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» LymeNet Flash » Questions and Discussion » Medical Questions » Lyme Patient : Lyme Disease is worse than cancer

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Author Topic: Lyme Patient : Lyme Disease is worse than cancer
merrygirl
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A support group member told the group at the last meeting that she has had breast cancer twice and had chemo and she said that Lyme disease is worse.

This made me really think.

maybe it is not like that for everyone, but wow.

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roro
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I definitely believe it. I know people who have had both and say lyme is worse.

I seem to be suffering a lot more than the pople I have known with cancer, definitely for longer.

but it seems cancer in the last stages, death, is worse. the pople who live to tell about it are those that go in remission.

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Andie333
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I wouldn't presume to speak for someone who's had to experience cancer,

BUT

My best friend is a two-time breast cancer survivor and has watched me go through this whole Lyme ordeal. She says if she had to choose between breast cancer and Lyme, she'd pick breast cancer.

Lyme, she says, is the nastiest thing she's seen.

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Lymetoo
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At least with cancer you recover or you die. With Lyme, you just SUFFER and suffer and suffer with no end in sight.

--------------------
--Lymetutu--
Opinions, not medical advice!

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pineapple
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quote:
Originally posted by Lymetoo:
At least with cancer you recover or you die. With Lyme, you just SUFFER and suffer and suffer with no end in sight.

Unfortunately there will be an end of this suffering. For some of us, sooner than later.
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Lymetoo
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True!!! What was I thinking?!!! [Frown]

--------------------
--Lymetutu--
Opinions, not medical advice!

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ElaineC
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I would believe this too -

but isn't it amazing how much support and compassion a cancer diagnosis brings...

if someone says thay have cancer everyone understands and supports them, but with a Lyme diagnosis it's the very opposite, although IMHO the length and severity of suffering can be much much much greater!!!!

Hopefully, one day soon this lack of knowledge and understanding will be a thing of the past!!

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cbb
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I had breast cancer in 2000 and I agree with all that has been said.

Another BIG difference between the two was the availability of medical care.

With cancer, I had my choice of doctors, choice of surgeon, choice of treatment - all right here in my home town. The morning after surgery, a breast cancer volunteer visited me in the hospital and even had a cute teddy bear for me to hug. Everywhere I turned, there were people who cared and gave wonderful support, which I truly appreciated.

BUT -
Compare that with everything Lyme patients are dealing with.

For me, the most depressing thing about breast cancer was realizing the difference in availability of medical care for Lyme disease!!
Absolutely unbelievable!!!

So, so sad.

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Vermont_Lymie
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Yes, that seems to be true, on several levels. That's why lyme patients have to stick together, we really need the support!
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5dana8
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ditto Vermont-lymie...we need to stick togeather for support [group hug]

I personally think lyme is worse than cancer for all the reasons Lymetoo already mentioned.

If I had to choose I would choose cancer in a heart beat.

--------------------
5dana8

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CaliforniaLyme
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Over the years I have heard that from 3 cancer survivors- !!!!!!!!!!!!

--------------------
There is no wealth but life.
-John Ruskin

All truth goes through 3 stages: first it is ridiculed: then it is violently opposed: finally it is accepted as self evident. - Schopenhauer

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joalo
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I am a cancer survivor and I'd have to agree. Yes, lyme is way, way worse.

--------------------
Sick since January 1985. Misdiagnosed for 20 years. Tested CDC positive October 2005. Treating since April 2006.

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fatigued15
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You can't compare an illness. I worked as a nurse for 18 years and I have seen many cancer patients suffer. This summer I went to a funeral of a 15 year old who died of cancer. To say one would rather have cancer is ridiculous. I do know the suffering of Lyme. We are a Lyme family and it breaks my heart to watch my children suffer. To compare an illness to me just doesn't make sense.
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dguy
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I found cancer easy by comparison. I think the bottom line is no one wants to suffer for a long period of time. Some cancers do cause long term suffering, but more often with treatment it either goes into remission or the patient dies.

Lyme is perhaps more like AIDS. Both are immune system related (AIDS is immune deficiency, Lyme is immune overexpression/imbalance), cause a wide variety of symptoms, and can linger for years or even span decades.

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CaliforniaLyme
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Remember what Doc J (From J Clinic in North Carolina) said about Lyme and AIDS patients (the latter of which he sees many of, the foundation of his practice), in his speech to Medical Board re treating Lyme patients:

"Lyme Disease, HIV/AIDS
and Quality of Life in 2006 in NC

Most of my HIV patients used to die ... now most don't ... Some still do, of course. My Lyme patients, the sickest ones, want to die but they can't. That's right, they want to die but they can't.

The most common cause of death in Lyme disease is suicide. In the current day, if one compares HIV/AIDS to Lyme Borreliosis Complex patients in
issues of 1) access to care, 2) current level of science, and 3) the levels of acceptance by doctors and the public, patients suffering with advanced Lyme Borreliosis Complex have an inferior quality of life compared to those with HIV/AIDS in NC."

--------------------
There is no wealth but life.
-John Ruskin

All truth goes through 3 stages: first it is ridiculed: then it is violently opposed: finally it is accepted as self evident. - Schopenhauer

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Vermont_Lymie
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I was surprised to see this week on their website that the CDC lists lyme (borreliosis) and babesia as "Rare" diseases. Yes, that is the official classification of lyme and TBD's. We have so much public education to do, in addition to healing ourselves and taking care of others!
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Peacesoul
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this is a pretty sick comparison but I get it.
I've seen friends die of cancer and never ever would I compare the two.
Yes cancer is a more accepted illness and there is more help, but I would pick abx and the aches and pains anyday over chemo.

comparing illnesses is just silly

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AZURE WISH
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I think the reason that some people say they would prefer cancer is because one way or another the suffering ends and the patient knows that one way or another the suffering will end.

I have never had cancer and would not presume to know how the horrors of cancer compare to the horrors of lyme ....

but I can tell you after spending the last 20 years (of my 30 years on the planet) suffering with symptoms (and the last 7 of those 20 years I have been disabled and unable to live in any real way)

I can say I see the allure to wanting or wishing a different disease... one that has a certainity (or at least very high probality) of the suffering ending in a much more affable time frame.

--------------------
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Peacesoul
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quote:
Originally posted by AZURE WISH:
I think the reason that some people say they would prefer cancer is because one way or another the suffering ends and the patient knows that one way or another the suffering will end.

I have never had cancer and would not presume to know how the horrors of cancer compare to the horrors of lyme ....

but I can tell you after spending the last 20 years (of my 30 years on the planet) suffering with symptoms (and the last 7 of those 20 years I have been disabled and unable to live in any real way)

I can say I see the allure to wanting or wishing a different disease... one that has a certainity (or at least very high probality) of the suffering ending in a much more affable time frame.

well I know of many success stories of people recoving from lyme. Lyme suffering can end
Plz, my niece is 14 and has SMA (spinal muscluar atrophy) and will live maybe another 2 yrs. She is a happy young lady with tons of friends, goes to reg school but lives in a wheelchair knowing she will die. She never EVER complains from all her aches and pains and limitations!
She has no cure. We do, so buck up and friggin appreciate what you have!
I've been sick for 13 and was only diagnosed this past Aug, so went through 13 yrs of being told I was nuts. I get it, I know it's tough to be sick with no answers and just easier to want to asign another illness.
But I bet many people right now sitting in chemo chairs for 6-8 hrs straight are wishing they had lyme.
I wish I had NO ILLNESS....period!
LYME CAN BE CURED.....this thread is depressing and unmotivating for people who are fighting

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Tracy9
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I think the clear point being made here is this:

We wish our disease came with the validation that cancer does on a societal level, because we are just as sick if not sicker, and no one seems to get that.

Plus herxes are comparable to chemotherapy, if not worse....but we can't explain them. The word chemotherapy is universally known and elicits validation and sympathy no matter who you are.

The word herx just raises eyebrows, and questions of "is that a real thing or are you making that up".

--------------------
NO PM; CONTACT: [email protected]

13 years Lyme & Co.; Small Fiber Neuropathy; Myasthenia Gravis, Adrenal Insufficiency. On chemo for 2 1/2 years as experimental treatment for MG.

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cootiegirl
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I realize my response will not win any popularity contests around here, but I find this thread particularly distasteful. Yes, yes, I should SOB, but I can't because it upset me so much.

I believe I understand what people are saying here and it has to do with the compassion/support, treatment and awareness that comes with a cancer diagnosis. Much has changed over the years so that many can survive cancer.

And believe me I certainly understand what we as lyme patients have to go through and the lack of compassion/support, treatment and awareness that comes with our diagnosis.

However, this really has to be one of the most disturbing threads I have ever seen here. My gosh, this is truly sick thinking and a perverse display of 'my disease is worse than your disease'. Why does one illness have to be worse than another? Does it make some of you feel better in some way that you are sicker than a cancer patient?

People die from cancer;others survive. People die from lyme;others survive...and your point is what?

cootiegirl

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Peacesoul
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quote:
Originally posted by cootiegirl:
I realize my response will not win any popularity contests around here, but I find this thread particularly distasteful. Yes, yes, I should SOB, but I can't because it upset me so much.

I believe I understand what people are saying here and it has to do with the compassion/support, treatment and awareness that comes with a cancer diagnosis. Much has changed over the years so that many can survive cancer.

And believe me I certainly understand what we as lyme patients have to go through and the lack of compassion/support, treatment and awareness that comes with our diagnosis.

However, this really has to be one of the most disturbing threads I have ever seen here. My gosh, this is truly sick thinking and a perverse display of 'my disease is worse than your disease'. Why does one illness have to be worse than another? Does it make some of you feel better in some way that you are sicker than a cancer patient?

People die from cancer;others survive. People die from lyme;others survive...and your point is what?

cootiegirl

Great point, good post. I think this stems from the fact that we are not validated.
I'm in Canada where there is practically NO help and the government does not want to recogize it, so I get it!

So what, we're lyme soldiers for goodness sakes....pioneeers! Put your armour on and fight the fight.
This is what people with Syphilis had to do 50 yrs ago.

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mojo
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I think that there are varying degress of Cancer and varying degress of Lyme. I have also read a post from a lady that had both and she said she'd take the Cancer in a heartbeat.

It's hard to compare the two but I certainly believe the Lyme can be worse than Cancer - depending on what type of Cancer, how bad it is and if it's caught early - similar to Lyme - how bad is it, how many co-infections and was it caught early.

I've had this discussion with one of my Dr's - she even had Breast Cancer and she definately agreed with me knowing how much I've suffered.

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onthemend
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If you have cancer, you will probably get help. With Lyme, not necessarily - - at all.

That's the point being made. Not that one disease is worse than another - this thread is about the additonal mental torture, I think. (?)

otm

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