Emerging Worlds: Chronic Illness and Viral Infections

Jamie Sams - Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

Stealth viruses

Stealth viruses

By Gussie FauntleroyFor The New Mexican, The New Mexican - 1/29/2001

Jamie Sams, 49, walks like an old woman. She shuffles, hunched over, and sometimes forgets what she came into a room for. Off and on for 11 of the past 30 years she's been bedridden with an illness that has been misnamed and renamed many times, but generally is referred to as chronic fatigue syndrome.

Yet in spite of constant exhaustion, pain, 80-hour headaches and a long list of other health problems, Sams is driven to help others who suffer from similar symptoms. Her mission is to raise awareness about what she sees as one of the most misunderstood, least known and sometimes openly denied medical theories of our time: that chronic fatigue, certain cancers, autism, attention-deficit disorder, multiple sclerosis and a host of other serious and often life-threatening diseases originate as viral infections.

These viruses, Sams and others believe, often are introduced into the body by way of vaccinations. And some are contagious even while they remain latent and almost undetectable in the body for many years. In particular, a newly discovered category of virus, called stealth viruses, are so small they are detectable only by electron microscope.

Stealth viruses behave in ways that previously were believed to be impossible, and are the hidden culprit behind many diseases, Sams believes.

Sams, a Santa Fe resident for the past 14 years, is co-author of Medicine Cards and author of a number of other books on American Indian spirituality and related topics. (Her own heritage is Seneca, Cherokee and French.)

In the past few years she has been immersed in reading and research on what she believes to be the source of her lifelong health problems. She has amassed volumes of studies, documents, books and Web sites dealing with the question of viral infections, and is in regular communication with a number of physicians and scientists actively involved in the issue.

It is a subject that soon will break into the public's attention, Sams predicts. So she and others working with her are setting up what she calls "information grand central," a Web site where doctors, nurses, scientists, care givers and the general public can have access to worldwide networking and the newest studies and resources on chronic disease and stealth viruses.

The Emerging Worlds Web site (www.emergingworlds.com) is scheduled to be up by the end of March. It is being established under the umbrella of the Children of Earth Foundation, which Sams founded a number of years ago to fund a variety of programs for American Indian youth, artists, elders and others.

The site will include a secure, private discussion forum where researchers, doctors and nurses around the world can share information and exchange ideas. Another secure chat room will be available for patient to patient exchanges.

Among the research studies and articles posted on the site will be audio interviews with scientists and physicians working on these issues. There will be information on alternative treatments for chronic illness, and innumerable links to related sites.

Sams sees a need for this type of resource in part because most medical Web sites are owned by pharmaceutical companies, and on many sites medical researchers feel inhibited about discussing unconventional theories and treatments. Sams and her colleagues hope to provide a centralized, independent resource for the immense volume of new information available.

"I think there needs to be a free spot on the bingo card so any researcher who knows something can come forth with it. Our motto is 'check your ego and your preconceptions at the (chat room) door.' We're trying to create a way for doctors in the field in third world countries to get involved in the dialogue and link up with the latest research, not just on viral illness, but for any chronic illness," she said.

Discussion of stealth viruses, in particular, runs up against long-held beliefs within the established medical system, Sams said. Dr. W. John Martin, at the Center for Complex Infectious Diseases in Rosemead, Calif., has been studying the link between stealth viruses and chronic fatigue, multiple sclerosis and other chronic diseases that up till now have not been considered contagious.

According to Martin's research, stealth viruses have the previously unknown capacity to mimic other strains of virus within their species. Martin believes they can even mutate to the extent that they jump species and become a completely different form of virus. And as the name implies, they are able live undetected in a body for years without killing the host, thus increasing the chances of spreading latent and undiagnosed disease.

Having mutated or adapted from well-known viruses, stealth viruses become transmittable through saliva, sexual intercourse, mother's milk and blood transfusions, Martin believes. As a result, babies can be born with viral infections that lead to serious illnesses, even though their mothers may be asymptomatic. Without the patient exhibiting symptoms of common viral infections, most doctors don't know to look for viruses in the body.

A number of researchers now believe one of the primary ways many viruses have been, and continue to be introduced into the population is through vaccines and forced inoculations. Some vaccines, such as those for polio and rubella, contain live human viruses to which Sams believes no one should be exposed. Other vaccines are "contaminated" with wild animal viruses that can wreck havoc in the human body.

"A live virus going into a human body can be deadly, and viral medicine is in its infancy, in my opinion, when it comes to understanding the long term effects of these things," Sams said. She added that even attenuated vaccines, those made without live viruses, are not necessarily safe. Attenuated vaccines are created by injecting a live virus into substances such as animal organs or chicken eggs, and then producing a vaccine with the antibodies created by this process.

However, it recently was discovered that some batches of oral polio vaccine in England were made with antibodies grown in bovine cells from cows infected with mad cow disease. As a result, children receiving the vaccine are in danger of manifesting the deadly viral infection that causes a variation of mad cow disease in humans, Sams said.

In another case, a large number of children in Norway were diagnosed with autism within a very short time of being inoculated with the measles/mumps/rubella vaccine that included a live rubella virus. A class action lawsuit currently is ongoing, brought by parents of those children.

Many people also believe the source of the debilitating Gulf War Syndrome was forced inoculations of military personnel with vaccines containing dangerous combinations of animal and human viruses, Sams said.

Central to all such cases is the fact that there is no required testing of vaccines, a situation Sams and others see as unconscionable.

"We have to be real clear on the fact that there have been major scientific blunders with attenuated and live vaccines. All vaccines need to be tested. We have to have a way of knowing that vaccines on the market are safe. As it is now, it's a matter of Russian roulette of which (batch) your doctor gets," she said.

If testing of vaccines had been required since the introduction of the first polio vaccines in the 1950s, Sams believes her own life would have been very different. An athletic young child growing up in Waco, Texas, she suddenly passed out several times in the eighth grade, and has had continually more serious chronic health problems since then.

In college she collapsed for a year and a half with what was diagnosed as mononucleosis. From age 16 to 28 she underwent eight surgeries on her abdomen, ovaries, uterus and other organs. Now her condition is called chronic fatigue, the current name for a general set of symptoms she shares with some 12 million Americans.

"Chronic fatigue syndrome is a real weird label. It includes people with environmental illness, heavy metal toxins and candida. I think there are five different kinds of CFS. But in every case the person is waylaid, and even if they're doing well they may have 50 percent of the energy level they used to have. And you never know, if you overdo things, when it'll come back with a vengeance. It's scary as the dickens," she said.

"They keep misnaming this disease. They called it the Yuppie flu, then chronic Epstein-Barr virus, but they never talk about the fact that there are many other viruses involved."

She added that the majority of doctors still consider chronic fatigue a "phantom disease," claiming the patient's symptoms are "all in the head." Contributing to this is the fact that most doctors do not test such patients for latent viral infections. Stealth viruses show up in blood cultures only when viewed under an electron microscope or by PCR (polymer chain reaction) machine, which detects latent viruses in DNA.

Sams said she has tested positive for 23 active and latent strains of easily detectable viruses, as well as several stealth viruses. She is convinced at least some of these entered her body through inoculations with the original polio vaccines, which contained a simian (wild monkey) virus. The vaccine was made with live kidney cells from monkeys that had viral infections, she said.

In her case, the stew of viruses in her body has produced a type of cerebral encephalopathy, or eating away of brain cells, as well as chronic hemorrhaging of the brain and other organs, and viral meningitis.

Sams uses a combination of Western drugs and alternative treatments to keep herself as functional as possible. Some viral inhibitors are available, and Dr. Martin currently is working on developing an inhibitor for stealth viruses.

Everyone, Sams says, should follow preventative measures such as safe sex and not sharing food, drinking glasses or utensils. She also strongly believes laws must be put into place to require testing of all vaccines for contamination by animal viruses, and all blood banks should be tested for contamination by stealth viruses.

"People need to bind together and put pressure on the FDA and on senators and congressmen to stop forced vaccinations and to test all vaccines," Sams said. "There's a multibillion-dollar link (between the FDA and drug companies) where they don't have to have vaccines tested. It's all about money and the bottom line, instead of human health."

The Emerging Worlds Web site (www.emergingworlds.com) being set up by Jamie Sams and others is scheduled to be online by late March. In the meantime, for information on support groups and current medical research on chronic fatigue syndrome and other chronic illnesses, here is a list of Web sites, books and resources suggested by Sams.

· Chronic Ill Net, www.chronicillnet.org

· Chenney Medical Center, www.fnmedcenter.com

· Center for Complex Infectious Diseases - stealth virus research,


· Australian research - Newcastle University biology department and

links to CFS researchers worldwide: www.ahmf.org/links

· www.cfids.net

· www.chronicfatigue.org/index.html

· The CFIDS Association of America, 800-442-3437

· National Vaccine Information Center, 800-909-SHOT, or www.909shot.com

· Books: Osler's Web: Inside the Labyrinth of the Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Epidemic, by Hillary Johnson

· The Virus Within: A Coming Epidemic - How Medical Detectives are Tracking a Terrifying Virus that Hides in Almost all of Us, by Nicholas Regush

· 50 More Things you Should Know About CFIDS and its Link to AIDS by Neeya Ostrum (www.chronicillnet.org/book/ostrum)