Boothbay Harbor man recovering from near fatal Lyme disease infection
Andrew Hawke contracted rare tick-borne illness
July 15 began as a difficult day for Andrew Hawke, a 23-year-old Boothbay Harbor lobsterman. He woke up around 6:30 a.m. and complained about being “extremely tired.” He sat beside his bed and shortly afterwards went unconscious and collapsed. His girlfriend called 9-1-1 and, after a brief observation, paramedics determined something “funky” was going on in his heart. Paramedics transported him to Mid Coast Hospital in Brunswick so he’d be close to Maine Medical Center in Portland, according to Hawke’s mother, Stephanie Hawke.
At the hospital, doctors believed the mysterious illness should be attributed to Lyme disease, a tick-borne illness. According to the Center for Disease Control, Lyme disease is the most common vector-borne disease in the U.S. and is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi and, rarely, Borrelia mayoni. It is transmitted to humans through the bite of infected blacklegged ticks. Typical symptoms include fever, headache, fatigue and a characteristic skin rash called erythema migrans. If left untreated, infection can spread to joints, the heart and nervous system. (See link for article)
Stephanie Hawke remembers hearing about a 17-year-old Massachusetts male who died of Lyme carditis recently while mowing his lawn.
Dr. Neil Spector wrote about his heart issues with Lyme in his book “Gone in a Heartbeat”: https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/04/25/tick-talk-a-conversation-about-lyme-dr-neil-spector/
Unfortunately Spector passed recently: https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2020/06/16/lyme-community-has-lost-a-hero-friend-dr-neil-spector/
I find it interesting that our ‘authorities’ are trigger happy with numbers and are often wrong. Since the beginning of time they’ve been wrong about Lyme/MSIDS and they continue to downplay it with words like “rare” when nobody’s counting and testing misses over half of all cases. So many patients go undiagnosed or misdiagnosed. I assure you that many die of heart conditions caused by tick-borne illness that are falling through the cracks.
For more: https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2020/07/20/cavalier-attitude-towards-lyme-infection-is-misplaced/ Here a doctor, after his son collapsed into unconsciousness with a heart rate of 35/minute, admits that a “cavalier attitude towards Lyme infection is misplaced.”
Here a study identifies 189 children with Lyme carditis: https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2019/12/09/study-identifies-189-children-with-lyme-carditis/
Lyme; however, isn’t the only tick-borne illness that can infect the heart: https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/06/03/heart-problems-tick-borne-disease/
Lyme advocate, Phyllis Mervine, makes a case that autopsies should be performed on those with unexpected, sudden death: https://madisonarealymesupportgroup.com/2018/07/09/with-unexpected-death-autopsies-should-look-for-lyme-carditis/
In his talk, a young doctor from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) described three cases where young people had died suddenly and had donated tissues to a tissue bank for possible transplantation. Testing at the tissue bank showed inflammation in tissue from their hearts, suggestive of Lyme carditis. Further tests were positive for infection with the spirochetes that cause Lyme disease.