Bartonella- The Beast!

Bartonella quintana and Bartonella henselae are two strains of a tenacious infection that are very misunderstood:

  1. Bartonella quintana is known in relationship to Trench Fever widespread among soldiers in World War 1 and 2.
  2. Bartonella henselae is known in context with an infections also known as Cat Scratch Fever, it can be transmitted from a cat.

There are multiple strains of Bartonella, however these two mentioned are currently tested. These gram-negative bacterial infections that go intracellular, are persistent, and are very misunderstood. In the arena of chronic infections associated with Lyme disease, this potential co-infection not considered in the conventional medical and infectious disease model. they do not respond to doxycycline that is standard of care treatment for Lyme disease.

Known vectors of transmission include fleas, associated with cats and dogs. This is one way a bartonella infection can be transmitted to human hosts – by their pets. Lyme – literate doctors and health practitioners are aware of this. There is no scientific paper available currently re transmission from a tick, yet there is strong supportive anecdotal evidence from many who are sick with a bartonella infection (which often was misdiagnosed for quite some time…)

Individuals infected with Lyme disease, can also be infected with bartonella. Standard Lyme disease treatment with an antibiotic, called doxycycline, is not effective against a bartonella infection, especially if has been untreated for quite some time and now is embedded in the tissues.

Testing in the blood for extracellular bartonella can come up negative, despite the infection being present inside the tissues. Thrombosis and vasculitis are associated with a Bart infections, besides a variety of other symptoms that can include heel pain, pain under the foot, shooting pains that come and go, severe neuro-psychiatric symptoms, insomnia, skin striae, and more. A chronic low white blood cell count is not uncommon with a bartonella infection.

Bartonella infections have great affinity for the vasculature, and cardiovascular system (including a condition called endocarditis). Tissues in the heart that can be affected include the valves, incl. the valves of the the aorta. This has been found in cats, cows, dogs… and humans too. Any treatment therapies must consider damage to the heart muscle. Herbal and glandular therapies can be helpful. In addition, it would be prudent to check regarding clotting factors and fibrinogen marker. This can be done with a blood test by the doctor.

The impact of Covid infections regarding blood clots, heart palpitations, POTS, and cardiovascular symptoms, is of interest. The use of heparin as a blood thinner in treatment, plus checking of oxygenation and D-dimer levels, might find a crossover into the arena of addressing infections such as bartonella. Increased blood viscosity is a concern, as is hypoxia.

Edward B. Breitschwerdt is an expert in this arena, and he has published a terrific paper with Korsey L. Kordick. The title is:


I am not a doctor. As a health practitioner, I assess the whole person. A compromised immune system, genetic predispositions to blood clotting, emotional traumas, diet, lifestyle, surgeries, physical accidents, environmental factors, and more, all create the landscape upon which any infection must be qualified. Viral infections, co-infections, toxic mold exposures, and more all come into play.

A big issue is that infections will suppress the innate immune system, and it is important to address all potential factors that do not allow an immune rebound. It is important to consider the context of “remission”, not “cure”. There is so much we do not know, however there are many interventions that must include addressing of unresolved trauma, TBI, and ongoing toxic exposures at home.

As an ILADS member, I make it a point to stay on top of new information. Dr. Mozayeni is a leading doctor in the bartonella arena. Pharmaceutical engagement for bartonella includes a variation and rotation of medications with intra and extracelluar actions. Bartonella has two cell walls that must be penetrated. It is the two walls that make this infection very tenacious, and it is able to hide in tissues, and avoid can thus immune detection.

Gut health plays an important role, as immune modulation and the gut-brain connection are important players. Long-term medications alter the gut terrain, and adversely impact detox pathways plus mitochondrial function.

The endocrine system plays an important role, as chronic infections will impact thyroid, adrenal , and sex hormone function. The HPA axis must be supported while addressing any bartonella infection.

In my practice, I choose herbal, homeopathic and nutrient interventions. Chronic infections are a long road, and bartonella is a tenacious infection, a real beast! If a client is working with a pharmaceutical approach, this can be complemented with various holistic interventions that work towards building health and resilience.

For more information, contact me at [email protected]

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