Chronic Lyme Disease Treatment
Im often asked how I got our family to health so quickly from our debilitating Lyme symptoms. People expect a quick answer detailing some magic pill. I have to explain that it took lots of hard work across many different categories to get our immune system working again, the infection under control, and the symptoms to disappear.
What Are The Symptoms Of Lyme Disease In Dogs
Generally speaking, symptoms of Lyme disease can be difficult to detect, especially in the early stages. Most animals infected with Lyme disease will show signs of lameness due to an inflammation of their joints. This lameness usually affects one of the legs but can reoccur in the same limb or switch to a different one later on.
In severe Lyme disease cases, some dogs can develop heart and kidney disease, as well as problems with their nervous system if the disease is left untreated.
Other common symptoms of Lyme Disease in dogs include:
- Arched back and a stiff walk
When To See A Doctor
A person should see a doctor if they have recently received a tick bite. It is not possible to know whether a tick is carrying Lyme disease, and the symptoms may take weeks to appear.
The earlier a person receives a diagnosis and treatment, the higher the likelihood of a quick and complete recovery.
It is not always possible for a person to tell if a tick has bitten them. As such, people should also see a doctor if they experience any Lyme disease symptoms. A doctor will ask about the persons symptoms and duration and whether the person has spent time in tick-infested areas.
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Does Lyme Disease Go Away On Its Own
Its certainly possible for people to get Lyme disease and to clear the infection on their own, without treatment, says Dr. Kuritzkes. But its better to be treated, because some of the complicationslike arthritis and myocarditis and damage to the central nervous systemcan be very serious.
The type of bacteria that causes Lyme disease is in the same general family as the type that causes syphilis, Dr. Kuritzkes explains. That doesnt mean anything similar in terms of transmission, but syphilis has several different phases, with primary and secondary and tertiary symptoms, he says. The infection can hide out in the body for a long time and can cause problems down the road if its not treated.
Early 1st Lyme Disease Stage
The first phase of Lyme disease is known as the early stage. If treated within the first month, the infected person can usually overcome it with a prescription antibiotic. Treatment in the first 30 days can also mean the difference between rapid recovery and a chronic condition.
Symptoms begin three to thirty days after contracting the disease. Initial symptoms include a lack of energy, headaches and a stiff neck, fever and chills, muscle and joint pain, and swollen lymph nodes. These generic symptoms may be misdiagnosed, especially if the patient was unaware of the initial bite or contraction of Lyme disease.
Some patients do not experience any symptoms initially. Less than 50 percent of those infected see an expanding, circular red bulls eye rash before seeing a doctor. The rash is medically known as erythema chronicum migrans, Latin for chronic migrating redness. It may be warm to the touch, but it does not itch and is not painful.
The infection rash is a sign that the bacteria are multiplying in the bloodstream. The bullseye can last up to four weeks. Some people will have a solid red rash. On darker-skinned people, the rash may look like a bruise. Therefore, you need to be aware of the other early-stage symptoms.
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How To Avoid Tick Bites
To reduce the chance of being bitten:
- cover your skin while walking outdoors and tuck your trousers into your socks
- use insect repellent on your clothes and skin products containing DEET are best
- stay on clear paths whenever possible
- wear light-coloured clothing so ticks are easier to see and brush off
Q: But Shouldn’t I Have My Sexual Partner Tested To Prevent Him Or Her From Transmitting The Germ Back To Me During Or After Treatment
A: I do not think so. During treatment it is highly unlikely that your partner will transmit Lyme to you because the herbal or prescription antibiotics you take will prevent this from happening.
At the end of treatment consider the steps outlined in Finished? And How to Prevent Relapse. I also believe these same steps that support the immune system will prevent the Lyme germs from a sexual partner to take hold. Even if a healthy sexual partner is treated for Lyme infection, there is no proof that the germ is eradicated at the end of his or her treatment. So it is best to follow the steps in outlined in Finished? And How to Prevent Relapse.
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Symptoms Of Lyme Disease
People with Lyme disease may react to it differently, and the symptoms can vary in severity.
Although Lyme disease is commonly divided into three stages early localized, early disseminated, and late disseminated symptoms can overlap. Some people will also present in a later stage of disease without having symptoms of earlier disease.
These are some of the more common symptoms of Lyme disease:
- a flat, circular rash that looks like a red oval or bulls-eye anywhere on your body
- other flu-like symptoms
These symptoms may occur soon after the infection, or months or years later.
Your child may have Lyme disease and not have the bulls-eye rash. According to an early study, results showed roughly 89 percent of children had a rash.
Lyme disease is best treated in the early stages. Treatment for early localized disease is a simple 10- to 14-day course of oral antibiotics to eliminate the infection.
Medications used to treat Lyme disease include:
- doxycycline, amoxicillin, or cefuroxime, which are first-line treatments in adults and children
- cefuroxime and amoxicillin, which are used to treat women who are nursing or breastfeeding
After improvement and to finish the course of treatment, healthcare providers will typically switch to an oral regimen. The complete course of treatment usually takes 1428 days.
How Long Does Lyme Disease Last
Lyme disease symptoms can begin anywhere from three to 30 days after transmission of the infection from a tick. If treated early on with antibiotics, most people feel better within a few weeks, says Dr. Zemel.
According to the CDC, its not uncommon for people to experience lingering symptoms like fatigue and joint or muscle pain for a few weeks or months after treatment. Additional antibiotics wont help these symptoms, however, and most people improve on their own over time.
In a small percentage of cases, people continue to experience symptoms for more than six months after their recommended course of antibiotics is completed. This is sometimes referred to as chronic Lyme diseasebut that name is misleading, says Dr. Kuritzkes, because there is no evidence that the bacteria that causes Lyme disease is still present in the body. Instead, the CDC refers to this condition as post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome .
As with many other kinds of infectious diseases, some people are left with some debilitating symptoms that dont go away, says Dr. Kuritzkes. I like to compare it to polio: Some people who had polio are left paralyzed, but that doesnt mean they have chronic polio they have permanent damage from the infection, even after its gone away.
Its possible that Lyme infection leads to some damage that we dont fully understand yet, Dr. Kuritzkes adds. But we do know that long-term or repeated courses of antibiotics have no benefit in these cases.
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Chronic Lyme Disease Cure: What Worked
Heres what worked best for us in rank order from most helpful to least helpful. Note that the first two items are relatively inexpensive. Up to #10 on this list I consider essential to getting rid of symptoms. The rest I consider more in the permanently get rid of symptoms category.
Hunting For Alternative Drug
Frustrated by the lack of treatment options for Lyme disease patients with lingering symptoms, Rajadas and his team began hunting for a better alternative in 2011. In 2016, they published a study in Drug Design, Development and Therapy that listed 20 chemical compounds, from about 4,000, that were most effective at killing the infection in mice. All 20 had been approved by the Food and Drug Administration for various uses. One, for instance, is used to treat alcohol abuse disorder.
In this most recent study, azlocillin, one of the top-20 contenders, was shown to eclipse a total of 7,450 compounds because it is more effective in killing B. burgdorferi and causes fewer side effects. Lyme disease affects more than 300,000 people annually, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It can affect various organs, including the brain, skin, heart, joints and nervous system, and cause heart problems and arthritis if untreated. Symptoms include fever, headaches, chills, and muscle and joint pain.
Traditional antibiotics, such as doxycycline, are effective as an early course of treatment for the infection in the majority of patients, but it remains unclear why these drugs fail to treat 10% to 20% of patients, Rajadas said.
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What Should I Do If I Find A Tick On My Child
Don’t panic. First Lyme disease is spread by the black-legged tick, not by the larger and more-common dog tick. The risk of developing Lyme disease after a black-legged tick bite is low, especially if the tick has been attached for a short time.
If you find a tick on your child, remove it using a fine-tipped pair of tweezers. Grasp the body of the tick and pull in an upward motion until the tick comes out. Do not squeeze or twist the ticks body. Take note of the ticks size and color, and how long you think it has been attached to your child.
If your child has been bitten by a black-legged tick that has been attached for more than 24 hours and you are in a Lyme disease endemic area, consult with your pediatrician. In some cases, your child may be prescribed antibiotics to prevent Lyme disease from developing.
The commitment and compassion with which we care for all children and families is matched only by the pioneering spirit of discovery and innovation that drives us to think differently, to find answers, and to build a better tomorrow for children everywhere.
Our Familys Direct Experience With Lyme
Our oldest child was bitten by ticks at ages 1.5 and 3 in San Jose, CA and Los Altos, CA. The picture above shows the tick she got at age 3. Very difficult to find in that thick hair! Our pediatrician said that since the ticks were on less than 24 hours, we shouldnt worry about Lyme. We were illiterate enough to believe her. We proceeded working on our daughters health issues as if they were gastrointestinal issues, autism, methylation, heavy metal toxicity, etc. We had no idea she had Lyme, and in hindsight this was actually a very good thing!
We first tested our child for Lyme at age 4 when she started having health problems. The doctor recommended Lyme Western Blot , which came out positive on IgG Band 41 only. He wrote No evidence of Lyme. Again we were illiterate enough to believe him. In hindsight, Band 41 can be Babesia, and it is often the band that shows positive first. It can also commonly be positive from dental infections, but she had never had a cavity, let alone a root canal.
How were we able to resolve 90% of her clinical Lyme symptoms on our own, without ever having a Lyme diagnosis? The details of how we did this are in the individual sections of this website under healing the gut, diet, autism, and methylation. The remaining 10% of her clinical symptoms resolved when we cleared up parasite issues. More details on all of this in Chronic Lyme Treatment.
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Chronic Lyme Disease Symptom Severity
In LDos chronic Lyme disease survey, over 75% of patients reported at least one symptom as severe or very severe and 63% reported two or more such symptoms. Find out more about LDo peer-reviewed published surveys. The chart below shows the severity of ten common chronic Lyme symptoms.
The survey also found that patients with chronic Lyme disease have high disability and unemployment rates. Over 40% of patients with chronic Lyme disease reported that they currently are unable to work because of Lyme disease and 24% report that they have received disability at some point in their illness.
Stage : Early Localized Disease
Symptoms of Lyme disease usually start 1 to 2 weeks after the tick bite. One of the earliest signs of the disease is a bulls-eye rash.
The rash occurs at the site of the tick bite, usually, but not always, as a central red spot surrounded by a clear spot with an area of redness at the edge. It may be warm to the touch, but it isnt painful and doesnt itch. This rash will gradually fade in most people.
The formal name for this rash is erythema migrans. Erythema migrans is said to be characteristic of Lyme disease. However, many people dont have this symptom.
Some people have a rash thats solid red, while people with dark complexions may have a rash that resembles a bruise.
The rash can occur with or without systemic viral or flu-like symptoms.
Other symptoms commonly seen in this stage of Lyme disease include:
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What Do You Do If There’s A Tick Under Your Skin
Use a pair of fine-tipped tweezers to remove it as soon as possible. Pull upward with steady pressure. If parts of the tick are still in your skin, try to get those with the tweezers, too. After everything is out, clean the bite area with rubbing alcohol or soap and water.
You probably wonât get infected if you remove the tick within 36 to 48 hours.
How do you throw away a tick?
Put it in soapy water or alcohol, stick it to a piece of tape, or flush it down the toilet.
Q: Once Diagnosed How Should You Treat Lyme Disease
Research over the last three decades suggests that Lyme bacteria have multiple ways of evading the human immune system and that treating acute Lyme with 21 days of antibiotics fails approximately a third of patients.
For that reason, I treat in two phases. For early Lyme, I treat with four weeks of doxycycline, amoxicillin, or cefuroxime antibiotics.
I follow this up with four more weeks of drugs that prevent and eradicate persister forms of the bacteria. The persisters are drug-tolerant and can revert to an active infection once the antibiotics are stopped.
I aggressively treat late-Lyme patients who have severe degenerative neurologic or rheumatologic cases. As noted above, the very sick patients frequently have a mixture of tick-borne infections.
For these patients, I choose a combination of oral or, when needed, intravenous antibiotics that target the pathogens known to be present.
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Which Is More Effective Heat Or Red Infrared Light
Heat, whether it comes from a traditional or infrared sauna, is both a stimulating and destructive force. Heat causes additional stress to the body.
While the stress is temporary and the stress can lead to accelerating healing, the heat itself can cause damage when not used with caution. Both heat and red light can help Lyme Disease sufferers.
If you are choosing between them, you will probably get more powerful and lasting results with light therapy.
Light is a stimulating force that does not stress the body but rather, promotes healthy cell functioning, without any known side effects.
Red light therapy reduces inflammation and promotes healing from within.
It does this by:
- Stimulating mitochondrial activity
- Boosting production of stem cells, which are non-specialized cells that have the ability to develop into many different cell types including brain cells, muscle, and other soft tissue
- Improving thyroid health
- Promoting liver regeneration
- Red light also eases the symptoms of Lyme disease including Lyme arthritis, a painful and debilitating condition that results from inflammation of the joints, usually the knees.
To date, this Lyme arthritis study is the only study specially conducted on the effects of red light therapy on Lyme disease.
But given the broad range of therapeutic benefits, and the vast number of conditions that red light therapy is known to effectively help, it is reasonable to conclude that it could help you if you suffer from Lyme disease.