Frequent Contributor (5K+ posts)
Member # 14183
It is very rare to find a doctor who specializes in lyme disease and also takes insurance. That is because he would lose so much money on each patient if he did.
A true lyme specialist will spend 1 hour to 1 1/2 hours with you at the first appointment. This is because the diagnosis of lyme disease is made mostly by interviewing the patient about their symptoms, medical history, and then an exam and testing for lyme and coinfections.
So, since the diagnosis is made that way, you are paying for expertise. Insurance will not allow a doctor to be reimbursed for all of that time spent.
The better the doctor, the better his diagnosis. So, you must be willing to travel and pay out of pocket for an accurate diagnosis and good treatment.
Because of this, many lyme doctors will do telephone appointments with their patients once they have seen them in person. They see or talk with their patients monthly. Treatment can last typically from one year to perhaps 18 months or 2 years.
So, now that you know this, do you want the name of a really top notch lyme doctor in Washington, D.C. who only requires in person visits once every 6 months? Or, a lesser doctor in Maryland who requires in person visits once every 3 months?
We have so much more lyme here on the east coast as compared to Ohio, so we have many more lyme specialists here and a lot more expertise than you have in Ohio or western Pa.
At least half of all lyme patients go out of state for their care, and the majority of lyme patients are in the east! Many, many lyme patients have to fly to see their doctor in person.
So, now you know that a 1 1/2 hour drive to see a lyme doctor is considered short!
See this table of lyme cases from the Centers for Disease Control:
This shows you how much more lyme disease we have here in the east.
You are not in a good place to be able to find a good lyme specialist locally. So, decide to be willing to travel occasionally and you can get an expert to tell you whether or not you have lyme, and you can get good treatment for it also.
This gives you the very best chance of getting rid of this horrible disease.
Let me know if you want the info on these 2 doctors.
In the meantime, look at pages 9-11 of the following document to see a good list of lyme symptoms:
Make a VERY complete list of all that you have and take it to your first lyme specialist appointment. See page 7 where Dr. Burrascano explains how lyme disease is diagnosed. Notice that he says that no test, no matter what type, can make the diagnosis for you.
What confirms the diagnosis of lyme disease is your response to a course of treatment, meaning antibiotics for lyme disease.
Welcome to LymeNet! We will help you here all we can. You can learn a LOT by reading the Burrascano LYme Treatment Guidelines document. I advise everyone who thinks they have lyme to STUDY this document to get their education on this horrendous disease which is really a number of diseases.
Lyme is very difficult to cure. That's why you want to find the very best lyme doctor that you can afford. Many doctors treat lyme disease, but very FEW have ever cured anyone of it. I know a few who know enough to cure.
You can also contact lyme support groups in your area and nearby states. See Support Groups on the left side of the page. Find out from them where folks in your area go for good care and which doctors are getting people well.
I have helped a number of people from Ohio find good treatment in Maryland and D.C. They say that they could NOT get the quality of care there that they are getting here.
I know this could be a shock to you, but there are just a handful of really good doctors who treat lyme disease here in the east and get people welll. You have to travel to them. And, the best ones often are not accepting new patients or have a 1 year wait for a new patient to be seen.
So, that is the lay of the land.
The more lyme symptoms you have, the stronger your diagnosis of lyme. Also see the symptoms of the so-called co-infections that always travel along with lyme--babesiosis and bartonella. Read pages 22-27 to learn about the symptoms these diseases cause.
Then, see the treatment that Dr. Burrascano recommends for lyme and the coinfections. Compare that to whatever you are being offered by your doctor in Ohio.
Here are a few points from Dr. B's guidelines:
You must attack both the regular and cyst (or other) form of lyme simultaneously--requires 2 different antibiotics taken together to do so.
You must test the patient for all co-infections and other physical ailments (thyroid, etc.) and treat everything the person has.
You must treat all co-infections (including babesiosis, bartonella, ehrlichia, mycoplasma, etc.) or the patient will not get well.
You must use Igenex for most of these tests--they are a tick-borne disease specialty lab in Calif.
You must use very high doses of antibiotics to kill the diseases (batericidal doses).
You must give the patient supplements, probiotics, herbs such as artimesinin if babesiosis is suspected, and require adherence to rules such as low carb diet, no alcohol, no smoking, rest, and exercise as the patient is able to do it.
You must treat at least 2 months after all symptoms have disappeared (if sick at least 1 year).
These are just a few of the important points you will see in the guidelines. You want a doc who does EVERYTHING Burrascano says to do. He treated lyme for over 25 years, and compiled what he learned so that other docs could benefit from it. Read it in his Guidelines.
This is important. You don't want to waste time and money on an ineffective treatment plan. I wasted 2 years with a doc who gave me only one antibiotic the entire time. What a mistake. Burrascano says you always have to take 2 different antibiotics to kill lyme in at least 2 forms. Lyme can evade any one antibiotic just by changing into a form that that antibiotic cannot kill. Being on one antibiotic at a time is called "monotherapy." Everyone on LymeNet knows that monotherapy will always fail.
I hang around LymeNet just to point folks to the good lyme doctors. I was cured of lyme 12 years ago by going to a doc who followed the Burrascano Guidelines.
I wasted 2 years on 2 other docs before getting to my Burrascano type doctor. So, I suggest when asking about doctors, you ask if they follow Burrascano. His protocol cured me and at least 5 of my friends. It is the most successful lyme protocol in the world.
When Burrascano was practicing, people came to him from every country in the world.
You need to be evaluated and treated by a Lyme-literate doctor (LLMD). Non LLMDs have no clue about this horrible disease or its complex treatment!
A LLMD is one who has treated Lyme disease and the co-infections which come with it for many years and has gotten patients well. A good one will follow Dr. B's Guidelines, the "gold standard" for Lyme treatment.
Btw - I know you are new to Lymenet, but please break up your posts into 2-3 sentence paragraphs, as there are people on Lymenet who cannot read large blocks of text due to neurological problems from Lyme.
To do this click the pencil/paper icon, make your changes, then click "Edit Post". Thanks.
Posts: 8553 | From Illinois | Registered: May 2006
| IP: Logged |
Honored Contributor (10K+ posts)
Member # 5829
Welcome to LymeNet Mc!
You have been having a miserable time, so sorry to hear it. I know the money situation is bad for many, so here is a list of ways you can check out other options.
Some do take insurance, but they are few and far between. It will take some work on your part to find someone suitable.
Can you please let me know who your LLMD is in OH?? do you know of a LLMD in or near.. even other states. 75 yr old man bit by 4 ticks.. all symptoms.. needs a LLMD. He lives in Van Wert, OH.. please help!!
Posts: 114 | From nashville, TN | Registered: Nov 2008
| IP: Logged |