Why Aggressive Lyme Treatment Can Fail:
Focusing on the Bee and Ignoring the Stinger
By Dr. James Schaller
I have never been comfortable with failed care. You know what I mean. You do an intake, get some lab testing done, you are given a diagnosis such as Lyme disease, and then you take full and aggressive antibiotics for complete trials. Yet they do not hit the home run you hoped for, and in fact at times you actually feel worse. At best, you improve partially and then hit a wall. Some even take IV antibiotics and still do not feel cured.
Why? How is it that the "cure" makes you sicker and leaves you far short of a return to normal health?
Last month, we mentioned one reason for Lyme treatment failure--Babesia has over 11 species that infect humans and our labs only test one or two. We have also found that Bartonella has at least nine species that infect humans and 99% of our lab testing is fair and only tests for two. I will discuss this more in an upcoming Bartonella textbook. Still another cause for Lyme treatment failure is exposure to indoor surface mold spore toxins found in 30% of USA structures (per EPA). These mold spore surface toxins highjack dozens of body chemicals and weaken your ability to fight Lyme. Are your air ducts dusty? If you answered, "Yes" this may be adding to your illness. Mycotoxins are almost entirely ignored, and sometimes actually naively belittled in advanced Lyme medical care.
In this article, I would like to discuss biotoxins that are not from special indoor molds, but from the Lyme bacteria itself. How often do you hear this discussed as a problem in Lyme treatment? If it is discussed, is it merely in the context of "it might be good to take some cholestyramine to bind up some Lyme biotoxins?" But when I listen to discussions about Lyme's surface biotoxins it is usually clear the reasoning is confused.
I would like to make this critical area of Lyme biotoxins and your ability to remove them simple and understandable.
First, we should not be surprised that any organism has biotoxins because the biological world is teeming with organisms that use toxic chemicals to function and survive. In the animal kingdom snakes and skunks have killing or annoying chemicals. Fish carry toxins in their barbs or their body. Insects have a wide range of toxic stingers and toxic inflammatory bites. Fungi and molds have dozens of toxins that have absolutely no safe dose. Finally, bacteria and viruses have many toxins that serve to undermine host defenses and increase the damage of these infections. In this context, that Lyme bacteria have toxins on its outer membrane should be no surprise. Lyme has over two-dozen plasmids designed to defeat the attacks of the immune system, so why not also have biotoxins to defeat the immune system and undermine the human body?
Simply, Lyme bacteria release more than bacteria debris when they die, they also release highly specific chemicals that are designed to disrupt and damage a mammal's body. With each passing year, medicine and science learn more and more about the seriousness of biotoxins such as those made by Lyme bacteria. Biological toxins like those found in Lyme bacteria have so many ways to harm your body, that it would take a small book to show how they harm humans when released. Yet here are some brief examples.
Lyme biotoxins disrupt the fat cell system and if not removed cause a type of obesity highly resistant to diet and exercise. The critical Leptin hormone increases and creates a type of bloating, puffiness or abdominal distention that is demoralizing to those trying to have a healthy weight.
Lyme biotoxins can disrupt VEGF that make and open capillaries throughout the entire body. These biotoxins undermine VEGF function so your capillaries ability to get oxygen to many types of tissues is impaired. A disrupted VEGF system often leads to profound fatigue and body pains, particularly after exercise or pushing yourself to perform a "full day's work." Similarly, Lyme biotoxins can disrupt the manufacturing of erythropoietin, a crucial chemical that produces red blood cells that carry oxygen to all our body organs. Amazingly, the number of red blood cells does not control erythropoietin levels, but instead it is regulated by low oxygen in your tissues. The body knows you can have "average" numbers of red blood cells, and still have tissues starving for oxygen. That biotoxins can sometimes disrupt tissue oxygenation is not unique, since other illnesses also cause this problem, e.g., kidney or liver diseases, excessively thick blood, inflammation chemicals, nutritional deficiencies, hypothyroidism, infections or cancers.
Lyme biotoxins also undermine the making of MSH (melanocyte-stimulating hormone), which according to Dr. Cone's definitive text has about fifteen critical functions. It controls inflammation, so it is being used to treat inflammation disorders like asthma and psoriasis and ulcerative colitis. It helps repair nerves and makes the natural pain system work normally. Perhaps one reason some struggle with addictions is their MSH is abnormally low—under 35-40. This super anti-inflammatory chemical is currently manufactured all over the world for a wide range of illnesses. After passing the extensive FDA process it will eventually be available in the United States—just not soon.
Another chemical impacted by Lyme biotoxins with some similar abilities is VIP (Vasoactive intestinal peptide). VIP is the topic of over 10,000 research papers and is involved in dilating the heart's blood vessels, promoting breathing by bronchodilation and controlling the immune and hormone systems. However, its role in the brain is the cause for great excitement. It can undermine brain tumors, improve brain blood flow, improve learning and memory, and protect the brain.
The introductory article is only meant to show you sample ways Lyme biotoxins can harm the human body. Do you wonder how effective your body is at removing Lyme biotoxins? You can easily determine your unique genetic ability to remove Lyme's specific biotoxins by ordering a special 5-part HLA inherited gene marker test from LabCorp (test 012542), which is one of the largest labs in the United States.
This HLA test is not the HLA-DR4 test that is involved in aggressive Lyme arthritis. It is also not the HLA-B27 that is found in people with ankylosing spondylosis, various types of arthritis, and some people suffering from psoriasis, inflammatory bowel disease or other autoimmune disorders.
This 5-part HLA test is able to determine how well you can remove the dangerous biotoxins of different organisms that live in the oceans, lakes, forests, and buildings. But for our purposes in Lyme disease treatment, we are particularly interested in two patterns—the 15-6-51 or the 16-5-51 pattern. If you have these you will not be able to remove Lyme biotoxins. So when you try to kill Lyme with antibiotics, antibiotic herbs, HBOT, or a wide range of traditional or progressive means, you will release Lyme's surface biotoxins and they will pass throughout the body easily and disrupt and damage dozens of human body functions. Simply, this Lyme poison has no natural body antidote for those who cannot naturally remove it—it will simply stay in your body and damage gene expression, hormones levels, protein function and cause dozens of other injuries. Consider it to be an eternal disruptive chemical poison able to easily pass through water pores and cell membranes.
If you make the mistake of thinking you are still ill because of residual Lyme, and try additional antibiotics at higher doses, you will release still more biotoxins and they will damage your body. Therefore, no one should be treated with antibiotics unless it is known how able they are at removing Lyme's biotoxins. You do not open a drum of industrial chemicals until you first know how well the body is going to survive the exposure as you remove the top! For children who fear lab testing, their HLA pattern can often be determined from their parents. If both parents do not have the Lyme problem gene, then none of their children can have it.
Other HLA patterns exist which will cause Lyme toxins to be released slowly. But they are outside the scope of this introduction.
Further, one often hears that the treatment for those who have biotoxin damage is simply the use of cholestyramine, an old cholesterol medication with broad biotoxins binding abilities. Unfortunately, in reality, by the time most patients with the 15-6-51 pattern or the 16-5-51 pattern or other troublesome patterns get to my office, they have had these biotoxins disrupting many body systems and my interventions need to be equally as complete. The idea cholestyramine will reverse all damage in a few months of aggressive use is profoundly simplistic.
Further, after these individuals are physically repaired from biotoxin damage, they then require very tailored and carefully paced Lyme treatment along with treatment for their co-infections. (The original Lyme biotoxins and HLA pattern work was done by Dr. Ritchie Shoemaker. It has been replicated by a small number of clinicians who understand this medical science.)