Infection and Rheumatoid Arthritis

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by DrNicolson, Sep 15, 2010.

  1. DrNicolson

    DrNicolson New Member


    Do you believe pathogens might play a role in triggering rheumatoid arthritis? If so, anything to head it off?


    Yes, I do. In fact, there is a foundation, The Road Back Foundation (, that is based on just this assumption. Years ago, Dr. Thomas McPherson Brown, working at the Rockefeller Institute in New York with Dr. Albert Sabin of polio vaccine fame, isolated an L-form bacteria that turned out to be Mycoplasma from the joint fluid of patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). He found that the Mycoplasma could be controlled by long-term Abx therapy with tetracyclines. After WWII Dr. Brown became head of RA research at the VA, an interesting promotion since the VA now spends quite a bit of time denying the role of this microorganism in various medical conditions, such as Gulf War Illness and other illnesses (see other posts on this forum). However, his successes increased and he eventually became Dean of the George Washington University Medical School.

    As you can imagine, the pharmaceutical industry was not very happy with this, because RA drugs were an important, long-term revenue stream for them. Brown was also dismissed by most of his rheumatology peers, but just before his death he published a book on treatment of RA that would shake up the establishment. In fact, his theory was picked up by Congress, and eventually a NIH clinical trial was funded. It was actually designed to disprove his theory. However, the results turned out just the opposite, the trial was a success, and the results were published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

    Since this first clinical trial and long after the death of Dr. Brown, at least 7 other clinical trials have shown the benefits of Abx treatment of RA. Most of the Abx drugs of choice were either minocycline or doxycycline. These Abx are now widely prescribed for infections in RA, lupus, scleroderma, CFS and FMS, Gulf War Illness, and more recently neurodegenerative diseases where infections like Mycoplasma are commonly found in patients.

    You can find out more about infections in RA and other diseases on our website,

    [This Message was Edited on 09/15/2010]

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