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  • HELP! Bitten by deer tick, what to do? Already have Chronic Illness...

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    Old 08-02-2005, 08:39 PM   #1
    GettingWellAgain
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    Question HELP! Bitten by deer tick, what to do? Already have Chronic Illness...

    Hi everyone,

    Two days ago, I found a deer tick in my groin, specifically inside of my labia majora (inside of my outer labia). God knows how I got a tick there, but he first thing I tried to do is remove it. It was terribly painful and very hard to do, and it looked as if MOST of the tick was removed. I kept bleeding, which kept me from being able to see where the tick was. I applied triple antibiotic ointment after picking. The next day, it was very irritated and red around it, and today it itches a little bit and doensn't look red at all. I also do not see any more of the tick still attached. Now, I've been sick now for about 2 years with a very bad Chronic Fatigue-like illness (and I'm only 20). It started with a severe balance disorder for 9 months, then pleurisy and the flu, then severe low blood sugar and fatigue and a million other symptoms, which I am still having. I have NEVER been tested for anything, as I have no health insurance and my parents absolutely have no money for me to see a doctor. The State will not insure me unless I have 3,200 dollars worth of medical bills, and I'm gettting up there, but it's hard to see a doctor to rack up bills because of up-front appointment costs. I live in a very wooded area of Connecticut, and I personally think it's possible that I ALREADY have Lyme Disease. I saw a naturopathic doctor very briefly, who said he believes 100% that I have Addison's or at least adrenal insufficiency to some severe extent, as I have ALL of the symptoms, including the pigmentation and severe low blood pressure. He also wanted to test me for Lyme, but I couldn't pay for any tests and stopped seeing him. Now, I do have ONE WEEK of doxycycline I was given by a clinic for a possible cervical infection (which was proved negative, so I never took the pills). They are 100mg, and I have enough to take 2 per day. Should I start these antibiotics? I am TERRIFIED. I have SOO MANY symptoms NOW, and since I'm afraid I ALREADY have Lyme, I'm terrified that I'm going to have a Herxheimer reaction to the antibiotics. The last doctor I saw said that my liver was swollen and hut upon palpation, so I'm also afraid that I'm not going to be able to handle any antibiotics due to the liver. I also have pretty bad Candidiasis, and just started to take acidophilus, as this is the first time my stomach is "okay enough" to handle it, believe it or not. I am nauseous all of the time from my adrenal insufficiency, and am also really worried about having major nausea from the doxycyline. All in all, I can't believe yet another thing is happening to me. Should I start the antibiotics and then go to the Emergency Room since I have no insurance or money to see a doctor? At least there they will bill me,and I will get a presciption for antibiotics, right? Can I expect a severe Herxheimer reaction? Can I expect severe side effects from the doxycycline? I was told the proper antibiotics protocol is:
    Doxycycline 100 mg four times a day for 30 days
    or Amoxicillin 1 gm (1000 mg) three times a day with Probenecid 500 mg three
    times a day. Is this correct? Please, someone advise. Thanks so much for takingt the time to read this long post,
    Katalina
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    Old 08-03-2005, 04:38 AM   #2
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    Re: HELP! Bitten by deer tick, what to do? Already have Chronic Illness...

    Hi Katalina, welcome to the board. You are going through a lot and it sounds like you've been sick for a long time. You are going to need to see a doctor and get these things taken care of. I'm sorry you don't have insurance with so many ailments, that must be very scary for you.

    How old are you? Do you go to school? It's very important that you get some help from either your parents or an adult mentor at your school or your church. The physical issues that you're describing should not be ignored, you need treatment. Addison's is a serious disease, good liver function is very crucial to your health, and lyme disease is not something you can ignore without consequence. I'm not trying to scare you, but just to encourage you to address this in a right manner.

    The State of Connecticut offers the Husky program to uninsured minors, if you are eligible for that I think it would be a good choice.

    You shouldn't be doing all this on your own, please find someone to help you through these decisions and let us know what happens. I don't suggest that you self-medicate, especially with severe adrenal problems and liver trouble too. You can do permanent harm to yourself if you take medication without doctor's supervision.

    Good luck, I hope you get good help very soon and get feeling better. Please continue to keep us informed of your progress. I am going to pray for you today.

     
    Old 08-03-2005, 04:58 AM   #3
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    Re: HELP! Bitten by deer tick, what to do? Already have Chronic Illness...

    Dear Katalina,

    I agree with sleeper. You need to get to the bottom of your medical problems before you start medicating yourself. I live in Texas so I don't know about uninsured people up there but sleeper has given you some ideas so I advise you to pursue them. If you are not still a teen I would still contact this program and maybe they can send you to something in your age bracket. The only way you will get better is if you seek out the proper help. It is not good that you found a tick embedded in you but not all ticks carry lyme. Hopefully yours did not. I will add you to my prayer list and hope you find some help soon. Let us know what happens. Don't forget that the rest of your life may depend on your treatment now for whatever is wrong.
    Betterdaysforme

     
    Old 08-03-2005, 07:37 AM   #4
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    Re: HELP! Bitten by deer tick, what to do? Already have Chronic Illness...

    Hi Katalina,

    I am so sorry you are sick! I think you are right in thinking you may have been dealing with Lyme all of this time. Does Addison's run in your family? I think in many cases with Addison's it is hereditary.

    I did some research on it when I was so sick. Everyday my husband would come home from work and I would have come up with a new diagnosis for myself. Addison's was the last one before I finally tested positive for Lyme, Babesia, and Ehrlichia (hme & hge). My hair was falling out, I had heart palpitations, and the shakes all the time. My blood sugar was always off - at least it felt like it was...

    I would follow SleeperWoken's advice and check into that Husky Program...you may also want to contact the CT support groups for lyme and see if they may have suggestions...

    Good luck and I hope you get some answers soon.

    Take care,
    NCgirl88

     
    Old 08-03-2005, 11:00 AM   #5
    deejavu
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    Re: HELP! Bitten by deer tick, what to do? Already have Chronic Illness...

    Hi Katalina,

    Sorry to hear that you are so sick. At age 20 it must be a terrible feeling because you probably can not do the things that other 20 year olds do.

    I also do not have Insurance and it took 5 years to get diagnosed after seeing many, many doctors (all cash).

    Finally I met a doctor who sent my blood to a Lab called IgeneX located in Palo Alto, CA. It cost around $1,000.00, maybe less. I did test positive for 2 forms of Lyme Disease after being told I had Chronic Fatigue for so many years.

    Living in Connecticut is high risk Lyme Disease Country, I live on Long Island where there are also so many ticks.

    As far as taking the 1 week supply of Doxy, I suggest that you don't take it as 1 week won't accomplish anything. The recommended dose for people who first get infected with Lyme is between 400 mg to 600 mg daily and for at least 6 weeks.

    I hope you can get some financial help and get your blood sent to IgeneX Labs.

    Please keep us updated and hang in there,
    Denise

     
    Old 08-03-2005, 05:24 PM   #6
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    Re: HELP! Bitten by deer tick, what to do? Already have Chronic Illness...

    Hi Katalina, welcome to the board! I am sorry you have been so sick.

    The most important thing you can do is see a Lyme knowledgeable doctor. There is an excellent one in Wilton, CT. His name is Dr. Steven Phillips. I suggest that you call his office and see if they can work out some kind of payment plan. Check out federal and state medical assistance programs.

    Besides Lyme ticks can transmit several co-infections. You need to be tested for these also. I would not recommend taking the antibiotics without supervision. The dose is not enough. Also, depending on your case another antibiotic may be better. The doctor may prefer you not to be on antibiotics or to be on another one for testing.

    Hang in there okay? There has got to be a way for you to get the help you need.

     
    Old 08-03-2005, 10:06 PM   #7
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    Re: HELP! Bitten by deer tick, what to do? Already have Chronic Illness...

    Hi everyone,

    Sorry I couldn't reply any sooner, I had trouble accessing this site earlier. Thank you for all your heartfelt responses.

    In regard to the questions about my lack of health insurance, I am unfortunately now too old to be on the Husky Plan. I actually was on it, and them cut me when I was about 18 and a half, and I'm now 20. Currently, I in what is called a "Spendown", and I am only partially sure of what that means. I was told that the State will not insure me unless I have 3, 200 dollars worth of medical bills because my mom "makes too much" (hard to believe when we can't pay any bills). Right now I have about 1,800 bucks worth of bills, and I'm getting there. It's just really hard to rack up bills because of the super-expensive office visits to see a doctor in the first place.

    I know one of you asked if I worked, and I do not. I really am too sick at this time, and have been for a couple of years. It's actually strange because some days are great and I'm energetic and functional, and other days I can't get off the couch and move because I have no energy and my blood pressure is SOOO low. Even on the "good" days, though, I don't feel right. There just isn't enough consistency in my feeling okay to have a job, unfortunately. I wouldn't last a week. I DO babysit for my little brother and sister everyday, which is like a job, but isn't too hard because they are almost old enough to not need a sitter anymore. In the past six months, I just started taking college classes online. I got a Federal Student Loan, and it actually takes up quite a bit of time. I'm considered a full-time student, and it's great.

    About IgeniX Labs, I've heard of it, and would LOVE to get tested through them. I think I will also contact Lyme support groups in CT, as they also may be able to lead me in the right direction of a doctor. I would love to see a LLMD, but I doubt there is any way my family could pay for one right now. My best best is getting up enough medical bills to get State insurance OR I can go through the other option that I just found today. Here's some good news. I just found a Naturopathic doctor from Bridgeport, CT that mainly treats HIV/AIDS infected patients in the area, but he is willing to treat me even though I'm not HIV-positive. He is FREE and from a clinic, and blood tests do cost something, but they are EXTREMELY cheap. I think that this doctor would be able to help me substantially. Also, my old allergist I used to see when I was 14 years old wants me to come in for a free appointment to discuss what she feels is going on with me. She may be able to refer me to an inexpensive doctor she knows, and she is really open to all aspects of one's health and treatment. So, both of those seem very promising for me.

    I really wouldn't be surprised if I test positive for Lyme, as I developed my symptoms two years ago right after a summer of heavy hiking and swimming in the woods. I will let everyone know how my testing goes, and I will be lurking here, learning more about this misunderstood disease. So, I guess for now I shouldn't take the Doxy without a doctor's supervision? Tomorrow I'm going to call that ND and tell him about my tick bite. Thanks again for all of your help everyone, I really appreciate it; you're all so supportive!
    ~Katalina
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    Old 08-04-2005, 09:08 PM   #8
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    Re: HELP! Bitten by deer tick, what to do? Already have Chronic Illness...

    Hi Katalina...I am glad to hear you have some resources that you are finding...keep reaching out....you will find help...this sounds so goofy but keep imagining yourself in the LLMDs office and I bet you will find yourself there sooner then you may think ...I am starting to believe in the power of thought and positive thinking.

    I started taking doxy when I was not under a physicians supervision because I was so sick and a veterinarian thought I was ill and gave it to me...turns out he was right....but I started it and herxed so badly...I also was concerned that I could affect the blood testing by taking it...it is a hard call. Sometimes I wonder if I had just stayed on it for the two months it took me to finally get a diagnosis if it would have benefited me - I will never know...

    Anyway, take care and stay determined. Keep us posted and don't hesitate to post...I will be worried if I don't see you post now and then

    NCgirl88

     
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