Lyme disease widespread
If you were to plot the locations of everyone in our four-state region suffering from Lyme disease and associated co-infections and connect the dots, I believe it would spell E-P-I-D-E-M-I-C.
A few weeks ago, The Morgan Messenger ran an article on the incidence of Lyme disease in the area and I applaud your efforts. There are a few notes that I would like to add, however.
Please don’t assume that if you don’t get the
classic “bulls eye” rash that you haven’t been infected with Lyme. Only about 50% of those infected actually get this particular rash and even fewer remember having it. If you do get the rash, you’re one of the
If you’re having symptoms of Lyme (and there are many of them!) and your blood test comes back negative, get the treatment anyway. The ELISA test that is used as a preliminary test has been eliminated in many areas because of the high percentage of false negatives and positives.
The Western Blot test that is used as a follow-up to the ELISA is a bit more accurate, but because of a strict set of guidelines (that have been under criticism for some time), your results may not be positive enough to get treatment.
Lyme disease is growing at a rate faster than AIDS — the number of reported cases jumped 77% from 2006 to 2008 and the Center for Disease Control openly admits that the reported cases probably only represent 10% of those actually infected.
Lyme disease is not particular, it has affected presidents, actors and probably many more people in your neighborhood than you’ll ever know. It’s called the “Great Imitator” because it’s been misdiagnosed as Autism, Alzheimers, ADHD, MS, Lupus, CFS, Parkinson’s and more.
For your sake and your family’s, learn about
Lyme disease. You can start this Thursday evening, August 26, at 6 p.m. by watching the award-winning documentary “Under Our Skin” being shown at First Methodist Church in Berkeley Springs by the Morgan County Advocates for disAbility Awareness.
It is open to the public and is free of charge. Before my daughter’s clinical diagnosis this past spring, I never would have thought that Lyme disease could be so devastating.