This is my Lyme doctor. I am so grateful to him for his work in this specialized field and for the compassionate care he and his team have given me over the last 7 years.

The Big Picture

Lyme disease:

  • is the most common vector borne disease in America
  • the most common tick disease in the world
  • is in every state in America
  • more than 300k confirmed cases and likely closer to 10x that number undiagnosed or not confirmed per CDC criteria
  • is a clinical diagnosis – which means if you get symptoms and respond to treatment, you do not need a test to tell you you’re sick
  • testing is highly flawed and cannot rule out disease
  • can be transmitted from mother to fetus and to children through breast milk
  • transmission is likely possible but not proven person to person
  • can be transmitted through blood transfusion
  • end point is uncertain and expensive to treat
  • sickest patients have too many complex, overlapping problems – we can’t think linearly, we need teams of health care providers


Ticks feed on an infected animal, become infected themselves, then drop off and find another source. When they bite into the skin, they transmit disease into the wound (within 15-20 minutes).

The Lyme spirochetes travel better through tissue than the blood stream – so they can move throughout the entire body, through organs and into the nervous system quite rapidly.

Best way to minimize transmission, grab the tick carefully and ease the tick out slowly. Save it for testing. Watch for rash, but isn’t usually present so more importantly watch for symptoms. Treat prophylactically if at all possible – even without symptoms!

15-30 day treatment is not enough. Dr. Harris will treat until the symptoms are gone (and don’t come back).

Multi-systemic infectious disease syndrome is a better term for what Lyme disease actually is.

Process can be quite long – there can be flare ups and relapses – know they limits and be more aware of when we need to rest.

As a society, we need to understand chronic illness more holistically. As a team, with a group of people all dedicated to treating Lyme disease, is the way the sickest patients are going to recover their health.

Additional Videos:

NIIM Lecture

Who Cares Interview

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