Stealth Pathogens and Lyme Disease

Stealth pathogens. The term may make you think of a spy movie. But, far from being fictional, stealth pathogens are very real, even though they have not been officially recognized by the conventional medical community despite the abundance of evidence in favor of their existence and their negative impact on the body.

Stealth pathogens are one of the things that complicate and obfuscate the diagnosis and treatment of Lyme disease. Many of the bacteria and pathogens carried by ticks are known to be stealth pathogens. 

Stealth pathogens are disease-causing microorganisms that can lie dormant for long periods of time before causing illness. They are adept at evading or concealing themselves from your immune system, and so these stealth pathogens can go undetected by your immune system, so your body may be unable to fight them once they become active.

They trigger chronic autoimmune conditions and sickness in potentially millions of people worldwide. Stealth pathogens do not follow the typical pathogen pattern of exposure, symptoms expressed=clear cut diagnosis, which is why Lyme disease and other diseases, sicknesses, and disorders that are caused by stealth pathogens are more effectively treated by functional medicine instead of traditional medicine because functional medicine practitioners look at the individual as a whole rather than focusing on a collection of symptoms.

How Do Stealth Pathogens Hide?

How do stealth pathogens hide? Here are some known methods by which stealth pathogens evade and conceal themselves from your immune system1:

  • Stealth bacteria can create a protective biofilm resistant to immune response.
  • Stealth pathogens can hide within other cells, tissue, or organs to avoid identification.
  • Some stealth pathogens are able to employ molecular mimicry, where they trick your immune system into thinking they are a natural part of your body.
  • Many people’s immune systems are too weak to effectively deal with stealth pathogens — such as those who suffer from conditions like chronic stress, leaky gut syndrome, or AIDS.


Here are some symptoms that stealth pathogens are known to cause:

  • Recurring infections
  • Fatigue
  • Joint pain
  • Muscle aches
  • Abdominal distress
  • Weight gain
  • Chills
  • Fever
  • Rash
  • Swollen glands
  • Headaches
  • Cognitive impairment or brain fog
  • Changes in appetite
  • Food intolerance
  • Lethargy and exhaustion

Known Stealth Pathogens

What are some common stealth pathogens?

  • Epstein-Barr virus leads to mono (AKA infectious mononucleosis), one of the most common stealth pathogens.
  • Mycoplasma are bacteria that lead to walking pneumonia
  • Candida albicans (candida) is a fungus. Candida causes fungal infection.
  • Bartonella species pluralis may cause Bartonellosis infections: Carrion’s disease, trench fever, or cat scratch fever. Bartonella seems to be among the most widely accepted of stealth pathogens.
  • Lyme disease (caused by the Borrelia species, usually the specific bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi).
  • Helicobacter (usually Helicobacter pylori or “H. pylori”) infections may trigger peptic ulcers, abdominal pain, nausea, and bloody/black stool.
  • Streptococcus is a type of bacteria that leads to strep throat or scarlet fever.
  • Adenovirus can lead to bronchitis, pneumonia, croup, or the common cold. 

Stealth pathogens may also lead to co-infections, because when one pathogen activates it may allow other infectious diseases or pathogens that were dormant to strengthen and manifest. 

What conditions might be caused by stealth pathogens?

  • Dementia & memory issues
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Diabetes
  • Digestive diseases
  • Irritable bowel syndrome (also known as IBS)
  • Ulcerative colitis
  • Crohn’s disease
  • Graves’ disease (autoimmune hyperthyroidism)
  • Hashimoto’s thyroiditis (autoimmune hypothyroidism)
  • Other autoimmune diseases

Treating and Testing for Stealth Pathogens

A lyme-literate functional medicine provider is the best source of treatment and diagnosis. They will begin by taking a detailed medical history. Some pathogens may also be able to be identified with blood tests, but not all. Diagnosis and treatment with functional medicine practitioners will be, and should be, unique for each person.

Therapies such as ozone therapy and hyperthermia are effective treatments against some stealth pathogens.

If you are seeking treatment for Lyme or a tick borne illness and would like to speak with a functional medicine, Lyme-literate health coach, contact Lyme Support.

  1. https://www.theforkclinic.com/post/stealth-pathogens-cell-wall-deficient-bacteria-in-chronic-disease
  2. https://parasitesandvectors.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13071-019-3806-z
  3. https://www.lymedisease.org/mld-stealth-pathogens-green/

Contact details

This article was written by Lyme Support. We know living with Lyme disease is complicated and there is never one simple answer. 1-on-1 guidance and practical, cutting edge solutions make the healing journey so much easier. If you are ready to make health, happiness, and hope your new normal, reach out to us! We offer personalized health coaching using a functional medicine approach. 

Lyme Support can also refer you to hospitals in Germany and Mexico offering advanced holistic Lyme protocols. For anyone struggling with tick borne illnesses, a hospital that treats the body as a whole can elevate you to a new level of normal. If you’d like more information about these specialized hospitals, we can help schedule you in and provide education on treatments. 

You can reach us via email at info@lymesupport.com or book a breakthrough call here –  https://calendly.com/christinelymesupport/breakthrough if you are ready to get clear on the next steps on your path to healing.

St Augustine, FL   |   Global

St Augustine, FL
phone: +1415.228.0296  (USA/Global)

The information provided through this website is for educational and informational purposes only. It is not medical or psychological advice. This information is to be used at your own risk based on your own judgment.

For our full Disclaimer, please go to lymesupport.com/disclaimer.