Growing Need For Lyme Disease Experts And Research
The estimated incidence of Lyme disease in the United States has been steadily rising, to approximately 476,000 new cases annually. Despite antibiotic treatment, approximately 10-20% of these new infections will lead to distressing and potentially disabling symptoms, such as severe fatigue, joint and muscle pain, neurologic symptoms, and cognitive problems that may last for months or years.
There is limited expertise in treating the acute and chronic aspects of tick-borne diseases, making it difficult for patients to find high-quality, specialized care. In addition, little research has been done to determine which treatments are most effective for persistent symptoms, which can interfere with daily activities and work.
Like COVID-19 long-haulers, many people with tick-borne diseases were completely well until their infection precipitated a cascade of chronic, multi-system effects, says Brian Fallon, MD, director of the Cohen Center for Health and Recovery from Tick-Borne Diseases. A comprehensive evaluation takes time. In addition, the cost of care for patients with chronic symptoms can be prohibitive, requiring multiple visits to physicians who may not be aware of the latest research on tick-borne illnesses. Our center will be the first to address all of these issues by offering access to affordable care with experienced physicians while at the same time integrating research and physician training into our clinical model.
Pioneering Multidisciplinary Research In Lyme Disease
The Johns Hopkins Lyme Disease Research Center is focused on patient-based research in all manifestations of Lyme disease.
Our mission is to understand and urgently address the varied manifestations of Lyme disease and translate our pioneering multidisciplinary research into improved patient care, education, and health outcomes.
How Is Chronic Lyme Disease Typically Treated
Once a person is diagnosed with Lyme disease, medical doctors treat the symptoms with antibiotics for two to four weeks. However, it is well-known within the medical community that antibiotics will only kill up to 85% of any targeted bacteria, leaving the remaining 15% mutated and antibiotic resistant. These antibiotic resistant bacteria may be responsible for persistent symptoms lasting many years, and are potentially more destructive than the original strain of bacteria.
Lyme disease patients present conventional medical doctors with more of a challenge, since antibiotics are the conventional doctors only solution. No one treatment method has been found to be successful for the vast majority of patients. Cure is often arbitrarily claimed after a set duration of antibiotics, whether or not the patients symptoms are actually gone, leaving many patients to wonder why they are not feeling better or often why they are feeling much worse. According to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, continued use of antibiotic treatment after the initial four weeks can cause even further complications.
This comes as no surprise to those of us at the Biologix Center.
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Has Niaid Looked At The Potential Benefits Of Long
Yes. NIAID has funded three placebo-controlled clinical trials on the efficacy of prolonged antibiotic therapy for treating PTLDS. The published results were subjected to rigorous statistical, editorial, and scientific peer review.
These trials were designed to ensure that several key parameters were addressed:
- The susceptibility of B.burgdorferi to the antibiotics used
- The ability of the antibiotics to both cross the blood-brain barrier and access the central nervous system and to persist at effective levels throughout the course of therapy
- The ability of the antibiotics to kill bacteria living both outside and inside mammalian cells
- The safety and welfare of patients enrolled in the trials
The first clinical trial, which included two multicenter studies, provided no evidence that extended antibiotic treatment is beneficial. In those studies, physicians examined long-term antibiotic therapy in patients with a well-documented history of previous Lyme disease but who reported persistent pain, fatigue, impaired cognitive function, or unexplained numbness. Those symptoms are common among people reporting PTLDS. Patients were treated with 30 days of an intravenous antibiotic followed by 60 days of an oral antibiotic.
In 2016, a clinical trial conducted in the Netherlands also concluded that in patients with persistent symptoms attributed to Lyme disease, longer term treatment with antibiotics did not provide additional benefits compared with shorter term regimens.
What Is A Lyme
A LLMD is a physician whose experience with Lyme disease patients makes them familiar with the vast range of symptoms, co-infections, and complications associated with the disease at various stages. Because of this knowledge and expertise, many patients also find LLMDs more open-minded and understanding of their experiences, especially if theyre having a hard time getting an accurate diagnosis from another physician.
But how do you know if you need to see a LLMD? Below are some common reasons, any or all of which may apply to you.
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Experienced Lyme Disease Doctors
We are one of the top Lyme Disease treatment clinics in the world. Weve specialized in late-stage Lyme disease treatment for over 23 years. Dr. Minkoff is an infectious disease doctor who oversees all Lyme treatment programs, using a safe and highly effective, science-based approach to help patients overcome Lyme Disease.
Lyme disease is the most common tick-borne illness in North America and Europe and is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi. Lyme got its name from Yale researchers who named the strange cluster of symptoms, after the town it originated from, Lyme, Connecticut.
Deer ticks typically carry the bacteria, which they spread to humans while feeding on their blood, but other insects including mosquitoes are also now being implicated.
What Are The Symptoms Of Chronic Lyme Disease
The symptoms of chronic Lyme disease can manifest differently from one person to another. In some individuals, these symptoms may be the first symptoms of the disease. Thats one of the things that makes it so hard to treat. Chronic Lyme disease symptoms can include any, or a mix of the following:
- Depression, anxiety, or mood swings
- Shortness of breath
- Tingling, burning or shooting pains
For many patients with chronic Lyme disease, inflammation is present and affects the joints and also the nervous system. Muscle and joint symptoms are the most common of the chronic Lyme disease symptoms and can occur in 80 percent of individuals with Lyme disease who have not been treated with antibiotics. Joint pain occurs in 20 percent of individuals, intermittent episodes of arthritis in 50 percent, and persistent arthritis of a single joint or a few joints in 10 percent of those who have not been treated.
Chronic Lyme disease symptoms can present as neurologic symptoms including pain, difficulty with memory or thinking, and odd sensations, such as numbness. However, late neurologic manifestations of Lyme disease are quite rare, and therefore, these types of non-specific symptoms usually have causes other than Lyme disease.
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Treating Chronic Lyme Disease
Chronic Lyme disease often presents a wide range of symptoms which can mimic the symptoms of other conditions. Patients whose Lyme disease goes undiagnosed for months or even years, run the risk of developing chronic Lyme disease symptoms which may include arthritis, fatigue and anxiety.
When a person is first infected with the bacteria genusBorreila, usually from a deer tick or mosquito bite, the first sign is often the appearance of a bulls-eye skin rash. It can be large and expanding in size. This rash is called erythema migrans and can be accompanied by flu like symptoms such as joint pain, headache and fatigue. These all usually emerge within days or weeks. If the person is correctly diagnosed at this time, then Lyme disease can usually be effectively treated with a course of antibiotics.
However, in many cases there are no early Lyme disease symptoms and the person may not even recall seeing a bite. Months may pass before chronic Lyme disease symptoms occur, which are inevitably misdiagnosed. The problem with chronic Lyme disease is that its so very effective at mimicking other ailments, and it manifests in different people in different ways. Its not uncommon for chronic Lyme disease symptoms to be misdiagnosed as multiple sclerosis, Parkinsons disease, lupus, mononucleosis, ulcerative colitis, ALS, Alzheimers disease, or fibromyalgia. Misdiagnosis can mean not getting treatment, or worse, getting treatment for the wrong condition.
Causes And Symptoms Of Lyme Disease
Lyme disease is caused by the bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi, which generally gets transmitted through a tickbite. It isone of the most prevalent tick-transmitted infections in the United States.
When a deer tick, carrying the bacterial infection, bites a human, it can transmit this infectious disease,along with avariety of other disease-causing pathogens, such as viruses and other microorganisms. In certain instances,patients maynotice a red Bulls eye rash called Erythema Migrans, a few days after the infected tick bites them. Apartfrom thisrash, some of the early symptoms of Lyme disease may include:
- Musculoskeletal Pain
In such cases of early Lyme disease, the IDSA guidelines recommend an oral course of antibiotics for 10 to 14 days,and 14 to 21 days antibiotic treatment for chronicsymptoms of neurologic Lyme.
While standard oral antibiotic treatment may be enough for early-stage Lyme disease, in our clinical experience,antibiotics alone cannot effectively treat the chronic neurological and psychological symptoms, which often manifestinthe later stage of the disease.
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Going Beyond Standard Healthcares Antibiotic Treatment For Aholistic Recovery From Lyme Disease
Those long bouts of debilitating joint pain, intermittent memory fog, and sudden seizures caused by Lyme disease, atick-borne infection, may not get resolved with standard antibiotic treatment alone. At Envita Medical Centers, anIntegrative Center of Excellence for Lyme Disease Treatment, we often see patients struggling to cope with theirsymptoms despite receiving standard antibiotic treatment.
In our clinical experience of over 20 years, we have successfully treated thousands of Lyme disease patients withpersistent symptoms, which can often lead to physical or psychological impairment when the disease is not treatedholistically.
Envita Medical Centers doesn\’t make any guarantee of outcomes. Results are not typical and will varyfrom person to person and should not be expected.
What Is The Treatment For Lyme Disease
The first-line standard of care treatment for adults with Lyme disease is doxycycline, a tetracycline antibiotic. Other antibiotics that have activity against borrelia include the penicillin-like antibiotic, amoxicillin, and the second generation cephalosporin, Ceftin. The mainstay of treatment is with oral antibiotics, but intravenous antibiotics are sometimes indicated for more difficult to treat cases of neurologic-Lyme disease, such as meningitis, and cases of late Lyme arthritis.
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Neuroplasticity And Emotional Healing
Many people with complex chronic illnesses live in a state of stress and limbic system activation. With tickborne illnesses, the medical journey can be traumatic given the complexity, difficulty with proper diagnosis and treatment, and the disputed nature of the illness. We have learned from experience that emotional healing and brain retraining is a key part of recovery, and we support you with comprehensive programs and coaching to help heal your brain and recover your health.
Symptoms Of Post Treatment Lyme Disease
- Include severe fatigue, musculoskeletal pain, & cognitive problems
- Can significantly impact patients health and quality of life
- Can be debilitating and prolonged
Our research indicates the chronic symptom burden related to PTLD is significant. Although often invisible to others, the negative impact on quality of life and daily functioning is substantial for PTLD sufferers.
The chronic symptom burden related to Lyme disease is considerable, as shown on the left side of the graph above, and statistically significantly greater than the aches and pains of daily living experienced by the control group, on the right.
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How Does The Biologix Center Treat Chronic Lyme Disease
While the prevailing medical thought is to first and foremost, kill any and all harmful bacteria regardless of how a treatment method makes a patient feel, the Biologix Center believes in treating the body in its entirety, and training the body to control its response to these infections naturally. There are thousands of types of bacteria within the human biome . Hundreds of these bacteria would be considered potentially disease causing, and yet the healthy body controls these bacteria easily. Therefore, we have determined that it is not the absence or annihilation of bacteria that creates health, nor is it purely the presence of bacteria that creates disease. It is the breakdown of the bodys own regulations that enable the overgrowth of various types of bacteria, and therefore disease.
Using tests such as Biospectroscopic Emission Sequence Testing , developed at the Biologix Center over 20 years ago by Dr. David A. Jernigan, D.C., we can eliminate much of the guesswork in doctoring. Our doctors focus on restoring the bodys proper regulation of bacteria overgrowth through precise, real-time testing and treatments that work through natural means to optimize each patients response to their specific bacteria. Unlike conventional blood tests that are merely a snapshot of a patients blood on the day it was drawn, our technology provides far more insight into the root causes of a patients symptoms as well as treatment options that are surely compatible with his or her body.
The International Lyme And Associated Diseases Society
ILADS was founded as a need to promote awareness and garner support for those who suffer from Lyme disease and co-infections, not only amongst the greater community, but for doctors as well. The problem with the overall perception of how to treat Lyme disease is that the problem only lasts for several weeks, can easily be treated, and does not lead to a chronic problem. At Arizona Center for Advanced Medicine, we know that this simply is not true.
Many factors can impact how far along the disease has progressed as well as how the patient will respond to certain treatments. That said, even with a course of antibiotics to address the symptoms, if a patient shows no signs of improvement, then it may be necessary to rethink the treatment options that go beyond antibiotics, though not necessarily abandoning them.
ILADS reaches out to a network of physicians to assist with diagnosing, finding the appropriate scientific research and literature, and begin a round of treatment. The ILADs guidelines for treatments was included in the National Guidelines Clearing House, which can be found at the following links:ILADS andNational Quality Measures Clearing House. This is a distinguished achievement that demonstrates our teams continued practice and dedication to helping patients overcome Lyme disease.
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Treatment All Under One Roof
Diagnosis, treatment and even family accommodations all happen in our beautiful medical clinic.
Chronic Lyme Disease is an immune-suppressing infection. Long-term immune suppression from Chronic Lyme Disease opens that gateway for multiple co-infections of every type of viral, bacterial, fungal, and parasitic. Lyme spirochetes, Bartonella, and the mosquito parasite, Protomyxzoa Rheumatica, will wrap themselves in biofilm if they are not immediately destroyed upon entry into our bloodstream. Biofilm is a protective shield manufactured by invading organisms to escape attacks from our antibodies, natural killer cells, and antibiotics.
Effective Chronic Lyme Disease Treatment requires a deep understanding of the Lyme Spirochete and tickborne infections like Bartonella and Babesia infections that live inside the cells of every organ in the body. Causing chronic illness and chronic Lyme disease symptoms throughout the entire body. Treatment for chronic Lyme disease requires much more than knowledge of microorganisms, antibiotics, and the immune system. Effective Chronic Lyme disease treatment requires additional expertise in the brain, and functions of multiple body systems including the endocrine system, gastrointestinal, and cardiovascular systems.
Who Can Get Lyme Disease
Most people who are diagnosed with Lyme disease have been bit by a nymphal, or immature, form of a tick. The problem with this is that the nymphal form is roughly the size of the head of a pin and therefore very difficult to see. Many people dont even realize that they have been bitten. It is thought that Lyme may also be spread from other vectors including mosquitos and spiders.
Lyme disease can also cross the placenta, so women who have Lyme disease who become pregnant may spread it to their children.
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Lyme Disease And Tick
Lyme disease patients have difficulty finding doctors with experience treating Lyme disease. For the past 25 years, LymeDisease.org has been connecting patients with Lyme-literate practitioners who specialize in caring for patients with Lyme disease.
We are happy to connect you with your nearest Lyme literate practitioners contact information. Please note, however, we are not privy to the status on each individual offices payment/insurance practices or if they are accepting new patients, with that said, we do encourage you to use the information available to contact the offices directly.
How Is Lyme Disease Diagnosed
Standard laboratories administer screening tests that fail to detect 51% of Lyme Disease cases. When a trial vaccine was briefly administered in the 1990s, these facilities omitted important Lyme-specific bands from the Western Blot test. Despite the fact that the Lyme vaccine is no longer available, these bands which detect Borrelia burgdorferi exposure, are still not included in standard commercial Lyme tests.
Thats why Dr. Nicole Schertell and Dr. Johanna Mauss use advanced specialty Lyme & co-infection tests, which they outsource to cutting-edge laboratories across the U.S. and Germany to better detect infections and determine which treatment is right for each patient.
As trained and active members of ILADS , these renown naturopaths synergize and innovate natural treatments. Theyve diagnosed and treated thousands of cases with this unique naturopathic approach.
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Boston Hospital Becomes World Leader In Lyme Disease Treatment
BOSTON – According to the CDC there are about 300,000 new cases of Lyme disease in the United States every year and some go on to develop chronic symptoms.
But as Dr. Mallika Marshall reports, one local hospital has become a world leader in taking care of these patients.
“I often describe my life as pre-Lyme and post-Lyme,” says Julie Ambrosino, a wife and mother of two from Dover, Mass. who used to be unstoppable.
“I was a person that did crossfit four times a week. I hiked regularly with my family. We loved to travel,” she explains.
But after developing Lyme disease back in 2008, Julie’s life changed dramatically.
“I have brain fog,” she says. “I have debilitating fatigue. I have muscle and joint pain. I get numbness and tingling. I have issues with balance and dizziness.”
“We offer deep listening to their problems and a lot of our patients visited many, many different doctors and finally they found a place where many aspects of their health can be addressed in one place,” says Zubcevik. “And that’s a relief for patients,” she adds.
Physical therapy, mental health counseling, meditation and support groups are just a few of the services provided. Julie has been focusing on balance and coordination.
“My outlook for the future, now that I found the Dean Center is very positive,” says Julie. “I really feel like they put me on a road to good health and as long as I can continue down that road, I see evidence that I will be completely better.”