IDSA Lyme guidelines to be reviewed

The IDSA is now accepting applications for members to serve on the review panel of treatment guidelines for Lyme disease. Urge your Lyme aware doctor to apply. This is their opportunity to serve the people affected by this epidemic.

In May, 2008, the IDSA agreed to have an independent panel review the guidelines, to determine whether they need to be revised or not. The agreement was part of a settlement reached when Attorney General of Connecticut, Richard Blumenthal, called for an antitrust investigation into the writing process of the 2006 IDSA guidelines for Lyme treatment.

This is a historic moment in US medical history. Although review of treatment guidelines is a normal part of IDSA procedure, this is the first time it has been legally ordered to invite an independent panel of doctors and scientists to conduct the review.

From the IDSA website:

"A panel of eight to 12 physicians and scientists will be assembled to review and critically appraise the literature on Lyme disease. The panel will also consider data and other information submitted to IDSA and will hold a public hearing where individuals may present data to the panel for consideration. At the conclusion of this process, the review panel will evaluate whether each of the recommendations in the 2006 guidelines is supported by the scientific evidence and will make a recommendation to IDSA as to whether its 2006 guidelines should be revised or updated. Any proposed recommendations shall require a supermajority of 75 percent or more of the total voting members of the panel."

The review time is estimated to take 8 - 12 months. We'll be keeping an eye on the entire process, and posting our notes here. Especially interesting will be the public hearing, which will be available for viewing online at the IDSA website.