Why Don't Chronic Lyme Patients Get Better?
Why don’t chronic Lyme patients get better? I have written a number of blogs on chronic Lyme disease. This remains a controversial and challenging topic.
For many years now, I have disagreed with the mainstream infectious disease (ID) specialists on the issue because I felt that the paradigm described by Richard Horowitz, MD, in his book Why Can’t I Get Better? better represented the underlying causes of those patients with chronic fatigue, headaches, pain and other symptoms.
I have asked the naysayers who do not believe in chronic Lyme disease to give some other explanation for the chronic symptoms of these patients beyond the insulting conclusion that it is all psychosomatic. It is rare for any specialist to come up with an alternative explanation.
But my ongoing research has come up with several alternative scenarios to explain these chronic symptom patterns. The ID specialists may have been right all along about many of these patients, but for the wrong reasons.
From my experience in practice, some of these patients have thyroid dysfunction as the primary cause for their chronic symptoms. Some of them have magnesium deficiency and other mineral deficiencies and imbalances as the primary cause. Some have food sensitivities that require testing outside of mainstream laboratories.
The two other areas that deserve attention are: mold/biotoxin and chronic viral infections. I have done a lot of research on Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome (CIRS) and I think this complex topic explains why many diagnosed with chronic Lyme disease don’t get well on years and years of combination antibiotics.
I have read two books recently, including The New Fibromyalgia Remedy by Daniel Dantini, MD, that support the idea that chronic, active infections from viruses like Epstein Barr, CMV, HHV-6 and parvovirus are the primary cause for many patients with chronic fatigue, brain fog, joint pain, muscle pain, headaches and other diffuse health issues.
There is no telling how many patients diagnosed with chronic Lyme would improve if their practitioner evaluated them for these other causes.
Has your practitioner evaluated you for other causes or influencers of your chronic symptoms and patterns?
For more about chronic Lyme, please see my book, The Best of All Worlds: A Family Doctor’s Path to Integrative Medicine.
Andrew Lenhardt, MD