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» LymeNet Flash » Questions and Discussion » Medical Questions » Toxoplasmosis - Anyone here tested for it?

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Author Topic: Toxoplasmosis - Anyone here tested for it?
AliG
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Could this be why so many don't get well? They have existing, dormant Toxomplasmosis?

That might explain why Atovoquone helps some, who relapse after Lyme treatment, when they've tested negative for Babesia. It's also used for treatment of Toxo.

I tested positive for Toxo antibodies, when pregnant. Toxo, Babesia & Lyme? Maybe that's why I'm such a mess?

I think I'm gonna have a chat with LLMD about this next chance I get.


Wikipedia-Toxoplasmosis


Toxoplasmosis is a parasitic disease caused by the protozoan 'Toxoplasma gondii'.

The parasite infects most warm-blooded animals, including humans, but the primary host is the felid (cat) family.

Animals are infected by eating infected meat, by contact with cat faeces, or by transmission from mother to fetus.

The most common means of transmission to humans is raw or undercooked meat.

The illness is usually minor and self-limiting.

Between 30 and 60 percent of the world population is estimated to carry a Toxoplasma infection.

After the first few weeks of infection (where it typically causes mild or no illness, or a flu-like illness) have passed, the parasite rarely causes any symptoms in otherwise healthy adults.

However, people with a weakened immune system, such as those infected with HIV, may become seriously ill, and it can occasionally be fatal.

The parasite can cause encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) and neurologic diseases and can affect the heart, liver, and eyes (chorioretinitis).


Transmission
Life cycle of Toxoplasma gondii.Transmission may occur through:

Ingestion of raw or partly cooked meat, especially pork, lamb, or venison containing Toxoplasma cysts.

Infection prevalence in countries where undercooked meat is traditionally eaten, such as France, has been related to this transmission method.

Oocysts may also be ingested during hand-to-mouth contact after handling undercooked meat, or from using knives, utensils, or cutting boards contaminated by raw meat.[1]

Ingestion, accidental or otherwise, of contaminated cat feces.

This can occur through hand-to-mouth contact following gardening, cleaning a cat's litter box, contact with children's sandpits, or touching anything that has come into contact with cat feces.

Drinking water contaminated with Toxoplasma.

Transplacental infection in utero.

Receiving an infected organ transplant or blood transfusion, although this is extremely rare.[1]

The cyst form of the parasite is extremely hardy, capable of surviving exposure to freezing down to -12 Centrigrade, moderate temperatures and chemical disinfectants such as bleach, and can survive in the environment for over a year.

It is, however, susceptible to high temperatures-above 66 Centrigrade, and is thus killed by thorough cooking, and would be killed by 24 hours in a typical domestic freezer.[2]

Although the pathogen has been detected on the fur of cats, it has not been found in an infectious form, and direct infection from handling cats is generally believed to be very rare.

Cats excrete the pathogen in their faeces for a number of weeks after contracting the disease, generally by eating an infected rodent.

Even then, cat faeces are not generally contagious for the first day or two after excretion, after which the cyst 'ripens' and becomes potentially pathogenic.

Studies have shown that only about 2% of cats are shedding at any one time, and that shedding does not recur even after repeated exposure to the parasite.


Pregnancy precautions
Congenital toxoplasmosis is a special form in which an unborn child is infected via the placenta. This is the reason that pregnant women should be checked for Toxoplasma antibodies.

A positive titer indicates previous exposure and immunity and largely ensures the unborn baby's safety.

If a woman receives her first exposure to Toxoplasma while pregnant, the baby is at particular risk.

A woman with no previous exposure should avoid handling raw meat, exposure to cat faeces, and gardening (cat feces is common in garden soil).
(I had only heard about the litter box, not the other two.)

Most cats are not actively shedding oocysts and so are not a danger, but the risk may be reduced further by having the litterbox emptied daily (oocysts require longer than a single day to become infective), and by having someone else empty the litterbox.

Treatment is very important for recently infected pregnant women, to prevent infection of the fetus.

Since a baby's immune system does not develop fully for the first year of life, and the resilient cysts that form throughout the body are very difficult to eradicate with antiprotozoans, an infection can be very serious in the young.


Clinical manifestations

Infection has two stages:

Acute toxoplasmosis
During acute toxoplasmosis, symptoms are often flu-like: swollen lymph nodes, or muscle aches and pains that last for a month or more.

Rarely, a patient with a fully functioning immune system may develop eye damage from toxoplasmosis.

Young children and immunocompromised patients, such as those with HIV/AIDS, those taking certain types of chemotherapy, or those who have recently received an organ transplant, may develop severe toxoplasmosis.

This can cause damage to the brain or the eyes. Only a small percentage of infected newborns have serious eye or brain damage at birth.


Treatment
The vast majority of patients with a normal immune system require no treatment.

Patients with HIV/AIDS or patients who are immunosuppressed should be given sulfadiazine and pyrimethamine.

Pregnant women who become ill with acute toxoplasmosis should be treated with spiramycin.

Folinic acid (leucovorin) is administered in all cases to reduce the bone marrow suppression caused by pyrimethamine (ref: Montoya JG, Liesenfeld O. Toxoplasmosis. Lancet. 2004 Jun 12;363(9425):1965-76. )


Latent toxoplasmosis
Most patients who become infected with Toxoplasma gondii and develop toxoplasmosis do not know it.

In most non-immunodeficient patients, the infection enters a latent phase, during which only bradyzoites are present, forming cysts in nervous and muscle tissue.

Most infants who are infected while in the womb have no symptoms at birth but may develop symptoms later in life.


Treatment
The cysts are immune to the standard acute treatments as the antibiotics do not reach the bradyzoites in sufficient concentration.

The antibiotic atovaquone has been used to kill Toxoplasma cysts in situ in AIDS patients.[3]

In mice, a combination of atovaquone with clindamycin seemed to optimally kill cysts.[4]


Risk factors
Infants born to mothers who became infected with Toxoplasma for the first time during or just before pregnancy.

Persons with severely weakened immune systems, such as those with AIDS. Illness may result from an acute Toxoplasma infection or reactivation of an infection that occurred earlier in life.


Possible effects on human behavior
The findings of behavioral alteration in rats and mice have led some scientists to speculate that toxoplasma may have similar effects in humans, even in the latent phase that had previously been considered asymptomatic.

Toxoplasma is one of a number of parasites that may alter their host's behaviour as a part of their life cycle.[5]

The behaviors observed, if caused by the parasite, are likely due to the presence of cysts in the brain, which may produce or induce production of a neurotransmitter, possibly dopamine,[6] therefore acting similarly to dopamine reuptake inhibitor type antidepressants and stimulants.

The evidence for behavioral effects on humans, although intriguing, is relatively weak. There have been no randomized clinical trials studying the effects of toxoplasma on human behavior.

Although some researchers have found potentially important associations with toxoplasma, it is possible that these associations merely reflect factors that predispose certain types of people to infection (e.g., people who exhibit risk-taking behaviors may be more likely to take the risk of eating undercooked meat).

Studies have found that toxoplasmosis is associated with an increased car accident rate, roughly doubling or tripling the chance of an accident relative to uninfected people.[6][7]

This may be due to the decreased reaction times that are associated with infection.[7]

"If our data are true then about a million people a year die just because they are infected with toxoplasma," the researcher Jaroslav Flegr told The Guardian.[8]

The data shows that the risk decreases with time after infection, but is not due to age.[6]

Ruth Gilbert, medical coordinator of the European Multicentre Study on Congenital Toxoplasmosis, told BBC News Online these findings could be due to chance, or due to social and cultural factors associated with toxoplasma infection.[9]

Other studies suggest that the parasite may influence personality.

There are claims of toxoplasma causing antisocial attitudes in men and promiscuity[10] (or even "signs of higher intelligence")[11] in women, and greater susceptibility to schizophrenia and manic depression[10] in all infected persons.

A 2004 study found that toxoplasma "probably induce[s] a decrease of novelty seeking."[12]

The possibility that toxoplasmosis is one cause of schizophrenia has been studied by scientists at least since 1953.

These studies had attracted little attention from U.S. researchers until they were publicized through the work of prominent psychiatrist and advocate E. Fuller Torrey.

In 2003, Torrey published a review of this literature, reporting that almost all the studies had found that schizophrenics have elevated rates of toxoplasma infection.

A 2006 paper has even suggested that prevalence of toxoplasmosis has large-scale effects on national culture.[13]

These types of studies are suggestive but cannot confirm a causal relationship (because of the possibility that schizophrenia increases the likelihood of toxoplasma infection, for ex., rather than the other way around).[14]


Human prevalence
In the U.S. NHANES III national probability sample, 22.5% of 17,658 persons over the age of 12 years had Toxoplasma-specific IgG antibodies, indicating that they had been infected with the organism.

It is thought that between 30% and 60% of the world's population are infected.

However, there is large variation countries: in France, for example, about 85% of the population are carriers, probably due to a high consumption of raw and lightly cooked meat.


Animal prevalence
A University of California Davis study of dead Sea Otters collected from 1998 to 2004 found that toxoplasmosis was the cause of death for 13% of the animals.

Proximity to freshwater outflows into the ocean were a major risk factor.

Ingestion of oocysts from cat faeces is considered to be the most likely ultimate source.[15]

[ 08. December 2006, 10:45 AM: Message edited by: AliG ]

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Note: I'm NOT a medical professional. The information I share is from my own personal research and experience. Please do not construe anything I share as medical advice, which should only be obtained from a licensed medical practitioner.

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5dana8
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Thanks Alig

for posting this. Very interesting.

I think lyme & the co's lower our immune systems & leave us much more open to virus & toxo's ect..
Maybe the average person may be able to fight this off.

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5dana8

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Aniek
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I just got a positive antibody test for toxo. I'm starting on clindomycin for it.

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"When there is pain, there are no words." - Toni Morrison

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lymie tony z
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SEE I always NEW there was a good reason to stay away from CATS...

Maybe that's why all the CRAZIES in the Middle East...they have the biggest sandboxes in the world!

I used clindamycin IV for a month and alinia last month...so maybe I got rid of the toxo's but I don't seem any smarter?

Good work AliG....

zma

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I am not a doctor...opinions expressed are from personal experiences only and should never be viewed as coming from a healthcare provider. zman

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Aniek
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My cats are indoor cats, so its unlikely I got my toxo from them. You can get it from contaminated food.

It's a common parasite. Just most people don't get too sick from it. But I've read about it going into remission, and acting up in immune suppressed systems.

--------------------
"When there is pain, there are no words." - Toni Morrison

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johnlyme1
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I also came up with toxo, crypto and a couple of others during the last 4 months out of nowhere - alinia really kicked the crypro fast for me and we also added a week of malarone and the toxo left.
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vachick
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Question: My dear departed cat actually had toxo and it may have caused the brain tumor that finally killed her. [Frown] This was five years ago. Is it possible that I could have gotten toxo from her since I cleaned her litter box? If so, could I still have it or is it something that goes away eventually?
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johnlyme1
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I also came up with toxo, crypto and a couple of others during the last 4 months out of nowhere - alinia really kicked the crypro fast for me and we also added a week of malarone and the toxo left.
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Beverly
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Intresting information, thanks for the post. I wish all the co-infections could be that easy to irraticate...7 days wow.
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Truthfinder
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I'm so glad someone brought this topic up - thanks, Ali, and others who have contributed.

At this moment, a friend's 18-year old daughter is being checked for toxo, Lyme, and other infections - her eyes have become terribly inflamed and she is on steroids (!) - and all after a very suspicious "bug bite" last July, which was NOT properly treated by the duck in charge.

What is it going to take to make these ducks understand how much HARM can be done by half-measures and the "wait and see" attitude?

Tracy

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Tracy
.... Prayers for the Lyme Community - every day at 6 p.m. Pacific Time and 9 p.m. Eastern Time just take a few moments to say a prayer wherever you are.

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AliG
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vachick,

You ABSOLUTELY could have gotten it from cleaning your cat's box. That's why pregnant women are strongly warned against even being close to the litter box.


What concerns me most is that it seems like this is very similar to Babesiosis in that it is a "self-limiting" illness.

I think that term is a load of poop. You "get over" the acute phase of Babesiosis but then it can recrudesce (I had to look it up [Roll Eyes] ).

From what I've been reading toxo does the same thing as Babesia & Malaria in that sense. It leads me to believe that these things stay dormant in your system, in cyst form or whatever, and then re-attack you when your immune defenses get low.

I don't know if you can get Toxo from a tick, but there are certainly plenty of other places you can get it. I'm one of those people who's eaten my steak medium-rare all my life. [shake]

I think if you have it laying in wait in your system and then you get bit by a tick [Eek!]

I just finished another course of Tx for my Babs. Both times it seemed to help to some degree and within 2 days of stopping, I'm back in the dumpster again.

I've had diarhea for 2 wks+/-. When I went to LLMD last week he asked if I had & I told him no. (How the heck do you forget something like that?) There is something seriously wrong with my brain!

I feel so sorry for the man, trying to help patients who can't even remember their own symptoms. Do we really need to wonder why so many Drs. don't want to try to help? It must be like repeatedly banging their heads on the wall.

[ 07. December 2006, 06:00 PM: Message edited by: AliG ]

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Note: I'm NOT a medical professional. The information I share is from my own personal research and experience. Please do not construe anything I share as medical advice, which should only be obtained from a licensed medical practitioner.

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Aniek
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I actually read a reference to toxo entering cyst form.

I don't think medium rare is a problem with toxo. It's rare that's a problem.

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"When there is pain, there are no words." - Toni Morrison

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AliG
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quote:
Originally posted by johnlyme1:
I also came up with toxo, crypto and a couple of others during the last 4 months out of nowhere - alinia really kicked the crypro fast for me and we also added a week of malarone and the toxo left.

If Toxo is treated this quickly, then I guess maybe my 2 courses of Mepron/Zith should have taken care of it as well?
[confused]

Unless maybe it's in "cohoots" with the Babesia somehow.
[confused]

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Note: I'm NOT a medical professional. The information I share is from my own personal research and experience. Please do not construe anything I share as medical advice, which should only be obtained from a licensed medical practitioner.

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AliG
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Tracy-

Thanks for sharing that info!

Please let me know how she makes out. I've had an eye inflamation thing going on too.

I think most of this stuff is way too complicated for the average duck.

That's why they avoid making diagnoses. They would have to admit their own inadequacies. [Roll Eyes]

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Note: I'm NOT a medical professional. The information I share is from my own personal research and experience. Please do not construe anything I share as medical advice, which should only be obtained from a licensed medical practitioner.

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AliG
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quote:
Originally posted by Aniek:
I just got a positive antibody test for toxo. I'm starting on clindomycin for it.

Sorry, I missed this [dizzy] .

Starting Mepron too? or just Clindo alone?

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Note: I'm NOT a medical professional. The information I share is from my own personal research and experience. Please do not construe anything I share as medical advice, which should only be obtained from a licensed medical practitioner.

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Aniek
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Just clindo. My LLMD doesn't think I can handle Mepron for babs, so I don't she would prescribe it for toxo.

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AliG
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What about the other one, is it Malarone? It's atovaquone (Mepron) in lower dose plus something I can't remember(maybe proguanil?). It's supposed to be better tolerated, I think?

[ 08. December 2006, 03:45 PM: Message edited by: AliG ]

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Note: I'm NOT a medical professional. The information I share is from my own personal research and experience. Please do not construe anything I share as medical advice, which should only be obtained from a licensed medical practitioner.

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AliG
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Didn't get to talk to LLMD about my thoughts on this. I have to call him in a week. I'm going back on Doxy again.

My Babesia count remains the same after 2 courses of Mepron/Zith with a break of Zith alone in the middle.

He thinks my current symptoms are from the Lyme.

I guess time will tell. [confused]

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Note: I'm NOT a medical professional. The information I share is from my own personal research and experience. Please do not construe anything I share as medical advice, which should only be obtained from a licensed medical practitioner.

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Cobweb
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I am really confused about all of this-my daughter tested positive for Toxo antibioties-they even found it in a scalp lymph tumor which was removed. But nobody has told us to treat it!

At the last LLMD , just this past Thursday, appointment the PA told us probably a lot of people would test positive for Toxo- she did some research on it, when it showed up in Carolyn's pathology report.

Then she told us she only treated for lyme and was not comfortable treating Carolyn for Toxo because of the drugs involved and we should go to an Infectious Disease Duck! [Eek!]

But she added most people resolved it on their own-HOWEVER, Carolyn's CD57 test was 54-confirming her already Igenex Positive Lyme test which would make her more vulnerble to the effects of Toxo.

Do I dare get embroiled with an Infectious Disease Duck??? I'm jealous of those whose LLMD will treat Toxo.

Carol B

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Aniek
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It is true that there are antibody tests that only show past exposure. But people with compromised immune systems can have problems with past infections. They usually point to people with AIDS.

We don't know for certain I have a current infection, but my LLMD wants to treat it.

I honestly don't think an ID doc would treat someone for toxo if the only antibodies are appearing show exposure, not current infection.

You say the LLMD only treats Lyme. Does the LLMD treat other coinfections? Ever? If not, then I would question whether this is really an LLMD.

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AliG
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The thing that's freaking me out is that Toxo is thought of, by mainstream medical, the same way as Babs is.

The IDiot I went to said I fought the Babs. NOT TRUE! The tests are as screwy and misunderstood as Lyme. You only test pos for Babs during the first two weeks, then it shows as a past infection.

If untreated, it repeatedly sneaks up and whacks you. IT LOOKS LIKE TOXO IS THE SAME KIND OF SNEAKY FREAKIN PEST!!!


Carol,

I would find a way to get her treated! I agree that an ID is likely to give you a typical ID cop out. I got it with my Babs.

Is Aniek near you? Go to hers. Find an LLMD who does Co-infections, if yours doesn't.

They can't tell me that Lyme doesn't compromise your immune system. It compromises everything!

I think that if the Toxo could get enough of a hold to make a tumor on her scalp, something needs to be done. [Eek!] If I may ask, how old is your dd that LLMD is afraid to Tx?

You've got my prayers [group hug] . Make some posts to find a Dr. who's not intimidated by it.

I have to talk to my LLMD next week, I'll see if I can actually speak with HIM about it then.

--------------------
Note: I'm NOT a medical professional. The information I share is from my own personal research and experience. Please do not construe anything I share as medical advice, which should only be obtained from a licensed medical practitioner.

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ping
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Hi AliG -

Just to note -

Dr. H who now practices in CO stated in his patient manual some 3 or so years ago that he found that either Toxo or Babs was almost always present with Borrelia infection. He also advised that he found testing for Toxo to be so inaccurate that he simply rx'd a couple rounds of Mepron to help remedy the problem.

I'm not saying that this is what you should do, I'm just passing on some info. BTW - The Mep tx. sure helped me. I tested neg for both Babs and Toxo.

"We are more than containers for Lyme."
ping

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ping
"We are more than containers for Lyme"

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AliG
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I guess my thoughts aren't so unique, just because I hadn't run across them yet. Thanks for posting, Ping. I'd like to try to find the info published by Dr.H in CO.

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NatalieA
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Just tested positive for IgG toxoplasmosis.. Is this a related tick-borne co-infection or not? Anybody out there having problems with low platelets?
Thanks
Natalie

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AliG
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Hi Neighbor!

You're out in my neck of the woods, I see.

That's one of the things I was wondering too. If Babs an be passed through ticks, why not Toxo too?

I haven't had low platelets, but I maintain slightly low MPV (Mean Platelet Volume). I understand that platelets start out large & get smaller with age, so that gives an idea as to how old your platelets are.

I guess I have more old than new platelets??
I'm still not sure I get that, but hope it will eventually sink in. [Roll Eyes]

I know ticks bite cats. Do mice or deer carry Toxo? There's tons of animals around here that ticks jump on & off of. I would think a tick/toxo conclusion could be highly fathomable.

And what about all you brats out there who didn't catch your ticks biting you? [Big Grin] Who knows what diseases they may have caught from you & they're on the loose again! [Eek!] [lol]

ROFLMAO

Sorry - apparently it must be ridiculously silly time for me.

[ 09. December 2006, 11:08 PM: Message edited by: AliG ]

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Note: I'm NOT a medical professional. The information I share is from my own personal research and experience. Please do not construe anything I share as medical advice, which should only be obtained from a licensed medical practitioner.

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NatalieA
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Hi AliG- where are u on NJ? I thought I read somewhere about toxoplasmosis and ticks once, but I can't remember for sure?

I'm still waiting on my Babs test from my doc, but now I tested positive for the H.pylori bacteria as well. Anyone else out there test pos for that?

My platelets are really low- at 5000 lately (normal is 150,000-450,000) and I really think it is all lyme related somehow. Just still trying to figure it out.

Anyway, I am following up with a new infectious disease doc next week at the hospital..I think it's a good idea right about now.
Natalie

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Truthfinder
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Wow, thanks Ping and others - some really good information here. I had no idea Toxo was even a TB infection.....

I wish I would hear back from my friend to see if her daughter tested positive for either Toxo or Lyme. So far, no word.

Tracy

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Tracy
.... Prayers for the Lyme Community - every day at 6 p.m. Pacific Time and 9 p.m. Eastern Time just take a few moments to say a prayer wherever you are.

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AliG
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Hi Natalie-

I'm up over the other side of 33. The female Dr.E in is pretty near you. Is that your LLMD? I've been going to the other one.

Hospital [Eek!] - i went to Centrastate with severe tailbone pain, following a massive migraine. Big mistake! That could just be the ER ducks and my poor timing though.

I believe I read somewhere about them having Dxd & Txd babesiosis. I was hoping for a little more familiarity with TBDs.

I just thought of another weird theory, I'm going to go post it in a new thread.

PM me & let me know how you make out with our local Drs.

Good luck!
[Wink]
Ali

[ 07. September 2008, 08:48 PM: Message edited by: AliG ]

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AliG
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Tracy-

Thanks for the update. Let us know what you find out. I'm sure everyone is curious.


I hope Carol's daughter is OK. That sounds really scary. [Frown]

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Truthfinder
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Ali, I'll let you know what I find out, especially since she has the eye inflammation thing going on, too.

And Carol, I meant to post that I would be very concerned about your daughter's Toxo with a CD-57 test result like what your daughter had. I think you are smart to look at treatment options.

Tracy

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Tracy
.... Prayers for the Lyme Community - every day at 6 p.m. Pacific Time and 9 p.m. Eastern Time just take a few moments to say a prayer wherever you are.

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Hi- I just find it interesting that so many of us "test positive" for the same thing..now toxoplasmosis.. I bet a lot of us (I did) have also tested for EBV as well?

LD is certainly wreaking havoc on our immune systems... It makes me scared sometimes to think of what can happen later in life if we can't "get better."

Hey Ali- are you in Millstone? And yes, Dr. E has been my doc for 2+ years now. I am going to see this infectious disease doc at JSMC..My hematologist just referred her to me wiht the toxo and the other h. pylori thing I seem to have too. I go there for my infusion treatments to try to combat this ITP/low platelet thing. Her name is Dr. C--anyone hear of her?

It will be interesting to see what we find out about this whole toxo thing.. I'll keep watching this post and I'll let you know what this new doc says- my appt. with this her is Thursday..

What a week ahead I have - hospital tomorrow and then 4 more dr. appts this week.. it just never ends!
Natalie

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Cobweb
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I just pm'd Aniek-since we are in the same neck of the woods.
I agree- for Toxo to show up in a scalp tumor seems a bit extreme. And her CD57 was lower than mine!!!!!
I feel like she has been abandoned by the medical professionals.

Carol B
PS Carolyn is 15-turning 16 December 25th!

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Aniek
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I don't think it's odd that so many of us test positive for toxo. Toxo is a very common infection. Healthy people get sick for a couple weeks from toxo and that's it.

Because we have compromised immune systems, our bodies might not fight the toxo as well. The toxo may cause more problems.

The tests are usually antibody tests. For all I know, the toxo is not causing my current symtpoms. But my LLMD wants to treat just in case it is.

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NatalieA
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Hi Aniek- when you say the tests are usually antibody tests, I guess you mean it just shows if we ever had it or were exposed to it, not necessarily if we ACTIVELY have it going on, right?

So before the docs decide to treat or not to treat, are there further tests that can be run to determine if it is an active infection? Or is there nothing conclusive?

Thanks
Natalie

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Aniek
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Natalie,

There are some tests that look at the stool and can tell an active infection. But my LLMD said the problem is that the tests need to be done very soon after the sample is collected, and that doesn't happen.

I'm definitely not an expert on this...figuring it out as I go on. Wish I had better answers myself.

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AliG
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bumping up.

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Note: I'm NOT a medical professional. The information I share is from my own personal research and experience. Please do not construe anything I share as medical advice, which should only be obtained from a licensed medical practitioner.

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LittleLymie19
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Has anyone pinpointed any particular or distinguishing symptoms of latent or chronic toxoplasmosis?
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METALLlC BLUE
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It's almost 3 years later and AliG had hit the nail *almost* on the head in terms of the Smear from F-labs parasite. Nice job AliG. [Smile]

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I am not a physician, so do your own research to confirm any ideas given and then speak with a health care provider you trust.

E-mail: [email protected]

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swedish lyme sufferer
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YES!

Toxo requires SPECIAL treatment!
Mepron is NOT enough.

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CD57
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Wow! this is incredible.
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swedish lyme sufferer
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OK this is for HIV-patients, but I think could be applied for immunodeficient lyme-sufferers.

http://www.aids.org/atn/a-079-04.html

Toxoplasmosis

AIDS-related toxoplasmosis is a serious infection of the central nervous system caused by the protozoan Toxoplasma gondii. The symptoms of toxoplasmic encephalitis can be difficult to diagnose with certainty, but as mentioned above call for urgent attention.

Various mammals and birds can be infected with T. gondii, but only cats appear to harbor the reproductive forms of the organism. Resting forms called oocysts are shed by cats in their feces, where they can survive in the soil for more than a year. Here they are a ready source of infection for other animals and humans. In humans the oocysts themselves are not damaging, but when the multiplicative forms, or active parasites, break out of the cysts they are capable of causing disease in infants and immunosuppressed adults. Active parasite forms of T. gondii can also be transmitted to people in undercooked meat.

The standard treatment for toxoplasmosis is pyrimethamine with sulfadiazine. These drugs are effective against the
parasite, but they do not destroy oocysts, so a continuous maintenance dose is necessary to squelch emerging parasites. Some people reach toxic intolerance of these drugs, and folinic acid (Leucovorin) is then used to diminish this toxicity. Pyrimethamine is also being studied in combinations with dapsone, trimetrexate, clindamycin and spiramycin (investigational), instead of sulfadiazine. Clindamycin is probably substituted most often.

Infrequently, pyrimethamine fails altogether and amphotericin B has been tried next. This drug can cause severe side effects, however, as many people who received it for cryptococcal meningitis will verify. An investigational drug, fluconazole, has been substituted effectively for this kind of meningitis, and tolerated more easily. Accordingly, fluconazole has been sug- gested for the treatment of toxoplasmosis. The FDA will probably approve fluconazole later this year (for background, see AIDS TREATMENT NEWS #58), but it may be accessible now with the help of buyersU clubs in New York and San Francisco (see "Obtaining Treatments from Abroad" in AIDS TREATMENT NEWS#78). Incidentally, researchers at the Universite Paris VI have found a new, less toxic derivative of amphotericin B called N-fru-AmB which demon- strated antibiotic and immune boosting effects in mice. It is not yet clear if it will be of use in humans, or for which infections.

Issue #75 of AIDS TREATMENT NEWS reported on two other promising options for toxoplasmosis: roxithromycin, approved in France, and azithromycin, approved in Yugoslavia. They may be as effective as pyrimethamine/sulfadiazine but more easily tolerated. However, we do not know results of human use for toxoplasmosis at this time. Roxithromycin might be obtainable through buyersU clubs (see paragraph above).

The abstracts of the 1988 Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy (ICAAC) presented results of varying combinations of pyrimethamine, sulfadiazine and arprinocid (investigational) against T. gondii in mice. Arprinocid was found to work poorly when combined with pyrimethamine, and pyrimethamine alone was somewhat more effective that either sulfadiazine or arprinocid alone. But arprinocid and sulfadiazine together worked synergistically, the best combination tried. Additionally, a metabolite of arprinocid called arprinocid-N-oxide was more effective alone in smaller doses than arprinocid (Luft and Frankel, abstract number 1420). Unfortunately, another study found that AZT made pyrimethamine much less effective in animal tests (Israelski, Tom, and Remington, abstract number 349).

In January 1988 in The Journal of Infectious Diseases, Drs. Benjamin L. Luft and Jack S. Remington authored a comprehensive discussion of diagnostic procedures and potential therapies for toxoplasmosis. In addition to many of the drugs mentioned above they proposed the investigational agents gamma interferon and interleukin-2 as candidates against T. gondii.

Lastly, researchers at the Robert Koch Institute in Berlin found that monophosphoryl lipid A, or MPL (not FDA approved), enhanced resistance in mice when administered before or at the same time they were injected with T. gondii (Masihi and others, 1988). This raises the possibility of prophylaxis or chronic suppressive therapy for toxoplasmosis. Also, we have heard anecdotally that people who are taking Septra for PCP show a reduced incidence of toxoplasmosis. Hopefully some trends will be identified for practical use.

Most physicians we spoke with feel that AIDS-related toxoplasmosis is a reactivated infection from early, common exposure to T. gondii; and indeed a large portion of the worldUs population is chronically but asymptomatically infected. Of people with AIDS who have the antibodies which verify this latent infection, at least 30% develop toxoplasmic encephalitis. This incidence may reflect the comparative virulence of different parasite strains operating within a context of immunodeficiency. But another consideration factor for the progression from latent to symptomatic infection is inoculum threshold the amount or concentration necessary to cause illness in someone. "Superinfection", or repeated exposure, could be a mode of reaching this threshold. It seems reasonably possible, especially for an immunocompromised person, that some infections might be avoided or suppressed by minimizing exposure to the organism.

Obviously, cat litter boxes could be kept away from food preparation and eating areas, and the litter disposed of by someone who is not at risk for toxoplasmosis. Cats should not be fed raw meat, and anyone who handles a cat or changes the litter should wash their hands thoroughly afterward. In this regard, toxoplasmosis is a "zoonotic" disease, one that can be transmitted from animals to humans.(1) Since birds, cats, fish, reptiles and rodents can all carry various zoonotic diseases, people with pets should observe careful handwashing after handling pets and before meals or food preparation.

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timaca
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Here is a lab that specializes in toxoplasmosis:

http://www.pamf.org/serology/clinicianguide.html

They have a contact email and will answer inquiries from doctors...but not patients.

The director of the lab is a kind, caring physician.

Best, Timaca

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tosho
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quote:
Originally posted by swedish lyme sufferer:
An investigational drug, fluconazole, has been substituted effectively for this kind of meningitis, and tolerated more easily. Accordingly, fluconazole has been sug- gested for the treatment of toxoplasmosis.

Interesting finding, Swedish Lyme Sufferer.
Now it makes me think why did I feel horribly sick when I was on 1x100mg/daily fluconazole back in 2006 before I started any abx for lyme.
Fluconazole may work on Lyme and now I see that on toxoplasmosis protozoa too, so I wonder if there is any connection between fluconazole and 'mystery bug'.

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[Bb WB igm+] [B.henselae PCR+] [Chlamydia pneum.igm+igg+] [EBV igm-igg+]

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tosho
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BTW, I had a negative antibodies for toxoplasmosis. Does it rule out this infection for 100% ?

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swedish lyme sufferer
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NO it can be hard do diagnose, I have read some where.
So I suppose it cannot really be confirmed by blood testing.

Seems to be like lyme. Some docs will "rule it out" or call it "past" infection when it is not super-positive....

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swedish lyme sufferer
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As symtpoms overlap both babesia and lyme disease I think it is possible that many people here have it re-activated.

Bactrim works on some cases, as does Fluconazole, and Mepron + zith to some extent (but brain penetration is poor here).

I am convinced I have it, easy to catch through pork etc.
Not only transmission by cats.

Involuntary movements etc, low grade fever, sweating are all sx of toxo....

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timaca
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tosho~
I also had totally negative antibodies to toxoplasmosis and the ID doctor caring for me is a toxoplasmosis expert...he agreed that toxo was not a problem for me based on my test results.

We have learned to treat what is obvious. Looking at your signature, I would think that Cpn is an issue for you, given your +IgM result. Have you been to www.cpnhelp.org? (Cpn is an issue for me too, along with several viruses)

Best, Timaca

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disturbedme
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This is interesting, especially since Mepron and Clindamycin have helped me a good bit.

As well as when I was on Diflucan, I noticed it helped me somewhat as well (made me feel slightly better at the time I took it), without the herx.

I will definitely ask my LLMD to have me tested for this.

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My Lyme Story

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tosho
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Timaca, sure I am treated for cpn all the time - I mean - double intracellular abx + pulsing tinidazole.

Currently: Bicillin Rifampin Roxithromycin Mepron pulsing tinidazole

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tosho
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Thanks, Swedish Lyme Sufferer.
By the way - have you ever taken Rovamycine (Spiramycin) ?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spiramycin

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nellypointis
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quote:
Originally posted by tosho:
BTW, I had a negative antibodies for toxoplasmosis. Does it rule out this infection for 100% ?

Tosho,

I had always tested negative for past exposure to toxoplasmosis (which is rare in France where 80+% of the population has been exposed to it).

Then once out of the blue one day I tested positive which surprised me because I never go anywhere near cats, always wash my hands after going to the toilet, and NEVER eat undercooked meat (which nearly all French people do), but I loathe it so I always have my meat extra-cooked.

I was already quite sick when I became seropositive for toxo, the ID doctor I was seeing then told me it could be significant and that I should get another test a few weeks later, I did and it showed "past exposure" without further comments.

I took it to mean that it was not a problem but that was before I had realised how complex all this was.

I don't really know what part toxo is playing in my infectious cocktail but my head used to nearly explode whenever I took any anti-protozoal treatment (toxo cysts bursting, causing a lot of inflammation? or worse sending toxo everywhere?)

Nelly

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