Lyme disease today is not what it was 20 or 30 years ago, and there is a great deal of outdated information. Conventionally, doctors would look for a story of hiking in the woods in the Northeastern US, then 2 days later either seeing a tick on their body and/or seeing a bullseye rash, possibly with some flu-like symptoms. If the patient checked all the boxes, the physician would go ahead and call it Lyme disease and treat it with the necessary antibiotics. We may even consider running a blood test for Lyme disease, but that wasn’t really necessary to begin treatment if the patient had all of the above presenting symptoms and story.
Nowadays things are different – Lyme is no longer confined to the Northeastern United States but is global, which makes diagnosis very challenging. The organism that causes Lyme called Borrelia Burgdorferi has morphed over the years into many different strains. In addition, there are hundreds of other tick-borne diseases from other bacteria, viruses, and fungi in the same tick. One bite can cause many infections.
One can easily get Lyme without a hint of a rash or possibly with the smallest of rashes in a belly button or groin area, without ever seeing it. It is possible to have been infected without any memory of being bitten by a tick, or you may have knowledge of being bitten but never developed a rash. In either case, Lyme disease can develop. This is typically because the infected tick is usually in a nymph stage, too small to detect. New research is also beginning to show that there may be other infection sources besides ticks.
If you suspect Lyme, the sooner you get tested and receive treatment for Lyme disease, the easier it is to make a speedy recovery.
There are several problems with conventional lab tests for Lyme disease.
None of this should be new information for many doctors that have ever treated Lyme disease. Secondary and Tertiary Lyme disease are well-known conditions in which Lyme did not present initially as mentioned with a rash, but rather presented in a different system of the body.
So we are very familiar with Lyme Arthritis. The bacteria can easily get into joint tissue as it loves to feed on collagen. Lyme can also cause Bell’s Palsy which is a condition involving the seventh cranial nerve which causes paralysis of the muscles of the face. This tells us that Lyme can also hide in nerve tissue. We also know about Lyme Encephalitis, involving the brain, and Lyme Carditis which is a heart disorder caused by Lyme and affects the conduction system.
Without treatment, Lyme disease can eventually cause a range of other symptoms. Among the most common are weakness or numbness in your limbs and neurological disorders.
Lyme disease is no longer an infection caused by just one organism, the well known Borrelia Burgdorferi bacteria. We now know that there are many tick-borne diseases and co-infections that co-occur with Lyme from the same tick. These can include bacteria such as Bartonella and Mycoplasma. They can include viruses like Epstein-Barr Virus. We find that several patients that have chronic mold have chronic Lyme and vice versa. All of these co-infections cause further havoc in our bodies on top of the damaging effects of the Lyme itself.
The ticks that carry Lyme disease also pass on a number of other conditions, so it’s not uncommon to have co-infections such as:
One of the most common Lyme disease co-infections is mold illness. Mold illness is fungal in nature, and fungi are opportunistic, meaning that they take advantage where they can. If Lyme is weakening the immune and neurological systems in the body, mold will likely also be present. Mold is a leading cause of inflammation and can trigger chronic inflammatory response syndrome (CIRS), which affects your immune system. Meeting Point Health providers have extensive experience in treating mold illness and other Lyme disease co-infections.
The good news is something can be done. The providers at Meeting Point Health are very familiar with chronic Lyme and know how to correctly test and treat. The primary treatment for Lyme disease is a course of antibiotics to destroy the bacteria responsible. Early intervention should kill the bacteria in 2-3 weeks, but if you’ve had Lyme disease for a while, you will need intravenous therapy too.
We also offer complementary therapies that can ease the symptoms, kill pathogens of Lyme disease, its coinfections and toxins, and restore neurological and immune balance to help you recover. Some of the techniques they use include:
To benefit from a comprehensive, functional approach to treating Lyme disease, call Meeting Point Health today at 215.298.9928 (Option 1). You can also schedule a consultation by completing our online contact form at https://www.meetingpointhealth.com/contact-us/.
Medically reviewed by Dr. Stephen Matta, DO, MBA CAQSM and Mary Anne Matta, MS, MA, LAC
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