In the 21st century, developed countries enjoy some of the best medical care that science has to offer, yet we are suffering in epidemic proportions from asthma, allergies, cancer, chronic arthritis and auto-immune illnesses like lupus, ALS, MS and a host of other disorders that until the last few decades, were unheard of or exceedingly rare. Why?
Some forward thinking physicians have evidence to suggest that part of this epidemic is actually due to chronic lyme disease that has been misdiagnosed.
Up to half of all people who suspect lyme disease, never find a tick bite and it can be a difficult disease to diagnose so this makes it easy for a doctor to mistake it for something else. With its myriad of symptoms from arthritic to neurological to cardiac, the possibilities are endless. Some patients are given medications and treatments they don’t need and when they fail to respond to treatment, can be labelled as ‘hypochondriacs’.
Steven Bock, MD, wrote in the International Journal of Integrative Medicine, that:
‘Patients have had negative testing for lyme disease for up to five years after the onset of symptoms. Patients diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS), living in an epidemic Lyme area, with atypical signs for MS, deserve to be studied fully with Lyme and cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) testing to determine if Lyme disease is an etiology.’ Even some children with attention deficit disorder (ADD) may in fact have underlying, chronic lyme disease.
How Can Doctors ensure the Correct Diagnosis?
If the patient’s clinical presentation and history are inconclusive, there are some tests that can help determine if it is lyme disease:
Enzyme Link Immuno absorbent Test and indirect Immuno Florescence can find out if there are antibodies to the tick. Even patients who show no antibodies can be found to have the disease using this test.
DNA Amplification Testing – Sometimes the affected person will shed DNA from the tick in his or her urine for years after infection, and this DNA can confirm whether it is present. If so, that chronic arthritis and depression they suffered from was probably triggered by lyme disease.