How One Tick Bite Can Impact Your Health: Lyme Disease
Do you believe that something terrible is happening to your body and that no one can comprehend the agony you are going through? You might have Lyme disease, brought on by the bacteria Borrelia Burgdorferi and spread by ticks. A single tick bite might cause a catastrophe. But due to its small size, you might not even notice that a tick bit you.
Do you believe it takes a long time to identify a new disease? Two years? Ten years?
The HIV disease was discovered three years later, in 1983, after being first noticed in 1980. It makes sense that the average lifespan should be at least five years. How many years would you suppose it took for Lyme to be discovered by contemporary medicine?
Reverend Dr. John Walker first diagnosed it as a disease in 1764. They discovered the actual insect, Borrelia Burgdorferi, in 1982. They only confirmed that it is caused by tick saliva after that. They had to wait 218 years to realize what was happening. They also have resources and tools from the modern era.
How could the Lyme disease spirochete, which is 12,000 times larger than the HIV – 10 micrometers – be found 72 times faster than the HIV, 120 nanometers in size?
It has snakes that can be seen under a microscope. Both syphilis and the disease that causes Lyme disease, Borrelia Burgdorferi, have snake-like characteristics. It was challenging to distinguish those microbes that resembled snakes.
It took 419 years for the cause of syphilis to be discovered, even though many well-known individuals, including Guy de Maupassant, Ivan the Terrible, Edouard Monet, Al Capone, Hitler, Mussolini, Cortez, Scott Joplin, Lord Randolf Churchill, and others, were affected. Syphilis was first documented in 1494, during a French army outbreak besieging Naples. The syphilis-causing organism Treponema pallidum was identified in 1913. I questioned why there were so many well-known syphilis cases. Were they promiscuous, or did their passion serve as their source of inspiration?
What else do Lyme disease and syphilis have in common, except that they are both caused by snake-like bugs? Why is dealing with them so challenging? Because they are both excellent imitators.
Do you believe that Lyme disease can be easily diagnosed at a typical doctor’s office if it is so challenging for scientists to do so? If you’re not seeking it, then no. Yet, it is simple if you have suspicions about it.
Snakes can be very hazardous. Yet you can defend yourself if you are aware of the threat. When a snake approaches, you have two options: flee or kill it. You can always obtain an antiserum if you are bitten by it, and you will eventually feel better. But when it comes to Lyme, this is not the case. The tick that bites you is an innocent-looking, poppy seed-sized one. Unlike snakes, you frequently don’t even know about them! The tick’s small size is not the only reason it poses a threat. You won’t feel the bite since it causes your skin to become numb. Do you see how clever it is? In actuality, Borrelia Burgdorpheri, the central issue, also affects it. There is a pandemic among tics; nearly half of them are sick. So, there is a 50% probability that the tick that bit you was infected. The unsettling fact is that, in addition to Lyme disease, it can also transmit other deadly conditions, including babesiosis and human granulocytic anaplasmosis.
You’ve probably seen a bull’s eye. Exactly how does Lyme begin? The “bull’s eye” lesion, known as the red ring with a dark red, occasionally indurated center inside at the tick bite site, may be the first thing you notice. Sadly, it frequently goes unrecognized. You might also never develop a rash.
The spread of Lyme disease occurs soon after the initial invasion. It penetrates the skin and creates rashes and pain in the muscles, tendons, and joints. Moreover, it enters the brain, heart, and neurological system. The outcome is disastrous: you can have many incapacitating symptoms, such as genuine psychosis, heart block, paralysis, weariness, depression, fibromyalgia, sleeplessness, and palpitations.
Is there a cure for this dreadful illness? There should be a cure with the aid of contemporary western medicine and all its antibiotics. Also, medical researchers developed antibiotic regimens that should instantly eradicate the bug. They could have celebrated their victory at that precise moment. They were unaware that Lyme illness would spark so many arguments and disagreements that politicians would get involved. In the past, this hardly rarely occurred in medicine.
What then appeared to be the issue?
What do you do if you buy a shirt or pair of jeans and discover they don’t fit? You either receive another or a complete refund. Similarly, it happened to Lyme disease sufferers. Up to one-third of Lyme disease sufferers were not improving despite receiving therapy. They informed their doctors that additional treatment would be required and went to see them. Yet, antibiotics are pricey. Thus, four controlled, double-blind trials were conducted in the medical field. While another two did not, two of them demonstrated the advantages of prolonged treatment. What effect did the official medication have?
Oct. 2007. The review on “Chronic Lyme disease” is published in the most prestigious US medical publication, “The New England Journal of Medicine” (NEJM). Conclusion: a lengthy antibiotic course is unnecessary and not scientifically justified. We conclude that the treatment of Lyme borreliosis with appropriate antibiotics for even longer than three months may not permanently eradicate the spirochete (Borrelia Burgdorferi – SK), according to the findings of a 1999 study led by Jarrno Oksi at Turku University’s Department of Medical Microbiology, Kiinamyllynkatu 13, FIN-20520, Turku, Finland. Perhaps the NEJM reviewers did not read this article? Or maybe they didn’t consider it important enough to alter their opinions?
Unluckily, there was more.
Do you recall all the zits and bug bites you had last summer? Not. 50% of patients had no memory of a tick bite. Keep in mind: it resembles a poppy seed. Approximately 50% of patients either don’t remember having the usual bullseye rash or don’t have it. As a result, they had nonspecific symptoms that were not Lyme-related.
It sounds pretty straightforward: get a blood test done if you are unsure what it is! The CDC advises performing the ELISA antibody detection test first and then moving on to the Western blot antibody detection test if the ELISA test is positive. What if a patient is unable to produce antibodies? Or is the genetic material utilized for the test different from the local type? Could it be that the tests’ sensitivity is just poor?
This implies that while they might test you for Lyme that is particular to your area, you might acquire it elsewhere, which is distinct from what they are trying for.
Consider this: Would you be ill if you had enough detectable antibodies to defend yourself? Because your body is battling, it is much less likely. What if, though, your body was unable to protect itself? Unable to produce antibodies to combat the bug? Maybe you don’t create enough? You then become seriously ill due to having no weapon to defend yourself. Also, since the Lyme tests will come back negative, they cannot formally diagnose you with Lyme. Seronegative Lyme disease is the name for it. When trials come back negative or ambiguous, you are in trouble because you are ill. It feels like the assailant is holding you at gunpoint. When George W. Bush was diagnosed with what seemed to be Lyme disease in 2006, how do you think the president of the United States was handled? He had antibiotics for months, not just for 21 days. This will likely stay a mystery because it is classified.
Then why are there so many fights? Why did Connecticut and Rhode Island even need to pass separate legislation to safeguard medical professionals using their clinical judgment to treat patients as they saw fit? Why does everyone get so worked up over-treating Lyme disease, but no one seems to care about how long you might be treated for a urinary tract infection?
October 2006. Courthouse in North Carolina. Here, an unusual civil lawsuit was brought. It wasn’t a mass lawsuit against a big business like the ones we used to read about in the press every day. It was entirely the contrary. A well-known doctor, Joseph Jamsek, who specialized in HIV and Lyme disease treatments, was being sued by a major health insurance company, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina, for an enormous sum of $100 million for insurance fraud. This doctor had to declare bankruptcy. Therefore, it appears that he did not have much money, not just because he could not pay $100,000,000. Considering that he could not even afford to battle the health insurance provider. What did he do, though? Has he stolen funds from the insurance? No. Did he rob patients of their money? No. Did he get any bribes? They don’t know of any.
What he did was: give his Lyme patients the care he believed was best for them. According to recommendations from the International Lyme And Related Diseases Society (ILADS), he was treating his Lyme patients. The insurance provider wanted him to treat Lyme patients by IDSA (Infections Disease Society of America) guidelines.
So what distinguishes the two of them from one another? Both were created by doctors and are non-profit organizations; neither are government agencies. The distinction is that IDSA recommends a far less expensive treatment than ILADS. Which one does the health insurance provider prefer, then? Who do you believe prevailed?
Yet, health insurance providers are not always that fortunate.
Connecticut in 2006. Office of the Attorney General. In November 2006, Mr. Richard Blumenthal ran for reelection. The same Richard Blumenthal who claimed to have served in Vietnam did not match his military records, according to the New York Times, is now the attorney general. He knows the patient’s wrath about the insurance company’s refusal to cover a lengthy Lyme disease therapy. The Lyme campaigners, and he has a meeting. He’s met them before, so this is not the first time. He started the hearings in 1999 over insurance coverage for long-term Lyme disease treatment. Patients at the time prevailed. And right now?
Because the Infectious Disease Society of America (IDSA) does not advocate for prolonged therapy for Lyme disease, health insurance companies refuse to pay for treatments. The IDSA group of experts drafted these suggestions. And Mr. Blumenthal, the attorney general, searches for a reason. And this is it: Five of the panel’s fourteen members had hidden conflicts of interest. Also, the IDSA biased the selection of the chairman rejected material about chronic Lyme illness, “restricted appointment of scientists and physicians with divergent views on chronic Lyme,” etc.
Further evidence is not necessary.
Notwithstanding Mr. Blumenthal’s evidence, the investigation was ended in 2008 without any charges being brought against IDSA. The IDSA did state that they would update their Lyme disease recommendations. And in 2010, they released their fresh advice. Do you believe any changes have occurred? In no way.
IDSA said they spent nearly $1 million on legal fees and revised rules. I’m curious how they came by such a massive amount of money. Who funded this? Doctors? Somebody else?
Yet, things got better for both doctors and patients: in 2009, Connecticut and Rhode Island established rules shielding medical professionals from punishment for providing prolonged Lyme disease therapy.
What is the cause of the extreme discrepancy between the IDSA and ILADS groups of Lyme experts? I find it doubtful that there was bias among all the specialists. They choose to become doctors to aid people. The doctor is by nature this way. Or perhaps the health insurance industry leveraged the gap in viewpoints to increase profits?
The fact that there are different viewpoints is not problematic. This is a trait of people. It is comparable to the distinction between science and religion. Religion and science hold highly different opinions about the world, but this does not necessarily imply that one is better.
Hence, based on the highly severe Lyme diagnostic criteria, IDSA provides fair guidelines. However, ILADS makes a compelling case that Lyme cannot be diagnosed using accepted standards.
What if there is another issue at hand? Perhaps it’s not just Lyme? Or maybe the Lyme spirochete itself is a significant challenge for us to solve?
Check out what the government says: the CDC reports that during the 15-year study period, the number of reported cases grew 101 percent, going from 9,908 points in 1992 to 19,931 points in 2006. And they do not seek to understand why?
Forget about physicians, scientists, insurance firms, and politics right now. Make good judgments. How has it increased twice in 15 years? Did they implement a tick food stamp program so that ticks might attack a more significant number of people? Or perhaps they built affordable housing in the woods, allowing hungry ticks to bite everyone nearby. I’m not aware of any. As more people become aware of Lyme disease, the tendency should reverse. Many people are frequently employing repellents and avoiding wooded areas, and the government is taking various actions. Is this silent epidemic, therefore, mysterious?
Naturally, there are no longer any ticks. There are undoubtedly fewer tick bites. Only an improved diagnosis offers a credible explanation for Lyme’s explosive expansion. Yet, rapid growth indicates that our ability to diagnose it through lab tests is minimal. This is with the Internet and supercomputers of today. Might there be one factor that explains the mysterious character of Lyme disease?
Delft, Netherlands, 1684. All of the intelligent children of basket maker Antonie van Leeuwenhoek’s neighbors, clients, and acquaintances are in awe of his diligence. Working day and night, Antonie is creating his invention, lenses. His close friends, neighbors, and clients were unaware he acted like he was working. He only had to rip glass rods apart, tear them apart, and then put the little whiskers back into the flame to create lenses, a straightforward secret technology. This is how he made the tiny glass ball, which was a perfect lens. He worried his firm would fail if people knew how simple it was. Why, therefore, did he create lenses?
To observe the microbial kingdom, which has never been regarded before. He found what he kept so fascinating that he sent a letter to the Royal Society in London stating, “I believe there are more of these animalcules in the scurf of a man’s teeth than there are men in a kingdom.” He was observing a dental plague. He was the first man on earth to stare at the biofilm, but he was unaware of this. Do you use dental floss? In actuality, what you’re doing is cleaning your teeth of biofilm. What is this beast that seems so innocent?
Dangerous microorganisms are hidden in biofilm. They assemble a maze of polymeric fibers on a suitable surface with tiny holes and pockets that serve as bacterial citadels. They hide there and are impossible for lab testing to find. They cannot be treated in addition to that antibiotics. They are there as they watch for more significant opportunities to strike again. Biofilms are highly harmful because of this. Perhaps they are infrequent and have little impact on routine practice. The reverse is true.
80% of all diseases involve biofilms. One of them is Lyme. Lyme is not intended to strike quickly and transmit to another person, like measles or the common cold. Lyme is made to stay long-term in its host, including ticks, deer, and possibly people. That is why it isn’t easy to find. This is a result of Lyme producing biofilm and lurking there! Because of this, blood tests sometimes fail to detect it! It frequently does not respond to antibiotics because of this. Need proof?
Dr. Eva Sapi, a cellular and molecular biology professor at the University of New Haven, is doing cancer research. Yet all of a sudden, she has cerebral swelling. Though her testing came back clear, she had Lyme disease clinically. she was forced to conduct her study. She and Dr. McDonald discovered that ticks also carry Lyme spirochete and other infections like mycoplasma. And they might be concealed in biofilms! I’m curious why the Infectious Diseases Society of America’s (IDSA) updated 2010 year Lyme disease management recommendations do not mention such a significant finding. It was the expert’s responsibility to take this into account. Or perhaps they decided not to? What caused this, exactly? It appears that the work of Drs. The IDSA experts did not appreciate Sapi and McDonald. But the ordinary people did: they nominated the film “Under your skin,” based on Drs’s research. Sapi and McDonald, for an Oscar. They deserve commendation because the treatment failure may be explained by Lyme being concealed in the biofilm. So maybe before treating Lyme, we should remove the biofilm?
The fundamental truth is:
1. If you were bitten by a tick and developed a rash, immediately get in for an evaluation. The sooner you receive treatment, the better your prognosis.
Because insect bites are frequently overlooked, you may benefit from a Lyme disease evaluation even if you were not bitten by a tick but still have symptoms, like a rash, indicative of the illness.
Use drugs that target the Lyme bacteria where they hide, as part of your Lyme treatment, to get better!
Disclaimer: The American Boards of Medical Professions, the FDA, or any other governmental body do not necessarily agree with the opinions expressed here. Only use this page for informational reasons; it is not intended to provide medical advice. Also, no health claims are being made in this publication. Before making any medical decisions, please speak with your primary care provider.
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