Chronic Lyme disease: A doubtful diagnosis

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Bacteria belonging to the genus Borrelia

In some patients, Lyme disease can be fairly easy to treat while in others, it can feel like a never-ending battle. Chronic Lyme disease, which is surrounded by much controversy, is a systemic, debilitating condition which persists despite antibiotic therapy. The seriousness of this condition and its resistance to treatment necessitates an individualized treatment plan not based on arbitrary insurance guidelines.

Chronic Lyme disease or late-stage Lyme is the third stage of this multi-system, multi-stage illness. Various factors may contribute to chronic Lyme disease. It can occur when patients have not been properly diagnosed or treated, or if they have received inadequate treatment. Some Lyme experts say that if all of the bacteria causing the Lyme infection are not killed, or if the patient does not continue to detoxify their body, and therefore creates conditions in which the Lyme bacteria can continue to infect them, the illness can move into a chronic stage, resulting in many other conditions, including rheumatoid arthritis, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, neurological disorganization, cardiac problems and more.

Misdiagnoses can also contribute to chronic Lyme disease when doctors subscribe medications for diseases or conditions they believe their patients have, but in fact they do not. Many people who have been labeled with another chronic disease such as lupus, multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, Parkinson’s and others, may indeed have a condition that could be effectively treated with antibiotics.

Let the maths tell us the story: Each year 200,000 new Lyme Disease cases are registered; multiplied by 20% results in 40,000 cases of chronic Lyme Disease per year! Given that most people with chronic Lyme Disease are not successfully diagnosed and treated.

There is no established cure for chronic Lyme disease. The response to treatment varies greatly from patient to patient. Many patients find they need to stay on antibiotics long-term (ie. years). Patients may also need antibiotic combos, coinfection treatments, symptomatic medications, and natural therapies. With these treatments some patients experience full recovery. Those who don’t are left to continue the search for treatment options.

Some of the key points of chronic Lyme Disease are:

  1. frequently misdiagnosed
  2. Unfamiliar pathogenesis
  3. LD is caused by many borrelia species
  4. There are more carriers of LD than just the deer tick
  5. LD is more common than we think
  6. Patients need longer and more comprehensive treatment
  7. Wrong diagnosis leads to complications

There is a debate starting to heat-up that whether or not to accept chronic Lyme Disease as a separate entity with a different treatment protocol! As many new sources confirm cases of this lethal disease, it is becoming mandatory for the medical community to do more clinical trials on this disease’s treatment plan.

News Sources confirming new cases of chronic Lyme Disease: