Krista F. from Ohio
How long do you believe you have had Lyme?
I became symptomatic in January of 2011. Doctors believe I may have had Lyme for many years but it laid dormant in my system and then became active when I was under a lot of stress, so I have no clue how long I have had Lyme.
How long did it take you to get a diagnosis?
Did you see multiple doctors before you were diagnosed with Lyme? If so, what types?
This is how it went for 2 years: Podiatrist, orthopedic, urgent care, family doctor orthopedic, family doctor, emergency room, neurosurgeon, sports medicine, neurologist, herbalist, family doctor, rheumatologist, neurologist, family doctor, gastroenterologist, chiropractor, hematologist, internal medicine doctor (who finally diagnosed Lyme based on symptoms). Not one physician ordered a Lyme test even though all of my symptoms fit the part.
How long have you been treating Lyme for?
Do you have any coinfections? If so, which ones?
My Lyme doctor believes I have Bartonella and Babesia based on symptoms. I also have Epstein-Barr Virus.
What types of treatments have you tried?
I was initially on and off oral antibiotics (when my liver cooperated) and herbal treatments. Last year, I was put on IV antibiotics for 7 months, which my body could not handle. I kept getting sicker and sicker. I have been strictly on herbal treatments since January 2016 and am slowly improving.
List up to 5 of your biggest (past or current) symptoms:
My biggest symptoms have been extreme muscle/tendon pain and tightness. I am unable to do any physical activity or walk further than just around the grocery store. My body feels like it is in a big twist. Also, I have numbness/tingling/nerve pain in my legs and feet, and sometimes my arms. I have stomach pain and food sensitivities. (I can only tolerate eating about 10 different foods). I had extreme sensitivity to cold temperatures where I would have to wear thermal underwear, thermal socks, foot warmers, and moccasins to work from October thru May (and I have a desk job). However, that sensitivity has improved greatly over the past 6 months. I no longer have to wear thermal underwear or socks in the winter.
What is the biggest way that Lyme has affected your life?
I was a very active person prior to Lyme disease. I walked 3 miles daily and I loved to exercise and play sports. I have not been able to even walk around the block for the past 6 years due to pain and my muscles dysfunction. My one wish is to be able to walk my dogs 1 mile again.
What is one thing you wish people knew about Lyme Disease?
I wish traditional doctors would believe in the disease and know what the multitude of symptoms are. I had all of the classic symptoms of Lyme disease and yet not one doctor tested me for 2 years. I believe if I would have been tested for it in the beginning, I would not have become chronic.
Any advice for someone newly diagnosed with Lyme?
Find a Lyme-literate doctor ASAP. Also, cut out inflammatory foods such as gluten, dairy, and sugar.
Remember: The Key to survival is to live for today. I do not look back at what I once could do and I do not look to what my future might be. I make the best of what I have today and most days I am able to smile. If I let my mind drift to the past or the future, that is when the anxiety and depression will set in.
Fun fact time! What is your favorite thing to do in your free time?
I like to play with my dogs and read.