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Does Hyperthermia Hold Promise for People with Lyme?

Hyperthermia has been widely used in Europe and some other parts of the world as a viable therapeutic intervention for diseases. Whole body hyperthermia involves incubating the entire body inside of a thermal chamber and heating it to 107-108 degrees Fahrenheit. Then, the body cools over a period of six hours, during which time the heat kills off abnormal cells and microbes deep within the organs and tissues.

Hyperthermia and Lyme Disease

Of late, a few practitioners have also discovered hyperthermia to be an extraordinary tool for managing Lyme infections, especially Bartonella [1], Borrelia, Mycoplasma, and viruses [2]. One of these practitioners, Friedrich Douwes, MD [3], a renowned integrative physician in Bad Aibling, Germany, accidentally discovered that hyperthermia could kill Lyme infections over 13 years ago. Two of his patients saw a remission in their Lyme disease symptoms [4] following hyperthermia interventions for another condition.

Shortly thereafter, Dr. Douwes stumbled upon research that showed that syphilis spirochetes — which are similar to Borrelia spirochetes — were susceptible to heat and would die when the body’s temperature was elevated to 106 degrees Fahrenheit, as in hyperthermia.  He then surmised that Lyme spirochetes might also be susceptible to heat, and so continued to care for Lyme patients using hyperthermia with great success.

What’s more, Dr. Douwes discovered that the effects of hyperthermia were potentiated whenever he would administer IV antibiotics to his patients during the intervention. The medications penetrated deep into the tissues where they normally would not reach without hyperthermia. This was a revolutionary discovery for him and has turned out to be a great benefit to his patients, many of whom who have been healed of Lyme after failing years of antibiotic therapies or other modalities.

In my book New Paradigms in Lyme Disease Treatment: 10 Top Doctors Reveal Healing Strategies that Work [5], Dr. Douwes describes his protocol for Lyme, which includes hyperthermia, in conjunction with other tools that he uses such as IV ozone [6], peptides and nutritional therapy. He has a high success rate in treating patients for Borrelia and Bartonella using these tools, although admits that hyperthermia is not as effective for Babesia [7].

Is Hyperthermia Safe?

Hyperthermia may not be a suitable therapeutic modality for everyone; indeed, there is a risk of side effects for a small percentage of people. Although, Dr. Douwes believes that these effects can be greatly minimized with conscientious preparation and planning. For example, he contends that he has never had a patient experience serious side effects because he and his staff take great care to ensure that all necessary preparatory precautions are taken, before, during and after the therapy.

Hyperthermia with Dr. Douwes may cause between $8,000 to $10,000 per week, which includes the adjunct tools that he uses to heal his patients with chronic Lyme disease [8]. What’s more, hyperthermia may be an important tool for those who have failed more conventional regimens involving herbal remedies [9] and antibiotics. Indeed, I believe that it may become a more popular treatment in the days to come as more and more people learn about it.

This article was first published on ProHealth.com on October 1, 2016 and was updated on July 27, 2020.

Connie Strasheim is the author of multiple wellness books, including three on Lyme disease. She is also a medical copywriter, editor and healing prayer minister. Her passion is to help people with complex chronic illnesses find freedom from disease and soul-spirit sickness using whole body medicine and prayer, and she collaborates with some of the world’s best integrative doctors to do this. In addition to Lyme disease, Connie’s books focus on cancer, nutrition, detoxification and spiritual healing. You can learn more about her work at: ConnieStrasheim. [10]