Is there a right antibiotic for Bartonella?

I officially started the Doxycycline! 100mg last night made me dizzy…which is the first thing any new antibiotic does to me, I’ve learned. After my dose of Rifampin today, I developed tremors, dystonia (in my hands, of all places), facial grimacing, muscle spasms in my back, and a terrible headache with pressure in my skull, just half-an-hour later. Additonal pain medication has made me comfortable, and it’s safe to say this combination is looking to be very effective.

Today the technician came to evaluate my oxygen machine. I had to explain all the strange quirks I have, like why my oxygen reading was normal when he took it, why I change the output fairly often and how my various conditions impact what I require from this thing. I also got a new nasal cannula (the part that you wear on your face) and a 25ft cord so I can enter the bathroom (right around the corner) without having to take off the oxygen. That is going to be very helpful, because up until now I’ve had to practically race to get back to it before I felt faint. (I also have a 50ft cord/tube in case I want to go sit on the couch in the living room, which is just past my hallway!). Ironically I haven’t needed any oxygen yet today, haha.

After some research on bartonella. I’ve found the best way to eradicate it in someone with severe neurological involvement who is also immunocompromised seems to be, Doxycycline 100mg b.i.d. (twice-a-day) and Rifampin 300mg b.i.d. The latter is usually taken once-a-day (q.d.) for several other conditions–which is what I’ve been doing since my LLMD said it was okay–but ideally, the best results are obtained from spacing it out. Some claim that it makes it easier on the person, but given my circumstance, I don’t know. Nonetheless, I’m going to aim to take both the Doxy and Rifampin split into two doses, and see if it causes any candida problems (which is my main fear, besides the herxing). If it does cause problems, I shall try going back to Rifampin 600mg once-a-day and Doxy still 100mg b.i.d., and, if all else fails, I’ll just have to take them both once-a-day.

But of course right now I’m still at 100mg q.d. Doxy, so all of that other stuff begins next week.

The American Society for Microbiology recommends this regimen for at least 6 weeks in healthy individuals, but for longer if that person’s immune system is dysfunctional. They also warn of life-threatening herxheimer reactions in the immunocomprimised. Having already been hospitalized twice for severe reactions to things that shouldn’t have caused such a reaction in “normal” people, it really drives home the need to be very, very careful. *big breath*

Of interesting importance is that only Doxycycline, Rifampin, and Gentamicin have shown true effects against bartonella. This makes me wonder whether other antibiotics simply haven’t been tested enough to know (if you’ve never looked, how would you know?), or if they have been tested, and the others–such as Levaquin and Bactrim–just don’t stand up. I did find one study which claimed because Bartonella can so quickly develop a resistance, quinolone antibiotics (such as Levaquin!) should never be used aginst bartonella species! *gasp* Now doesn’t that blow everything else out of the water? Granted, it’s only one study.

a rainbow at night


2 thoughts on “Is there a right antibiotic for Bartonella?

  1. Thank you
    I’m curious of bartonella and my doc ordered me a $495 test from the fry lab co.
    I’m just wondering if it’s worth doing or do I just keep fighting. I’ve been on rifampin about a year ago and that was one of the only antibiotic’s where I felt a difference. I’ve been off all antibiotics for a year but i’m on a lot of supplements and natural detoxifier’s. Green dragon botanicals,transfer factor multi immune to strengthen my immune system. My worst symptoms are clearly neurological. Should I go back on antibiotics or what?

    Any response is greatly appreciated.


    1. Hi! I’m sorry I couldn’t get back to you soon than this.

      No lab has found bartonella in me except IGeneX, and even then I got lucky. I’ve done LITERALLY dozens of tests via Fry and Quest, and they are useless. I tested negative even in the WORST of my infection, and yet IGeneX managed to pick it up when I was already six months into treatment. :\

      ALSO. My LLMD said he got a kit from Galaxy labs, which are supposedly the BEST out there! They weren’t doing testing during hte time I needed it, so I couldn’t get one from them, but if I had to recommend somewhere, they would be it! You can ask your doctor if he’d call and get a testing kit from them, instead.

      I would definitely get on antibiotics if your symptoms are severe, and especialy neurological. This can AND WILL turn into multiple sclerosis, or worse. Bartonella also loves to damage the heart. This is nothing to play around with… Have you been tested for Lyme disease? That’s definitely an IGeneX test. Or do you have a Lyme Literate Medical Doctor/LLMD? You can join and visit the Seeking a Doctor forum to help you find one.

      Herbs were not enough to keep my bart in check. You need to be on Rifampin and another antibiotic in combination (Zithro, Doxy, Mino, Bactrim, something ilke that) for at least a year, with as little pause/skipping any doses as possible because this infection very easily develops resistance to these antibiotics. You continuing treating for two months after your symptoms stop.

      Hope this helps!


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