Bacteria and Memory Issues

Readers know that my own experience was having a SPECT scan that was read as early Alzheimer’s Disease during my last flare. Remission of CFS resulted from aggressively altering bacteria. A reader just posted me a new research articles that rings true to me — because CFS has been associated with walking pneumonia in me for almost 40 years (before CFS was known). This was likely Chlamydophila pneumoniae in my case. 

J Alzheimers Dis. 2014 Sep 2. [Epub ahead of print]

Bacterial Infection and Alzheimer’s Disease: A Meta-Analysis.

Abstract

The possibility of an infectious etiology for Alzheimer’s disease (AD) has been repeatedly postulated over the past three decades. We provide the first meta-analysis to address the relationship between bacterial infection and AD. Studies examining the association between AD and spirochetal bacteria or Chlamydophila pneumoniae (Cpn) were identified through a systematic search of the databases MEDLINE, EMBASE, PubMed, and Google Scholar. Data combined from 25 relevant, primarily case-control studies demonstrated a statistically significant association between AD and detectable evidence of infection of either bacterial group. We found over a ten-fold increased occurrence of AD when there is detectable evidence of spirochetal infection (OR: 10.61; 95% CI: 3.38-33.29) and over a four-fold increased occurrence of AD in a conservative risk estimate (OR 4.45; 95% CI: 2.33-8.52). We found over a five-fold increased occurrence of AD with Cpn infection (OR 5.66; 95% CI: 1.83-17.51). This study shows a strongly positive association between bacterial infection and AD. Further detailed investigation of the role of bacterial infection is warranted.

An earlier study reported “After the first report on the presence of Chlamydia pneumoniae (Cpn) in brains of patients with AD appeared in 1998, this bacterium has most often been implicated in AD pathogenesis. However, while some studies demonstrate a clear association between Cpn infection and AD, others have failed to confirm these findings.” [2010]

The association issue failure is the classic medical tunnel vision — believing that a single infection is responsible for a single condition.  My model is that an infection by “farming the gut” will cause similar sets of bacteria overgrowth that will result in the same symptoms being reported. 

Interesting also, that antibiotics are known to slow Alzheimer’s disease. http://www.webmd.com/alzheimers/news/20031009/antibiotics-may-slow-alzheimers 

Interesting that they are also the ones that have been effective for CFS – 

“a three-month course of the antibiotics doxycycline and rifampin

 

 

 

 

 

Memory Issues, Vitamin D and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

I tend to view some of the processes involved with CFS to parallel (but are not identical) to Alzheimer’s Disease. Memory issues with CFS can remit with remission, AD has no remission.

Recently, the role of vitamin D with AD has had some research published (Journal Neurology, August 6, 2014). Low or very low Vitamin D levels double the risk of AD.  CFS research has found that the severity of symptoms increases with low levels of vitamin D and greatly reduce when patients are at the top of the recommended range (or slightly beyond).

One form of vitamin D, 1,25D (not normally tested for) appears to go up or down depending on severity of CFS symptoms.  By up, I mean very far above the normal range. When the lab did their first test of my 1,25 levels, it was so high they assumed a lab error. They repeated the test with the same result. With remission, I dropped down to the normal range of 1,25D.

A few years ago, there was a fad treatment, the Marshall Protocol, that promised remission if you pushed your Vitamin D level down to zero.  Bad idea. I know many people who tried it that are still addressing side-effects that arose during their attempt to do this protocol (under MD supervision).

And many many more!

 

How much, technically that needs to be done in consultation with your MD.  Most MDs will just want to get people into the bottom of the normal range. My physician wanted me to be near the top of the normal range. How much was I taking, around 20,000 IU of Vitamin D3 per day (as you get older, it takes more to maintain a level).

 

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Memory problems with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome

While I had active CFS, I had a SPECT scan. The radiologist read the abnormal results as early Alzheimer. “Early” does not mean starting, but before the typical age of onset. At the same time, I was having severe memory issues (since disappeared).

In a recent New Scientist article, , I read how anti-tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) was being used successfully for slowing the progress of Alzheimer’s Disease.  I was not surprise because I was talking several anti-TNF-α supplements as part of my research approach.

On the flip side, some foods like honey [2003] increases TNF.

Also, in my series on Crohn’s disease, many of the supplements listed were known to reduce TNF .

So if you have memory problems, you may wish to increase your anti-tnf supplements (and make sure that you check all of them to see if any increases TNF )

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