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A 43-year-old male asked:

Is the lyme spirochete (borrelia) the only infectious cause of raynaud's? if not, what are some other infections that cause this?

2 doctor answers4 doctors weighed in
Dr. Robert Lowe
Pediatric Rheumatology 17 years experience
Not likely: Raynaud's is either primary or secondary.Primary raynaud's means there is no known reason for it (idiopathic)and that it is not part of a more severe autoimmune disease such as lupus or scleroderma.Likely there's a genetic link since this can run in families. Secondary raynaud's is a more severe form that is part of an autoimmune disease.It's not well documented that any infections cause raynaud's.
Dr. Randy Baker
Holistic Medicine 40 years experience
Possibly Bartonella: Interesting question. No one knows for sure but it seems likely to me that bartonella may also cause raynaud's, but most with bartonella infection also have lyme ; bartonella is even harder to diagnose than lyme. There may be other microbes not yet known to cause it. If someone has raynaud's ; standard lyme tests are negative they may well still have lyme disease- see http://bit.Ly/1aaqjgc.
Dr. Robert Lowe
Dr. Robert Lowe commented
Pediatric Rheumatology 17 years experience
I disagree. There is no evidence in the literature for these statements about Lyme, Bartonella, and Raynaud's. Please cite your evidence/source.
Mar 11, 2014
Dr. Randy Baker
Dr. Randy Baker commented
Holistic Medicine 40 years experience
Provided original answer
As you know, Dr. Lowe, they give us extremely limited space here so I seldom have room to cite references. Re: Lyme & Raynaud's see http://www.cabdirect.org/abstracts/19920599321.html Many Lyme specialists feel Bartonella infection may be more common than Lyme but these are diff. varieties than B. Henselae: http://www.cvm.ncsu.edu/news/2012-05-04-Uncovering-Bartonella-the-Stealth-Pathogen.htmln
Mar 12, 2014
Dr. Randy Baker
Dr. Randy Baker commented
Holistic Medicine 40 years experience
Provided original answer
Standard tests for B. hensalae don't show the varieties prevalent in Lyme patients. For more on Bartonella see http://lymebites.com/bartonella/ While some of this information is controversial, my experience & that of many Lyme specialists is that Bartonella co-infection is common. Here is a literature report on Bartonella as a cause of Raynaud's: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17401716
Mar 12, 2014

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