Treatment: the End-Game
Treatment of chronic C. pneumoniae infection in Multiple Sclerosis: The End Game.
The question is: how do you know when to finish? And the answer seems to be to take the response to treatment as a guide.
I’ve noticed quite often, in treating persons with MS, that, after a year or so of combined antibiotics, they get worse on stopping; this seems to happen quite quickly, even as soon as a few weeks. Often they have flu-like symptoms and loss of energy. Surely this is far too short a time for the regrowth of bacterial numbers (which after all took years and even decades to cause severe chronic disease.)
I think the answer must lie in the withdrawal of the immunomodulant action of doxycycline or minocycline. These antibiotics inhibit macrophage activation in the CNS and have a profound action on many cell types in the immune system; they downregulate pro-inflammatory cytokines. It seems very likely that the symptoms which occur soon after stopping antibiotics are due to a strengthening of the immune system in its activity against bacterial fragments. The fact that they include flu-like symptoms, those of ‘coming down with something’ seems to point to increased cytokine activity.
I’ve made a small note of this on my web-page which deals with the sequelae of treatment: comments are very welcome.
What a complicated disease this is!