RICHARD LONGLAND is a man on a mission – a mission born from an intimate brush with the reality of how bacterial biofilms can impact health.
This is a brief timeline of his journey:
2003 – Having been plagued with chronic back pain for years, Richard finds himself disabled. He seeks and follows the advice of expert physicians and others who have been similarly stricken.
2004 – Following spinal surgery, Richard begins experiencing severe pain in other areas of his body. His head, throat, shoulders, and neck ache. Richard creates ADRSupport, a global discussion board for those suffering or recovering from spinal conditions.
2006 – By now, Richard’s health has plummeted. He lives on the edge of despair, with “bone-crushing” fatigue, mental fogginess, and troubles in both his cardiovascular and nervous systems. With characteristic determination to find a way through, he launches the Arthroplasty Patient Foundation (APF) and reaches out to others suffering the debilitating effects of joint disease.
2007 – Physicians diagnose his condition as being the result of a systemic bacterial infection: mycoplasma pneumonia. They cannot pinpoint how he was infected or prescribe antibiotics. At the time, there was no standard of care for treating chronic bacterial infections. but are confident of the diagnosis. Richard produces his first film for spine patients.
2008 – His personal quest to understand biofilms and antimicrobials leads to the development of a treatment protocol that combines both science and nature to combat the systemic bacterial biofilms that have been ravaging his body.
2012 – Another film, Why Am I Still Sick, is produced. Richard calls systemic biofilm infection “America’s Mystery Diagnosis.” His own health is in an upswing. He attributes his recovery to the treatment regimen he has followed, based on the Marshall Protocol and naturopathic remedies. Today, Richard’s regimen includes the daily consumption of raw Aloe vera gel.
2013 – Richard has been restored to health. His work is devoted to research and education concerning biofilms and bacterial infections. The puzzle he is piecing together reveals ties to dental health, sinus infections, and more. He perceives chronic bacterial infections to be a “stealthy healthcare epidemic.”
To get a glimpse of how significant and far-reaching this work extends, watch the following trailer to Why Am I Still Sick.
What are biofilm infections?
We covered the basics of biofilms in a previous article. Please go to this page to get up to speed on the topic: Biofilms.
Here are a few of the most important and germane considerations:
- Biofilms are usually polymicrobial, made up of many different species that work together to create one distinct entity.
- Biofilms are the normal state of bacteria, and are usually not problematic. However, they can become pathogenic or virulent. In fact, researchers have proved that gene transfer (and subsequent mutations) accelerate within biofilms!
- Some call these infections bioburdens or colonizations. No matter which name you choose, the threat is still real and solutions are urgently needed.
- Bacteria are not the only life form present in biofilms. Some are composed of yeast colonies as well.
- Treatment should be personalized and targeted to the individual diagnosis – depending on the type, location, and severity of the infection.
Watch this film of Richard’s interview with Dr. Scot Dowd: Diagnosing Bacterial Biofilm Infections:
How can biofilm infections be treated?
Typical identification of a bacterial or fungal infection is normally accomplished by acquiring a sample and studying the culture. This traditional method of determining the nature of an infection still works well in acute situations, where the infectious agents are free-floating (planktonic) in the fluids.
For chronic biofilm infections, however, technological development has led to more advanced means of diagnoses at the molecular level. Unfortunately, these methods have been slow to find acceptance in medicine. Much of Richard Longland’s efforts are aimed at educating physicians on the potential of diagnostic means beyond lab cultures.
By then using selectively designed treatment regimens on site (rather than performing amputations), physicians are becoming more and more skilled at treating infections that may previously have led to an unnecessary amputation and extended suffering — leading, perhaps, to an early death.
The treatment varies according to the infection. Some biofilms will respond to antibiotics. Some require a more molecular approach.
Still further evidence shows that many naturopathic remedies, including essential oils, have exhibited remarkable efficacy against polymicrobial biofilm infections.
“Biofilms are everywhere,” says the “Father of Biofilm Research,” Dr. Bill Costerton, in this interview:
Diseases that may well be directly linked or attributed to biofilm infections include certain cancers, heart disease, joint problems, lupus, COPD, gum disease, urinary infections, GERD, and many more.
No wonder Richard Longland is enthusiastic about this work. The potential ramifications are huge.
Please leave any questions for Richard in the comments below. We will make sure he sees your inquiry and has the opportunity to respond.