Does Babesia always "herx"?

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BlakeAlexander
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2017
Total Posts : 33
   Posted 2/27/2018 10:56 AM (GMT -6)   
After months of no response to Lyme specific antibiotics (Doxy/Rifampin) my LLMD advised me to discontinue and run an IGENEX co infection panel. I tested positive for Babesia Duncani with an Igm antibody level of 640.

My doctor was a bit surprised because I have never really had babesia symptoms. My only symptom that could be babesia specific is chills. I very very very rarely have night sweats and do not have fevers, flushing, air hunger, cough etc. Because of my symptomology my doctor was a little hesitant to prescribe babesia medication. He said antibody levels do not definitively mean active infection and that it could be a representation of my immune systems reaction to the organism. But he ended up giving me malarone (4/day) to be taken with high dose artemisinin and cryptolepis.

According to what I have read on this forum most people herx with babesia meds. What if you do not have a herx? Does it mean you most likely do not have babesia?

My main symptoms are extreme and constant fatigue, body aches, chills, and very mild cognitive issues.

Post Edited (BlakeAlexander) : 2/27/2018 9:12:04 AM (GMT-7)


hammer8
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2017
Total Posts : 61
   Posted 2/27/2018 10:59 AM (GMT -6)   
What are your symptoms? For me, babesia manifests as mostly cognitive issues and fatigue.

BlakeAlexander
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2017
Total Posts : 33
   Posted 2/27/2018 12:06 PM (GMT -6)   
hammer8,

pretty bad fatigue, body aches, cognitive issues and chills are my primary symptoms

Girlie
Forum Moderator


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 33963
   Posted 2/27/2018 1:27 PM (GMT -6)   
BlakeAlexander said...
After months of no response to Lyme specific antibiotics (Doxy/Rifampin) my LLMD advised me to discontinue and run an IGENEX co infection panel. I tested positive for Babesia Duncani with an Igm antibody level of 640.

My doctor was a bit surprised because I have never really had babesia symptoms. My only symptom that could be babesia specific is chills. I very very very rarely have night sweats and do not have fevers, flushing, air hunger, cough etc. Because of my symptomology my doctor was a little hesitant to prescribe babesia medication. He said antibody levels do not definitively mean active infection and that it could be a representation of my immune systems reaction to the organism. But he ended up giving me malarone (4/day) to be taken with high dose artemisinin and cryptolepis.

According to what I have read on this forum most people herx with babesia meds. What if you do not have a herx? Does it mean you most likely do not have babesia?

My main symptoms are extreme and constant fatigue, body aches, chills, and very mild cognitive issues.


The symptoms of the three B's overlap some. You can have fatigue, body aches, chills and cognitive issues with Babesia. You may only have one symptom of babs and even be asymptomatic. (Dr. Horowizt talked about a patient who wasn't getting better...and he treated her for babesia even though she was not showing babesia signs/symptoms and she got well.

Take a look at this article on babesia - scroll down to the green box of symptoms.
See fatigue is there, and some cognitive issues, too.

So how long have you been on the malarone? and no response?

Most LLMD's will prescribe an antibiotic to go with the malarone.

/suzycohen.com/articles/lyme_babesia_treatment/
Moderator, Lyme Forum
Symp started April/2013; Buhner's Lyme May 15-July24/14; Igenex pos. July 3/14
Doxy: July 4-Aug.24/14;Zithro July26-Aug24/14; Amox + Proben. Aug. 29/14;
added biaxin Sept. 26/14
Disc. amox,added Ceftin Nov. 20th.;
Disc. biaxin added Buhner bart herbs Dec/14;Jan/15 pulsing Tinda (w/ Ceftin);
Abx/herb break Apr-July/15; July-mino; Aug. added Rif;
Nov./15 mino - to biaxi

Rikky1
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2015
Total Posts : 2925
   Posted 2/27/2018 2:49 PM (GMT -6)   
be very careful with babesia esp duncani as i've heard too many stories where people either have only slight symptoms, symptoms they attribute to another pathogen or no symptoms at all.

put me in the latter bucket yet i haven't been able to shake it until recently and that's after 9 months of mostly babs focused treatment in 2015 then a year straight for all of 2017.

note even if you don't think babesia is an issue it can block progress on other infections given its profile and size (20x bigger than lyme and other buggers) per Dr. J in DC.

duncani is a real b*itch to get rid of most LLMD's understate how hard it is to eradicate and seem not to treat long enough.

BlakeAlexander
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2017
Total Posts : 33
   Posted 2/27/2018 3:03 PM (GMT -6)   
Girlie,

Today is the 4th day of the malarone. I actually have a cold right now. Symptoms (mostly sinus) started yesterday. I highly doubt that this is a herx but you never know... So I am definitely keeping an eye on that as well as any other potential die off symptoms.

And yes, in a few weeks I may ask my doctor to add either azithromycin or clarithromycin. Do you have any recommendations for what would pair well with malarone besides macrolides?

BlakeAlexander
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2017
Total Posts : 33
   Posted 2/27/2018 3:05 PM (GMT -6)   
Rikky1,

Yes, I couldn't agree more. Ignoring "classical" babesia symptoms and not testing or paying attention too could put you in a bad spot and definitely hinder treatment progress if babesia is present and you are focusing only on lyme.

Post Edited (BlakeAlexander) : 2/27/2018 1:08:41 PM (GMT-7)


Girlie
Forum Moderator


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 33963
   Posted 2/27/2018 4:40 PM (GMT -6)   
BlakeAlexander said...
Girlie,

Today is the 4th day of the malarone. I actually have a cold right now. Symptoms (mostly sinus) started yesterday. I highly doubt that this is a herx but you never know... So I am definitely keeping an eye on that as well as any other potential die off symptoms.

And yes, in a few weeks I may ask my doctor to add either azithromycin or clarithromycin. Do you have any recommendations for what would pair well with malarone besides macrolides?


I would add an antibiotic in sooner than later...

You could add minocycline, doxycycline, or Bactrim DS.

With the Mepron I'm taking Ceftin plus bactrim. (plus 1600 mg of Artemisinin)

I would think ceftin would be an option to take with malarone as well.
Moderator, Lyme Forum
Symp started April/2013; Buhner's Lyme May 15-July24/14; Igenex pos. July 3/14
Doxy: July 4-Aug.24/14;Zithro July26-Aug24/14; Amox + Proben. Aug. 29/14;
added biaxin Sept. 26/14
Disc. amox,added Ceftin Nov. 20th.;
Disc. biaxin added Buhner bart herbs Dec/14;Jan/15 pulsing Tinda (w/ Ceftin);
Abx/herb break Apr-July/15; July-mino; Aug. added Rif;
Nov./15 mino - to biaxi

BlakeAlexander
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2017
Total Posts : 33
   Posted 2/27/2018 7:01 PM (GMT -6)   
Wouldn't adding any of those antibiotics be considered "monotherapy" for lyme? Doesn't lyme always need at least two drugs?

Girlie said...
BlakeAlexander said...
Girlie,

Today is the 4th day of the malarone. I actually have a cold right now. Symptoms (mostly sinus) started yesterday. I highly doubt that this is a herx but you never know... So I am definitely keeping an eye on that as well as any other potential die off symptoms.

And yes, in a few weeks I may ask my doctor to add either azithromycin or clarithromycin. Do you have any recommendations for what would pair well with malarone besides macrolides?


I would add an antibiotic in sooner than later...

You could add minocycline, doxycycline, or Bactrim DS.

With the Mepron I'm taking Ceftin plus bactrim. (plus 1600 mg of Artemisinin)

I would think ceftin would be an option to take with malarone as well.

Rikky1
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2015
Total Posts : 2925
   Posted 2/27/2018 9:05 PM (GMT -6)   
yes you should add two abx unless you take bactrim which is two abx in one already. bactrim is a great drug its a mild biofilm buster and hits all 3 B's to some extent. it typically won't eradicate any of the infections but it sure helps to knock them down and keep them at bay

Girlie
Forum Moderator


Date Joined May 2014
Total Posts : 33963
   Posted 2/27/2018 9:26 PM (GMT -6)   
BlakeAlexander said...
Wouldn't adding any of those antibiotics be considered "monotherapy" for lyme? Doesn't lyme always need at least two drugs?

Girlie said...
BlakeAlexander said...
Girlie,

Today is the 4th day of the malarone. I actually have a cold right now. Symptoms (mostly sinus) started yesterday. I highly doubt that this is a herx but you never know... So I am definitely keeping an eye on that as well as any other potential die off symptoms.

And yes, in a few weeks I may ask my doctor to add either azithromycin or clarithromycin. Do you have any recommendations for what would pair well with malarone besides macrolides?


I would add an antibiotic in sooner than later...

You could add minocycline, doxycycline, or Bactrim DS.

With the Mepron I'm taking Ceftin plus bactrim. (plus 1600 mg of Artemisinin)

I would think ceftin would be an option to take with malarone as well.


Many (most?) LLMD's will add one antibiotic to mepron or malarone.

Dr. J (who I am seeing now) has two with it - but he does not have his patients taking these meds daily. They are pulsed...which makes it more tolerable.

I subscribe to a Lyme treatment book (online) I think it's $4.99 per month. It's by LLMD MR in Seattle.
You can see different protocols there.
He prescribes one antibiotic with malarone or mepron...but then says if not effective, to add in Bactrim.

(I think I'm remembering it correctly)

www.treatlyme.net

You can sign up , read the information and then end your subscription..(write down all the protocols). So, it would only cost you $4.99

I think Dr. H. also prescribes more than one antibiotic with the Malarone/Mepron , as well.
Not sure if he pulses though.
Moderator, Lyme Forum
Symp started April/2013; Buhner's Lyme May 15-July24/14; Igenex pos. July 3/14
Doxy: July 4-Aug.24/14;Zithro July26-Aug24/14; Amox + Proben. Aug. 29/14;
added biaxin Sept. 26/14
Disc. amox,added Ceftin Nov. 20th.;
Disc. biaxin added Buhner bart herbs Dec/14;Jan/15 pulsing Tinda (w/ Ceftin);
Abx/herb break Apr-July/15; July-mino; Aug. added Rif;
Nov./15 mino - to biaxi
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