By Martha M Grout, MD, MD(H)
Balance Point Capital Partners announce their investment in
IGeneX - the CLIA certified laboratory which most Lyme literate doctors use for
their testing of patients in whom they suspect Lyme disease. On the same
day, the Australian city of Sydney hosts a debate between Lyme disease
sufferers and the experts, the subject being whether Lyme disease exists
in Syndey. The Royal College of Pathologists has declared what one infectious
disease specialist declared to a colleague of mind in Scottsdale, AZ -
"There is no Lyme disease in Australia/Arizona". A
paper just published on PLoS|ONE reports that persistence of symptoms in Lyme
disease (at least in Europe) is associated with higher numbers of spirochetes
found on culture of biopsies from the bull's eye rash.
Of course, the species most commonly found in Europe is Borrelia afzelii,
which is not part of the antibody testing performed in the United States.
Sot it's no wonder than standard labs often do not report a positive
Western Blot for patients who are clearly ill and who improve on treatment
for Lyme disease.
The IGeneX lab has more species of Lyme in their antigen mix, and they
also report borderline positive tests as "indeterminate" - so
the chances of picking up a positive test are higher when the blood sample
is sent to that lab, rather than to a more conventional lab. The moral
of the story is... if you are ill, and there has been any possibility
of exposure to Lyme disease - any exposure to ticks at all - you are well
advised to keep searching for (a) a test which can diagnose your illness
and (b) a physician who believes your symptoms and is willing to treat.
The International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society maintains a list
of "Lyme-literate" physicians which is available upon request
to anyone who inquires.
For more information about Lyme disease and its treatment,