Stephen buhner Lyme and bartonella protocol

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Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2018
Total Posts : 78
   Posted 4/9/2018 12:37 AM (GMT -6)   
Hey everyone! I am thinking about starting stephen buhner's bartonella protocol. I do not have Lyme, but just Bart and have had it for a few years but not this bad as a recent trauma really brought out the infection where as before my immune system battled it down. How bad are the herxs though? I'm afraid I will be totally absent minded and crazy once I begin his herbal protocol. Do people's bodies usually adjust? I'm 19 and living with my grandmother and I going to work for this summer so I can't afford to be under functional. If anyone has expererienced with Stephen's protocols for Bart or even Lyme, can you share the experience? Thanks

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Date Joined May 2014
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   Posted 4/9/2018 2:23 AM (GMT -6)   
Bart herxes can be bad...but you can start treating with low doses...and very slowly increase.

I've been on buhner herbs for bart...but can't say I herxed really badly on them - I had added them to my antibiotic 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

Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2017
Total Posts : 505
   Posted 4/9/2018 3:54 AM (GMT -6)   
I’m on bart herbs. Just listen to your body if you’re feeling worse slow down with the dose and increase the detoxing. Good luck with it

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2016
Total Posts : 581
   Posted 4/9/2018 7:56 AM (GMT -6)   
My buher herb herx for bart was mostly anxiety mixed in with the typical fluish/clammy die-off feeling. It was managabale but if it was too uncomfortale, binders like bentonite clay & citrus pectin helped. Also epsom salt baths and IR saunas. Given your short period of time with the illness I think you'll do fine

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2017
Total Posts : 2041
   Posted 4/9/2018 3:58 PM (GMT -6)   

Hey! I'm doing Buhner's bartonella protocol as outlined in his bartonella book. I started with Japanese knotweed and the supportive herbs first and added the antimicrobial herbs last.

I don't expect you would have any issues with the supportive herbs, but I would still add them one at a time. I added a new one each week.

From my experience, the ones that will likely cause herxes:

Japanese knotweed
IHA (isatis/ houttuynia/ alchornea)
Sida acuta

For knotweed, I'd start with 1/16 to 1/8 of Buhner's starting dosage.

For IHA and Sida acuta, start with no more than 3 drops.

Wait until you get all the herbs going before increasing doses.

Herxes can be delayed. The effects of the herbs are cumulative. For me, it seems to hit around the 3 week mark.

Bartonella and herxing from it can cause pretty strong psych symptoms for some, such as anger, rage, irritability, mood swings, feeling overwhelmed, feelings of despair and hopelessness, suicidal thoughts or thoughts of wanting to die, nightmares or weird dreams, fear, anxiety, etc. These things can come on suddenly and also leave suddenly. Some have hallucinations - visual or auditory.

I'm not telling you all this to scare the crap out of you. Just so you can be aware and not thrown completely for a loop if you experience some of these. Everyone is different, so you may experience a lot of those or possibly none of those. Just want you to be prepared, especially if you're already having some of those as your normal symptom picture.

Also, be aware that after starting treatment, many people will experience new symptoms they've never had before, even if they've been sick a long time and have had a wide variety of symptoms. This tends to freak people out the most.

If your grandma is supportive and understanding about your illness and you feel comfortable confiding in her, you may want to let her know you are starting treatment and your symptoms may get worse or new symptoms may pop up. Hopefully, she could be a safety net for you. It always helps to have people around you that you can lean on for support. You will also find much support here. It still helps to have a physical hug or a shoulder to cry on. Speaking of crying, you might do that, too.

You will need to detox and take binders to deal with herxing. In the New to Lyme post, there is info on detoxing (epsom salt baths, dry brushing, lemon water, Alka-Seltzer Gold, etc). Binders - modified citrus pectin, activated charcoal, bentonite clay, Zeobind (zeolite), etc.

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2018
Total Posts : 78
   Posted 4/9/2018 8:10 PM (GMT -6)   
Okay thank you to everyone who responded to me. You guys don't know how much it means to me. My plan is to start the supportive herbs first then add in a new herb each week. My detoxing supplements will include milk thistle and activated charcoal since I have some gi problems I think from Bart and bentonite clay seems to make it worse for some reason. Hey walkingbyfaith, do you think you could outline the updated protocol and reply what herbs and the doses is it. I'm only aware of the I guess his old protocol which is on his website and includes less herbs I think. Ive heard some good things about his protocols. Thanks and thank you to everyone else.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2017
Total Posts : 2041
   Posted 4/9/2018 10:14 PM (GMT -6)   
This is from Buhner's bartonella book:


Cytokine Cascade Intervention: Japanese knotweed, EGCG with quercetin, and cordyceps. Chinese skullcap, NAC, and Vit E are also of benefit. Chinese skullcap should definitely be added if you are experiencing CNS problems.

Suggests mixing herbs in pomegranate jusce.

Organ Protection: Sida acuta for the red blood cells, hawthorn for the heart, milk thistle for the liver, red root for the lymph system and spleen, and EGCG (with quercetin), l-arginine, and Japanese knotweed for endothelial cell protection.

Immune Support: rhodiola and ashwaganda

Antibacterial Regimen: Alchornea cordifolia, isatis, and houttuynia, and sida acuta

Japanese knotweed: tincture, 1/4 - 1/2 tsp 3x daily
EGCG with Quercetin: 800 mg EGCG plus 1,200 mg quercetin daily
L-arginine: 500-1,000 mg 3x daily
Cordyceps: tincture, 1/4 tsp 3x daily; or powder, 1 tablespoon 3x daily, or capsules, 2,000 mg 3x daily
Sida acuta: tincture, 30-60 drops 3-4x daily
Red root: tincture, 1/4 - 1/2 tsp 3x daily
Milk thistle seed: standardized extract, capsules, 1,200 mg daily
Hawthorn: tincture, 1/4 - 1/2 tsp 3x daily
Rhodiola/ashwaganda combination: equal parts of each: tincture, 1/2 tsp 3x daily
Isatis/houttuynia/alchornea combination: equal parts of each: tincture, 1/2 tsp 3x daily
Vit E (alpha-tocopherol): 200 IU or 150 mg daily (optional)
Pomegranate juice


L-arginine: do NOT take this if you get chickenpox or shingles or have herpes viruses.

Buhner gives some pretty detailed instructions on this. EGCG has to be stored in the refrigerator. Don't expose it to the air for any length of time. Taking it with hard water affects its absorption. (Take with distilled water.) Taking it with milk will inactivate it and make it useless. Try to get a supplement with at least 80 percent total catechins, at least that amount of polyphenols, and 50 percent or so of EGCG. Dosage range is 400-800 mg daily. Take it with 1,200 mg quercetin daily - both at the same time in the morning. If you don't want to take EGCG supplements, you could instead drink green tea throughout the day.

Buhner's doses tend to be very high. Some of us never even close to his starting doses because we are too sensitive. If you turn out to be one of the sensitive people, don't despair. Just take whatever dose you're able to.

I don't follow the above protocol exactly. Instead of tinctures, I take Japanese knotweed in powder form and I take capsules of hawthorn, rhodiola. I've taken both capsules and powder forms of ashwaganda. I take rhodiola capsules only twice a day - morning and afternoon and ashwaganda once a day at night. (Rhodiola can give you energy and ashwaganda can make you sleepy.)

With severe brain/CNS involvement:
1. Chinese skullcap tincture, 1/4 tsp 3x daily, plus . . .
2. Greater celandine tincture, 1/4 tsp 3x daily plus . . .
3. Kudzu root tincture, 1/4 tsp 3x daily

He also recommends greater celandine and kudzu root for neural (nerve) pain.

With anxiety/hysteria:
1. Pasque flower tincture, 10 drops each hour as long as necessary or
2. Motherwort tincture , 1/4 -1/2 tsp up to 6x daily or
3. Coral root tincture, 30 drops (one dropperful) up to 6x daily or
4. Chinese skullcap tincture, 1/4 tsp 3x daily

There's much more, but this is more than enough to get you started. I would advise getting the herbs in the basic protocol plus Chinese skullcap and either kudzu root or greater celandine. I would advise taking the Chinese skullcap along with the basic protocol if you have any CNS or psych symptoms and keep the kudzu or celandine or one of the herbs listed for anxiety/hysteria on hand in case you need it. The last thing you want is to get hit suddenly with intense psych symptoms and have to go run to your local herbal supply store (if you have one) trying to find one of these herbs while you're in that state of mind. tongue

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2018
Total Posts : 78
   Posted 4/9/2018 11:55 PM (GMT -6)   
Alrighty thanks. How long did it take for you to see improvement and or how long did it take for you to beat this thing down? I know it's gonna be a journey.
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