Acute Lyme Vs Chronic Lyme Disease Symptoms
The conventional treatment for early stage Lyme disease consists of a 2- to 3-week course of oral antibiotics, followed by a repeat course, as required. Successful clinical outcomes are evidenced by reduced symptoms and laboratory immunoglobulin titers that have returned to normal. At this point, most patients are pronounced cured, treatment ceases, and the tick is presumed to be eradicated. Traditionally, any negative clinical symptoms experienced after the antibiotic course or treatment is presumed to be unrelated to the Borrelia pathogen.
Unfortunately, this classic positive outcome is not universal. In fact, many patients remain unwell after standard antibiotic treatment. They are told that any persistent symptoms are no longer Lyme related. Many are abandoned by their treating physician and thereafter, told to see a psychiatrist or some other specialist for non-Lyme related illnesses. Some are told they have post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome , but no solution is offered.
Do You Think You May Have Lyme Disease
Check out the following signs and symptoms to see if any match for you:
- Do you have fatigue and brain fog that started years ago and has gradually worsened over time?
- Do you have cyclical bouts of malaise, fever, fatigue and body aches?
- Do you have joint pain and swelling that persists without a diagnosis of rheumatoid or osteoarthritis? If so were you given a catch all diagnosis of mixed connective tissue?
- Did you have a summer flu that persisted and was diagnosed with mononucleosis but you developed persistent fatigue, weakness, headaches and dizziness?
- Do you have non-specific symptoms that are dismissed by your primary care physician or you are told that you have fibromyalgia or irritable bowel syndrome?
- Did your symptoms improve or even clear up after a round of antibiotics, just to return when you stopped taking them?
- Did you suddenly or over time develop neurological conditions that include dizziness, headaches, numbness and tingling in yourarms or legs, or pain in your hands or feet?
- After experiencing a trauma such as a car accident, emotional loss, or even childbirth, did you find yourself with persistent fatigue,brain fog, and insomnia?
Women And Lyme Disease Your Guide To Better Health
Women and Lyme Disease: Your Guide to Better Health is a guide for women about Lyme disease the guide I wish existed when my mysterious symptoms first developed.
There are limited informational resources discussing the correlation between issues such as hormones, endocrine system, chronic pain, and mental health. This book will help provide you with more awareness about an often underdiagnosed disease.
Now, let your journey to increased Lyme disease knowledge, better physical and mental health, and improved well-being begin!
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How To Remove A Tick
If using tweezers, pull the tick upwards without twisting and grab it as close to the skin as possible to ensure you remove the head and mouth. Once the tick is removed, keep an eye on the area and watch out for any Lyme disease symptoms.
We are certainly not encouraging anyone to hide away from the sunny weather or steer clear from any grassland areas as most tick bites do not transmit the disease. But we believe it is important for everyone to be informed and aware of the Lyme disease signs and symptoms to keep safe this summer.
Testing And Treatment Of Cortisol
Assessing cortisol function starts if there is clinical suspicion based on symptoms. The preferred to assess cortisol secretion is with a 4-point salivary cortisol test. National and functional medicine laboratories offer this test and require a physicians order.
Supplementing with cortisol should follow the physiological pattern of cortisol secretion. The dose of cortisol is higher in the morning and lower throughout the day, depending on the supplemental need. People may need to increase the amount of hydrocortisone when experiencing increased stress or with more aggressive antimicrobial therapy. It is essential to supplement with DHEA while on hydrocortisone.
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Supporting The Adrenals First The Smart Move
To avoid this negative spiral of worsening health, the first step is recognizing that recurring and chronic Lyme disease symptoms are deeply integrated and entwined with the state of the bodys adrenal health and NEM stress response. This is such an important concept that is worth repeating since it paves the way to successful recovery from Lyme disease symptoms.
Since Adrenal Fatigue is an intrinsic condition and the mechanisms of dysfunction come from the inside, recovery must focus on the body holistically. Proper Adrenal Fatigue recovery is primarily concerned with rebuilding the bodys strength and nutritional reserves so that it has the capacity and energy to optimally power the many internal systems of the body. This is achieved using a combination of proper dietwhich avoids stress-inducing foods and provides natural nutritionalong with nutritional supplementation to round off the bodys much needed building blocks and lifestyle changes to minimize stress and keep the body active and relaxed. Care should be taken not to place further excessive stress by using stimulants, such as unnecessary hormones, herbs, and glandulars, that provide the body with short-term energy but have potentially excitatory and long-term negative effects on the body.
How Is Chronic Lyme Disease Treated
Most patients being treated for CLD will be on some type of antibiotic regimen: long term, cycling, or combination therapy. The goal of antibiotic therapy is to get rid of all stages of the bacteria that cause Lyme disease.
Other therapies are used to:
- boost the immune system
- alleviate fatigue
- support the hormone systems
Many patients with CLD have altered levels of cortisol, sex hormones and thyroid hormone. Treatment is often complex and treatment goals can be moving targets since hormone levels fluctuate.
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Signs And Symptoms Of Untreated Lyme Disease
Seek medical attention if you observe any of these symptoms and have had a tick bite, live in an area known for Lyme disease, or have recently traveled to an area where Lyme disease occurs.
Untreated Lyme disease can produce a wide range of symptoms, depending on the stage of infection. These include fever, rash, facial paralysis, and arthritis.
The appearance of the erythema migrans rash can vary widely.
- Fever, chills, headache, fatigue, muscle and joint aches, and swollen lymph nodes may occur in the absence of rash
- Erythema migrans rash :
- Occurs in approximately 70 to 80 percent of infected persons
- Begins at the site of a tick bite after a delay of 3 to 30 days
- Expands gradually over several days reaching up to 12 inches or more across
- May feel warm to the touch but is rarely itchy or painful
- Sometimes clears as it enlarges, resulting in a target or bulls-eye appearance
- May appear on any area of the body
- Does not always appear as a classic erythema migrans rash
- Severe headaches and neck stiffness
- Additional EM rashes on other areas of the body
- Arthritis with severe joint pain and swelling, particularly the knees and other large joints.
- Intermittent pain in tendons, muscles, joints, and bones
- Heart palpitations or an irregular heart beat
- Episodes of dizziness or shortness of breath
- Inflammation of the brain and spinal cord
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How Do I Know If I Have Lyme Disease
Medichecks Lyme disease Blood Test is the first step to help confirm whether you are infected with Borrelia burgdorferi bacteria. However, if you have glandular fever, rheumatoid arthritis, or another autoimmune condition, a test like this could produce a false-positive result. A positive ELISA result would need to be discussed with your doctor, who may arrange an immunoblot confirmation test.
A Lyme disease test can be negative if taken too soon after the infection date. If you are free of symptoms, wait for at least six weeks after the date you suspect you were bitten or were in an environment where you could have been infected. If you are experiencing symptoms, we recommend testing as soon as possible.
Lyme disease is diagnosed clinically using and interpreting all test results carefully. There is no conclusive test for Lyme disease, so it cannot be diagnosed through a blood test alone.
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What Causes Chronic Lyme Disease
Any chronic disease is one that lingers over time without every truly going away. Some scientists believe that CLD develops when the patients initial Lyme infection isnt treated adequately. Inappropriate treatment causes the disease to progress, becoming more severe and difficult to treat.
Others describe CLD as symptoms like fatigue and joint or muscle pain that linger after the standard 2 to 4 weeks of antibiotic therapy.
To add to the controversy, some practitioners in the medical community do not feel Lyme is a chronic condition at all.
Another difficulty with chronic Lyme is that it mimics other diseases. Clinicians are often hard-pressed to determine which came first and where to focus treatment. For example, are you more at risk to develop Chronic Fatigue Syndrome because you had a serious Lyme infection or would the Chronic Fatigue have happened anyway? Regardless of the source, patients with the symptoms described above do benefit from therapy.
What Is The Endocrine System
Essentially, the endocrine system is anetwork of glands in the body that create hormones. These hormones help cellscommunicate with each other and are broadly responsible for every function inthe body. Hormones control our emotional states, metabolism, growthdevelopment, organ functions, and reproduction. The endocrine system chooseswhen to release these hormones into the bloodstream and controls how they arereleased. Most of the major glands in the system are located in the brain, includingthe hypothalamus, the pituitary gland, and the pineal gland. The thyroid andparathyroid are also key these are located in the neck. The thymus is foundbetween the lungs, and the pancreas, the largest gland in the system, sitstowards the back, behind the stomach. The testicles and ovaries are two morecrucial glands for men and women respectively.
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Estrogen In Lyme Disease
Sufficient levels of estrogen provide immune-activating and anti-inflammatory benefits. Estrogen increases B-cell and antibody production to support the immune response. I have seen young women with Lyme disease with very low estrogen levels in my practice. Deficient estrogen levels in a woman of reproductive age should provide a clue to rule out an underlying infection such as Lyme disease.
Lyme disease symptoms can flare in a monthly cyclical pattern. These symptoms may be attributed to hormonal changes in a woman if she has undiagnosed Lyme disease. Some women with Lyme disease experience severe PMS due to the underlying inflammation of the infection.
Can Babies Be Born With Lyme Disease
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, if Lyme disease during pregnancy is left untreated, it can potentially lead to an infection of the placenta. And while it is rare, it is possible for the infection to spread from mother to fetus. There is currently no evidence or reports that suggest its possible to pass the disease through breast milk.
Remember, if you are pregnant and suspect you have been infected with Lyme disease through a tick bite, its important to speak with your health care provider.
You should get tested for Lyme disease if you have been bitten by a tick. You should especially take a Lyme disease test if the tick went undetected for over 24 hours, as there is a greater likelihood of contracting Lyme disease in these instances. If you notice Erythema migrans or other Lyme disease symptoms, ensure that you seek out testing immediately. Always bear the early symptoms in mind following significant periods spent in grassy or woodland areas.
LetsGetChecked provide an at-home Lyme Disease Test which tests the blood for antibodies that are associated with Lyme disease.
- You are presenting with symptoms of Lyme disease in the days following being bitten or having the tick removed
- You live in a place that is rich in vegetation or woodland
- You live in Northern America or Northern Europe
- You go camping or hiking on a regular basis, particularly during the Summer or Autumn
- You come into contact with larger woodland animals on a regular basis
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The Role Of Hormones In Lyme Disease
The association between thyroid, adrenal, and sex hormones and chronic infections, including Lyme disease, is not often considered. Sufficient levels of hormones are necessary since hormones influence the immune response. Compounding the issue, chronic infections adversely affect hormone levels contributing to the symptoms commonly seen in Lyme disease. Thyroid, adrenal, and sex hormones should be properly assessed and, if needed, treated to improve Lyme disease symptoms and overall outcome.
How Lyme Disease Is Affected By Your Menstrual Cycle
Lyme disease is one of the most common tick-borne illnesses in the U.S. and Europe. Caused by certain species of bacteria, including Borrelia burgdorferi, Lyme disease leads to various short-term and long-term symptoms.
Despite being a common bacterial infection, Lyme disease is difficult to diagnose. That is because many Lyme disease symptoms overlap with those of other illnesses, such as fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome and rheumatoid arthritis.
Managing the symptoms of Lyme disease can be particularly difficult for women. Fluctuating hormone levels throughout the menstrual cycle can lead to sudden flare-ups. Symptoms such as depression, anxiety, insomnia and body ache can worsen when a female patient is menstruating.
It is important to keep an eye on various symptoms and seek treatment early on. This article will take a closer look at Lyme disease symptoms and understand their correlation with the female menstrual cycle.
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How Is Lyme Disease Transmitted
Lyme disease is transmitted from the bite of infected black-legged ticks . These ticks pick up the bacterium while feeding on infected deers, birds, or mice. They are more likely to attach to the scalp and armpits.
In most cases, Lyme disease transmission happens only when an infected tick is attached to the body for longer than 36 hours. HOWEVER, some studies showed that it could happen in only 6 hours. Most patients contract Lyme disease from the bite of immature infected ticks that are difficult to spot.
Lyme Disease Progression
The progression of Lyme disease happens in the following stages:
- Early localized disease – characterized by a red rash that resembles a bulls eye within the first 1 to 2 weeks of the tick bite.
- Early disseminated disease – This stage begins a few weeks or months after the tick bite and is marked by signs of systemic infection.
- Late disseminated disease – The third stage of Lyme disease can occur months or years after the infected tick bite due to lack of proper treatment in the initial stages.
It is important to understand that the disease does not unfold in the same way for every patient. Many patients do not develop the characteristic red skin rash during the early stages of the infection. Also, even after undergoing initial treatment, nearly 36% of patients continue to remain symptomatic.
Lyme Neurotoxins And Hormonal Factors
Consult your doctor before using any of the treatments found within this site.
An interview with Nancy Faass, MSW, MPH
Wayne Anderson, ND: It is my privilege to be here with Robert Gitlin, DO, an experienced Lyme-disease practitioner, trained in Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine, with expertise in the endocrine system and hormones. We would like to offer our perspectives on how guiding hormone therapy in the Lyme patient differs from treating other patients, given that intracellular infections have their own unique effects on the endocrine system.
I think that currently one of the problems in medicine is an excessive focus specifically on Lyme disease. What sometimes gets missed is the fact that this is a constellation of toxic influences that all have the same mechanism of action. Our patients may be struggling with infectious processes caused by borrelia or co-infections like babesia, bartonella, ehrlichia, or mycoplasma, as well as toxins such as mold species, petro-based chemicals, and heavy metals. All of those infections and toxins affect the regulatory systems of our body: the brain and nervous system, and the immune and endocrine systems.
Unresponsive to Hormone Therapy
Difficult Hormonal Transitions
High Levels of Inflammation
Complex Chronic Illness
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How Does Lyme Disease Affect Pregnancy
Lyme disease is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi and is the most common vector-borne disease in the United States. This tick-borne disease is transmitted through the bite of an infected black-legged tick, often known as a deer tick. The ticks that carry Lyme disease are typically found in grassy, wooded areas, which is why youre more likely to get bitten if you spend a lot of time in these sorts of areas particularly in late spring and early summer.
If you are bitten by a tick and contract Lyme disease, it will be treated with a course of antibiotics. If youre pregnant and get Lyme disease during pregnancy, antibiotic treatment will be safe for both you and your baby – early detection and treatment are vital to ensure the disease doesnt progress into a later stage. If Lyme disease goes untreated, according to the CDC, it is possible for it to spread from mother to fetus although its important to note that this is rare .
Lyme Disease And Menstrual Cycle: Understanding The Link
A womans body goes through constant hormonal fluctuations throughout the menstrual cycle. Typically, estrogen and progesterone levels are at their peak before ovulation. However, the level of these hormones starts declining post-ovulation and is at its lowest at the end of the menstrual cycle.
Lyme disease symptoms are known to vary with hormonal fluctuations. Lower levels of estrogen and progesterone at the end of the menstrual cycle worsen these symptoms. That is the reason most women experience debilitating symptoms of Lyme disease before, during and after menstruation.
It is also essential to understand that hormonal changes in the body lead to premenstrual syndrome . The condition is characterized by mood swings, anxiety and depression, among other symptoms. The emotional stress of PMS can intensify certain symptoms of Lyme disease, including depression and brain fog.
Many women also have to deal with sleep disturbances near the end of the menstrual cycle. This, in turn, aggravates emotional and mental health issues, ultimately leading to further deterioration of Lyme disease symptoms.
Also, women with Lyme disease tend to have lower levels of progesterone and estrogen. It can lead to the onset of menopause-like symptoms, causing further hormonal imbalance. This, in turn, could affect their mental wellbeing and result in a flare-up of Lyme disease symptoms.
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