I’m very pleased today. I talked with my doctor and he thinks that the discomfort caused by the grapefruit seed extract wasn’t a herxheimer reaction, it was intolerance. I didn’t know that you could tell the difference, but he says there are clues. In general the guidelines are:
- A herx reaction is generally marked by multiple symptoms such as malaise, muscle pain, fatigue, headache, and a flu-like feeling that lasts for weeks.
- Medication intolerance is generally marked by isolated symptoms that resolve quickly upon discontinuing the medication.
I had intense headaches on GSE, even at very small doses. That shouldn’t happen. Also, the HA’s stopped immediately when I stopped the GSE. So I was intolerant! He suggested alternate cyst busting drugs:
- Metronidazole (I used this years ago and it caused awful nausea)
- Tinidazole (extremely expensive: $700/month)
- Rifampin (can cause liver problems. I know someone this happened to)
- Fluconazole, aka Diflucan. (This is my best option. I already take it for yeast problems, and it agrees with me. It isn’t as strong as the others, but I can take it for a prolonged period).
The nice news is that I feel good on my current regimen without the GSE. My headaches and neck pain are pretty much gone. I haven’t noticed bad night sweats. My energy level is improving. So this sounds like my magic combination for a while. I have a few other problems to solve, such as insomnia, chemical sensitivities, allergies, and periodic vulvodynia. But I’m relieved and I feel very hopeful that I’m on the right path.
The plan is to treat the Babesia for a minimum of 4 months, and stay on the ABX for Lyme for a while. Then I’ll switch over to herbals, probably for the long haul. I understand that long term maintenance is probably required for me. I accept the fact that I probably won’t be cured, but can achieve long term remission and live a “normal” life. I will be thrilled if this happens.