There is one simple reason for Lyme disease (and other vector-borne infections) case numbers remaining low in Washington. We have an amazing number of Lyme-literate physicians here—but they do not report cases, fearing insurance companies will bring charges to medical boards due to the infamous Infectious Diseases Society of America Guidelines that deny chronic Lyme. Patients pay in cash and do what they can to protect treating physicians who take chronic Lyme very seriously.
Does this lead to some doctors taking advantage of the situation to make money? Yes, unfortunately it does. But the Lyme community is close and its many members carefully share information on doctors worldwide. Research and education is also shared. As most chronic patients know, community is what gets us through the roughest times.
We try very hard to educate the public about Lyme prevention in May, Lyme disease awareness month. We work in our communities to prevent others from having to take the difficult journey our family is on.
Your Lyme article (May 2017) left out one very important tip we would like to share with readers. After hiking, gardening or whatever way you choose to enjoy the outdoors, toss your clothes into the dryer on high for 10 to 15 minutes. Ticks cannot survive the dry heat. Please, do not use any old wives’ tales to remove ticks—they do not work. Google “tick tool” and carry this device on your keychain.
Enjoy the changing seasons and be safe out there. We care.
Lorraine Hart welcomes anyone with questions about Lyme disease to contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or consult her Facebook page Harts of Lyme.