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  • Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

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    Old 04-18-2007, 08:18 PM   #1
    Alesis
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    Question Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

    Hi!

    I found a reference to this board on the fibromyalgia board. I have a lot of symptoms that fall under the LD category, including some of the more peculiar ones, but I've never had a reaction to any of the antibiotics I've taken throughout my 29 years of life.

    In the more recent years, I've taken penicillin (doesn't work; probably because I took amoxicillin and ampicillin a lot when I was younger), zithromax, and most recently erythromyacin (last November). I haven't needed to take them very often in my 20s -- thank goodness -- but not once have I had the awful reactions that lyme sufferers report.

    Do LD sufferers always get herxes? If that's pretty much the case, then I'd like to avoid travelling 4 hours out of my way to spend $500 I don't have to get tested for a disease I probably don't have.

    Thank you so much!

    A.

     
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    Old 04-18-2007, 09:12 PM   #2
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    Re: Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Alesis View Post
    Hi!

    I found a reference to this board on the fibromyalgia board. I have a lot of symptoms that fall under the LD category, including some of the more peculiar ones, but I've never had a reaction to any of the antibiotics I've taken throughout my 29 years of life.

    In the more recent years, I've taken penicillin (doesn't work; probably because I took amoxicillin and ampicillin a lot when I was younger), zithromax, and most recently erythromyacin (last November). I haven't needed to take them very often in my 20s -- thank goodness -- but not once have I had the awful reactions that lyme sufferers report.

    Do LD sufferers always get herxes? If that's pretty much the case, then I'd like to avoid travelling 4 hours out of my way to spend $500 I don't have to get tested for a disease I probably don't have.

    Thank you so much!

    A.
    Alexis, the type of antibiotics that you mentioned are not the antibiotics that are commonly used to treat LD, erythro. is completely ineffective in the treatment of LD. Penicillians just cause the Lyme to hide in the cell walls or become cyst forms until you stop taking it. Plus usually stronger doses of antibiotics are prescribed and for longer periods of time. Alot of people don't herx until 2 -3 weeks after starting antibiotics. So you may not have been on the antibiotics long enough for them to be effective in LD. This most likely is the reason that you didn't recall any Herxing. With herx's everyone experienced them differently, sometimes they are mild, sometimes strong. You may only experience severe fatigue or muscle aches worse than normal, or you can have symptoms that you have never had before that you might chalk up to something else, such as a severe head ache that happens to come on the same time as a change in the weather, so you aren't sure which caused it. Everyone does not have the same results with the same antibiotics, the doctor will prescribe what he or she feels will help you the most by going through your symptom history and by the lab tests. They ususally will start you off on doxycycline, biaxin, or Ketek and then add a Anti-protazoal or anti-mylarial drug, such as Flagyl, Tinidazole or Plaquenil, these help to kill the lyme that has turned to cyst form. There really is not exact protocal for LD therapy. If you really feel that you could possibly have LD it is very important that you see an LLMD and get tested by Igenex labs, left untreated LD can be very dangerous to your health. Good Luck, Sarah

     
    Old 04-19-2007, 05:52 AM   #3
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    Re: Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

    Hi Alesis, welcome to the board!

    Lyme disease is a multi-system bacterial infection caused from the bite of an infected tick. Below is a Lyme symptom list. You can have any combination of symptoms.

    Unexplained fevers, sweats, chills, or flushing
    Unexplained weight change--loss or gain
    Fatigue, tiredness, poor stamina
    Unexplained hair loss
    Swollen glands
    Sore throat
    Testicular pain/pelvic pain
    Unexplained menstrual irregularity
    Unexplained milk production: breast pain
    Irritable bladder or bladder dysfunction
    Sexual dysfunction or loss of libido
    Upset stomach
    Change in bowel function-constipation, diarrhea
    Chest pain or rib soreness
    Shortness of breath, cough
    Heart palpitations, pulse skips, heart block
    Any history of a heart murmur or valve prolapse?
    Joint pain or swelling
    Stiffness of the joints, neck, or back
    Muscle pain or cramps
    Twitching of the face or other muscles
    Headache
    Neck creeks and cracks, neck stiffness, neck pain
    Tingling, numbness, burning or stabbing sensations, shooting pains
    Facial paralysis (Bell's Palsy)
    Eyes/Vision: double, blurry, increased floaters, light sensitivity
    Ears/Hearing: buzzing, ringing, ear pain, sound sensitivity
    lncreased motion sickness, vertigo, poor balance
    Lightheadedness, wooziness
    Tremor
    Confusion, difficulty in thinking
    Difficulty with concentration, reading
    Forgetfulness, poor short term memory
    Disorientation: getting lost, going to wrong places
    Difficulty with speech or writing
    Mood swings, irritability, depression
    Disturbed sleep-too much, too little, early awakening
    Exaggerated symptoms or worse hangover from alcohol

    When Lyme disease is a possibility, it is very important to see a kowledge- doctor. Many doctors do not understand Lyme and treat with outdated protocols. Besides Lyme, ticks can transmit several co-infections including Babesiosis, Ehrlichiosis (HME & HGE), Bartonella, and Mycoplasma. It is estimated that 60% of people who have Lyme are co-infected. It may affect treatment choice and progress. It is important to be tested for these by a Lyme reputable lab such as IgeneX in Palo Alto, CA.

    There are many different antibiotics that can be used to treat Lyme. The doses need for Lyme treatment are usually much higher than for other infections. While the majority of people herx, not everyone does. Herxes affect people differently. It is not likely that you were on strong enough doses continuously to herx. Every case is different and needs to be treate individually.

    The most imporant thing you can do to confirm or rule out Lyme is to see a Lyme doctor. If you would like a doctor recommendation, let us know.

    It is also important to learn as much as possible. I recommend reading Dr. Joseph Burrascano's 2005 Diagnostic Hints and Treatment Guidelines For Lyme and Other Tick Borne Illnesses. He is one of the top Lyme doctors in the country, and many Lyme doctors follow his protocols. I also recommend the book "Everything You Need To Know About Lyme Disease (2nd edition)" by Karen Vanderhoof-Forschner.

    I hope you can get some answers soon.

     
    Old 04-19-2007, 11:43 AM   #4
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    Re: Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

    Thank you both for your replies. Guess it's not so cut-and-dry.

    Could someone recommend a LLMD in the Syracuse, NY or Utica-Rome, NY area?

    I just found out today that I'm on the verge of getting a nice government job; in other words: soon I'll be getting double the pay I'm making now, plus in a month or two *good* health insurance. Hopefully I'll be covered for lyme testing if I decide to go that route.

    Symptoms? Plenty of them. Here goes:

    Unexplained fevers -- this is a weird one. I tried to donate blood several times last year, and they always turned me away because my temp was above 99.5. (The Lyme possibility didn't cross my mind until a few days ago, or else I wouldn't have tried to donate!)
    Fatigue, tiredness, poor stamina
    Pelvic pain
    Unexplained menstrual irregularity -- all my life!!!
    breast pain -- mine have been particularly tender lately for some reason
    loss of libido -- never had much to begin with.
    Upset stomach -- has been coming and going for about 6 months
    Change in bowel function -- diarrhea (lots of it!)
    Chest pain or rib soreness -- comes and goes; always attributed it to acid reflux
    Shortness of breath -- it doesn't take much to make me out of breath
    Heart palpitations -- sometimes when I lie down I can feel my heart "flutter"
    Any history of a heart murmur or valve prolapse? -- had a heart murmur when I was 12
    Joint pain or swelling -- tons of joint pain, some swelling in fingers
    Stiffness of the joints, neck, or back -- all over my body
    Muscle pain or cramps -- all over my body
    Twitching of the face or other muscles -- I have strange facial tics. I also get muscle twitches throught my body.
    Headache -- started off as a headache which wrapped around the back of my head to my eye two years ago...now it's progressed to my neck and shoulder.
    Neck creeks and cracks, neck stiffness, neck pain
    Tingling, numbness, burning or stabbing sensations, shooting pains -- sometimes
    Ears/Hearing: ear pain -- random, sudden burning sensations, some sound sensitivity
    lncreased vertigo, poor balance
    Lightheadedness, wooziness
    Tremor -- sometimes in my hands, especially if I rest my forearm on something
    Confusion, difficulty in thinking -- tons!
    Difficulty with concentration, reading -- to the core!
    Forgetfulness, poor short term memory -- to the core!
    Disorientation: getting lost, going to wrong places -- I get lost easily and don't remeber driving directions beyond two turns
    Difficulty with speech or writing -- sometimes I mix words up and mis-speak
    Mood swings, irritability, depression -- This has been getting worse as of late. "Small stuff" bothers me especially. It has all my life, but I feel it's getting worse. Things that haven't annoyed me since I was an early teen, like emptying the dishwasher for example, are starting to annoy me again. This is so unlike me. Mom asked me to do it and I couldn't do it without swearing and complaining. I feel so bad now, as this is not my style. I am normally a very helpful person, but repetitive, manual tasks that involve a lot of fine motor skills annoy the heck out of me, especially since I tend to drop things.
    Disturbed sleep-too little -- take sleeping meds
    Exaggerated symptoms or worse hangover from alcohol -- never been much of a drinker; can barely handle one drink

    I also want to mention that I have mental illness and some (but not most) of the symptoms can be caused by the pills I take for that. I have been on antidepressants since 2001, but I also took them from 1996-1997. I was on antipsychotics from 1990-early 2007 for mood stabilisation and now I am on a different type of mood stabiliser (Topamax).

    In addition, I have been suffering from chronic plaque psoriasis since I was a baby, and there is a known correlation between it and other autoimmune disorders like fibromyalgia and Psoriatic Arthritis.

    Thank you for hearing me out and I look forward to your replies.

    A.

    Last edited by Alesis; 04-19-2007 at 11:47 AM.

     
    Old 04-19-2007, 01:33 PM   #5
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    Re: Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

    Hi A

    I had my first herx only 5 days after starting the abx. It lasted about 4 days and then went away. Two weeks later he started me on Ketek also and I herxed within 12 hours after starting that. Since then (Nov 2006) I have had a constant sore throat along with various other symptoms. My doctor said that is how my body is reacting to the bacteria die off. I was sick for 2 years before being diagnosed. Everyone is different and all react differently to the different medications. I am now on Ceftin and Ketek and still have the sore throat. I guess I should be happy that I know the bugs are dying off. Good luck.
    Kim

     
    Old 04-19-2007, 03:06 PM   #6
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    Re: Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

    Hi Alesis. I definitely think you should see a Lyme doctor for an evaluation.

    Be advised that many Lyme doctors do not take insurance because insurance companies often do not reimburse them. People usually pay up front for the doctor and testing and then submit the bills to their company for what they will reimburse.

    You may want to look at the Lyme Disease Research Studies Overview of Neuropsychiatric Lyme Disease. It lists the cognitive and psychiatric symptoms of Lyme.

    I know of two Lyme doctors in NY who come highly recommended: Dr. Kenneth Liegner in Armonk and Dr. Richard Horowitz in Hyde Park. I have heard that Dr. Jeffrey Morrison in New York City is knowledgeable, but I do not know if he is.

    I hope you can see a knowledgeable doctor soon.

     
    Old 04-19-2007, 06:04 PM   #7
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    Re: Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

    Hi!

    Thank you again for your replies.

    Ticker: Hyde Park is certainly closer than NYC, but Syracuse or Utica would be even closer. Do you know or any one else know of any LLMDs up here? Hyde Park is still a 3 hour 15 min drive for me.

    I read the thing about most LLMDs not accepting insurance. It's very sad that in today's world of modern medicine that insurance companies fail to pay for the testing and evaluation/monitoring of this dangerous disease. Are they equally bad when it comes to drug therapies? I've already read some upsetting stories on here; hope they're all not that bad.

    The good news is that I should be getting an offer any day now from this gov't job (I got news today that I passed the background check), and from what I've heard, the insurance is very good. Even if the LLMD doesn't accept insurance, hopefully my new insurance will reimburse a good percentage of it.

    Thanks again and I look forward to your replies.

    A.

     
    Old 04-19-2007, 07:39 PM   #8
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    Re: Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

    Hi Alesis. There are not many Lyme knowledgeable doctors in the country. Many people have to travel out of state to see one. Those are the ones I know of who come highly recommended in NY.

    It is sad that insurance companies have become so business oriented. I think it can be easier getting coverage for meds with some companies.

    I hope you get an offer soon!

     
    Old 04-19-2007, 09:07 PM   #9
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    Re: Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

    Thank you for your help and encouragement.

    I will probably wait until I actually have the job and insurance, unless the symptoms intensify drastically. So far they have been mild compared to what other people have been posting, despite me having a lot of them.

    The insurance I have now covers diddly squat, and I'm only working part time. If anything, I'll at least have double the pay that I'm earning now once I get that new job.

    A.

    Last edited by Alesis; 04-19-2007 at 09:08 PM.

     
    Old 04-20-2007, 05:39 AM   #10
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    Re: Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

    Hi Alesis. I would not wait too long. You may want to go ahead and make an appointment because sometimes it can take time to get one.

     
    Old 04-20-2007, 10:32 AM   #11
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    Re: Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

    Thank you again. I may do that.

    I just wanted to let you know that today I was emailed a welcome letter and a start date of May 29th!!!! I am so happy!!!

    A.

     
    Old 04-20-2007, 05:27 PM   #12
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    Re: Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

    Alesis, congratulations!!!!!!

     
    Old 04-21-2007, 11:44 AM   #13
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    Re: Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

    Hi...

    I dont know if these two doctors, who are brothers who work together are closer to you but...they have 2 offices...and they treat lyme:

    Drs. Kenneth and Steven Bock
    Rhinebeck Health Center
    Rhinebeck, NY AND Albany, NY

     
    Old 04-21-2007, 03:06 PM   #14
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    Re: Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

    Hi!

    Thank you to both of you.

    Albany is closer than Rhinebeck, although harder to navigate due to its urban structure (and the parking is atrocious).

    Have heard good things about these MDs?

    I will look them up...if they're outside of Albany, as opposed to downtown, they will be a lot easier to get to.

    Best,

    A.

    Last edited by Alesis; 04-21-2007 at 03:06 PM.

     
    Old 04-22-2007, 07:52 AM   #15
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    Re: Do antibiotics always cause "herxes"???

    I have not heard good things about Dr. Bock.

     
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