So it's been a month now that I've been treating my chronic Lyme disease, Hashimoto's disease and chronic Epstein Barr virus.
The herxing has evolved from an initial week of heavy sweating to a more recent bout of bug-bite like zaps in my skin, both of which are signs of die-off (the latter is more specific to parasites, which I'll get into in detail in one sec). In between the sweating and the itching skin, I've experienced profound fatigue and brain fog consistently.
Last week, I had some follow-up blood tests performed at Quest Diagnostics and iGenex. Since we already know I have the three diseases mentioned above, we tested for Lyme co-infections, i.e. common bacteria/parasites that Lyme patients acquire from ticks that carry Lyme. (We didn't test me for these the first time around, since we still didn't know if I had Lyme yet). This time, we also did a candida panel, iron panel, blood cell panel, and I believe a thyroid update. There was something else, too, but I can't remember. Anyway, in three weeks I see my doctor for the results, and you can bet I'll update you all on this blog! ;-)
In the literature I've been reading, I keep coming across the same fact: the majority of Lyme patients have parasites (sorry, too much brain fog to cite my sources). This is a well-documented fact. Last week, I started feeling like bugs were biting my skin, throughout my dermis from head to toe. At its highest frequency, every minute or two, I'd feel the zap of a bite on my face, neck, stomach, legs, armpits, elbows, scalp, you name it. It called for scratching, of course, to relieve the sudden itch.
Ever inquisitive as I am, I took to Google and the Lyme community to research this, and learned it is indeed a common sign of parasitic activity as they start to reactivate and re-energize themselves in response to the treatment. The good news is, it may mean they're dying off. (I'm not on any specific parasitic treatment at the moment, but a lot of what I'm taking detoxifies the body and can kill parasites too. However, if we get confirmation from the lab tests that I have parasites, I'll be adding a new drug to my protocol.)
Let's see, what other updates do I have for you..........
I'm in the process of applying for short-term disability. I am clearly in no condition to be working, and since I've paid into SSDI over the years, I'm hoping I can get a little bit of compensation back for the time I'm unable to work. However, it's such a burdensome process. First, I had to pay a $75 standard fee just to have my doctor sign off on my application. Then I got a notification in the mail that, according to EDD, I haven't been employed since 2009. This is because I haven't filed my taxes yet for 2010, and as a full-time consultant for all of 2010, no deductions were taken out of my paychecks. So I hurriedly did my taxes this weekend and have a fat check to send off to our government. Once I pay my owed taxes, I *may* be eligible for disability, but it will be a few weeks until I find out. (I'll keep you posted).
Anyway, now that I'm a month into my treatment, I'd like to inquire with the Lyme community about what you all take and what you'd recommend that I add. There are a few things I'm very interested in trying! (I'll get to them in a minute). Note that I see my doctor in three weeks for my follow-up blood test results, and I'll ask him about any recommendations you all make, and hopefully get his approval for the new things I want to try.
As a refresher, here's what I currently take (the list has somewhat changed since the last time I shared it)~
For the Lyme, I take minocycline (an antibiotic) twice daily, in addition to samento (cat's claw) drops.
For the Hashimoto's, I take Armour thyroid once daily, and iodine tablets once daily.
For the Epstein Barr, I take drops of cumanda and samento, which have anti-viral properties.
For anxiety disorder (which is actually neurological Lyme), I've added 5-HTP, B vitamin complex and cod liver oil to my Cymbalta prescription.
For a healthy gut and candida prevention, I take a probiotic called Symbion twice daily. I had to discontinue the Diflucan for candida, due to its side effects.
For my unbalanced hormones, I use bio-identical Progesterone cream on my stomach at bedtime.
For Vitamin D deficiency, I take Free D3 capsules daily.
Lastly, I take Vitamin C in addition to a Calcium & Magnesium supplement, which I interchange with a food-source based multivitamin every other day.
From everything I read and hear from others, the above list just barely scratches the surface. I'm very interested in trying some new things that specifically work on the Lyme. So please let me know if you have any experience with any of the following, or any thoughts about any of them in general:
- People with Lyme are very metal toxic, because we accumulate metals in a way that non-Lyme people don't. I've read about chlorella, clay and charcoal, among other treatments, to break up and shed the metals, and would love your experiences with either (or something else that does it, too).
- Many Lymies are raving about the coffee enema, claiming it detoxifies the liver and gallbladder, both of which by default become toxic when a person has Lyme. I'd love your experiences on the coffee enema, specifically how your body reacts to it.
- I've read that GABA helps with anxiety and insomnia and would love any feedback.
- I already read about oregano oil and cellulase for candida/yeast and am interested if any of you have tried either.
- My lymph nodes are always swollen, due to my chronic Epstein-Barr virus and chronic bacterial pneumonia (both of which have caused what myriad doctors only termed "allergies" and "sinusitis" over the years). I'd been hearing about remedies that help drain the Lymph nodes, such as lymphatic massage and herbs, and would love any input on this.
- Any other feedback on herbs for Lyme or parasitic co-infections would be much appreciated!
Thank you. I will be in touch again soon with blog entries about famed Dr. Montoya's lecture on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, controversial exercise limitations, and of course, updates on my blood test results and my disability applicaion!