Kills Bartonella: A Brief Guide.

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How to kill bartonella in a Lyme disease treatment image from Marty Ross MD

In my experience recovering from bartonella, one of the Lyme disease co-infections, requires

  • combination herbal or prescription antibiotics,
  • steps to boost the immune system, and
  • supplements to decrease inflammation caused by chemicals called cytokines.

Boost the Immune System and Decrease Inflammation

It is critical for bartonella recovery to take steps that boost the immune system. Do the first 10 steps in The Ross Lyme Support Protocol. These steps

  • correct sleep,
  • decrease inflammation cytokines,
  • help the immune system adapt to stress,
  • correct hormone imbalances,
  • provide essential micro-nutrients, and
  • remove yeast overgrowth in the intestines if present.

Use Combination Herbal or Prescription Antibiotics to Treat Bartonella in a Lyme Disease Treatment

Bartonella can be difficult to treat when a person has a borrelia (lyme) infection. To prevent relapse it is best to use two antibiotic combinations. There are three tiers of treatments that I use. Tier One and Two include prescription antibiotics; Tier Three is an herbal antimicrobial combination. The most effective treatments are in Tier One followed by Tier Two. I tend to use Tier Three when a person cannot tolerate prescription antibiotics or when the prescriptions do not work. Tier One combinations appear to work 90% of the time and tier two about 80% of the time. Tier 3 seems to work 70% of the time or less.

Tier One

Rifampin-based Treatments

In these treatments Rifampin is the main effective ingredient. I combine Rifampin 300mg 2 pills 1 time a day with one of the following:

  • minocycline 100mg 1 pill 2 times a day,
  • bactrim DS 1 pill 2 times a day or
  • azithromycin (Zithromax) 500mg 1 pill 1 time a day.

Doxycycline 100mg 1 or 2 2 times a day can be substituted for the minocycline, but rifampin decreases doxycycline levels in the blood. Clarithromycin (Biaxin) 500mg 1 pill 2 times a day can be substituted for azithromycin but rifampin also decreases clarithromycin blood levels.

Flouroquinolone-based Treatments 

Flouroquinolones are a class of antibiotics that include a number of members like

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levofloxacin (Levaquin) and ciprofloxacin (Cipro). I combine levofloxacin 500mg time a day or rciprofloxacin 500mg 1 pill 2 times a day with one of the following:

  • minocycline 100mg 1 pill 2 times a day,
  • doxycyline 100mg 1 to 2 pills 2 times a day, or
  • bactrim ds 1 pill 2 times a day.

Clarithromycin and azithromycin are not used with flouroquinolones because together they may cause heart rhythm problems. Levofloxacin seems stronger than the ciprofloxacin.

Clarithromycin and Bactrim DS 

I combine clarithromycin 500mg 1 pill 2 times a day with bactrim ds 1 pill 2 times a day with good benefit.

Tier Two

A Macrolide Plus a Tetracycline

Use one of the following macrolides:

  • clarithromycin 500mg 1 pill 2 times a day or
  • azithromycin 500mg 1 pill 1 time a day.

Combine these with a tetracycline:

  • doxycycline 100mg 1 or 2 pills 2 times a day,
  • minocycline 100mg 1 pill 2 times a day, or
  • tetracycline 500mg 1 pill 3 times a day.

Tier Three

Houttuynia plus Sida Acuta

I started using these two herbs together in the summer of 2015. This combination works about 70% of the time. Start houttuynia at 5 drops 2 times a day and increase daily by 1 drop per dose till at 30 drops 2 times a day. At the same time take Sida Acuta from Woodland Essence as 1/4 tsp 3 times a day and after 1 week if tolerating it increase to 1/2 tsp 3 times a day.

Prior to using this combination I was not impressed with other herbal options. For instance I have tried a formula called A Bart by Byron White herbs which seems to help less than 50% of the time. Likewise houttuynia by itself only works 50% of the time.

Treatment Course

For most of the combinations described above, treatment requires 4-6 months. The only exception to this is a treatment which includes levofloxacin which typically requires 1 to 3 months. I treat until most of the bartonella symptoms appear resolved. Fortunately, using the immune supports and tier one or two approaches 95% of people recover from bartonella. The remaining 5% may have relapses or require continuous antibiotics to keep bartonella under control.

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