I was bit by a tick in June of 2018 and began treatment using a holistic approach in August of 2018. Here is Part 2 of my journey to the present date (March 2019). I still have a way to go in my healing, but have made huge progress so far!
That brings me to my first appointment. I sat down with the doctor to discuss my symptoms (mentioned in Part 1) in August of 2018.
Based on my symptoms and the fact that I found the tick, knew it has bit me and that I was living in an endemic area at the time, she said it was very likely that Lyme Disease was the culprit.
We spent some time talking about my symptoms prior to the tick bite (which were very similar, just on a lesser scale), and she actually stated that I could have had Lyme before and was re-infected.
I grew up in the Hudson Valley in New York, which a hotbed for Lyme. I’ve also always been very outdoorsy playing soccer, doing a lot of hiking and horseback riding as a kid.
The doctor I chose has a holistic approach to treatment, and not only do they treat the Lyme bacteria, but they also diagnose and treat for underlying issues that may have “triggered” the reaction to the bacteria in the first place.
Some people get really sick when they’re infected while others don’t, so what is different between them? From the research and doctors conversations I’ve had, it seems to all boil down to your immune system.
If your immune system has already been compromised by pathogens, environmental triggers, detoxification issues and genetic mutations, then your body is less capable of handling an infection such as Lyme.
I left that initial appointment with an IGeneX test kit for Lyme Disease, which is a Western Blot panel with additional bands and a higher level of sensitivity. The normal CDC Western Blot has some bands omitted and is notoriously inaccurate.
I got my blood drawn, and after waiting several weeks, got my results back, which ended up being “equivocal”, with bands 41 and 45 as positive on the IgG and IgM tests (not enough for a diagnosis).
With that being sald, Lyme testing is notoriously inaccurate (even with better testing), and is generally considered a clinical diagnosis.
My doctor said that band 41 is a fairly Lyme-specific band, and based on the fact that I found a tick on me in an endemic area (a lot of people never see the tick), my symptoms, and this testing result, that they strongly believe it is Lyme.
My Natural Treatment
The Lyme treatment protocol this doctor prescribes includes not only treating for Lyme, but the underlying issues that could be causing my body to react in such a dramatic way in the first place.
They see in almost all patients that there are underlying issues with some or all of the following: parasites (even if you’ve never been out of the USA), candida and other bacterial overgrowth, low-level viruses and bacterial infections, heavy metals such as mercury (I have 10 mercury fillings that the dentists always tell me are “very worn”), mold and immune system issues. They suspected that all of these were an issue for me, which mean my immune system is overwhelmed and not capable of fighting off the Lyme bacteria, since it is already overrun by things it cannot handle.
After leaving my initial appointment, i started on a custom cowden protocol (samento and banderol, which are antibiotic herbs), along with other supplements and recommendations for detox and healing. You start with a small amount of each herbal antibiotic, and gradually increase the dosage.
Immediately i had a hard time with the drops, which the doctor said also is a good indicator that Lyme is indeed an issue.
I was eventually able to get to the max dosage that they recommend, and after awhile, I felt as if my healing was no longer progressing, so they have changed up my protocol several times since then.
My symptoms have gradually decreased over time. I’ve had three phone appointments since that initial appointment, and have changed up my protocol a bunch of times, as mentioned before.
Let me know if you want to hear more about exactly what my protocol is, although it is customized for me specifically based on my symptoms and diagnoses, I’m sure it could help someone struggling with where to begin.
At this point, my symptoms are roughly 60% better, with many of my initial symptoms gone or lessening. The ones I struggle with mostly now are fatigue, joint pain, hormonal issues, memory problems and brain fog, tinnitus, low body temperature, low blood pressure and numbness in my back.
I’ve been able to manage the joint pain very successfully through use of curcumin and other anti-inflammatory supplements. In fact, when I ran low on my curcumin, I felt my joint pain come back full-force.
Some of those issues I’ve had before being infected (part of why they think i might have already had it), but all have gotten worse since I was infected.
Why did I forgo conventional antibiotic treatment?
The doctor did give me a prescription for two months of doxycycline, which I thought about filling, but ended up deciding not to for multiple reasons.
It had been two months since my exposure, and from what I’ve researched, oral antibiotics are effective only right away after infection.
I also wanted to boost my immune system to allow my body to fight off the bacteria, as it is designed to do normally, rather than reduce it even more by taking antibiotics. This way, if I am ever infected again, my body is capable of attacking the bacteria right away, rather than my body relapsing and having to complete this entire process again in the future.
I’m not totally against antibiotics but I do believe that they are not fixing the absolute root problem in most cases.
I’ve also had incredibly uncomfortable side effects of taking antibiotics in the past, and did not want to subject myself to extreme bloat and other uncomfortable digestive issues as a result.
My doctor will continue to treat me remotely until August, at which point I’ll have to go back into the office. They also want to test for heavy metals and mold via a nasal swab test, which have to be done in person.
I’m also currently undergoing testing for any potential thyroid imbalances, which could explain some of the symptoms I am still experiencing.
Lyme can be transmitted from mother to child so healing is my priority right now, in case I decide to have kids in the future. I want to make sure I am completely healed first, so I can live my life to the fullest.
What are some good resources if I think I’m experiencing the same thing?
Dr Rawls has a great article called Lyme Disease: a natural approach from a doctor who’s been there. He has healed himself and many others from Lyme naturally, and has summarized the science and statistics better than I ever could.
I also like to search the Healing Well forum for any Lyme-related questions I may have.
I’ll be sure to keep you guys updated regarding how my symptoms progress. If you want another Lyme update in a few months, or if you want more specifics on my healing protocol, let me know in the comments below!
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