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Blastocystis Hominis or Flagyl - Which is worse?

Discussion in 'General ME/CFS Discussion' started by Prefect, May 28, 2017.

  1. Prefect

    Prefect Senior Member

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    I'm making a whole post of this because it's too important to ignore in my condition.

    I just got tested positive for Blastocystis Hominis and I suspect I caught it from my girlfriend last summer, around the same time as my bad flare up which still continues. My flare up involves neurosensory and psychitric problems though, NOT gut issues.

    I have no idea if I should treat it or not.

    My doctor thinks Blasto is not pathogenic. I think I want to treat it because the fact that my relapse happened half a month after I met my girlfriend is too big a coincidence.

    Doc's going to put me on Flagyl if I do convince her.

    Is Flagyl a harmless enough drug that I can take a chance on and see if it improves my condition, or is it one of those bad antibiotics like Fluoroquinolones and floxies that will destroy me? I know it'll kill everything good in my tummy, that's not what I'm talking about because I can always replenish with probiotics. I'm talking about something more menacing like the type of damage Fluoroquinolones can do.

    I'm already taking Saccharomyces boulardii to weaken the parasite, but want to take the next step and try to eradicate it.

    Is it worth it?...Especially considering the low rate of eradication this parasite's known for no matter what you use?
     
  2. Tunguska

    Tunguska Senior Member

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    Just so happens I got courses of both quinolone and flagyl, and although flagyl is rough it's not as extreme.

    One of the doctors (I'll never find the link again) prescribes B12 and (iirc) B complex to counter the reported peripheral neuropathy from flagyl, although (iirc) there's no documentation to support this.

    So I did that and went a step futher and took high doses of NAC (2g+) during the whole course. It was doxycycline + flagyl so it was damn uncomfortable. The NAC is co-administered in studies with flagyl so there are no negative interactions predicted. I came out with no scars.

    [That said I would stay away from long courses]
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2017
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  3. Hutan

    Hutan Senior Member

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    Some strains of Blastocystis are associated with pathogenicity and some seem to be completely innocuous. Whole populations are reported to have Blastocystis with seemingly no ill effect and possibly even a benefit. The genetic variation between strains of Blastocystis is reported to be very high. It's a bit like asking if it's a good idea to have an animal as a pet while not knowing if the animal in question is a cat or a lion.

    Probably it is not possible to find out the strain but I think it is worth asking. If you know the strain, that will put you in a much better place to know whether to treat.

    My family had a range of gut protozoa type things that were regarded as mostly benign including Blastocystis and Dientamoeba fragilis and Entamoeba. We did have significant gut issues. We chose to treat with Flagyl (Metronidazole) and it made no difference, good or bad. The parasites still showed up. I think we tried Tinidiazole also with no effect.

    I was better after a course of paromomycin (specifically to get rid of the protozoa) but I was also trying valtrex (which successfully stopped endless cold sores) and the timing coincided with the onset of summer when I seem to be better regardless of treatment. I still have gut issues and ME. I think if you have decided that there is enough reason to treat, then it is best to try something that has a good chance of eliminating the target. Note that negative stool samples don't necessarily mean no parasites, shedding can be intermittent - there's some good studies around on that, comparing different approaches to testing.

    There are some threads on Blastocystis here on PR that will give you more information.

    http://bhomcenter.org/wp/ This website has a link to a paper on a triple drug approach to treatment as well as papers covering the variable pathogenicity of Blasto.
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2017
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  4. Sushi

    Sushi Senior Member Albuquerque

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    People react differently to Flagyl. For me, it really set me back. Are there other antibiotics that are options?
     
  5. Learner1

    Learner1 Professional Patient

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  6. alicec

    alicec Senior Member

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    Flagyl alone will not eliminate Blastocystis and may create resistance.

    Pioneering work on elimination was done here. The standard treatment is a triple therapy but other procedures for resistant cases have been developed.

    Whether to treat is a difficult question. Think about this carefully. Just killing it because it is there makes no sense. You need good reason to think it might be causing problems.

    Here is a post about some treatment options.
     
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  7. CCC

    CCC Senior Member

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    There's no question Blasto can be pathogenic. The website badbugs.org pulls together the research and treatment options quite well.

    We went through the same thing for a similar problem, but with Dientamoeba fragilis - interestingly, my son was very unwell from the dientamoeba but my husband was aymptomatic; doxycycline cleared it from my husband but not my son. (Blasto is said to be much, much worse that the dientamoeba).

    My poor boy ended up needing the triple therapy at the Centre for Digestive Diseases.
    • He tried a 10-day course of doxycycline - ineffective (GP prescribed)
    • About 6 months later he tried a 10-day course of doxy + secnidazole - totally ineffective
    • About 4 months late, he tried the CDD's triple therapy (colonic infusion of three abx + 10-day oral nitazoxinide) - success. One source of debilitating fatigue removed. Gut problems solved.
    They use a similar approach for Blasto.

    It's possible your doctor is saying it is non-pathogenic because the pathology lab is telling him that. They don't just give the results, but also the treatment approach without qualification. You could try printing out some of the research from the BadBugs website if your doctor is the sort of person open to such things.
     
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  8. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    You may have indeed picked up a pathogen from your new girlfriend, because human beings pass microbes to each other all the time, especially when there is intimate social contact like kissing, which can spread respiratory pathogens. It may not necessarily be Blastocystis hominis that you picked up though; it could be any number of viruses, bacteria, etc.


    If you want to attempt a Blastocystis hominis eradication protocol, I'd suggest first checking what the percentage eradication rate is for the protocol you are using. Single drug treatments such as metronidazole (Flagyl) have a poor success rate.

    See this post for a list of Blastocystis hominis eradication protocols, and their eradication success rates.
     
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  9. Prefect

    Prefect Senior Member

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    It is, I just got tested positive for it, and I know I didn't use to carry this, from previous parasite tests. It was confirmed by government run lab too, not just GDX.

    I'll be combining it with Florastor, which I've been taking for about a week. I've read research Saccharomyces boulardii can increase the effectiveness of Flagyl. It's all I've got.

    Trust me I'd love to get my hands on some serious anti-parasite meds in that list, but for a country (Canada) a big part of whose population is recent arrivals from all parts of the world, our arsenal of anti-parasitic meds is something out of the corner pharmacy from Strange Brew, it's just pathetic and moronic.
     
  10. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    It could be Blasto, but Blastocystis hominis is difficult to detect, so tests can often come out negative, even when you have this pathogen. If my memory serves me correctly, I believe you need to take 6 stool samples on consecutive days to stand a good change of detecting Blasto. If you take just one stool sample, the chances are there will not be any parasites in that.
     
  11. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    I had to order the anti-parasite drugs from abroad when I tried a Blasto elimination protocol. I know that in Canada, getting drugs through customs is not easy though. Fortunately for me in the UK they do not restrict personal pharmaceutical importation.
     
  12. Art Vandelay

    Art Vandelay Senior Member

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    Flagyl will not get rid of blasto. I had a number of courses of it for blasto and it was completely ineffective (apart from making me feel awful and making the blasto more resistant). A course of tinidazole and bactrim also didn't work.

    I had to end up going to the CDD for their triple therapy which worked on the second attempt. Dr Borody at the CDD was extremely critical of the doctors that had treated me with Flagyl.
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2017
  13. Prefect

    Prefect Senior Member

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    Ok folks. Here's the million dollar question. Did your ME improve after getting this eradicated? I'm not asking about GI symptom, I'm asking about your BRAIN!

    Keep in mind I have close to NO gastrointestinal symptoms; all my symptoms are are sensory and neuropsychiatric.

    And yes, my flare up happened a month after I met my girlfriend, who she admitted her doctor may have mentioned something about her having blasto because she goes to Italy a lot.

    And I mean yes, Blasto can increase intestinal permeability, but so can H Pilory, which I have and am not eradicating either.

    I have a decision to make.
     
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  14. Prefect

    Prefect Senior Member

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    Not to mention make my girlfriend take this treatment or breakup with her.
     
  15. Learner1

    Learner1 Professional Patient

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    Not to be overalarmist, but increasing intestinal permeability is at the root of a lot of disease. Food particles and bacteria can then get through your intestinal wall and cause your immune system to act out.

    Studies have linked unhappy microbiomes to ME/CFS.

    Killing off the h pylori and b hominis isn't guaranteed to fix your ME, which is a multifactoral problem, but it might simplify what's wrong with you and help to encourage your recovery.
     
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  16. Art Vandelay

    Art Vandelay Senior Member

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    No. My gastrointestinal symptoms (daily bouts of diarrhoea, bloating, nausea etc) did improve by about 50% but my other ME symptoms remained about the same.
     
    Last edited: May 29, 2017
  17. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    That's an alternative medicine view, which has not been proven as yet, but is a possibility.



    Did you ever see the list of neuropsychiatric that the virus I caught from kissing triggered? They are detailed on my website.
     
  18. Prefect

    Prefect Senior Member

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    I caught Blasto from kissing her south of the border, but yes, I have read about that virus; the symptoms other than the neuro stuff don;t fit mine
     
  19. alicec

    alicec Senior Member

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    No.
     
  20. Richard7

    Richard7 Senior Member

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    I took tripple therapy http://www.badbugs.org/Blasto_treating.htm in December.

    I was doing a lot to reduce anxiety at the time (by reducing permeability and inflammation) and I am still on Hip's tumeric, flaxseed oil and NAG. But the tripple therapy seemed to reduce anxiety. Before and to an extent during the therapy anxiety was still a background issue. Since the therapy it only ocassionally breaks through: less than once a week.

    I do not know if you consider anxiety to be a brain symptom or not.

    Another major difference was that I started producing/releasing enough bile and was able to stop taking ox bile. This is important as we need to release bile as part of detoxification.

    So things are better but not good. But the ME is still ME.
     
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