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Randy C's Story

Another victim of the Lymerix Vaccine

I first contracted Lyme Disease from an adult Lone Star Tick in the Spring of '97. Due to misinformation on all of the Web sites where I researched LD after the initial bite, I did not seek immediate medical advice. It was not until Fall that I started treatment and of course, by then, I was in the late stages of the disease.

My advice for everyone:

1) LD can be contracted by ticks other than the deer tick - no tick bite is a safe bite.

2) LD can set in within hours - my tick was only attached for a maximum of 6-8 hours, not the 24 hour minimum suggested by information available at the time.

3) All of the info. that I found claimed LD symptoms took a minimum of 3 - 4 days and sometimes up to 30 days to occur - my EM rash occurred within 12 hours of the tick's removal.

4) Don't believe what the CDC or other sites tell you - if you have a reaction to a tick bite, get it treated immediately and DO NOT let it get into late stages....otherwise, life will suck!

In January of 1999, I thought I was over the LD but in less than two weeks without medications, I relapsed hard with severe headaches, tremors, and fevers. So I went back on the antibiotics. Then, in the Spring of 1999, I started taking the Lymerix injections on the advice of my doctor. He said it was not expected to cure the existing infection but it would prevent any future reinfections. The injections were taken in Feb., March, and the last in June of 1999.

Since last June, my health has steadily deteriorated. After the last shot, I started to notice the reoccurrence of typical LD symptoms such as fatigue, mental fogginess, tremors, short temper, dizziness and headaches. It was not an immediate reaction but rather a steadily worsening condition. Throughout the fall and winter, my symptoms continued to get worse, most especially the growing pain in my knees and back.

After changing my antibiotics to a combination of flagyl and doxycycline in the early winter, much of the dizziness and mental confusion abated. However, the arthritic pains in my knees and back have continued to grow steadily worse. 12 day steroid packs provided short term relief but not long term relief. The pain just keeps coming back.

I've been trying to get back to work these past few weeks but it has proven to be very painful. The physical demands have pushed me to the point of physical exhaustion with severe knee and back pain. That is after a short 6 - 8 hour day. Not my previously normal 10 - 14 hour days. I'm only 35 and I don't see how I should be feeling this exhausted at such an early age.

My knees are limiting my mobility and my quality of life. Until the LD, I've always worked many long, hard days. My health was actually quite good this time(March - June) last year as I was working 12 hour days for a week at a time out on the road. But once I finished the Lymerix series, everything started going back downhill.

During my last office visit with my LD physician, he told me there were some reports of others having bad reactions to the injections. So I've started researching the Web for info. on this subject and to my dismay, many others have complained of the arthritic reactions. I would be glad to hear from any others that have had the same experiences from the injections. I know of the class action lawsuit in Pa., but are there any others going on? I'm starting to consider going the same route if things don't improve.

All of my recent problems, especially the arthritic pain, have dramatically worsened after the series of Lymerix injections. Why was information not provided by the manufacturer regarding the possible arthritic reactions to everyone considering taking the vaccination? Why was my physician not instructed not to give the injections to anyone with a current LD infection?

While I don't agree with many of the typical frivolous lawsuits filed in our country each year, I would like to see something done for anyone who has had problems resulting from complications resulting from this Lymerix vaccination.

Randy Collins

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