(NaturalNews) Lyme disease is the fastest-growing infectious disease in the United States, with as many as 400,000 new cases per year. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA), however, deny the existence of chronic Lyme (a disabling disease which results when treatments aren't immediately given following a tick bite), which afflicts many. Most people with chronic Lyme disease don't recall having ever been bitten by a tick. They might learn they have the disease after symptoms manifest, but at that point, treatment is complicated.
Tests for diagnosing Lyme disease are inadequate, for many reasons. For instance, Lyme disease suppresses the body's antibody production, resulting in false negative tests, while antigen tests miss blood samples containing proteins from borrelia burgdorferi, one of the principal organisms implicated in Lyme. What's more: because the CDC and IDSA refuse to recognize it, most doctors aren't taught about chronic Lyme disease and how to treat it.
However, numerous case studies prove that chronic Lyme exists and can often be effectively treated naturally. Doctors, scientists and Lyme advocates have presented these case studies to the IDSA and US Congress, yet the studies are always dismissed. This has prevented doctors and the public from learning about chronic Lyme disease and from policy and funding for research and treatments from being developed.
Because of this, thousands of people are improperly treated or unaware that they have the disease. Doctors, who know about the devastating effects of chronic Lyme disease and understand how to treat it, are persecuted by the medical establishment and have their licenses revoked for putting patients on long-term treatment regimens. More information on the politics of Lyme disease and why this happens can be found in the award-winning 2009 documentary, Under Our Skin: The Untold Story of Lyme Disease, and in Pamela Weintraub's book, Cure Unknown:.
Chronic Lyme is a debilitating, disabling disease that affects every organ and system of the body. It mimics a variety of diseases such as fibromyalgia, rheumatoid arthritis and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and, in the most severe cases, Parkinson's, ALS or multiple sclerosis. The International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society (ILADS), which recognizes that chronic Lyme exists and establishes effective guidelines for its treatment, estimates that most chronic Lyme disease sufferers experience a level of disability equivalent to that of a person who has suffered from a recent heart attack. A Lyme disease symptom list can be found at: http://www.lymenet.org/BurrGuide200810.pdf
Effective treatment protocols are complicated and usually involve years of treatment, along with remedies to heal the organs, tissues and other parts of the body affected by Lyme. Treatment is difficult, partly because borrelia burgdorferi isn't the only organism implicated in the disease. The malarial-like parasite, babesia, along with bartonella, ehrlichia and many others comprise the matrix of infections that is chronic Lyme disease and that has disabled many hundreds of thousands of people in the United States and abroad.
Anyone suffering from undiagnosed symptoms or any of the above-mentioned diseases may have Lyme. Diagnosis can be confirmed by a "Lyme-literate" doctor, who diagnoses the disease based on symptoms and response to treatments, along with unconventional methods of testing. Recommendations for Lyme-literate doctors can be found at: www.ilads.org. Most doctors in conventional medicine don't know how to recognize or adequately treat the disease, so a recommendation from ILADS or a reputable online Lyme disease support group such as LymeNet.org can enable sufferers to find hope and healing from the disease.
Burrascano, Joseph J., MD. Advanced Topics in Lyme Disease: Diagnostic Hints and Treatment Guidelines For Lyme and Other Tick-Borne Illnesses. Sixteenth edition: 2008.
Weintraub, Pamela. Cure Unknown: Inside the Lyme Epidemic. New York: St. Martin's Press, 2008, 2009.
About the author: Connie Strasheim is a health care journalist, and the author of four books on holistic healing, including the recently released "Defeat Cancer: 15 Doctors of Integrative and Naturopathic Medicine Tell You How." (www.cancerbooksource.com). She has also published two books on chronic Lyme disease, including, "Insights Into Lyme Disease Treatment: Thirteen Lyme-Literate Health Care Practitioners Share Their Healing Strategies," (www.lymeinsights.com), which has been the best-selling Lyme disease book on the market since its release in September, 2009. Ms. Strasheim's experience and research, along with her near decade-long battle with chronic Lyme disease, have provided her with profound insights into how to heal chronic illnesses of all types with natural medicine.