Quiting And Begining Again
I caved. On Saturday the 20th (August 2016), my partner and I had plans for an exciting night out. But by that morning I was in insufferable pain. My feet were swelling up again my dark circles were back and I was overcome by sheer fear of going back to where I was before figuring out that antibiotics can take down (not get rid of) Lyme pain. I chickened out for several reasons. 1) I didn’t want the bacteria to become resistant while on the CHIM-FLUOX treatment (HOAX!), 2) I didn’t want my body to go back to where it was, 3) I didn’t feel like I had the strength to handle the agony whilst my family used that as “evidence” that it’s all in my head, 4) and most importantly I didn’t want to miss out on life with my partner.
I had been away for a month, traveling and experiencing mediterranean countries. And though my energy was not back to its fullest, I certainly was doing much better than I was before! Compared to my Paris trip last fall (where I slept for a little more than half my time there!) I have been in unbelievable shape. I wasn’t ready to give this remarkable recovery yet.
So I quit the Alfons Ven package and began on a more rigorous abx regimen as follows:
- 100 mg doxycycline twice a day
- 500 mg Tinidazole once a day
- EVERYDAY FOR THE NEXT 30 days.
My instincts were that I was not herxing… On the pulsing course by the 5th day (the first day abx-free after a 4 day period) I feel the pain in my toes and small joints of my feet. This got worse after I stopped the abx but not quickly… it crept up. I am pretty sure that the bacteria were re-colonizing again… You should know that Lyme establishes itself in several colonies and has a slooooooOOOW growth rate. So when you defeat one, you have a million others in the process of development and, since antibiotics wear off far too fast (or maybe the bacteria grows way too slow–glass half full / half empty), the colonies will mature and reproduce effectively long after your medication has been absorbed.
My new regime ends on September 18th, 2016. Which means I completely destroy my gut and gain weight (as an already noticable side effect) in the process–I have slowly gained about 6 kg since starting abx at the end of June this year.
Given my choice to follow through with this, some mini research is required…
Some Research Activity
I was questioning whether or not I can take probiotics with antibiotics and couldn’t find anything credible (will scour medical journals more thoroughly to see what I can find). However, on googling this, the first link to appear was this, which says:
If however, you have to take antibiotics for a finite period, then I cannot emphasize enough the simultaneous use of probiotics. Probiotics are beneficial microorganism cultures – i.e. good bacteria strands – that basically replenish the good bacteria in your system and try to repair the side-effects of antibiotic use.
Whilst using probiotics, I also advise one to eat foods high in natural probiotics and prebiotics (also referred to as fructooligosaccharides – FOS – or inulin). Prebiotics are the food the good bacteria in your body thrive upon and hence it results in growth and multiplication in your gut.
Good examples of food that contain prebiotics are: artichoke, asparagus, banana, unrefined barley, garlic, green beans, honey, leeks, unrefined oats, onions, raisins, soybeans, tomato, sprouted wheat products, whole grains etc.
Good examples of food that contain probiotics are dairy or soy yogurt with live cultures, miso, unrefined whole grain breads and cereals, fermented cabbage, brined olives, salted gherkins, kefir and also the prebiotics listed above.
When choosing a probiotic product, select one which guarantees at least a minimum number of spores at the time of opening and not at the time of manufacture (at least 1 billion). Also make sure that more than one strand of bacteria is present (there are claims that too many types of bacteria can lead to certain strands competing with each other to populate the gut and as a result less colonise adequately, though there is no clear evidence to substantiate this claim).
Op, and here you have some sources from my initial peer-review search into probiotics aiding with recovery from antibiotics and if they actually do anything:
http://www.nature.com/ajg/journal/v101/n4/full/ajg2006155a.html (Probiotics are useful and do help! American study.)
http://bjgp.org/content/57/545/953.short (Probiotics don’t relieve antibiotics symptoms — British study)
http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1365-2710.2008.00980.x/full (American study on older people in america who were taking antibiotics along with Florajen prebiotics. The result showed that 17% experienced diarrhoea in the Florajen group compared to a 37% rate for the placebo group… seems credible! Also tells me you need to choose your probiotics wisely)
- “Factors that disrupt this protective barrier, for example antibiotic use or surgery, results in host (human) susceptibility to pathogen colonization (meaning bad bacteria may take over your gut) until such time as the normal microflora can become re-established (until your body restores itself) . Probiotics are uniquely qualified to fit into this window of susceptibility and may act as surrogate normal microflora until recovery is achieved (meaning it can act as your gut’s good bacteria until the body heals itself).”
- “lack of significant drug interactions” –> doesn’t interact with other medicine… (yay so I can take mine during!)
- “ease of administration” –> you can take it easily
http://www.futuremedicine.com/doi/full/10.2217/fmb.11.142 (literature review done on research about gut bacteria changes and weight gain. “These results suggest that manipulating the composition of the gut microbiota may prevent weight gain or facilitate weight loss in humans” that’s exactly what I needed to know.. I need to find out what will help me lose the weight and not gain it back while on abx.
As you can see, there isn’t much on weight gain as a side effect of abx and whether probiotics can help with that… Most research are on probiotics aiding with the leaks during an antibiotic course.
So, armed with all of this information… I feel compelled to get up and fight (figuratively) to find a cure or remedy of some sort. I can’t lose my health, my sanity, my loved ones, my focus, and my figure all at once… I certainly have lost my peace of mind and my trust in people (loved ones and professionals I am supposed to trust) . But despite this I have also learned a great deal about myself during this time.
Since the abx sessions, I the pain lessened but didn’t disappear. I also noticed that yesterday (23/08/2016) and the day before (22/08/2016) I had worse feet pain and bad focus, respectively. These are all coupled with sinus block, strange discharge, numb arms, painful neck and shoulder muscles, depressive moods, and extreme cravings and insatiable appetite. I have been trying to watch what I eat but it isn’t making much of a difference. Either way, I also can’t rule out the fact that I am back in the UK (which I, as much as I hate to admit this, do not like very much). remarkably, today the pain in my feet is reduced again, and I didn’t wake up with sore legs and feet. I have developed acne and white heads all over one side of my face (the numb side!). My sense of smell is still bad. I have noticed that the ridges on my nails have reduced significantly and so have my cuticles.
As always, will post updates soon.