Low Dose Naltrexone for Chronic Lyme Disease

Low Dose Naltrexone for Chronic Lyme Disease

Have you heard about LDN (Low Dose Naltrexone) for chronic Lyme disease? I am excited to say that I have been taking it successfully for chronic pain although it took awhile to kick in.There appear to be many amazing health benefits for taking LDN, including the inhibition of cancerous cell growth!

The major mechanism of action of LDN involves blocking the body’s opioid/narcotic receptors for just a very few hours (rather than the all-day blockade caused by the 50mg dosage). Those are the same receptors used by the body’s endorphins. The body responds to this by greatly increasing its endorphin production, and those higher levels last all day — far after the blockade by LDN has ended. Endorphins turn out to be the major normalizer/upregulator of one’s immune system.

It is best to start low at between .5 and 1.5 mg and work up to as much as 4.5 mg (vs 50 – 300 mg for drug addicts or alcoholics). My doctor prescribed 2 weeks at 1.5 mg, 2 weeks at 3 mg and three weeks ago I moved up to my full dose of 4.5 mg.  I did’t notice any improvement during the first month (although I know a few people who felt benefits at 2 mg), but about two weeks into the full dose I started to notice a marked improvement in pain relief and general well-being.

I have read that some people who had NOT been diagnosed with Lyme and were treated with LDN for fibromyalgia had a worsening of symptoms due to an apparent immune response. This patient writes from LDN Yahoo group:

“LDN can and usually does backfire with untreated Lyme disease. That is how I discovered that I have Lyme, because I tried LDN and everything got much worse, and prompted me to get testing done that revealed Lyme. Since then I have heard the same story repeated again and again from many people with Lyme. In my opinion, the ability to tolerate LDN is a good test of the relative severity of infection when you do have Lyme. LDN seems to “turn the lights on” for your immune system and reveal everything that was previously invisible. If there’s nothing there, you’re fine. If your body is riddled with spirochetes, you’re in for a BUMPY ride as all-out warfare commences.  Lyme sufferers that have been on antibiotics for extended lengths of time or have less severe cases seem to do alright with LDN.”

Some people experience a relief in symptoms much faster than I did, but like most treatments it takes consistency for lasting relief.

Some of the other things LDN has found to be helpful in treating:

  • ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease)
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Ankylosing spondylitis
  • Anti-aging
  • Autism (see Jacob’s amazing piano-playing story in the MOVIE)
  • Behcet’s Disease
  • Celiac disease
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • CREST syndrome
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Dermatomyositis
  • Dystonia
  • Endometriosis
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis
  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBS)
  • Lupus
  • Multiple sclerosis (MS)
  • Myasthenia Gravis (MG)
  • Nephrotic Syndrome
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Pemphigoid
  • Primary lateral sclerosis (PLS)
  • Primary Biliary Cirrhosis
  • Progressive Supranuclear Palsy
  • Psoriasis
  • PTSD
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Sarcoidosis
  • Scleroderma
  • Sjogren’s Syndrome
  • Stiff Person Syndrome (SPS)
  • Systemic Lupus (SLE)
  • Transverse Myelitis
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Wegener’s Granulomatosis

Additionally, LDN has been found helpful in in combating the following cancers:

  • Brain tumors (both astrocytoma and glioblastoma)
  • Bladder Cancer
  • Breast cancer
  • Carcinoid
  • Colon & Rectal Cancer
  • Endometrial cancer
  • Glioblastoma
  • Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma
  • Liver Cancer
  • Lung Cancer (both small cell and non-mmall cell)
  • Lymphocytic Leukemia (chronic)
  • Lymphoma (Hodgkin’s and Non-Hodgkin’s)
  • Malignant Melanoma
  • Multiple Myeloma
  • Myeloid leukemia
  • Neuroblastoma
  • Ovarian Cancer
  • Pancreatic Cancer
  • Prostate Cancer (untreated)
  • Renal Cell Carcinoma
  • Throat Cancer
  • Uterine Cancer

Where do you get it?

Like all prescription medications LDN must be prescribed by a MD, and it is usually mixed by an independent lab and sent directly to you rather than through a pharmacy.  No, it is not covered by insurance but thankfully it is relatively inexpensive – between $30 and $40 per month.

For more information:

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This entry was posted in Alternative Treatment Protocols, Ask the Doctor, Chronic Lyme Disease, Coping with Lyme disease, Lyme Disease Symptoms, Lyme Disease Treatment, Neurological Lyme disease, Pain, Research and Development and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to Low Dose Naltrexone for Chronic Lyme Disease

  1. Valerie says:

    I initially had a negative reaction to LDN before my Lyme diagnosis. But, since I have started treatments, it is a life saver! What a wonderful post!

    • Jenna Seaver says:

      I agree – it is a life saver! Do you mind me asking about your negative reaction? There aren’t supposed to be any side effects although many complain of insomnia initially (I didn’t notice anything worse than what I have always had with Lyme although now I sleep better than I have in a decade!) I’m glad it’s helping you!

      • Valerie says:

        Sure! It caused me severe insomnia and it just simply did not work when I first tried it a couple of years ago. It actually made my pain much worse in the beginning. Since I have been in Lyme treatments however, it has begun to work its magic and actually dull my pain. So happy to have found your blog!

  2. Joan says:

    I was diagnosed of ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease) a rapidly progressive, invariably fatal neurological disease that attacks the nerve cells, I was given medications to slow down the progress of the disease, after some months my conditioned worsened and i lost ability to go about my daily activities and i had to quit my job, my legs and arms were terribly weakened, i resorted to a wheelchair (Perbombil C300). This was till my husband’s friend introduced my husband to a herbal clinic in South Africa who sell herbal medicines to cure all kind of diseases including ALS, we contacted the herbal clinic via their email and purchased the ALS herbal remedy, we received the herbal medicine via courier within 7 days and commenced usage as prescribed, its totally unexplainable how all the symptoms gradually dissapeared, my speech has greatly improved and am able to walk a distance now with no help, contact this herbal clinic via their email healthherbalclinic@gmailCOM

  3. Wlk says:

    Jenna, back in the day(08) you and I seen all the posts on many forums …LDN LDN LDN…it’s the
    cat’s meow…or was that cat’s claw… 😉 … Anyhow, interesting you should post this, every year as I go
    through more and more…..I wonder if I should take it, try it?

    I’m worried, cuz last year I was re-infected by a tick…I do intensive tick checks…this one was VERY small and hid himself well…Anyhow, unable to afford a LLMD I saw a IDSA Doctor who even after my showing him the NEW Guidelines for treating Lyme…REFUSED to treat me…and only would give the 21 day bullship! I took that plus many naturals, to try and combat something I didn’t want to get worse…Well I got Severe Bells Palsy soon after and now am suffering severe Meniere’s type symptoms….However I’ve found that if I treat leaky gut, Candida, and Parisites it plays games with the “meniere’s type symptoms… It’s very weird and it’s getting old fast…limits the quality of life big time….it’s one thing to walk around with “pain” and stiffness” of Lyme so to speak…but to lay down next to the throne and pray for relief….another story in it self… So here I wonder….would LDN be the kicker…or will I suffer beyond any ability to regain any balance and have the ringing go away? Ohh the so called “normal” world has no idea……none…

    • Jenna Seaver says:

      So sorry for your suffering and loss – people don’t understand how much we lose to this disease…you need to get on disability and find a LLMD who accepts medicare – you MUST get on abx to get ahead of the disease and it will take many years. LDN is great to go with a treatment – it helps with neuropathic symptoms and works to strengthen the immune system but it will not get you better by itself. Forget IDSA docs who aren’t Lyme-literate – connect with your state Lyme association – they should have some guidance on the best LLMDs near you –

      Best wishes!

  4. Lorin Kenney says:

    Hi Jenna,

    I am taking LDN for Fibromyalgia, I also have Epstein Barr Virus which is what I think created the Fibro. I have been having that bumpy ride you are talking about. I am now on 1 mg after at least six months of treatment and I have a mysterious rash on my neck and face. What did you do to treat you Lymes so you could continue on with your LDN treatment. I was tested for Lyme’s about a year ago but it was negative. I have heard that can happen even if you have Lyme’s or maybe I wan’t tested for the the type of Lyme’s I have. I would like to hear how you are healing yourself other than LDN. Thank you so much,

    • Jenna Seaver says:

      LDN is not a treatment for Lyme but for symptoms. It helped somewhat but was not as helpful as I hoped…I find that a combination od antibiotics, probiotics, and anti-parasitic medicines work best to treat.

  5. Shasha says:

    The health issues listed maybe due to Celiac/gluten. Tests may not work to diagnose Celiac. LDN helps block hidden gluten. Gluten may lower the immune system/hurt the gut lining/lower the thyroid/hurt the adrenals. Fixing Celiac first may help a person heal from Lyme. LDN helps block gluten that is hard to block in the air/on the skin/hidden in food etc. I will take LDN for the rest of my Life. When I stopped LDN for a short time is when I got Lyme/coinfections from picking up trash in a wooded area. Herbs/strong probiotic/LDN/no gluten/no sugar/no soy/no GMO etc and taking vitamins/good oils/minerals…probiotic…Far Infrared Sauna/ozone help me. Hair tests show good minerals/heavy metals. Lyme/coinfections may lower Mg/Mn/Fe/Mo etc. Zyto scan shows infections/how organs/glands are working. LDN is for Celiac. Most people are hurt by gluten, but may not realize it. When gluten lowers the immune system people may get other infections. LDN helps keep the immune system working strong and gut lining healed from gluten. Gluten/Lyme/GMO/antibiotics may hurt the gut lining so less nutrients absorb.

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