Commentary: The war of the doses
“I cannot refute that chronic Lyme — in your body for more than a year — exists,” says Dr. Peter Brassard, who practiced at the Block Island Medical Center for many years and still owns a property here. “But I don’t think we have an answer for it, and personally I have never seen a case.”
Nurse practitioner and island resident Pam Hinthorn is equally measured in her response. “I maintain an open mind,” she says, “but I find it hard to justify total skepticism [about chronic Lyme]. Common sense makes you question why all these hips are going bad on places like Block Island, where Lyme disease is prevalent.”
Granted, researchers and doctors are very pedantic about what actually is classified as LD. And possibly this nomenclature for what LD is may be part of the reason for so much disconnect in opinions. Many of us tend to fold Lyme; Bartonella; Babesiosis; Ehrlichiosis; Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever; etc. all into one category for simplicity. Either way, these pathogens are all TBIs and all are treated with a course of antibiotics.
The spirochetal bacteria may cause differing symptoms, but what you call them is irrelevant. Pretending they are not there is silly; not treating them and not being vigilant is dangerous.
Both parties have interesting arguments, but, until we better understand the dangers of antibiotics vs. Tick Borne Illnesses (TBI) I personally believe in taking prophylactic measures. The long term risks of TBI is too crippling not to. Especially when some infectious disease experts (e.g. Dr Howenstine) suggest that possibly one in fifteen Americans may already be infected.
Dr. Brassard’s suggestion of an antibiotic Pez dispenser sounds like a business opportunity to me. Maybe the Pez dispenser character should be Doc from the Seven Dwarves.
Read more: Block Island Times – Ticked off Debating chronic Lyme disease This is another in a series of articles looking at Lyme disease and Block Island