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Dr_Anderson, Doctor
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 335
Experience:  Psychiatrist
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I definitely have LYMES. excruciating pain.
Plse help me since you were ER doc too and know pharmacists.
1. Taking Lorazapem- what can I safely take for sleep? I see kava? has drug interactions and they say some herbal products do.
2. Is kava - melatonin?
3. Is there prescription med as well that is safe?
4. Re: emergency- trouble breathing, chest pain ---can one take safely ASPIRIN
if you think you are having pericarditis or heart attack?
YOUR ANSWERS urgently needed. thank you margo

Dr_Anderson : Greetings!
Dr_Anderson : I am sorry you are going through this, now, too! :(
Dr_Anderson : Kava is not melatonin, but can be used for sleep. I actually prefer melatonin as an over-the-counter sleep aid because it is natural, (your body makes it). Doses that are effective for people range from as little as 1.5 to as much as 10 mg.
Dr_Anderson : There are prescription meds which may be a good option for sleep, but it is important to avoid ones that are benzodiazepine-like or actual benzos, such as Ambien (benzo-like), Restoril (benzo), specifically.
Dr_Anderson : Non-benzodiaepines used for sleep include Rozerem (a prescription melatonin-like drug) and Lunesta. Others that are used off label for sleep include Remeron, Seroquel, and Trazodone.
Dr_Anderson : Finally, if you feel you are having a heart attack, pericarditis, or have chest pain, call 911 IMMEDIATELY - THEN take an aspirin. Aspirin will do you no good if you pass out before calling for help.
Dr_Anderson : I hope you got this in time to help!!
Dr_Anderson : Regards,
Dr_Anderson : Dr. Anderson
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Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hi Dr Andersen:

Margo with lorazapem and Lymes....

Here's what is going on.

Went to Dr Cameron - director ILLADS - diagnosed with lyme. He gave me 50mg doxyclycline 2x per day plus probiotic. He said that I won't need sleep aids as Loraz will work better. He is right. Here is my question:

I have heard alot about herxing...that it is when the bacteria die you have symptoms. So far on the antibiotics I've had a passing sore throat, sweats....

Q1- is herxing basically flu like symptoms with muscle aches...or

Q2- when there is die off of the bacteria I will have all those anxiety symptoms again.

I know they look for herxing to gauge if the antibiotic is working. Plse find out for me what you can. comp as usual.

Q- I got the 3 bands in April 2012- then I'm sure I had it...takes at least few weeks for them to show up...In my case going on and off wellbutrin / topamax / thyroid - could of given me the anxiety symptoms. Hoping this is the case and I have just Lyme.

Q- want to really know what symptoms of herxing are.

You are the best, XXXXX XXXXX you tell it from the heart and straight. Thank god you guided me to re-test for lymes.... Margo



I believe you are referring to the Herxheimer reaction yes? This is a known reaction due to antibiotics, especially in the penicillin or tetracycline classes, killing bacteria, usually in the Spirochete class, which leads to toxin release. Basically, this reaction is flu-like, yes, and should be very self-limited (hours to a day or two at most).

(2) Given that a lot of these sepsis-like symptoms (sweating, chills, aches, etc.) resemble anxiety symptoms, it is possible you will have anxiety symptoms or what seems like anxiety symptoms. They may actually be a medication-induced reaction, but from antibiotics instead of benzodiazepines.

(3) Yes, going on and off meds can certainly lead to anxiety symptoms. whether or not an actual anxiety disorder is present. This is due to both the side effects from starting a medication, and the withdrawal from stopping one. What a Catch-22!

(4) Typical symptoms of the Herxheimer reaction are septic-like, and include: fever, chills, muscle aches, blood pressure fluctuations, headache, increased breathing, increased heart rate, muscle pain, and sometimes skin lesions. The symptoms usually occur within a few hours of taking the antibiotic, and may be lessened by taking aspirin or Tylenol.

Humbled to be of service!


Dr. Anderson
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