Why Romney’s Statements About Chronic Lyme Disease Are Dangerous

Excerpted from Business Insider  ( Posted: 10/01/2012)

Lyme disease has been seen all over the country, and about 10 percent of the  population has had it, though this varies by state and the disease is still  spreading. In Virginia, the rate is around 9 percent, and in Massachusetts it’s  over 20 percent. The disease is transmitted by tick bites, leaves a  characteristic red “target” rash around the bite, and causes fever, headache and  fatigue in those infected. It’s diagnosed using a test for the bacteria that  causes the disease, and treated with antibiotics for up to a month to rid the  body of them.

Chronic Lyme disease is a proposed syndrome that sufferers think is brought on  by a bacterial infection from a tick bite. Many doctors and researchers don’t  believe in this syndrome, which lasts much longer than your run-of-the-mill Lyme  disease infection. The CDC, NIAID, and leading  medical professionals agree that the syndrome doesn’t exist.

There are others within the scientific community, and especially outside of  it, that debate these experts. But now that debate has risen to the political  sphere as well, as presidential candidate Mitt  Romney has taken up a position on the issue: He believes that the disease  exists and he wants people of Virginia to have access  to a dangerous (and proven  ineffective) treatment for, as he said in a political mailer.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/romney-and-chronic-lyme-disease-debate-2012-10#ixzz28nokhOJB

~ by Rob on October 9, 2012.

3 Responses to “Why Romney’s Statements About Chronic Lyme Disease Are Dangerous”

  1. “proven ineffective” ???
    You think those studies PROVED that “prolonged” antibiotic treatment for lyme disease doesn’t work?
    How long were the treatments prolonged for? 2 months instead of one.
    That’s not long enough. Try 2 years, for example. That might work.

    Trying to eradicate an antibiotic resistant spirochete such as borrelia burgdorferi with just 2 months of antibiotics is like trying to eradicate an antibiotic resistant spirochete such as treponema pallidum with 2 months of antibiotics. Everyone in the medical profession knows you can’t cure most cases of syphilis in 2 months. So why shuld Lyme disease be curable in 2 months?

    • SH,
      You are exactly right. Who is to say how long Lyme treatment needs to be. But, it is fair to question whether antibiotics can ever fully rid a patient of the disease completely. The most many chronic patients can hope for is to avoid getting worse and having it spread. This requires treatment, much like all chronic illnesses and cancers. So then, why is there still a debate regarding treatment?
      Rob

  2. Go Romney!

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