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06/01/2011 11:38 AM

Oral vs. IV Antibiotics

Posts: 13

Happy Wednesday, everyone!

I have an appointment with my LLMD July 5th, where we will discuss how my treatment is going using oral antibiotics.

This is leaving me with several questions for all of you who have been/are currently being treated:

For any reason, have any of you preferred one type of treatment over another?

I understand there is a high risk of infection while using a pick line for IV treatment, but other than that are there any other side effects or risks you have experienced?

Everyone is different, but I am very eager to get as much information as I can before going to my appointment.


As for my side effects with oral antibiotics:

Upset stomach, which makes it very difficult to take in the necessary amount of water.

Horrible taste of chemicals in my mouth for hours after swallowing the pills.

Colon is doing "just ok", but feel it would be much better if I could just drink more water.

For reference, here is what I'm taking:

Metronidazole 500mg tab, twice daily

Azithromycin 500mg tab, once daily

Cefuroxime 500mg tab, twice daily

Cymbalta 20mg capsule, twice daily

IgG Concentrate 45% Immunoglobulin G 500mg capsule, 4 per day

Cat's Claw 500mg capsule, 6 per day

Probiotic Formula (66 Billion Organisms per capsule), 2 per day

EPA-DHA Balance 400mg EPA/200mg DHA (Fish Oil), 4 per day

Wormwood 425mg capsule, 2 per day

Milk Thistle 500mg capsule, 4 per day

As you can see, this adds up to a lot of pills every day!

Thank you for any suggestions/education you might have.

Post edited by: DblRainbow11, at: 06/01/2011 11:40 AM


06/01/2011 07:45 PM
Posts: 3856
Senior Member

I never did the IV and my only bad reaction was to Zithro (belly upset) and an allergic reaction to Septra

06/01/2011 07:57 PM
Posts: 123

Regarding the upset stomach, I think Zofran is majorly underused. I hear a lot of people stop something because of vomiting but Zofran totally takes away my nausea in 15 minutes. If you have insurance that covers it, you might give it a try if it's nausea (rather than burning) that is bothering you.

06/01/2011 08:11 PM
Posts: 13


That brings up a valid point. I have also been experiencing a lot of heartburn since I started treatment.

One of my antibiotics, I'm not sure which one, can't be taken with antacids because the it will completely inhibit the antibiotic and prevent it from working.

Does Zofran work for this too?

Are there any ways around this? ie, herbal, holistic methods to get rid of heartburn that WON'T stop the antibiotic from working?

06/01/2011 08:35 PM
Posts: 216

Hi DblRainbow -

I agree that Zofran is underused, but it is only going to help with the nausea. I have been told that you should be on 2 different kinds of probiotics and on digestive enzymes.

I took orals for 2 years and despite using the above regimen and more, I developed horrible gut issues. I had always had a stomach of steel.

I had a PICC line when I was septic. Did NOT like it at all. But I did not use home health, I managed it myself and it basically becomes one handed, I was always aware of it inside my arm. Not that it hurt, it was just strange.

I had a port that was a nightmare. There was SOOO much trouble accessing it. When they would finally get it in, it was smooth and not bad, but otherwise, VERY painful. It got infected after my surgeon had me go to the ER for evaluation and to have them access it and not at home with my puppy laying next to me! lol

I had 2 different Groshong Catheters (these are central lines also). The 1st one got a 4 inch blood clot after my doctor's office drew blood out of it. (Lyme makes us clot more, so I will flush it right away with Heparin instead of saline) The 2nd one freakishly just fell out. No bleeding or anything. No one had ever seen that before.

I took IV Rocephin for the Sepsis and I had more improvements in those 3 wks than on 2 years of orals!

I will be starting with a nem LLMD and doing IV's. He is going to let me get a Groshong. I don't care that I will have something hanging out of my chest. With all else we have - no biggie!

That is my experience. Remember that we are all different and trust your intuition!


06/01/2011 08:51 PM
Posts: 123

Rainbow, Zofran will only help with the nausea. I had some reflux on one drug but I took it at night and staying upright helped me. I'm not the one to answer your question on naturals sfor heartburn ince I'm just beginning to learn myself, but you might put it out as another question because I guarantee you there is a lot of experience and I think you'll get some good answers.

As far as IV vs. oral, I def. have neuro lyme but both LLMDs that I've seen have agreed that since I respond to orals that there isn't much benefit to using IV (for me) since my main side effect is bone pain. They don't get into the central nervous system any better, or give you any longer lasting bacteria eradication, which is a common misconception, according to the LLMD that I saw this morning. I'm sure there are several other indications for using them, however.

06/02/2011 07:18 AM
Posts: 6931
Group Leader
I'm an Advocate

There are Aloe drinks you can take to help with stomach issues and heartburn...

Personally, I did IV abx for less then a month - did nothing for me...Over 12 years of oral abx - with conventional meds, and alt therapies too...close 2 remission once or twice - but with HUGE crashes...

Over the last few years, I have taken control over this through the right Dietary and nutritional changes and naturals - BUT I will say that when my body needs help...

I have 4 kids in school - so they can bring quite a bit home...I don't play around. If I need abx to help me get through something problem with that...

I have even recently had to have a steroid injection in my elbow - and took my natural abx for a couple of weeks - and no flares...

Now that my little one is sick - and after doing research it seems more likely that she has RSV as opposed to Pneumonia - I have been feeling run down...

So up on the naturals I go - not taking the chance...

Now I do get Zofran when my IBS kicks in - that or phenegran - helps with nausea some - but when they mix it with Adavan - in order to sedate me - WOW...AM I LOOOOOOPY...

How bad are the stomach issues...since being dx'd with IBS - I have been on Bentyl - which relaxes the smooth muscles - IE the intestines and such...and it helps in SO many ways!!!


06/02/2011 11:06 AM

Zofran is awesome. I love that stuff. Don't take it anymore, but it's great. Would definitely get a prescription for that if my stomach starts acting up again.

Rainbow, for the icky chemical taste, you can try chewing cloves or fresh ginger. It probably won't make it go away, but it certainly won't hurt. And the ginger will help with your nausea as well. Smile

I had one good experience with a PICC line (IV abx), one negative. The first time I had a port in my neck/chest. I was in high school, so you know I got questions. At that point I just didn't care. Told everyone I got bit by a vampire, but it was okay 'cause I staked him to death. Smile

Didn't seem so hard on my stomach as the orals. I did herx, but it was mild and mostly just my sleep patterns.

The second time I had a port in my arm. Unfortunately I had a bad reaction to the abx I was given. I was not under direct doctor supervision (my LLMD was in another state), and I feel that was a recipe for disaster. Basically, I did everything wrong you possibly can.

Ended up taking it out myself after I didn't sleep for a month. I was out of my mind. Hallucinating, rage, etc. One of the worst experiences of my life... but it was partly my fault. I don't blame the LLMD- he was going off the information he had. It flat out wasn't a good situation.

I've done orals more times than I can count. It destroyed my stomach, but kept the worst symptoms at bay. I can't tolerate orals anymore, but I'm glad I took them when I had the chance.

I agree with cmany about the natural thing. At the end of the day it seems safer. I did the abx thing for years, and it just didn't quite work for me. But that's just me and my personal journey.

06/03/2011 10:38 PM
Posts: 105

I like IV better and it's been a killer the past 6 months. I can feel it sizzle and die on my spine every time I infuse. I'm almost to remission after struggling on orals for two years, but it's $$$$$!

I wouldn't just let any doctor give me a PICC line. I don't trust all LLMDs. I have had some really horrible ones who I have no idea what made them get up on day and help lyme patients.

I always knew I had to go the IV route and I had one of those horrible doctors want to give me a line...I walked out with my mom after asking her 50 thousand questions with bad vibes. I knew she didn't know what she was doing. Really drill your doctor on the dirty to see how much experience they have using IV antibiotics. It's a huge commitment and you only want to have to do it once and you don't want to be a guinea pig.

06/03/2011 10:41 PM
Posts: 105

As far as the line itself - I haven't had any problems. I have a PowerPICC in my chest where it has been danging since November. I just shove it in my bra so it doesn't bounce around.

I love the location of my Powerline! I would recommend it to anyone. It's similiar to a Hickman, but the difference is it's a smaller guage and is anchored in your neck. It's never in the way and I can use both hands easily.


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