Chronic infections

Diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis, even cancer; they all have one thing in common. We still don’t know the exact cause of these conditions. In recent years, science has increasingly linked chronic inflammation and infectious diseases that contribute to the development of these chronic infections.

A chronic infection often starts with an acute infection due to a variety of possible causes, ranging from a tick bite, a scratch from a cat, a wound, or a sore throat. A chronic infectious disease progresses slowly and often has long periods of unclear symptoms. These symptoms can lie dormant for months or years (eg in tuberculosis). Chronic infectious diseases are usually more difficult to diagnose than acute infections. As a result, the damage can be high before a long-term treatment is initiated.

White blood cells are programmed to fight inflammation. They disable any damaged or infected cells. When the damage of this acute infection has been dealt with and the first symptoms have passed, the white blood cells die or go back to doing what they did before; ready for new injuries.

Chronic inflammation occurs when the cause of the infection, such as a bacterium, is able to entrench itself in the white blood cell. Here the bacteria can vegetate and eventually start to multiply without our immune system being able to do anything against it. After all, the pathogen is located in a part of the immune system: the white blood cell. In this way, the pathogens are very difficult to trace and can spread throughout the body and cause vague complaints such as fatigue, loss of concentration, muscle pain, joint pain and headaches.

NL-Lab has developed research methods to detect these pathogens in their ‘hidden’ form. Constant research is being done to expand the diagnostic portfolio with new relevant pathogens. At the moment NL-Lab can detect the following pathogens:

  • Aeromonas hydrophila
  • Anaplasma species
  • Babesia species
  • Bartonella species
  • Bordetella pertussis
  • Borrelia burgdorferi
  • Borrelia species
  • Chlamydia pneumoniae
  • Chlamydia trachomatis
  • Ehrlichia species
  • Haemophilus influenzae
  • Mycobacterium tuberculosis
  • Mycobacterium species
  • Mycoplasma pneumoniae
  • Porphyromonas gingivalis
  • Propionibacterium acnes
  • Pseudomonas aeruginosa
  • Rickettsia species
  • Salmonella enterica
  • Salmonella species
  • Staphylococcus aureus
  • Staphylococcus species
  • Streptococcus species
Fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue syndrome: exhausted woman falling asleep in the office