Lyme disease misunderstood

Tthe outrageously low figure of 700 cases in Canada is based on a testing that is highly ineffective

In your article of June 17 on Lyme disease, Dr. Dee Hoyano said the risk of Lyme “is quite low”. Unfortunately the outrageously low figure of 700 cases in Canada is based on a testing that is highly ineffective, and many, if not most, doctors don’t even think to test for Lyme.

My niece has Lyme disease. She was debilitated by the disease, but not tested for Lyme, not in Canada. She was labelled with untreatable “Childhood Disintegrative Disorder” and she continued to decline.

When nearly a year later my niece received a Lyme diagnosis in the U.S. and finally got appropriate antibiotic treatment, she improved, dramatically!

But she is not one of our Lyme statistics. And neither are the other thousands upon thousands who go to the U.S. each year for treatment they would expect to get in Canada. But in the Canadian medical system, chronic Lyme is not generally recognized.

The Complex Chronic Diseases program in Vancouver goes as far as to call it “Lyme-like” syndrome. They treat with psychiatric drugs, pain killers and Tai Chi or meditation, but not with the antibiotics Lyme sufferers so often need to get better.

Calling Lyme sufferers psychosomatic is the equivalent of saying epileptic people are possessed by the devil. One day we will look back on this as a shameful time in history.

In the meantime, most people with Lyme are left to suffer or die, some committing suicide because they see no hope.

Janet Laidlaw

Nanaimo

 

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