Food for thought...
Conventionally, infections have been treated by use of antibiotics, which affect cells that are exposed thereto in such a way as to kill the exposed cells. In addition to adversely affecting bacterial cells, antibiotics may also induce toxicity and kill beneficial bacteria, as well as damage or kill the cells of a treated subject.
Antibiotics have been used to treat a wide array of infections. There is a movement, however, to curb or limit their use. This is because, as medical professionals have long been aware, many bacteria evolve in such a way as to develop strains which are resistant to antibiotics. As evidence of the severity of the problem of antibiotic-resistant bacterial strains, great efforts have recently been taken to make the general public aware that antibiotics should be used judiciously.
The usefulness of antibiotics is also largely limited to bacteria, fungi, and some parasites. Very few substances are considered effective antiviral compounds. Nonetheless, many undesirable pathogenic infections and the diseases that result therefrom are caused by viruses.
For serious bacterial infections, high doses of antibiotics may be administered to an infected subject. Sometimes, bacterial infections become so severe or unresponsive or inaccessible that surgery is needed to excise the infected areas of a subject's body and, thus, to physically remove the infecting pathogen.
The use of surgery is somewhat undesirable because of the trauma and increase in oxidative stress caused thereby. As such, surgery is often used as a last resort for eliminating infections.
Although surgery, the administration of antibiotics, or both of these techniques are useful for removing infections and, thus, for permitting the body of a treated individual to heal itself, neither of these techniques is useful for enhancing the ability of a subject to heal itself.