Lyme Disease Research Database Independent reporting on all aspects of Lyme Disease

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Lyme Success Story - Samson

In spite of the turmoil Lyme can cause, many people are living happy and productive post-Lyme lives. I've had the fortune to connect with a number of them. Samson's story is a really uplifting example.

The first thing you notice about Samson is his upbeat attitude, in spite of the long journey he took back to health. He's a happy young man, originally from Detroit, who worked hard to earn his way into his dream profession, the music business, in L.A. To an outsider, it may appear as if he's always had a lucky star, and that may be true! But the thing he's really good at is not giving up. He's a vivid example of being proactive in your own healing.

His story, like a novel with lots of ups and downs and a happy ending, includes knee surgery for puffiness, an inflamed jaw, a frozen shoulder, tons of research, nightmarish
symptoms and three different protocols in eight months. It also features travel – lots of travel – around the US, to places such as the Mayo Clinic, to seek out specialists to diagnose and treat his illness.

Like shooting a squirt gun
Until he finally found himself back on the road to good health, Samson never stopped trying to find a way to heal from Lyme. The worst period for him was from age 21 to 28. At one point he visited Dr. Andrew Weil's clinic in Tucson, where he was directed to try an Eastern approach. He used alternative medicines and meditation. He read Weil's book Spontaneous Healing, and became a vegan for a year. That resulted in anemia, although it did give him a little relief from his symptoms. At another point, he fasted on water only for two weeks, in another attempt to get down to the root cause, which also resulted in a bit of relief. But it was hardly enough.

Samson was also taking Omega 3's, turmeric,
curcumin, and other supplements. But he says that when you're dealing with Lyme bacteria, taking supplements without taking antibiotics is like shooting a squirt gun at a person who is trying to do harm. It won't stop them, but it will give you the satisfaction of doing something.

curing Lyme disease
Finding confidence
A turning point came one day, when Samson happened on the trailer online for the acclaimed film about Lyme,
Under Our Skin. He proceeded directly to Lyme specialist Dr. Daniel Cameron in New York, and began antibiotic treatment for about three weeks. But his intuition urged him to continue seeking help, and it was only when he walked into Dr. Raphael Stricker's office in San Francisco that he felt confident about kicking Lyme.

Samson, who works as a talent manager and is in scout development in the music business in Los Angeles, has a lighthearted way of telling his story, but anyone who knows how difficult Lyme is, will recognize the cost, the resources, and the steely perseverance he had to devote to healing. Perseverance, and always listening to his intuition, have no doubt fueled his healing journey.

“I've always been very intuitive, and grateful for that!” he says.

Today, Samson has finally won his life back from Lyme, and he's feeling great and right on track, exactly where his intuition told him he belonged.

Join the LDRD to listen to Samson’s story.

Please keep in mind that your success story might just help lift the spirits of someone who needs it most. Call us if you would like to share.




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Darryl is back--Listen to his success story

Pro bike racer Darryl is counting the days to an upcoming race in April. Twenty-one months of hardcore antibiotic treatment are now behind him, including IV Rocephin, Zithromax and a go-round of Flagyl and Mepron last summer. 
 
Since this new chapter of life began, Darryl counts among his athletic successes the "Beach and Back" fun bike race, a twenty-six mile, grueling uphill bike course that kept him "in the saddle" for four-and-a-half hours. I don't know about you, but I can hardly stay seated for more than one hour, and that's without peddling of course, without having to stretch and take water breaks. You can hear the surprise in his voice, and the satisfaction at his accomplishment as he describes the effort it took to finish that ride. 
 
Darryl's impressive athletic achievements are no accident. A self-described "numbers guy," he has long been a devout record keeper, tracking his heart rate and other bodily systems with the eagle eye of a master coach. In fact, he is a coach, and takes his role seriously. A handful of Lyme patients have been lucky enough to come into Darryl's orbit, and he helps keep them on track with their Lyme-related needs. Knowing the hell that awaits someone with a positive diagnosis of Lyme disease, he aims to mitigate the bureaucratic and other various challenges that await them. 
 
Some of Darryl's key points for beating Lyme:
 
Be a warrior. Don't allow anything to stop you from seeking treatment. Darryl saw 35 doctors before receiving a positive diagnosis for Lyme. He is passionate about standing up for yourself in the face of stubborn insurance company policies. His advice when your insurance company refuses to pay for tests and/or treatment that you and your doctor know are necessary? Appeal, and stay with it. Do not give up the fight. If you can't do the fighting, get someone who can fight for you until you can. 
 
Be organized and monitor your progress. Keep your medical files together in one place. Statistics such as test results, enzyme counts, heart rate, weight and the dates of measurement are important, and so are their fluctuations. I love this--Darryl uses spreadsheets to track his numbers. Why didn't I think of that? Carefully monitor your progress. Keeping track of meds, supplements and foods on a spreadsheet is a great idea too. 
 
Put yourself first. We hardly even need to mention this one. While it seems like such an obvious point, it is nevertheless quite difficult for a lot of people to pull this one off. Are you the main caretaker for a busy family? Find a way to take time for yourself every single day. Get enough sleep. It takes whatever it takes to get well. Your family might have to adjust, but rest assured they'll be overwhelmed with relief when you get better. 
 
And finally, exercise, exercise, exercise. That's a direct quote. Even Darryl's mom (who also has Lyme) rides the bike he gave her indoors, in front of the telly. Do what you can to sweat out the toxins every day. Build muscle, which will help your immune system build strength. Darryl addresses this whole issue of exercise with compassion for those of us who suffer with crushing fatigue. He's been there too. 
 
The really, really great news? Darryl's better! 
 
Get your water bottle, jump on your stationary bike, hop onto your mini-trampoline and put on your headphones. Listen to Darryl's interview here. 
 
Listen to the entire interview with Darryl for free!

Podcast - This is a long interview, so it may take awhile to load, please be patient.
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Call for Lyme success stories

I know from experience that when you're in the thick of an acute illness such as Lyme, all your energy is spent on getting better. The pain can be so constant and overwhelming that you lose sight of what being healthy is. You might not think you can get there ever again. Sadly, we know that this disease can sometimes take an irreversible tact. You don't have to search far to encounter grim stories of people suffering with Lyme.

However, many people do recover from this profound illness. I recently took a road trip with my significant other, attended a family reunion, and reconnected with friends I cherish. Life is so astonishing sometimes, so precious, that now I have complete days when I totally forget how sick I've been, and what a long, slow climb it was back to a state of health.

I've been collecting Lyme success stories almost from the time I was diagnosed, because I felt strongly that if someone else out there had healed from Lyme, then I could too. My parents brought me up to share good news, so I'm still gathering success stories that others can learn from and be inspired.

Have you recovered from Lyme disease? Are you well on your way to a healthy, post-Lyme life?

People take so many different paths back to living a productive life. Many are able to follow a Lyme-literate doctor's protocol until they're Lyme-free. Many aren't able to afford that luxury, and so they use a combination of protocols and techniques that seem to help. Some are on a strict diet, and they claim that it has helped them walk away from Lyme. Some use herbal therapies and devices such as the rife machine. And considering how bone-crushingly weary Lyme can make us, I'm always impressed by the numbers of people who swear that rigorous physical exercise played a central role in their healing. Many of the people we've interviewed in our Lyme success stories, such as arryl's Lyme success story">Darryl, who races bikes and works as a professional Hollywood stuntman, talk about applying the mental rigor, discipline and intense focus they honed as a competing athlete, to the path of healing.

Walking away from Lyme is something we all desire to do one day. If you've been successful in doing so, please consider sharing your success story with others. You never know when something you say might trigger an idea in someone's head and help them turn their health situation around for good. You won't be telling other people what to do. You'll simply be relating your own experience, which is in itself, a powerful sort of medicine.

Contact me directly for further information about sharing your Lyme success story.


Thank you.
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Add spice, reduce inflammation

Do you have an appropriate Lyme disease diet?

Low-grade or chronic inflammation accompanies a bacterial infection such as Lyme disease. Chronic fatigue and lethargy are produced when the body is busy fighting infection. Reducing inflammation is key in regaining vitality and healing. It's smart to include foods in your diet to help achieve those goals.

Help your body reduce damaging inflammation with the following:

* Eliminate refined sugar and processed foods
* Reduce stress in your daily life
* Get enough early morning sunshine


Add some spice to your life -- specifically, turmeric and ginger -- to help reduce inflammation. They are both part of the same family of plants.

Turmeric is used to lend mustard its yellow color. It is used frequently, though sparingly, in Indian food. The active substance, curcumin, is a powerful, yellow dye that will stain countertops and plastic food containers. It's also a well-known anti-inflammatory. Turmeric can be taken in capsule form or you can sprinkle it onto your food. I like it on my eggs for breakfast, or added to the stir-fry veggies we often cook for dinner. A general rule of thumb is to use about a teaspoonful or less in cooking. More than that will make your food taste bitter.

Ginger root is the underground stem of the ginger plant. The powder and the grated root are often used in cooking and baking. Ginger has medicinal qualities, and due to its anti-inflammatory element has long been used to aid in arthritis and ulcerative colitis. Among other uses, ginger is antibacterial, and effective as a digestive aid.

Nearly all of the people we've interviewed for our Lyme success stories have said that modifying their diet has improved their health significantly.

* What changes to your lifestyle and diet are helping you heal from Lyme?

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Dr. Oz interviews Under Our Skin filmmaker

We received a flood of comments about Oprah's interest in Lyme disease. She's listening! And now there's someone you'll want to listen to as well.

You can hear Oprah's Dr. Oz this week on XM Radio as he interviews filmmaker Andy Abrahams Wilson, whose Lyme documentary Under Our Skin is helping turn the tide of attention toward this controversial and misunderstood disease.

The show airs Wednesday, November 26th at 1 a.m. 7 a.m. and 6 pm EST. Oprah and Friends producers say people who don’t subscribe to the satellite radio can also listen by going to http://www.oprah.com/radio and clicking on the “Free 30 Day XM Radio Trial.” Register and you can listen online.

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Darryl's Lyme success story

Darryl is a professional athlete. He races mountain and BMX bikes, and works as a stunt man in Hollywood. When I asked how he would classify his story, he didn't hesitate to call it a success. "I'm 100% better," he says, confidently. You can hear the relief in his voice. Talking about his future, he mentions his work and racing, but it's clear that suffering for so many years with undiagnosed Lyme has influenced his outlook as well. He's now devoted to telling his story wherever he can, and is passionate about helping others.

LDRD members, listen to the interview with Darryl.

Learn about becoming a member and listen to the interviews.
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Marguerite's Lyme story

"It's been a rollercoaster," says Marguerite, who began looking for a Lyme literate doctor when she first contracted the disease many years ago. She had just experienced the death of her second husband. She had two adorable puppies, and was active in church, taking yoga, working and staying physically fit when she discovered she had Lyme disease. Living in the heartland of Lyme in Fairfield, Connecticut, she was bitten more than once.

She got herself to an infectious disease doctor the minute she detected a tick bite, and was given short courses of doxycycline, which she now suspects were not long enough. She even received the controversial Lyme vaccine, which was only available for a brief period of time due to its ineffectiveness.

This is a frustrating and familiar story: Marguerite's Lyme symptoms began as flu-like feelings and migraine headaches. Her severe low back pain and neurological challenges made it very difficult to work, even though her company allowed her to work from home. She developed apnea, insomnia, painful swelling in the joints and more. She's gone to three infectious disease doctors who she says won't even listen to her positive test results for Lyme. Today, she uses patches for pain control, and is actively looking for a Lyme aware doctor to treat her.

We wish you well, Marguerite!

Members can listen to Marguerite's story. Please consider joining the LDRD.
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CJ's Lyme success story

"You've gotta hear this!"

That was the subject line in CJ's note to me the other day. Turns out she was right -- I did. I just hung up this minute from our conversation, and I'm still smiling. She's one of those sunshiny souls that just can't help but affect people that way. What does she do for a living? She's the office manager of a trapeze school. Not your normal occupation, but then CJ isn't your average person. Actually, she participates in ironman competitions. Does she still have Lyme? Yes. Does she let it bring her down? If she does, she's not letting it show.

CJ's success story, like everyone who has struggled to defeat the disability that can accompany Lyme disease, comes at a price. She was misunderstood and misdiagnosed for a long time. As a teenager, she attended music camp where she concentrated on her highly developed skills as a flautist. Gifted on both the flute and piccolo, and disciplined about practice, she was headed for a life of professional music.

However, a tick bite that she got at camp stopped her in her tracks. She called home, begging her puzzled mother to let her leave early. Her mom knew something was seriously wrong.

CJ's story takes many jogs and unexpected turns. She falls in love, marries, then deals head on with an unsupportive spouse (a bastard and a s^%#head, to quote her precisely). And the most remarkable thing happens. She finds inspiration in a nine-year-old leukemia patient facing two years of chemotherapy. She is a nurse. At his bedside, she tells him that she's going to run in a charity race on his behalf. He looks at her, asks "can you run?"

LDRD Members can login (to the left) and listen to CJ's story.

Become a LDRD member and get immediate access to all of our audio interviews.
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