What you need to know about Lyme disease
When you mention Lyme disease (Multiple Systemic Infection Disease Syndrome) you are met with either blank stares, or a multitude of misconceptions including that the disease doesn't exist in Australia.
With so many myths surrounding this condition, we wanted to bring you the facts to dispel this confusion and bring awareness of a condition that is so often overlooked and misdiagnosed.
What is Lyme disease?
Lyme Disease is called the 'Great Imitator' as it mimics many other diseases such as MS, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Lupus, Parkinson's disease, Motor Neurone Disease (ALS), Fibromyalgia, Guillain-Barre Syndrome, Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis, Alzheimer's disease and more. It can affect any organ in the body including muscles and joints, the heart, gastro-intestinal system and the neurological system (including the brain) and it's four times more prevalent than AIDS.
Although Lyme disease was officially identified in 1975 in the Town of Lymes (USA), it was recognised in Europe much earlier. It's an infection caused by a Spirochete (Borrelia Burgdorferi bacteria) transmitted from the bite of ticks infected with this bacteria. Borrelia has at least 18 different species.
While it is commonly believed that ticks are responsible for human infection, there is now strong evidence suggesting that other 'biting' organisms can also cause infection. As well as Lyme Disease, ticks can transmit other diseases (co-infections) such as Babesioisis, Bartonella, Ehrlichiosis, and Mycoplasma to name a few.
Symptoms to look out for
Symptoms present themselves in various stages. They may be constant or intermittent and usual treatments are not effective. If not properly treated at the earlier stages it may lead to chronic lifelong disabilities.
Initial symptoms begin with the development of an itchy rash (erythema migrans) appearing after the tick bite and this rash then spreads out to form a bulls-eye pattern. This pattern, which may also appear on other parts of the body, is a distinctive characteristic of Lyme disease. In some instances there may not be any symptoms or they may only appear weeks or months later and be mistaken for the flu. Be aware of any unexplained headaches, fatigue, neck and muscle soreness or fever during this time that is aided with normal medication.
Later symptoms of Borrelia infection may include arthritic type symptoms such as swelling, circulation problems, joint pain, paralysis (temporary) of facial muscles, shortness of breath, numbing and weakness in your hands arms and feet. Memory loss, respiratory problems and meningitis may also occur weeks, months and sometimes years later, after an infection, if not treated. This stage is also known as 'chronic Lyme disease'.
Some other co-infections, which may present are Babesia Infection, with the main symptoms being fatigue, neck and back stiffness and Bartonella infection produces more neurological symptoms (like MS).
What treatments are available?
It's important that you seek treatment as soon as possible. Write down any symptoms you have and make your medical practitioner aware of the possibility of Lyme disease so that proper tests can be carried out. While infections can hide within cells and are not always detected in a blood (serum) test, a urine test can detect infections.
The best test to confirm Lyme disease is to undergo a challenge test. Resolve Health and Wellness is a practice that is Lyme disease 'literate'. As Lyme disease can present in individual ways we take a very personalised and holistic approach. We focus on nutrition, supplement with herbals and also use Bioresonance Therapy, a non-invasive, gentle therapy that uses biophysics - the physics of your body, to improve your overall immunity.
When it comes to treatment, antibiotics are often prescribed with different antibiotics required for each infection. This can deplete an already damaged immune system and many patients also need gut repair and an extensive detox, to recover from a cocktail of prescriptions.
Are you concerned about Lyme disease or have any questions you need answered? Call us today on (07) 5525 2211.
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