lyme and babesia differences?

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teeners
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2011
Total Posts : 213
   Posted 1/29/2012 9:05 PM (GMT -6)   
recently it has been suggested to me that i may have babesia as well as lyme by some members of a local support group based on my symptoms. however, everything i read says babesia usually starts with high fever and chills, and symptoms often include night sweats. i have had lowgrade fevers and burning sensations but nothing like drenching sweats or high fevers. ive also had extreme fatigue and a little shortness of breath. how easy is it to distinguish between the two? and does treatment for babesia also kill lyme bacteria? i see a new llmd feb 15 (my last had his license suspended), but am curious in the meantime

Inhimwelive
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2011
Total Posts : 174
   Posted 1/29/2012 9:34 PM (GMT -6)   
I am being treated for both and have had some of the same questions.. I never had a high fever but I did have really bad night sweats. So bad in fact that I lost about 20lbs in two weeks... I do not exhibit all the classic symptoms of babesia either but since I started treatment for it I have started feeling much better. As far as treatment goes they are both treated with different antibiotics.. Lyme is typically doxy and Babesia is a Malaria type illness and is usually treated with Mepron.
I don't have an easy answer for you but a good llmd will screen you for Babesia.

borderlyme
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Jul 2011
Total Posts : 1347
   Posted 1/30/2012 11:35 PM (GMT -6)   
My LLMD recently tested me for babesia, as apparently it was showing up in a lot of her other patients recently (my test was negative). While waiting for my results I kept thinking, "but I don't have the symptoms of babesia!" My understanding was that it was distinguished by high fevers, night sweats, and air hunger. I also remember hearing something about decreased WBC count, but I could be wrong - all of these coinfections get so confusing and overlap so much.

I think there are pretty detailed descriptions in the "New to Lyme" thread that might help to differentiate between Lyme and Babesia. Honestly I think it's really tough to sort out what causes what symptoms - these aren't simple infections that act in predictable ways - plus everything is so interconnected - someone with babesia alone will probably exhibit symptoms a bit differently than someone with both babesia and lyme, etc.

Has your doctor tested you for babesia? That would probably be the best place to start if you're worrying about it. I'd discuss the possibility with your doctor. Also, from what I recall, babesia (and/or bartonella) are usually suspected when Lyme treatment isn't progressing as well is it maybe should (which is why my doctor has been exhaustively looking into what else could be going on with me - though I think it's all the viruses & toxin overload for me) ...does this sound like a red flag for you? Obviously I'm not saying "if your treatment is going well you couldn't possibly have babesia," but it's always a tough call when we can't know 100% for sure what we have and what we don't.
Co-Moderator, Lyme Disease Forum

Traveler
Forum Moderator


Date Joined May 2007
Total Posts : 14784
   Posted 1/31/2012 2:12 PM (GMT -6)   
One of the best authors that I have read - in my opinion - about dealing with Babesia is Dr. James Schaller. You can download a free copy of his book "Babesia Update 2009" for free by going to www.drjoneskids.org and clicking on the link for Babesia on the left side of the page. At the bottom of the Babesia page, you will see the links.

The more these infections get studied the researchers are finding that they are more complex than was thought before. You don't have to have symptoms to have an infection of Babesia - a "silent" infection as it's called. It can also come back to life spontaneously, after a splenectomy (partial or whole) , or when the immune system is suppressed - even after treatment.

I feel like it's well worth the time to be as sure as possible that you don't have this infection. A LLMD is your best bet to evaluate you to determine if you have this infection.
Co-Moderator, Lyme Disease ;)

Treating with Acupuncture, Traditional & Modern Chinese Medicine & Western Herbs. Before tx, I had all but 20 of the symptoms on the "Master Symptom List"

"Absence of proof is not proof of absence" - Dr. Edwin Masters, great LLMD & researcher -RIP

I break up my post because my eyes have been effected by TBI's as well, making long paragraphs very hard to read.
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