Stethoscope and vials

by Alan R. Gaby, MD

John Myers, MD, a physician from Baltimore, Maryland, pioneered the use of intravenous (IV) vitamins and minerals as part of the overall treatment of various medical problems. The author never met Dr. Myers, despite living in Baltimore, but had heard of his work, and had occasionally used IV nutrients to treat fatigue or acute infections.

After Dr. Myers died in 1984, a number of his patients sought nutrient injections from the author. Some of them had been receiving injections monthly, weekly, or twice weekly for many years – 25 years or more in a few cases. Chronic problems such as fatigue, depression, chest pain, or palpitations were well controlled by these treatments; however, the problems would recur if the patients went too long without an injection. Intravenous Nutrient Therapy: the “Myers’ Cocktail” Alan R. Gaby, MD Alan R. Gaby, MD – Past president of the American Holistic Medical Association; author of Preventing and Reversing Osteoporosis, and co-author of The Patient’s Book of Natural Healing. Correspondence address: 301 Dorwood Drive, Carlisle, PA 17013.

It was not clear exactly what the “Myers’ cocktail” consisted of, as the information provided by patients was incomplete and no published or written material on the treatment was available. It appeared that Myers used a 10-mL syringe and administered by slow IV push a combination of magnesium chloride, calcium gluconate, thiamine, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, calcium pantothenate, vitamin B complex, vitamin C, and dilute hydrochloric acid. The exact doses of individual components were unknown, but Myers apparently used a two-percent solution of magnesium chloride, rather than the more widely available preparations containing 20-percent magnesium chloride or 50- percent magnesium sulfate.

The author took over the care of Myers’ patients, using a modified version of his IV regimen. Most notably, the magnesium dose was increased by approximately 10-fold by using 20- percent magnesium chloride, in order to approximate the doses reported to be safe and effective for the treatment of cardiovascular disease.1, 2 In addition, the hydrochloric acid was eliminated and the vitamin C was increased, particularly for problems related to allergy or infection. Folic acid was not included, as it tends to form a precipitate when mixed with other nutrients.

This treatment was suggested for other patients, and it soon became apparent that the modified Myers’ cocktail (hereafter referred to as “the Myers’”) was helpful for a wide range of clinical conditions, often producing dramatic results. Over an 11-year period, approximately 15,000 injections were administered in an outpatient setting to an estimated 800-1,000 different patients. Conditions that frequently responded included asthma attacks, acute migraines, fatigue (including chronic fatigue syndrome), fibromyalgia, acute muscle spasm, upper respiratory tract infections, chronic sinusitis, and seasonal allergic rhinitis. A small number of patients with congestive heart failure, angina, chronic urticaria, hyperthyroidism, dysmenorrhea, or other conditions were also treated with the Myers’ and most showed marked improvement. Many relatively healthy patients chose to receive periodic injections because it enhanced their overall well being for periods of a week to several months.

During the past 16 years these clinical results have been presented at more than 20 medical conferences to several thousand physicians. Today, many doctors (probably more than 1,000 in the United States) use the Myers’. Some have made further modifications according to their own preferences. In querying audiences from the lectern and from informal discussions with colleagues at conferences, the author has yet to encounter a practitioner whose experience with this treatment has differed significantly from his own. Despite the many positive anecdotal reports, there is only a small amount of published research supporting the use of this treatment. There is one uncontrolled trial in which the Myers’ was beneficial in the treatment of musculoskeletal pain syndromes, including fibromyalgia. Intravenous magnesium alone has been reported, mainly in open trials, to be effective against angina, acute migraines, cluster headaches, depression, and chronic pain. In recent years, double-blind trials have shown IV magnesium can rapidly abort acute asthma attacks. There are also several published case reports in which IV calcium provided rapid relief from asthma or anaphylactic reactions.

This paper presents a rationale for the use of IV nutrient therapy, reviews the relevant published clinical research, describes personal clinical experiences using the Myers’, and discusses potential side effects and precautions. Click here to read the full article.


Gaby, A. R. (2002). Intravenous Nutrient Therapy: the” Myers’ Cocktail”.Alternative Medicine Review, 7(5), 389-403.