Posted 4/28/2015 8:09 PM (GMT -6)
I know it's lengthy, but here is an excerpt from Dr. Burruscano's guudelines on Managing Lyme Disease, which I find very informative:
LYME DISEASE REHABILITATION
Despite antibiotic treatments, patients will NOT return to normal unless they exercise, so therefore an aggressive rehab program is absolutely necessary. It is a fact that a properly executed exercise program can actually go beyond the antibiotics in helping to clear the symptoms and to maintain a remission.
Although the scientific basis for the benefits of exercises is not known, there are several reasonable theories. It is known that Bb will die if exposed to all but the tiniest oxygen concentrations. If an aggressive exercise program can increase tissue perfusion and oxygen levels, then this may play a role in what is being seen. Also, during aggressive exercise, the core body temperature can rise above 102 degrees; it is known that B. burgdorferi is very heat sensitive. Perhaps it is the added tissue oxygenation, or higher body temperature, or the combination that weakens the Lyme Borrelia, and allows the antibiotics and our defenses to be more effective. Regular exercise-related movements can help mobilize lymph and enhance circulation. In addition, there is now evidence that a carefully structured exercise program may benefit T-cell function: this function will depress for 12 to 24+ hours after exercise, but then rebound. This T-cell depression is more pronounced after aerobics which is why aerobics are not allowed. The goal is to exercise intermittently, with exercise days separated by days of total rest, including an effort to have plenty of quality sleep. The trick is to time the exercise days to take advantage of these rebounds. For an example, begin with an exercise day followed by 3 to 5 rest days; as stamina improves, then fewer rest days will be needed in between workouts. However, because T-cell functions do fall for at least one day after aggressive exercises, be sure to never exercise two days in a row. Finally, an in intermittent exercise program, properly executed, may help to reset the HPA axis more towards normal. On the following page is an exercise prescription that details these recommendations.
This program may begin with classical physical therapy if necessary. The physical therapy should involve massage, heat, ultrasound and simple range of motion exercises to relieve discomfort and promote better sleep and flexibility. Ice (vasoconstriction) and electrical stimulation (muscle spasm and trauma) should not be used!