks before having a replacement dose.
It is very important to make sure you don’t double up on doses as it can lead to extremely strong side effects. Some new hosts have reported having very noticeable intestinal side effects in the weeks after applying their dose, even though they did not have any reaction on their skin.
In cases where it is agreed that the dose was not viable we will reship to you free of charge.
Can I store doses to use later?
To give the best chance of receiving a viable dose, Na larvae should be applied as soon as possible after arriving and, if necessary, stored in the package at room temperature and never be placed in the fridge or left in a hot car or in direct sunlight.
Once packaged and shipped, the Na larvae will normally remain viable for only 4 – 6 weeks before beginning to die off.
Tto doses can be stored in the refridgerator in the original package for at least one year from receipt date.
Do I need to contact YourSymbionts when my next dose is due?
YourSymbionts will contact you when your next dose of the Na starter package is due. Please contact us if you past 12 weeks since the last dose and haven't heard from us.
You need to contact us when you want another dose from the Na triple package.
Can I pass the helminths on to anyone?
No. Due to the necessary stages of the selected helminth life cycles, they cannot be spread from one person to another in a home with a modern sewerage system.
Ova are deposited in stool, but they must be left in very specific conditions for at least a week to develop and become infective.