Overview of Lyme Disease
Lyme Disease is a tick-borne disease caused by the spirochete bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi.
The initial presentation is a "bulls-eye target lesion" surrounding a tick bite, but the chronic symptoms may be noticed long after the initial target lesion has faded.
The most common chronic symptoms of Lyme Disease are fatigue, weakness, parasthesias, neck/shoulder pain, headache, dizziness, migrating muscle or joint pain, fever, psychotic symptoms (depression, schizophrenia), back and sciatic pain, night sweats or awakening between 2 and 4 AM. As discussed below, additional co-infections may add additional symptoms [Schwarzbach2016].
Lyme Disease is associated with autistic disorders [Bransfield2008], Chronic Fatigue Syndrome [American Lyme Disease Alliance], Fibromyalgia [Sigal1988], Multiple Sclerosis, Myelopathies, Polyneuropathies, Brain tumors, Encephalopathy [Murray1992], Meningitis, Encephalitis, Neuritis, Mania, Depression, Schizophrenia, Anorexia [Fallon1994], Parkinson's Disease [Cassarino2003], and dementia [Fallon1994].
In addition to the spirochete Borrelia burgdorferi, many patients may suffer coinfection by other tick-borne bacteria, including Babesia spp, Bartonella spp, Ehrlichia chaffeensis, Anaplasma phagocytophilum, Rickettsia spp, and Coxiella burnetii. In addition, immune suppression may lead to additional opportunistic infections, including Chlamydia pneumoniae Chlamydia trachomatis Mycoplasma spp Yersinia spp Toxoplasma gondii Coxsackie Virus Epstein Barr Virus (EBV), Cytomegalovirusvirusvirusvirusvirusvirus Virus (CMV), Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV), and Human Herpes Virus (HHV) 6/8 [Schwarzbach2016]. The presence of these coinfections can lead to apparent variations in the symptom picture of "Lyme Disease." Note that these co-infections are intracellular parasites, and hence difficult to treat using conventional antibiotics.
Complimentary and alternative treatments for Lyme disease that are considered below include:
- Low Dose Naltrexone
- Neurotransmitter Balancing