Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Fibrolady37, May 14, 2006.

  1. Fibrolady37

    Fibrolady37 New Member

    is herxing please will someone tell me ive seen it on posts a few times & always wonder what it is?
    Id really like to know thanks.
  2. Jane_Canuck

    Jane_Canuck New Member

    eheheh you know I keep getting told what it is but damned if I can remember lol I will bump to help this!

    hagn Brenda
  3. jbennett2

    jbennett2 New Member

    The herxheimer reaction, nicknamed "herx", otherwise referred to as Jarisch-Herxheimer (J-H) is a phenomenon originally observed in the treatment of Syphilis, but later found in other illness [1]. In general terms, it is described as a temporary increase of symptoms when anti-syphilitic drugs (antibiotics) are administered.


    As mentioned, the general description is a temporary increase in symptoms, but also included is the development of new ones. More specifically the most common events include: increased joint or muscle pain, headaches, chills, fever (usually low grade), hypotension, uticaria (hives) and rash. [1-5] A multitude of other symptoms have been described.

    Worth noting is that hives and rash are sometimes mistaken for an allergic reaction. [2] It is up to one’s physician to determine this. However, with close observation and proper treatment (see Treatment) may prevent unnecessary cessation of therapy.

    In more severe cases of J-H, a reduction of the dosage or temporarily cessation of the treatment has been recommended [5].

    Timing, Frequency and Duration:

    This is individualistic and herxheimers can occur within days to weeks after the institution of antibiotic therapy. In some patients they occur only once or twice (if at all) and with others continue throughout the course of treatment, usually lessening in severity.

    They can occur and are more often described in cycles (example: every 4 weeks) and have been reported to last from days to weeks. It can be very beneficial to document any exacerbation. Some physicians use this as a guideline for treatment. Further, it may help differentiate herxheimers from the normal symptoms or progression of Lyme disease.


    Herxheimer reactions can be very difficult on patients and affect compliance with therapy so supportive measures should be sought or utilized to lessen discomfort if needed. The use of aspirin, NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs), pain medication, muscle relaxers, hot baths or others remedies can be appropriate. Of note, some have found Benadryl helpful even in the absence of rash or hives.

    The good news is that the herxheimer is thought to indicate that the antibiotics are indeed working and that following each worsening may bring about more improvement. Though the lack of a herxheimer reaction should not cause anxiety if symptoms are improving.

    Other considerations:

    Something often overlooked but can present with similar symptoms is Candida (yeast) infection. Treatment with acidophilus and if needed prescription medications such as
  4. Fibrolady37

    Fibrolady37 New Member

    thanks anyway
    Here are some very gentle hugs for you(((((((.
    May god bless you & yours.
  5. Fibrolady37

    Fibrolady37 New Member

    I only wanted to know because i wondered if it was anything to do with fms.
    Its not something thats of any use to me but thanks for explaining it to me.
    May god bless you & yours.

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