We encourage you to read this article and watch the video below that expresses the top ten medical, social, and political challenges that Dr. Morales believes are the greatest disparities surrounding Lyme Disease.
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Top 10 Medical Controversies That Affect Lyme Patients
Here are the Top 10 Medical Controversies that affect Lyme patients or as I like to call it – “The Top 10 Things That Sucks When You Have Lyme Disease.”
Lyme patients may appear physically in good condition so as their imaging reports, their studies, their medical examinations, and lab reports as well. This is obviously a great disadvantage for Lyme patients as they can not only be affected physically, mentally, emotionally, but also sometimes metabolically as well, which means that some patients have to calculate the amount of energy left in their systems in order to do a simple task such as exercising, going out with friends, or even walking out to the market.
So this also possesses a big challenge in patients that suffer from mental exhaustion, which can perform simple calculations. And in some cases, have impaired decision making and can collapse from something as simple as revising a bank statement.
There is no specific treatment that works for everybody the same since borrelia consists of more than 100 different subtypes, some patients may be affected with by more than one different subtype. And in some cases or up to 90% of them, there can be also co-infections. And some of the co-infections can be worse than the Lyme itself.
I often get asked what is your treatment success rate and it’s always a challenge to answer correctly because of the very broad variety of patients that exists. Some patients can get a hundred percent better almost immediately whereas others may never get a hundred percent. It really comes down to the patient’s diagnosis and his or her genetics.
Scarce effective treatment options or too many gimmicky or useless experimental options are available. In one hand, we have the IDSA 2020 guidelines stipulating that a 10-day course of doxycycline is enough to treat a confirmed Lyme disease patient. And if there is neurological Lyme, you can give up to 21 days of the same antibiotic or exchange it for row 7. This obviously has a lot of shortcomings. Dr. Embers in 2012 confirmed that by doing such a treatment, a hundred percent of the patients treated would still have Lyme after being treated; they would test positive. Klempner in 2001 also confirmed this before Dr. Embers.
And on the other hand, we have so many lack of options, that this has given rise to unsubstantiated treatments, medical devices, supplements, and even medical companies all around the world, which in some cases could be capitalizing with ineffective and unproven treatment options, ultimately taking advantage of the patient.
My personal favorite – the IDSA or Infectious Disease Society of America discredits patients’ feelings and symptoms. There are several shortcomings in the development process of the IDSA guidelines with a lot of bias recommendations turning away from clinical judgment and common sense. There is a lot of conflict of interest and each of the researchers that are doing these guidelines. There are significant financial relationships to them and this is really overwhelming.
In most cases, serving in more than one board, chair of buy sports or vice chairs, advisors for drug companies have stocks and pharmaceuticals editors for the FDA receiving research funding and providing legal expert opinions for testimony regarding Lyme disease. So there is a lot of conflict here. The guidelines are not intended or should not be intended to supplant physicians’ judgment with respect to particular patients or special clinical situations, however, they do.
The lack of consensus that exists between patients and doctors or Lyme literate MD’s in a group together, and the IDSA is probably our most direct form of harm to our Lyme patients and their families. There are over 35 organized groups of doctors and patients in different associations representing clinicians and patients most of which have hundreds or in some cases even thousands of members just in the USA alone, providing accurate information for the illness, about the illness, and its clinical challenges.
However, there is a ruling entity composed of a small number of researchers with poorly constructed studies undermining the Lyme patient’s chronic burden, loss, and suffering. This group is called the IDSA.
If you have Morgellons, very little help is offered, very little understanding as well. Morgellons is a known Lyme entity, however, there is no current approach offered as treatment or diagnosis by the IDSA or the CDC but in fact, patients are labeled and treated as psychiatric and in some cases, just ultimately deemed crazy.
Transmissibility can occur from sexual intercourse, breast milk, through birth, and there is even reports that mosquitoes can carry Lyme disease. So by having so many transmission avenues and only recognizing the one which is tick bites are transmissible, then we’re missing a major number of cases that occur daily. Rough estimates dictate, 100 new patients are infected daily and 25% of these are children.
More than 40% of chronic Lyme patients are unable to work and statistically, this is correct. I, however, see a different number in my daily practice. I see as many as seventy or eighty percent of my patients being supported, non-working mothers, husbands, daughters, etc. This is an issue that inflicts a moral and self-confidence burden on the patients besides the financial load for patients and the whole family.
The financial disparities when it comes to research for funding of Lyme compared to other diseases is huge. The NIH yearly budget for Lyme is 20 million dollars for more than 300,000 cases a year compared to breast cancer’s, 650 million dollars funding for only 230,000 cases per year or an even greater contrast with HIV’s 3 billion dollar funding for almost 50,000 cases a year.
God did not invent Lyme disease, the scientists did. Just kidding. I don’t know this as a fact but several books talk about government-funded research labs that were ordered to step up the infections capacities and force mutations to make it more virulent, more transmissible. Some claim that this was one of the many cold war strategies back in the 60s. This one, I really can’t be sure and I would love to hear what you think.
Thanks for watching. This has been – Top 10 Medical Controversies in Lyme Disease.
Reviewed by Dr. Omar Morales, MD