Friday, January 28, 2011
Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
“It’s nothing fatal. Lyme disease is an infection caused by the borrelia bacteria from a tick,” she shared on the Tom Joyner Morning Show. “It’s a chronic condition, and I’ve had it in my system for over 15 years.”
Lyme disease is a condition that may cause complications of the heart, nervous system, and joints, but it can be cured.
Morgan will be returning to the show in the coming months"
Sunday, January 23, 2011
When I first heard about this paperback, which was released in early 2008, I admit to being skeptical. Oh brother, I thought, not another crazy thing that Lyme is going to blamed for! Being a voracious reader of anything concerning tick-borne illnesses, however, I picked up a copy and plunged in.
I was not far into the introduction before the intrigue set in. Hmmm, maybe the author has something here after all, I had to admit begrudgingly. And before I reached the end of the book, I found myself nodding in agreement with many of the passages, caught up in the author's hypothesis and meticulous research.
Most modern academics believe that there was no biological factor behind the "witches" of the colonial time period. They ascribe to the notion that these people were motivated to such behavior by social factors such as spite, a need for attention, hysteria, or a psychosomatic disorder. In other words, even to this very day, people are still accusing these "witches" of "faking it." That is an accusation that almost every Lyme sufferer has heard at least once! Indeed, many have made the comparison that the persecution against present-day Lyme patients and their doctors is akin to a modern-day "witch hunt"....
Drymon found that "most of these afflicted people [in Salem] also developed neurological symptoms, like seizures, hallucinations, brain fog, and lethargy, as well as joint swellings." As Drymon states on page 10, "Using the tools available to them within their own particular culture or social paradigm, they labeled and understood the disease as a variety of named afflictions."
Ms. Drymon spent over five years researching and writing this controversial book, a fascinating "medical mystery" of sorts that is certain to provoke debates and heated arguments. Aware of the controversy, she hopes that readers will be open-minded enough to think outside the current medical box that so many are trapped in.
"I do think it's a disease with a history. We're in lockstep with a lot of people who have really suffered in the past, and we need to remember that," Drymon explained, "I wrote this book to provoke discussion .."
Drymon does not jump to conclusions but uses every possible historical record available, including some rather unconventional ones, to ferret out the facts. "Disguised As The Devil" is not a conspiracy-theory laden book, nor filled with the histrionics of the angry and desperately ill. Quite the opposite, in fact, the author lays out the hypothesis and evidence in a very rational and analytical manner. I was extremely impressed by the exhaustive research and copious citations and references from a huge variety of sources, some of which were first-hand witness accounts. Yet even with this vast amount of information, in no way does any of it seem excessive or unnecessary.
When presented with the daunting task of relating so much information, many authors tend to throw it at their readers all at once, leaving the reader gasping for breath and feeling as if they have just been plunged into a deep pool of icy water without a lifejacket. Fortunately, Drymon does not resort to this tactic. Rather, she takes the reader by the hand and gently leads along, step by step, while being careful to keep the history concise enough for even the most historically-challenged individual (such as myself) to understand.
Drymon discusses the cultural habits and beliefs of the time, the geography, climate, politics, and other influential factors in their social context. She seems to anticipate every question that readers might come up with (Why were so many more women affected than men? Why were they often depicted as old hags?) and uses the same calm logic to answer those questions.
More than once during my course of reading, I experienced an "A-ha!" moment in which the information made so much sense and seemed so obvious that I could not believe it had never occurred to me before. For example, witches have historically been associated with "familiars", that is, supposed demons in the form of various animals (usually dogs, cats, birds and the like). When one realizes that family pets such as dogs and cats can bring ticks into our homes and thus into closer proximity to us, this "superstitious" association suddenly takes on new meaning. There are many other fascinating comparisons to be found in this book, but I will allow the reader to discover them on his or her own.
Additionally, all Lyme disease aspects aside, I learned more about the witch trials from this single book than I ever did in all my school classes. While we may never know for certain what afflictions or behaviors led to the witch trials, it certainly seems that Ms. Drymon has uncovered a very striking possibility.
As Drymon concludes with a discussion of present-day Lyme politics and the battle that many Lyme sufferers undergo in order to obtain proper diagnosis and treatment, it occurred to me that not much has really changed in the last 350 years or so. Sure, we no longer burn so-called "witches" at the stake... instead, we throw them to the wolves known as IDSA and Big Pharma or tell them that "it's all in their heads".
Perhaps the colonists were not so primitive in their beliefs as we would like to think. Perhaps they were really not all that different from us. And perhaps the old adage that "Those who do not learn from history will be doomed to repeat it" has never been truer. --Susan T. Williams, Public Health Alert, December 2008
The definitive prequel to "Cure Unknown" meticulous research showing that Lyme disease has been around for a long time and its victims have been badly treated over the centuries! --The Sentry, December 2008
Friday, January 21, 2011
My success can be attributed to:
1 yr of doxycycline / Flagyl
3 months of IV rocephin
3 years of Bicillin shots
99% of all of my symptoms cleared up, except numbness in the face and insomnia, but I now lead a normal life and have had no relapses [Smile] .
A little background:
I was sick for six months and had many hospital visits before I was diagnosed, so I had serious neurological problems including insomnia, memory loss, facial numbness, vertigo, etc. including an inflamed heart and many other issues.
was 22 years old when I was bitten and their was no rash. My roommate did get bitten as well and he did have a rash, that is the ONLY reason I new to ask for a lyme test. I was lucky, because there was no rash or visible tick.
I first went to a general practitioner that put me on low dose doxycycline after I tested positive for lyme two times. He stopped treating me and said he didn't know why the doxy wasn't working.
I then took it upon myself to find a lyme specialist who put me on high dose doxy, penecillin, and flagyl. That helped a little bit, but wasn't a cure.
I then looked for a doctor that would prescribe IV antibiotics and thankfully found an infectious disease specialist that did prescribe them for me.
Because I tested positive so many times I had no problem getting the IV antibiotics. That helped a little bit as well, and finally I went to a lyme specialist who is a neurologist and they put me on bicillin shots twice a week.
Over a 3 year period this helped the most, but it was a very long road. My suggestion: excercise when you can and stay positive even though it is hard.
Post edited by: Rianna, at: 11/30/2008 03:58
Thursday, January 20, 2011
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
Monday, January 10, 2011
Add to that dealing with frequent inner ear/balance dysfunction that often goes along with lyme - and there is just no correct word for that kind of exhaustion. Nutritional deficiencies caused by lyme also complicate matters. And the list of fatigue causes goes on and on. But we need not figure out why every minute.
When you have the flu, do you say you are "tired" or "sick"? Usually, "sick" - so, with lyme, I suggest dropping the tired when we have to explain. "Simply unable to do that right now" covers a lot of territory.
I do recall when I first experienced failure of my legs - I was with my (then) husband in a mall and I started to cry because of the sudden crash and loss of neuro function. I had said "I'm just so tired" and couldn't help but cry. He dismissed it, saying, "well, being tired is no reason to cry."
I never again told him just how sick I was. I didn't have the words. He didn't have the ability to comprehend and I had no doctor who could do so either. It would be nearly twenty more years before lyme and other TBD came to light.
"Tired" and "Fatigue" just are not at all adequate terms to describe it. I stopped telling people I was too tired but just too sick, to be more accurate but also hoping they'd better understand. And that's when they really dropped like flies.
Lyme not only separates the "men from the boys" so to speak, it will show you just who are true and good friends. Friends, loved ones, want to learn more. "
Sunday, January 9, 2011
But, Bart's son, Dante was not convinced this was the real issue. When Bart and Heidi visited Dante and his family in Atlanta in July of 2009, Dante thought that Bart looked like he had Lyme Disease. Dante lost a very close friend and mentor to Lyme Disease when he was younger and he thought that Bart looked so similiar to his friend. He also thought he remembered that Bart was bit by a tick. Bart was bitten by a tick in the bay area approximately seven to eight years ago and did have a target rash around the tick bite. He was given the ELISA test by his HMO too soon (under two weeks) and it came back negative so Bart thought that he did not have Lyme Disease. After much urging from Dante, Bart paid out of pocket for the Western Blot Test (The HMO refused to pay for this test) and it came up positive for Lyme in the beginning of October of 2009. Advanced stages of Lyme Disease can mimick neuromuscular diseases because the bacteria infect all areas of the body. Many who have Lyme Disease don't know it and have been diagnosed with: ALS, MS, Alzheimers Disease, Parkinsons Disease, Chronic Fatigue Syndome, Chrone's Disease, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Fibromyalgia, etc.....
It seems like the disease had accelerated since we found out the true diagnosis and just in the third week of October alone, Bart went from using a cane to walk to being paralized in his legs, eyes, and throat: this progression was only in one week. On Monday, October 26th, Bart was to begin treatment for Lyme Disease but he woke up and could not speak, swallow, open his eyes, or move his legs. Heidi and his daughter, Joelle, and his sister, Brenda decided to take him to the Lyme doctor for the first treatment with plans of taking him directly to the hospital after that in order to address the clear health issues at hand. However, in the parking lot of the Lyme doctor's office, Bart stopped breathing and his heart stopped beating. Joelle did CPR and Heidi called 911. He spent three days at El Camino Hospital and was transferred to the HMO hospital in San Jose where he stayed for 1.5 months. The HMO refused to treat Bart for Lyme disease and insisted that he had ALS and that he was going to die, even though we provided them with + Lyme tests. We decided to take Bart out of the HMO, transfer him to a skilled nursing care facility, and have him treated for Lyme disease. He got off the ventilator, started walking again, and made it home to San Diego; but took a turn for the worse and passed away on 12/16/10.
Lyme Disease is a very huge issue in the United States. Too many doctors do not know the statistics. In 2008, there were 35,000 new diagnosed cases in the US, according to the CDC. (HIV/AIDS new diagnosed cases in the US were 37,000). This is a huge health issue! Lyme was reported in EVERY state in the US in 2008. The farce that Lyme is "hard to get and easy to treat" is just plain wrong. We are hoping to share Bart's story, his struggle, and God's grace throughout all of this in order to get the word out and inform people and in order to give thanks to God. Thank you for sharing this journey with us."
Friday, January 7, 2011
Monday, January 3, 2011
Jordan Fisher is well known in the Lyme Community because of his role in the documentary "Under Our Skin". I wanted to share his letter to the IDSA, because he talks about his struggle, but also his recovery! He has been off antibiotics for some time and is completely cured. It wasn't an easy road, and he talks about in the film how he wanted to give up, but luckily he is here now and able to help others.
You can visit his website at: http://www.jordanfishersmith.com/
To the Infectious Diseases Society of America:
Almost twelve years ago, I was bitten by a tick at work, and contracted Lyme Disease and Babesiosis. Because of the job you’ve done at diminishing the perception of danger about tick-borne disease and pressuring doctors who treat it aggressively out of business, it took a year and a half and a nationwide search to find a doctor who would treat me.
By then I was dreadfully ill, and as a result I lost my job and my 21-year career. In my first year of antibiotic treatment I got worse. I pursued aggressive treatment for another six years, during which time I got steadily, if slowly better. During this time one of my two doctors was forced out of practice as a result of your work. Thanks to my heroic physicians, I am recovered after a nine-year battle with tick-borne disease. And I am now contributing to society, working, and raising my kids.
Your ineffectiveness and the extent of your compromise with the insurance and HMO businesses are noted. You and your work will be forgotten eventually, as we have forgotten the names of the opponents of Copernicus. Shame on you for the suffering you are causing on the way to your eventual obscurity as prideful scientists who called it tragically wrong. The monument to your life’s work is an unchecked epidemic.
—Jordan Fisher Smith, recovered victim of tick-borne disease