Posted on May 15, 2017 in Blog |

The following is an excerpt written by Dr. B.Robert Mozayeni included in our book Lyme Savvy: Treatment Insights for Lyme Patients and Practitioners. In2008, when I looked at Borrelia Western blots I gave it sort of a 3 or 4 out of 10 in terms of how confident I would be in the result if I saw a positive. There are some Western blots so glaringly positive that no one would argue them. That is part of the problem with the test. The result produced is along a spectrum of potential levels of confidence with great variability of clinical context. You can have a couple of weak bands and to a really sick patient with no other answers – those results can justify their treatment. To a healthy patient, the same results would be interpreted as negative or normal. Context is always important, not only for interpretation of test results, but for choice and timing of treatment. Great — but what if you get the wrong treatment because you have Bartonella causing weak positive bands on the Borrelia Western blot? Then you are going to have only a temporary improvement and a relapse. Then Lyme doctors will start telling you “we can temporarily get you better but we cannot fix you.” Usually, as much as they may try, they don’t actually know the cause; or they do know and may not have the right treatment. If you see only IgM-positive bands on the Lyme Western blot, then you definitely need to test for co-infections, especially Bartonella. The Borrelia Western blot scores a 3 or 4 out of 10 in terms of my general confidence level because it is an indirect test, looking at antibody responses to a germ. There is nothing better than actually directly detecting a germ such as by detecting its DNA signature or at least its unique proteins encoded by the DNA. Then you can be sure you have that microbe. Unfortunately, a sensitive and specific test like this has not been available for Borrelia. Lately, some companies have developed enrichment culture methods. This is encouraging but fraught with pitfalls for potential contamination. We need more...

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