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Conversation with Eric Gordon, M.D. on Transmission and Treatment Issues

Dr. Gordon spent some time in conversation to cover some of the remaining patient questions from the conference with Dr. Burrascano. The following is a transcript from that conversation. The second part of the talk will be posted later this week.

Initial questions:

Can Lyme or co-infections be transmitted thru sex or kissing?

 Please address whether Lyme is an STD?

 Can it be transmitted from an adult to young children during normal care giving?

 What do you think about the possibility of sexual transmission or other TBD? [Read more…]

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Will Surviving Mold Mean Surviving Lyme?

The following is the most recent article from Dr. Ritchie Shoemaker, a specialist in biotoxin caused illness. This article was originally published in Public Health Alert, and is republished here with the permission of Dr. Shoemaker. 

NOTES FROM THE MOLD FRONTIER

Ritchie C. Shoemaker MD
With Laura Mark, MD

Will Surviving Mold Mean Surviving Lyme?

 Take out a microscope and look under the in the kitchen cabinet right underneath the pinhole leak in the water supply line.  Is there something growing in the water-damaged area?  You bet: You’ll surely see some filamentous fungi (AKA molds), but look too at the bacteria and actinomycetes.  They are feasting on the simple food stuffs created by the extracellular digestive enzymes of the fungi.  Free food!  This habitat is a nice warm 65-72 degrees all day, every day, year round.  Microbe paradise!  Plenty of food, plenty of moisture and plenty of places to breed safely means plenty of microbial growth and plenty of secondary products of microbial metabolism.  Call the products toxins, inflammagens, cell wall fragments and beta glucans; they are all foreign antigens as far as our immune response is concerned.  And they all cause intense inflammatory responses that are well-demonstrated in tests of innate immunity. [Read more…]

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Treatment Fatigue

Answers from the Gordon Medical Staff

Question:

Please talk about treatment fatigue in general, in particular, what are your options if your body cannot tolerate antibiotics, maybe the liver function is limited?

By “treatment fatigue” I assume you mean that a specific patient cannot tolerate ongoing standard doses of antibiotics. I would like to address a broader view of this problem, since what it is really addressing is how capable the individual is of mobilizing their immune system (with the aid of antibiotics) to kill the infecting organisms (Lyme, Bartonella, Babesia, Ehrlichia, Mycoplasma, etc.), and then how capable it is to remove those dead organisms and toxins from the body. This requires the coordinated workings of the organs of detoxification: the liver, intestines, lymphatic system, kidneys, skin, lungs, and spleen, along with the immune system, to do this properly. [Read more…]

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How Do You Know If You Really Have Lyme Disease?

Question: Why do patient symptoms vary so much? Everyone seems to have different symptoms so how can we be sure we all have Lyme disease?

There is virtually no illness in which a specific disease manifests the exact same way in everyone who has that disease. For example, if a woman goes through menopause, she may experience primarily hot flashes or night  sweats, or she may have difficulty sleeping, or low energy, or mood swings, or depression, or vaginal dryness, or decreased libido, or difficulties with focus, memory, and concentration, or some combination of all of these. [Read more…]

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Treatment: Antibiotics or Herbs?

Question:

Is it possible to effectively treat Lyme disease and co-infections without antibiotics?  Is the immune system able to wipe it out if given the right support?

Dr. Eric GordonAnswer from Dr. Eric Gordon:

I would say unequivocally, maybe. The difficulty goes to the heart of the Lyme war between ILADS  and the IDSA. Since active Lyme is a clinical diagnosis, which means it is determined by the patient’s history and current symptoms, we can’t really say how many people diagnosed with Lyme have Lyme, or other infectious or toxin caused diseases.  If you look at symptom lists, the overlap with other illnesses is huge.

My answer is yes, I have read reports of people treated with herbs, and their symptoms and their CD57 tests have normalized. In my practice,  I often start with herbal treatments, but almost always use antibiotics at some point in the therapy. The biggest issue is not drugs vs. herbs, but rather the underlying toxicity of the person, and whether or not their immune system can manage inflammation.  I have had several patients who had severe “Herx’s” to herbs and yet did well on antibiotics. [Read more…]

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Coinfection Testing

Question: Does Igenex Labs Test for coinfections?

Answered by Susan Friedl – Gordon Medical Research Coordinator:

Igenex Labs does test for many of the tick borne coinfections, including a variety of tests for Borrelia burgdorferi (Lyme disease), Babesia microti and Babesia duncani, Human Monocytic Ehrlichia and Anaplasma Phagocytophila, Bartonella henselae, and Rickettsia species (Rocky Mountain spotted fever, Mediterranean spotted fever, Boutonneuse fever, Israeli spotted fever, Astrakhan fever, Indian tick typhus, Murine typhus, Cat flea rickettsiosis, flea-borne typhus.) [Read more…]

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Lyme During Pregnancy

Question:

I passed Lyme to both of my children. If they are on antibiotics during pregnancy, will it prevent passing the Lyme to their children?

Dr. Eric GordonAnswer from Dr. Eric Gordon:

If your children have active Lyme, treatment before pregnancy would be the best course.  Treatment during pregnancy with antibiotics does prevent transmission of Lyme. Certain antibiotics have been found, in the proper doses, to prevent transmission, and to be safe for the fetus.

There may be a chance of transmission of Lyme bacteria in breast milk, also. If you still have active Lyme disease, you should discuss with your physician whether you should breast feed your child.

Dr. Eric Gordon is the founder of  Gordon Medical Associates. What Dr. Gordon emphasizes is listening to his patients. “I believe my patients. Their description of what is going on in their body is the most accurate way we have to assess what is going on with them. I interpret the information they present, and blend it with laboratory results and imaging and other tests to determine a protocol that is customized to their condition.”

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Stem Cell Treatment for Lyme Disease

Question:

Please comment on stem cells?

Answer from Dr. AzRa MaEl:

Before commenting on stem cells, it must be understood that the FDA has banned the use of stem cell treatments in this country, except in research settings, and for a few specific applications. The prohibition of stem cell treatments in the U.S. is said to be for our safety. Some outspoken proponents of stem cells question FDA motives, because there have never been serious adverse reactions reported, despite tens of thousands of patients having been treated worldwide.  Most of the stem cell treatments currently in use are done with the unneeded umbilical cords and placentas from healthy newborn babies, rather than from eggs fertilized in the lab using IVF technology (“embryonic” stem cells).  Unless they are being saved to gather stem cells, umbilical cords are generally discarded. (As amazing as it seems, most cords are still being put in the trash in this country despite being a very valuable resource.)

Thus, most people who receive stem cells travel abroad to India, Mexico, Panama, and other places for this treatment. There aren 20+ patients with “chronic Lyme” who have received stem cell therapy whose stories have been shared with our practice. Many have reported partial or temporary benefits, and some with sustained benefits.

Some patients are benefitting from a related therapy called “particle rich plasma” that is available in this country.  It seems to work in a similar manner as stem cells, though it is still fairly new and under ongoing development.

It is likely an advantage to thoroughly treat Lyme and co-infections before receiving stem cell or related therapies.

AzRa MaEl, MD was educated at Duke University School of Medicine and the University of California San Francisco Family Medicine Residency in Santa Rosa. He specializes in innovative treatment strategies for persistent complex illness. He now practices at Gordon Medical Associates in Santa Rosa. In addition to antibiotics and other allopathic treatments, nutritional support, lifestyle, and emotional factors are considered a vital part of recovery for all patients.

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What Is the Methylation Protocol?

Many of the doctor’s responses to questions have referenced the methylation protocol. The following is an article explaining the simple methylation protocol. While this original article addresses Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia, this protocol can be used in people with Lyme disease and other chronic illness as well. Some people may find they need a more complex methylation protocol to see improvement. As stated, even though this is a very simple protocol using over the counter supplements, the results can be very strong, so we recommend you do this protocol under the supervision of a physician.

A Simplified Methylation Protocol is Effective for the Treatment of Chronic Fatigue and Fibromyalgia

Neil Nathan MD

I suspect that the words “methylation protocol” are, at first glance, intimidating. But if you will hang in with me for a few paragraphs, I would like to make this both understandable and useful.

First of all, what is most important is that we have recently shown that the use of tiny doses of very specific combinations of vitamin B-12 and folic acid, has resulted in significant improvement in patients with fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. That’s the bottom line.

So, if you are suffering with chronic fatigue and/or fibromyalgia, you may be interested in learning more about our research, and what we learned. [Read more…]

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Can Treatment Damage Hearing?

Question:

Could you speak to Ototoxicity (toxicity to the auditory nerves) of the antibiotics used to treat Lyme?  My neurologist cannot tell if hearing loss is caused by Lyme or antibiotic use.

Dr. Eric GordonAnswer from Dr. Eric Gordon:

If ototoxicity is present, I do not know how to be sure if it is due to antibiotics versus infection of the 8th cranial nerve.  Not all antibiotics are considered ototoxic, and even those that are will not cause problems for every patient. The toxicity from antibiotics is probably mediated by oxidant stress, and this may also be the cause of some of the damage by infection, as well.  Individuals have varying ability to manage oxidative stress. With that in mind, checking glutathione adequacy, methylation pathway tests  from Vitamin Diagnostics Labs (special testing, have your physician contact the lab), as well as evaluating the other detox pathways and your heavy metal burden would be helpful.  All of these problems will make ototoxicity more likely whatever the stressor of the system.  Treatment of these metabolic problems will often improve ototoxicity.

I would also get a good evaluation by a cranial osteopath.  Occasionally osteopathic cranial manipulation will mitigate some of the tinnitus.

Consult your physician for a more complete workup of your toxic load in order to support your ability to deal with any toxicity, as well as the infection.

Dr. Eric Gordon is the founder of  Gordon Medical Associates. What Dr. Gordon emphasizes is listening to his patients. “I believe my patients. Their description of what is going on in their body is the most accurate way we have to assess what is going on with them. I interpret the information they present, and blend it with laboratory results and imaging and other tests to determine a protocol that is customized to their condition.”