My husband was diagnosed in February of this year with Lyme. He had been having symptoms for a few months. We didn't want to believe he could have Lyme, but it soon became clear that his symptoms and cycle were identical to mine. He was tested and was positive with the LUAT test. We are not sure if he caught the disease from me or if he picked it up elsewhere. There are over 312 strains of the bacteria responsible for Lyme disease and they can all cause slightly different symptoms.
My son and daughters are slightly different from mine, but my husbands are almost identical. If the organism can pass through the placenta and onto the fetus, thereby giving birth to a baby with this disease, then it only stands to reason that it could be sexually transmitted like another spirochetal disease - syphilis. There are no studies to prove this, but my doctor has quite a few cases where one partner has the disease and much later the other partner starts to show symptoms.
There are even worse horror stories. I know patients who are misdiagnosed because of ignorance on the part of the physician. They are told Lyme disease doesn't exist in their area. They do not educate themselves to the symptoms and proper treatment. That is why I, as well as my son and daughter, have what appears to be chronic Lyme disease. I have hope for my husband, but he is not really getting better and is cognitively deteriorating.
The state of Michigan is not that different from many other states - not many are willing to admit they have a Lyme disease problem. They will say it is in upper Michigan, but not in the lower half. I was bitten in my backyard in Oakland County. There are pictures of babies with the EM rash who were bitten in Wayne county and others who say they haven't been out of the lower part of Michigan. From what I have read it is in almost every state.
I can understand a state's economic reasoning for not wanting to admit to a problem with this disease, but not the humanitarian reason. We, the citizens of this state, and the tourists who visit this state deserve to be better informed and protected. Many citizens and tourists are being exposed to Lyme disease without any education to prevent them from getting the disease. Sure, tourism is important to a state, but so are the men, women, children and their animals who live in and visit this beautiful state.
Massachusetts is known for having this disease in their state. The disease was named for a town in Lyme, Connecticut, but they still have tourists flock to Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket every year. If people know there is a problem, they can take steps to prevent themselves from contracting the disease.
As you can see, Lyme disease has touched my family's lives a great deal. I hope and pray that more people, doctors, researchers, politicians and the general public wake up and educate themselves to the horrors and devastation that this disease causes. My prayer is that researchers come up with something that cures this disease and prevents it in others.
With my background and understanding of this disease, when I'm able, I give lectures and try to educate others on this disease in the hope of preventing it in others, or at least have them recognize it earlier in hopes of a better outcome than has occurred for my family and myself.
Update May, 2000, My husband had to retire from a profession that he loved in Feb. of this year. My granddaughter in Tennessee has been diagnosed with HGE and Bb and my grandson who lived in Germany with my son and his family also has the disease. They have moved back to the US not to far from the Boston area in hopes of getting treatment. Therefore, the saga goes on.
I'm a support group leader for Lyme disease here in Michigan and have become quite an activist. Writing and making trips to Lansing in our State, Going on Lyme Disease Rally's and conferences whenever I can. The LDF conference, The one we have here in Michigan, The Gettysburg Rally and the March on Washington.
It's not that I feel like doing these things, it's that I feel I have to get the word out about this disease in hopes of helping others, as well as my own family.
Sincerely Carol Fisch
The Lyme Disease Quilt Page
Please click on the mailbox to send me your comments
Lyme Quilt main page
Lyme Disease related links
Copyright ©1998-2001 The Lyme Disease Quilt Page