Chronic Lyme Disease: Myth or Reality?
Lyme disease, caused by the bacteria Borrelia burgdoferi, is the most commonly reported vector borne disease in the United States. Most of human cases are reported in the Northeastern and Midwestern of North America.
The disease is transmitted by a deer tick when it feeds on a human being. This infection is treated with antibiotics and most patients recover without any complications.
Unfortunately, some patients continue to have subjective symptoms despite receiving appropriate antibiotic therapy. Persistent symptoms have been described by the medical community through the Infectious Disease Society of America (IDSA) as Post Lyme Disease syndrome. Others claim that chronic fatigue syndrome is associated with Lyme disease.
A small but vocal group believes these continued symptoms are the result of chronic Lyme disease. They disagree with current tests and treatment. Check out this video “Under our Skin’ Link: http://www.youtube.com/openeyepictures. These advocacy groups have been politically active and effective in pushing Chronic Lyme disease into the mainstream.
Although the scientific evidence for chronic Lyme disease remains poor, there remains a lot of controversy. We believe that two major steps must be addressed:
1) More independent research using proper scientific tools needs to be funded into Lyme disease.
2) The IDSA has been very poor at engaging and communicating with the public. Having scientific evidence on your side is not enough, if it is not explained in a coherent, easily understandable manner.