HOW TO GET AN ACCURATE POLYMERASE CHAIN REACTION
(PCR) BLOOD TEST for MYCOPLASMAL
and OTHER INFECTIONS
© August 2003 Sean A.
Dudley & Leslee M. Dudley
Mycoplasmal infections are found in patients
with: Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, Gulf War Illness, Lyme
Disease, AIDS, Autoimmune diseases, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Lupus,
Scleroderma, Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, Multiple Sclerosis, Leukemia
and other diseases.
SYNDROME & FIBROMYALGIA
The top three pathogens that Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
patients test positive for on PCR
pathogens found individually or in combination with the other infections
Epstein Bar Virus,
TYPES OF MYCOPLASMA
MOST ACCURATE of the PCR blood tests is the
original, standard individual test for a specific species. It has an
accuracy rate of 95%.
"Multiplex" ("3 in 1" or "4 in 1") multi-species
Mycoplasma PCR blood tests are less expensive but their accuracy has not
yet been established.
Antibody Test - least accurate of the blood tests,
it is not as accurate as PCR. People generally only make antibodies to
Mycoplasma fermentans incognitus when they are near death. However,
people make antibodies to the other mycoplasma species more readily.
Culture - Mycoplasmas are rarely successfully
cultured, as they require specialized culture mediums and weeks of
careful laboratory work.
Do not perform the General (or Family) Mycoplasma
species screening test. It is not as accurate as hoped. This test should
never be used by physicians as a screening test for mycoplasmal infections
Have the blood drawn at the testing lab. If that
is impractical, the second best solution is to have the blood delivered to
the lab within 24 hours. If a sample of blood containing mycoplasmas is
left at room temperature, within 24 hours half the mycoplasmas are dead
and within 72 hours all are dead. Once dead, they disintegrate and the
specific genetic sequences needed to be found for PCR amplification will
Have the blood sample drawn later in the day if
you are shipping overnight. This shortens the hours before the sample is
Also, have the blood drawn early in the week, rather
than on a Friday, so that the sample arrives on a day when the lab is
open, rather than sitting unprocessed over the weekend.
Ship blood samples with blue ice, keeping the
sample at a refrigerated temperature. Place some packing material between
the blood sample and the blue ice to prevent the blood sample from
touching the blue ice. This avoids freezing of the blood sample, which
causes coagulation, ruining the sample for testing.
Do not take any antibiotics at least one month or
more before a PCR blood test. The antibiotics will remove most of the
infection from the blood, preventing an accurate result. This restriction
also applies to natural products that kill mycoplasmas, such as colloidal
silver, flax seed oil and fish oils.
Do not take vitamins, herbs or supplements that
boost the immune system and might reduce the mycoplasma count. Examples
would be Vitamin C, IP6, immune boosters, garlic, transfer factor, olive
leaf extract, etc. Unfortunately, no research exists to guide patients
on how long they should avoid these products before drawing blood.
The best time to have blood drawn is when the
patient is symptomatic.
Mycoplasmas can become dormant from time to time, so
if a patient is feeling well it might not be the best time to test.
If patients receive a negative result, but are
still symptomatic, they should be retested. Review our suggestions for
how and when to be tested to see if they were followed. Discuss the
merits of retesting with your physician.
Patients should be tested before beginning
However, some patients start antibiotics before being
tested as an experiment to see if they will show improvement. Then, to
avoid a relapse, they refuse to stop using antibiotics before taking a PCR
test. Unfortunately, once they start antibiotics, they risk getting a
false PCR result. Even if the patient stops taking antibiotics for one to
several months, there is no guarantee that the PCR test will then find
mycoplasmas in their blood stream. This leaves patients unsure of their infection(s) and they may not be taking the most
effective antibiotic(s). Also, without a positive test result, physicians
are reluctant to prescribe long term antibiotic treatment.
For patients already on antibiotics, there may be
an alternative to PCR; Antibody Tests. Though traditional antibody tests
are generally not as accurate as PCR, detection may be possible if a
patient has developed antibodies to mycoplasmas. Test accuracy increases
the longer the patient has been on antibiotics.
LYME DISEASE (CHRONIC
LYME DISEASE, NEW LYME DISEASE, MONTANA LYME DISEASE)
If bitten by ticks or fleas carrying Borrelia burgdorferi you can develop
traditional Lyme Disease, which is self-limiting and carried by a deer
experience with patients suggests that if the tick or flea also carries
co-infections, such as Babesiosis or especially Mycoplasmas, you may
develop "Chronic Lyme Disease" also known as "New Lyme Disease" as well as
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia and Autoimmune Diseases.
"Montana Lyme Disease" symptoms are similar to Lyme Disease. However, it
is caused by a Lyme disease-like agent that has adapted to the Rocky
Mountain wood ticks found in Montana and the Western United States.
Spirochetes (Borrelia bacteria), three types:
sensu stricto (USA, UK, Europe)
Borrelia garinii (UK, Europe)
Borrelia afzelii. (UK, Europe)
Disease" is a combination of the Borellia-pathogen and one or more of the
Relapsing Fever caused
by the spirochetes:
Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever
Coxiella burnetti (Q-Fever and "Post-Q Fever Fatigue Syndrome")
Colorado Tick Fever
Eastern tick-borne Rickettsiosis
Tularemia (rabbit fever)
Ehrlichiosis (caused by Ehrlichia, a rickettsia-like bacteria)
Anaplasmas (related to the genera Rickettsia and Ehrlichia)
© August 2003 Sean A.& Leslee M. Dudley,Mycoplasma
Registry for Gulf War Illness & Chronic Fatigue Syn-dro-me. Content of
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intellectual property of Mycoplasma Registry. Any copying, republication
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Printed versions of the brochure "How to Get an
Accurate PCR Blood Test for Mycoplasmal & Other Infections" ©, with an
updated list of laboratories, are available upon request. We are an
unincorporated nonprofit association, California Reg. No. 6679. To cover
our expenses and to continue our work and research, donations would be
greatly appreciated. Please make checks payable to: Mycoplasma Registry.
MYCOPLASMA REGISTRY - Sean & Leslee Dudley
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