New Research On An Old Foe - Lyme Disease
Lyme disease was first recognized in 1975, when a mysterious outbreak of juvenile rheumatoid arthritis occurred around Lyme, Connecticut. In 1982, Willy Burgdorfer discovered the causative agent of Lyme disease. It turned out to be a spirochete (spiral-shaped bacterium) from the genus Borrelia, subsequently named Borrelia burgdorferi (Bb). As Lyme disease expert Jo Anne Whitaker, M.D., notes: “Lyme disease is called the ‘New Great Imitator’ because, like syphilis [the original ‘Great Imitator’], it attacks multiple organ systems and mimics many diseases. Both diseases are caused by spirochetes.” Originally believed to be spread only through bites by the tiny deer tick (Ixodes dammini), it is now known to be potentially spread by many tick species, as well as bot flies, mosquitoes and fleas. And in a recent article with 224 references, physicians W.T. Harvey and P. Salvato have offered persuasive evidence that Lyme disease is transmitted sexually and congenitally (by birth from an infected mother), as well as through breastfeeding. They also provide evidence that Lyme disease may be a hidden epidemic, affecting as much as one-sixth of the human race, if not more. By 1994, Lyme disease experts Brian Fallon and Jenifer Nields could already state: “Now the most common vector-borne [spread by ticks and insects] infection in the United States, Lyme disease is increasing in incidence and geographic spread.” Lyme disease is believed to cause, mimic, manifest as, be misdiagnosed as, or contribute to more than 300 conditions and diseases (see complete list at www.drgarysnyder.com). About 60 percent of those bitten by Bb-infected ticks or insects will develop a characteristic “bulls-eye” rash (erythema migrans), yet many confirmed Lyme disease patients never develop such a rash. There may be few initial symptoms other than a flu-like syndrome, yet within weeks to years a diversity of symptoms may occur. These may include fatigue, low grade fevers, night sweats, migrating joint pains or arthritis, muscle pains, sleep disturbances, frequent and/or severe headaches, numbness or tingling in hands or feet, nerve pains, brain fog, hypersensitivity to lights, sounds, tastes or smells, memory and concentration problems, speech difficulties, depression, irritability, mood swings, heart, eye, respiratory and gastrointestinal problems, to name just a few. Symptoms may come and go, varying in intensity. The Bb spirochete may penetrate into the brain as early as three weeks after infection. Lyme disease has become a surprisingly controversial disease. Even famed novelist Amy Tan has been drawn into the controversy, after a belated Lyme disease diagnosis in her own case. She complained about being tested even for syphilis and ALS (Lou Gehrig’s disease) before anyone thought to test her for Lyme disease. Why the controversy? The controversy involves two of the more recent breakthroughs, testing (laboratory confirmation) and treatment. First the standard laboratory procedures ELISA and/or Western blot antibody testing, is flawed with only about 50% accuracy. Dr. Jo Anne Whitaker M.D., has developed a new “quantitative-rapid identification of Borrelia burdorferi” test (QRIBb). This is the Lyme test used exclusively at Alternative Medicine Center. Using a florescent antibody technique, Whitaker has confirmed Lyme disease in over 3,500 blood specimens from chronically ill patients. She has found many patients were given a false diagnosis (e.g. ALS, MS, Parkinson’s, CFS, Candidiasis, etc.) who, turned out to have Lyme disease, and in many cases recovered from “incurable” ailments after appropriate treatment. This brings us to the next breakthrough, “appropriate treatment”. Lyme disease is very difficult to treat and over the past 30 years has shown to be resistant to standard antibiotic therapy. Antibiotics always cause suppression of bacterial organisms, which means they literally run and hide, boring deeper into tissues and even cells. Even intravenous antibiotic care costing tens of thousands of dollars may kill 85% of the bacteria at best, leaving 15% alive and now antibiotic resistant. Failure to treat Lyme disease early in its course or for a sufficiently long duration may lead to a chronic illness characterized by persistent waxing and waning neuropsychiatric disturbances, arthralgias [joint pains], myalgias [muscle pains], sensory-hyperacuities, and severe fatigue. Given the recognized difficulty of successfully treating Lyme disease with standard antibiotic therapy, an alternative treatment that is natural, nontoxic, well-tolerated, effective, and can be taken orally for as many months or years as needed, would be a welcome remedy in the Lyme war. Fortunately such a remedy is now available in our clinic. It is an herbal extract called “Samento,” made from a Peruvian vine called “Uncaria tomentosa,” also known as “cat’s claw,” “una de gato,” and “Vilcacora.” Samento is made from a rare chemo type of U. tomentosa that is rich in penticyclic oxindole alkaloids (POA) and is guaranteed free of tetracyclic oxindole alkaloids (TOA). It is the TOA-free nature of Samento, combined with its POA potency that gives Samento its unique effectiveness. John Kule M.D., began using Samento in his practice in March 2002. After treating 60 patients with it, he wrote a report for the British Naturopathic Journal. He used it to treat a broad range of conditions, including chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, hypertension, irritable bowel syndrome, candidiasis, gastritis, rheumatoid and osteoarthritis, Lyme disease and benign prostatic hypertrophy. Fifty-nine out of 60 showed distinct clinical improvement. Frequent findings were increased energy, enhanced sense of well-being, lifting of “brain fog,” decreased inflammation, decreased blood pressure in hypertensives, decreased fasting blood sugar in diabetics, reduced fluid retention, and reduced blood pressure medication in hypertensives. He found only few, mild and transient side effects. The clinical feedback here at the Alternative Medicine Center has been very similar with over 90% of our Lyme patients showing positive responses to a wide variety of chronic health conditions. Are you sure you don’t have Lyme disease?
A simple blood test will determine. For more information, click here
Dr. Gary Snyder
2640 E. Oakland Park Blvd.
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33306 USA
Phone: (954) 486-4000
Fax: (954) 928-1514