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Chelation therapy - Ethnoscience Glossary Terms and Abbreviations

Chelation therapy involves a series of injections of a chelating agent - usually the synthetic amino acid EDTA or ethylenediamine tetraacetic acid. An accepted treatment for some types of heavy metal poisoning, Chelation is also claimed to detoxify, or cleanse the body. It has been used to treat cancer and arteriosclerosis (hardening of the arteries). Treating these diseases with chelation is very controversial, because there is little good quality evidence supporting the safety and efficacy of chelation for these purposes.
The name "chelation" comes from the Greek chele, which means claw. This refers to what happens within the body in the process of chelation. The chelating agent (EDTA) grabs, or binds onto a metal ion to form a stable compound. Vitamins, minerals and other supplements are often given along with the chelating agent.

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