By Arthur Gertler, L.L.M.D.

It is not unusual to see skin eruptions in the treatment of Lyme disease, especially early in the course when Herxheimer reactions appear. It is due to the dissemination of toxins and immune complexes arising in the gut and migrating to the skin, where it causes a variety of dermatitis manifestations. Lyme overgrows the bowel after it attacks the nervous system, and when treatment begins, it breaks down yielding toxins, antigens and immune complexes which naturally migrate to the inert depot the skin, away from vital internal organs and the brain. In the skin, these will often cause rashes, eczema, psoriasis, rosacea, and acne to appear in sensitive individuals. This is usually only temporary, at the start of Lyme treatment, when there is a wave of spirochete loss, often seen when Herxheimer reactions appear, and recedes later on. Pre-existing dermatitis may exacerbate at this stage as well.

Standard treatment of the dermatitis with LymeplexPLUS® serum, aloe, neem, and many other common skin salves is usually effective.