Can Lyme Disease Actually Get Worse?

A report published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine in October 2008 predicts increased risk for water-borne illness around the Great Lakes, potentially affecting 40 million people, due to an increase in climate-related extreme rainfall that could overwhelm storm water and s…

A report published in the

American Journal of Preventive Medicine in October 2008 predicts increased risk for water-borne illness around the Great Lakes, potentially affecting 40 million people, due to an increase in climate-related extreme rainfall that could overwhelm storm water and sewage systems, potentially diverting raw sewage to Lake Michigan – a key source of drinking water.

While some regions will be effected by extreme precipitation, others will experience drought. These drier conditions can also spread water-borne

illness as a single infected source could be shared by more people than usual.

The top list of health problems that will escalate due to weather changes are:

Malaria

reporting for “The

East Hampton Star”  in Long Island, New York reports that:

“One of every four reported cases of Lyme disease in the United States occurs in New York State, and the East End of Long Island is one of the most intense areas of Lyme infestation in the world.

“Some doctors think there is a lot of Lyme hysteria here on the East End. There may be some truth to that. It’s a challenging and scary medical problem. I personally treat many Lyme patients or

people we think have Lyme for neurological symptoms and pain. I can tell you that it’s not easy or clear-cut.

“A person’s emotional state and their multiple physical symptoms are huge issues in this patient population. One can never be entirely certain as to the origin of certain symptoms. Ideological rigidity and neglect of conventional psychiatric and neurological diagnoses do not make for good patient outcomes.

“Still, I’ve seen lots

of hard-working, levelheaded people, Bonackers, who have responded well to a strong follow-up course of antibiotics or a semi-permanent catheter. These folks are not flighty or neurotic. It’s not all in their heads.

“Some patients have the misguided notion that the only way they can feel better is to fight the illness with as many antibiotics as possible. Lyme disease causes neurologic dysfunction, so therapies may need to include treatments for neurological, pain, and

emotional issues as well. We have some brand-new therapies besides the antibiotics that seem to be helping a lot.

“Lyme may turn out to be a lot more like another spirochete bacterial illness — syphilis — than we could have imagined. Both can have a long latency period before symptoms appear, both can start out with a rash, both apparently can hide in the tissues, both involve multi-system disease, both cause neurologic and psychiatric problems, and both can mimic

other diseases.

“There are some docs out there treating Lyme who are pretty far out — even for me, a university medical professor for many years and fully trained quack. The bottom line is, if you’ve been exposed to Lyme disease, you’ve got to get the antibiotics quickly — full stop. Yes, there are other things that can help, like acupuncture and supplements, but you need to try to eradicate the bug.”

The worse thing is that many, many people

have been bitten and infected without showing immediate symptoms, and the bacteria can lie dormant for years and then suddenly destroy a person’s life.

The good news in the Hamptons is that (for the most part) families enjoy upper-class lifestyles which means access to the best medical care and the chances of Hampton residents being thrown into a state mental facility is not very likely.

We can only hope and pray that some extremely wealthy residents in the Hamptons will have compassion on

their increasing number of sick friends and push politically for real solutions.

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