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» LymeNet Flash » Questions and Discussion » Medical Questions » Babesia and Herx

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Author Topic: Babesia and Herx
CLR
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I understand the Herxheimer reaction that occurs when bacteria die off. This is supported by clear medical literature.

What about Babesia? Babesia is a blood parasite, not a bacteria. I can find nothing that supports the theory that "babesia die-off" causes a Herxheimer reaction.

A doctor also told me that a "herx" would not occur during treatment for Babesia.

What gives? Is there any medical research/literature out there that supports the notion that a herx reaction occurs when treating Babesia?

Posts: 28 | From Kansas | Registered: Aug 2009  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Dekrator48
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CLR,

I don't know about literature, but I do know that when I started my full dose of Mepron (1 tsp in AM and 2 tsp in PM), my muscles became more sore and my joints became very sore.

After 6 weeks on Mepron, the soreness remains.

I don't know if this was caused by some kind of die off of babesia (neg test), or maybe Mepron allows the lyme meds to attack lyme better, creating more die off of lyme.

--------------------
The fibromyalgia I've had for 32 years was an undiagnosed Lyme symptom.

"For I know the plans I have for you", declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future". -Jeremiah 29:11

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riverpatrol
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I understand your confusion because I was just as confused when I started Babesia treatment. But with my very first dosage it knocked me to the ground. When I told my doctor of the severe reaction, he said that was exactly the reaction he expected. Thanks for the warning!

I Googled babesia herx and could not find any medical reference, but several blogs and posts.

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^
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Hoosiers51
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When I take something for babesia, and then I get symptoms, I call it a "flare".....because who knows if it is just the babesia coming out of hiding that we're feeling, as opposed to the actual dying of babesia.
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opus2828
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My LLMD said that Mepron is also a strong cyst buster for lyme and that the herx may be related to that.
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kitts
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I have been on 1 tsp am 1 tsp pm of Mepron for 4 months. I have herxed everyday. I feel best in the am before I take my first dose at noon. Does anyone else have similar stories?

--------------------
Kitty
Lyme, Babesia, XMRV virus Diagnosed 2008
Mepron, Zithro, Cepaflexin, Fluconozol, Vitamin, Herb therapy

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Lymetoo
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All I know is that my worst herxes were from babesia meds.

--------------------
--Lymetutu--
Opinions, not medical advice!

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richedie
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But I believe the only thing Mepron does is stop Babesia from reproducing. No?

How long do you all think a herx can last?

--------------------
Mepron/Zith/Ceftin
Doxy/Biaxin/Flagyl pulse.
Artemisinin with Doxy/Biaxin.
Period of Levaquin and Ceftin.
Then Levaquin, Bactrim and Biaxin.
Bactrim/Augmentin/Rifampin.
Mepron/Biaxin/Artemisinin/Cat's Claw
Rifampin/Bactrim/Alinia
Plaquenil/Biaxin

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JamesNYC
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I do not understand how one can herx with babs treatment

Mepron keeps babs from replicating. The infected RBCs are cleared out of the bloodstream as the RBCs are naturally replaced about every 3 months. There is no actual die-off to cause a build up of toxins, and therefore a herx.

People are feeling lousy after medication, but maybe it could be due to the Mepron itself.

It is *theorized* that some babesia can hide in bone marrow and some organs. However, as they are not allowed to replicated, the immune system kills them. Still, I do see how this can cause a herx.

I've been on Mepron twice. Once for 6 months. And now for another 6 to 9 months (or more) at double dosage. I have never felt anything I could identify as a "herx".

Plus a herx is supposed to be caused by a large, sudden die-off which causes a build up of toxins. So I'm confused as how It can continue over a long period of time.

So, if I am missing something can someone please explain how a babseia herx would work? (of course maybe it's one of those things that there is no technical explanation for and it varies by individual).

Anyway, just throwing some of my understanding into the air.

James

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Hoosiers51
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Would it be possible to feel better from babesia treatment the same day you start it, or the second or third day?
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springshowers
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I agree with James and had the same experience.

James .. what other meds and treatments have you been on that you do not herx from?

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tick battler
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My children have been on babesia treatment for months. After 8 months, we were not sure if one of my boys had kicked it, so we stopped the babesia meds for 2 months. But his symptoms came back so we had to start it up again.

On the second day of Mepron, my boy said that his ear hurt really badly. He happened to have a bump near where he was saying it hurt, so I brought him to an ENT that we had been to before.

Turns out the bump was something common and benign. But during his exam, when he tried to lift his chin up for the doctor, he cried out b/c it hurt. Then I realized that his entire neck was stiff and it went all the way up to his ear. His neck was stiff for about 4 days during this first week back on Mepron and then it resolved.

I specifically asked his LLMD about this, as I had also heard you onlly "herx" with Lyme treatment. His LLMD told me that this was actually a Lyme herx from the Mepron killing cysts. But then I asked about the night sweating that often increases from starting babs meds and he said that was a different mechanism. I didn't get any more detail than that.

tickbattler

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TF
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When I began treating babesiosis (I had a positive from Igenex--they actually saw it in my blood) I began getting weekly "sick" times.

My lyme doc called these "flares." He said that babs has a 1-week cycle and a 2-week cycle. I was experiencing the 1-week cycle. The question is, why did I START experiencing this cycle only when I began treating the babs?

My babs treatment was Bactrim DS. (I could not take mepron and zith.)

Anyway, the flares started very, very shortly after starting the Bactrim. I had already gotten rid of my lyme and bartonella. This was the last infection to be treated.

I got these 48 hour sick times like clockwork starting every Friday evening and lifting every Sunday evening.

When I told the doc this, he had me add artimesinin to encompass the flare. (I started taking it every Friday morning and stopped taking it Monday morning.)

The artimesinin had an amazing, immediate impact. My sick time that weekend was only 6 hours instead of 48 and it was not nearly as severe as what I had experienced the 4 weekends before.

We gauged when to end treatment by the flares. They eventually went to every 2 weeks, then eventually became just an overwhelming urge to go to sleep for 1 hour, and finally disappeared altogether.

To me, this was amazing from a medical standpoint.

So, my doc called them "flares" rather than herxes, but they were so bad they may as well have been called a herx--totally debilitating mentally and physically.

Many people don't know Bactrim will kill babesiosis, but it sure did it for me. It took a long time though. That's why it is not the treatment of choice. My doc said it takes twice as long to get rid of babs with Bactrim DS than it does with mepron/zith.

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richedie
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I don't know if I am having a herx but I have been getting worse for a long time. My arms are becoming less and less functional and pain through the room. I am not just on Mepron, but Zith and Ceftin as well so there is more taking place.

I don't have sick times or cycles, just never ending pain.

I also had several positive FISH tests for Babesia and a few other positive tests for the critter! Ugh!

--------------------
Mepron/Zith/Ceftin
Doxy/Biaxin/Flagyl pulse.
Artemisinin with Doxy/Biaxin.
Period of Levaquin and Ceftin.
Then Levaquin, Bactrim and Biaxin.
Bactrim/Augmentin/Rifampin.
Mepron/Biaxin/Artemisinin/Cat's Claw
Rifampin/Bactrim/Alinia
Plaquenil/Biaxin

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seekhelp
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TF, it sounds as if you were the perfect responder to Lyme / Babesia meds. Textbook! In fact like some of the stories in The Lyme Disease Solution book.
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HaplyCarlessdave
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quote:
What about Babesia? Babesia is a blood parasite, not a bacteria. I can find nothing that supports the theory that "babesia die-off" causes a Herxheimer reaction.

A doctor also told me that a "herx" would not occur during treatment for Babesia.

What gives? Is there any medical research/literature out there that supports the notion that a herx reaction occurs when treating Babesia? [/QB]

I suspect that it's the toxicity of the atovaquone itself, rather than toxins from the Babesia plasmodium. But it would seem that the result would appear similar to a "herx". The key may be to start with a lower dose and work up, if you want to avoid this reaction.

But the timing is also a factor..
DaveS

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Amelia
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I have always thought this piece was interesting:

http://lymemd.blogspot.com/2008/12/babesia-herxheimer-reactions.html

I herxed like mad- or whatever one wants to call it

with my Babs treatment- sweats especially.

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Skyler
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I get so sick from mepron within a few days that I have to stop taking it. I do not know if it's a herx or not, but I get the feeling it is.


I have never lasted more than 6 days on mepron.


IF it gets to be too much there are other things you can try, like artamisean (spelling is wrong) and malarone.
Those seem to be good for people who get really sick on Mepron. They are weaker medications, and perhaps that the trick.

--------------------
I'm probably sleeping...

Posts: 419 | From Florida | Registered: Apr 2007  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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