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georgeNY 03-01-2007 11:58 AM

New here. Have Lyme.
 
Hello,

my name is George, I'm 24 years old, and I'm from New York.
I was first diagnosed with Lyme Disease when I was 18 a couple weeks after I hit a deer with my car and crashed into a tick-infested ditch. I had dozens of red "bullseyes" on my back. I was treated for a month with pills.

So far the new year has been nothing but trouble for me. Early January I went to the ER for what they called an anxiety attack. I continue to feel fatigued/depressed and I constantly have a sort of brain-fog. Three weeks ago I went to my doctor. She had me take a blood test. Two of the the tests were "Lyme Ab/Western Blot Reflex" and "Lyme, Western Blot, Serum". These terms mean nothing to me, but she said that I have Lyme disease and she put me on Doxycycl HYC 100mg twice a day for one month. Its been one week now and my symptoms remain. Is this normal? How long does it usually take for the symptoms to withdraw?

Also, she said that I must've contracted the disease sometime last year. That would be months ago. Should I be concerned? Could I have chronic Lyme Disease? I dont have any muscle pains or any other symptoms but the fatigue/depression/brain-fog.

Any information would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you.

ticker 03-01-2007 12:20 PM

Re: New here. Have Lyme.
 
Hi George, welcome to the board!

Lyme disease is a multi-system bacterial infection caused from the bite of an infected tick. Although only about 50% of people who have Lyme ever get a rash, a bulls-eye rash is a definite sign of Lyme disease. It sounds like you were not treated long enough initially and possibly not aggressively enough.

Below is a Lyme symptom list. You can have any combination of symptoms.

Unexplained fevers, sweats, chills, or flushing
Unexplained weight change--loss or gain
Fatigue, tiredness, poor stamina
Unexplained hair loss
Swollen glands
Sore throat
Testicular pain/pelvic pain
Unexplained menstrual irregularity
Unexplained milk production: breast pain
Irritable bladder or bladder dysfunction
Sexual dysfunction or loss of libido
Upset stomach
Change in bowel function-constipation, diarrhea
Chest pain or rib soreness
Shortness of breath, cough
Heart palpitations, pulse skips, heart block
Any history of a heart murmur or valve prolapse?
Joint pain or swelling
Stiffness of the joints, neck, or back
Muscle pain or cramps
Twitching of the face or other muscles
Headache
Neck creeks and cracks, neck stiffness, neck pain
Tingling, numbness, burning or stabbing sensations, shooting pains
Facial paralysis (Bell's Palsy)
Eyes/Vision: double, blurry, increased floaters, light sensitivity
Ears/Hearing: buzzing, ringing, ear pain, sound sensitivity
lncreased motion sickness, vertigo, poor balance
Lightheadedness, wooziness
Tremor
Confusion, difficulty in thinking
Difficulty with concentration, reading
Forgetfulness, poor short term memory
Disorientation: getting lost, going to wrong places
Difficulty with speech or writing
Mood swings, irritability, depression
Disturbed sleep-too much, too little, early awakening
Exaggerated symptoms or worse hangover from alcohol

It is very important to see a knowledgeable doctor. Many doctors do not understand Lyme and treat with outdated protocols. Besides Lyme, ticks can transmit several co-infections including Babesiosis, Ehrlichiosis (HME & HGE), Bartonella, and Mycoplasma. It is estimated that 60% of people who have Lyme are co-infected. It may affect treatment choice and progress. It is important to be tested for these by a Lyme reputable lab such as IgeneX in Palo Alto, CA. Do you know if you have been tested for these?

If you need a doctor recommendation, let us know.

200 mg of Doxy daily is not strong enough for Lyme. I believe the recom-mended dose is 300-600 mg daily. One month of treatment is not long enough even for a new infection.

A few tips about Doxy. Do not have any dairy, magnesium or iron products two hours before or after taking it or it will not be absorbed properly. If it makes you nauseous, eat something substantial and non-dairy before taking it. Avoid the sun. You can get a severe burn in minutes even when wearing sunscreen. Do not lay down for at least an hour after taking it or you can ulcerate your esophagus. This is very painful! Drink a full glass of water when you take it for the same reason.

Whenever you take any antibiotics, make sure you take high-quality acid-ophilus capsules. They replace the good bacteria in the body and help to prevent yeast overgrowth (which men and women can both get). The best ones to get are refrigerated. Most healthfood stores have them. Wait at least two hours before or after taking the antibiotics to take the acidophilus.

Be aware of the Jarisch-Herxheimer Reaction (herx). Often, when people who have Lyme take antibiotics, their symptoms become worse or they get new ones. When the antibiotics kill the bacteria, toxins are released making them feel sicker. It can be very scary when it happens, but it is a good sign the antibiotics are working. Although it can vary individually, many people experience this at the beginning of treatment and every three to four weeks.

It is a good idea to document your symptoms daily. One way to do this is to list the three main symptoms you have each day and a numerical rating of their severity, from 1-10. Over time when you review this, you can see when your herxes occur and how you are responding to the meds.

It is also important to learn as much as possible. I recommend reading Dr. Joseph Burrascano's 2005 Diagnostic Hints and Treatment Guidelines For Lyme and Other Tick Borne Illnesses. He is one of the top Lyme doctors in the country, and many Lyme doctors follow his protocols. I also recommend the book "Everything You Need To Know About Lyme Disease (2nd edition)" by Karen Vanderhoof-Forschner.

Hang in there okay?


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