Archive for the ‘Lyme’ Category

Why Do Officials Continue to Deny Gestational Lyme?

Why do officials continue to deny the reality of gestational Lyme?

by Sue Burke Faber

Aug. 2018

I’ll never forget a couple of years ago when our whole crazy Lyme journey began. I had been diagnosed here in Canada with positive two-tier tests for a European strain of Lyme and one of our daughters also tested positive by Canadian serology for European Lyme, but without travel history to Europe.

I thought this was a great example of possible maternal-fetal transmission and brought it to the attention of my local public health unit. They weren’t so excited.

My concerns were relayed in writing to a senior health official at Public Health Ontario (who is not a physician or a clinician). He called the local region back and told them to promptly close my daughter’s file and that he did not consider maternal-fetal transmission be a mode of exposure. That was it, case closed.

Sometime later, I was to receive an official letter in the mail from Public Health stating that both my case and my daughter’s case would not be counted in the Canadian statistics as confirmed OR probable cases of Lyme disease. It was a slap in the face and made no sense whatsoever.

That wasn’t all. The letter went on to say that they (Public Health) had done a literature search on congenital transmission of Lyme disease and ‘no scientific evidence to support congenital Lyme disease transmission in the scientific literature was found.’ They also included a list of the articles that they had reviewed.

I looked at the list and felt sick. They had listed articles including the very first case report from 1985 – which clearly described unequivocal evidence of congenital transmission – as well as case reports of deceased babies with overwhelming spirochetosis in their organs and tissues. Their conclusion just didn’t make ANY sense.

I picked up the phone and called my local health unit. I was practically in tears. I asked to come in and speak in person with the region’s chief medical officer. I wanted to show them the full articles and case reports, which clearly described this alternate mode of transmission.

I was denied a face-to face meeting but offered a 30-minute call. I asked the chief medical officer if they had actually reviewed the documents which were listed the letter to me. I was told that wasn’t their job. I was also told to follow up with my family doctor if I had any further concerns and no further action was taken.

This complete ignorance and lack of engagement ignited a fire deep within my spirit for justice – not just for the sake of my own children, but indeed all the families struggling to get recognition and care for their children. I was determined that this placating, paternalistic, rigid denial would not continue to be the narrative – and if things were going to change, I would have to dig deep into the literature to prove the truth for myself.

And I did.

It has taken two years and the support of some incredible people helping me find and access the original peer-reviewed research. Research which clearly documents transplacental transmission, in fact Canadian documentation by Health and Welfare Canada that documents transplacental transmission. An entire chapter in a reference medical textbook devoted to an in-depth analysis of the literature at the time of maternal-fetal transmission and its serious implications and need for further research.

And as I started reading, digging, analyzing and processing the literature, the anger which had indeed ignited my journey transitioned and was replaced by unbridled passion. Passion to ensure that the truth be brought to the surface and that this truth be handed to the right people with integrity and influence, to answer the hard questions and start tackling this issue.

Rigid denial is no longer an option. Ignorance cannot stand up to truth. Evidence demands a verdict and, that verdict is not that maternal-fetal transmission is plausible or possible, but rather, it has been described and proven and agreed upon by scientists, researchers and physicians alike.

It is clear that further research and urgent investigation of transplacental transmission of Lyme disease is needed and requires an all-hands-on-deck, streamlined, multi-disciplinary approach. We need a patient-first, evidence-based integrative model of bringing together patients with lived experience, front-line clinicians, researchers and scientists – to examine the issues and dig broader and deeper together.

This must be a process which is firmly anchored in transparency, integrity and scientific rigor, with patients as trusted partners.

Frontline healthcare professionals and mothers themselves need to be aware of the risk of maternal-fetal transmission. Families who come forward and identify that they are concerned that Lyme could have been passed on to their children need to be taken seriously.

Urgent action is needed.

At LymeHope, we have respectfully asked to be partners with the Public Health Agency of Canada as its mandate is “to promote and protect Canadians’ health by preventing and controlling chronic and infectious diseases and injuries as well as preparing for and responding to public health emergencies.”

Lyme disease is an infectious disease which is not only zoonotic (tick transmission) but has been proven and even documented by Canadian Federal Health authorities to be transferred from human-to-human, mother to child. There are also valid concerns that this disease could be transmitted sexually and through the blood supply.

This disease is affecting the lives and futures of Canadians, and we believe that PHAC has a duty and responsibility to all Canadians to act. We must not defer or wait for others to take a lead. They weren’t the ones to identify and amplify these issues in the first place – we at LymeHope were – when we first spoke at the Parliamentary Standing Health Committee in June 2017.

My testimony here:

I trust that this alternate mode of transmission will be recognized for what it is – in Canada, and an apology made to all those who have suffered as a result of this rigid denial of truth.

Babies have died, parents have grieved, childhoods have been lost, hearts have been broken, Lyme sufferers have ended their lives by suicide. The suffering, neglect and pain only continues to mount.

This is why I hold onto hope and I won’t stop. This is why I engage in a way which is respectful, asking for change makers, experts, policy makers and influencers to come together and examine the truth which exists and to take action. We need healing, restoration and reconciliation.

So for all the parents out there who have been told “there is no evidence” of maternal-child transmission, we have now done the work for you. Click on this link to access the document which has direct quotes from the medical and scientific literature on Lyme and Pregnancy/Congenital transmission.

You can confidently share the evidence that does exist and ask again for help. Call your MP and MPP, speak to your respective professional associations and work within your sphere of influence.

Never give up. And remember, change will happen as we move forward together. One day at a time, one step at a time, one prayer at a time.

Sharing hugs to all the mamas today – who never give up hope for their littles.

Sue Burke Faber is co-founder of LymeHope, an advocacy organization in Canada.



The head in the sand denialism is killing people.  We need to how ALL the tick borne illnesses are transmitted.  Somehow they can quickly determine Zika is transmitted STD, but they can’t seem to figure out if Lyme is despite it being found in vaginal secretions and semen:  Why isn’t work being done on this?  Wait!  I know the answer.  They are doing climate studies….

There’s been a denialism regarding other insects being able to transmit as well even though German researchers have found borrelia in mosquitoes:  DNA of Borrelia afzelii, Borrelia bavariensis and Borrelia garinii could be detected in ten Culicidae species (mosquitoes) comprising four distinct genera (Aedes, Culiseta, Culex, and Ochlerotatus). Positive samples also include adult specimens raised in the laboratory from wild-caught larvae indicating that transstadial and/or transovarial transmission might occur within a given mosquito population.

Entomologists often point to a 30 year old ancient study by Magnarelli et al when denying other insects:   Prevalence of infection for hematophagous insects (blood sucking) ranged from 2.9% of 105 Hybomitra lasiophthalma (horse fly) to 14.3% of seven Hybomitra epistles (horse fly) …Groups of 113 field-collected mosquitoes of Aedes canadensis and 43 Aedes stimulans were placed in cages with uninfected Syrian hamsters. Of these, 11 females of both species contained B. burgdorferi and had fed fully or partially from the hamsters. No spirochetes were isolated from the hamsters, but antibodies were produced in one test animal.

Again, why are we relying on a study covered with an inch of dust?  I know the answer to that too.  Climate studies…..

For more info on congenital Lyme:  All my initial symptoms were gynecological.







What’s the Best Diet for Lyme Disease? Dr. Rawls

What’s the Best Diet for Lyme Disease?

Published on Aug 8, 2018
What are the best foods to eat and avoid to ease the fatigue, pain, brain fog and other symptoms of Lyme disease?
Dr. Bill Rawls shares his three key Lyme diet guidelines.
Written transcript:
Question: What’s the Best Diet for Lyme Disease?

Dr. Rawls here with some tips on diet.

When you look at any kind of chronic illness —Lyme disease or any other illness — gut dysfunction is always a component, and a lot of it stems from eating a poor diet. Just the process of digestion itself can cause gut dysfunction. So diet is really, really important.

We could go on for hours and hours about diet, but I’ve tried to boil it down to three basic guidelines. If you can adopt these three habits, then you will change your life from a diet point of view. You’ll feel better, and you’ll start getting well faster. Diet is really key.

Guideline #1: Eat more vegetables than anything else. Vegetables are just such an important component of diet. Vegetables supply the kind of fiber that keeps our gut and digestive process hydrated. It’s the kind of fiber that feeds the right bacteria. It’s the kind of fiber that helps pull toxins out of your body.

Vegetable fiber is very different than grain fiber, plus there are all the other antioxidants and wonderful things that come in vegetables. That’s my top rule for anything that is related to diet. No matter what diet you follow, the number one rule is, eat more vegetables than anything else.

Fruits? They’re also pretty darn good. They have a lot of the same antioxidants and good fiber and everything else, but also a lot more sugar. Temperate fruits like apples and blueberries are really good.

Guideline #2: Try to minimize the processed food. This is one that I struggle with every day, too. When I go to the grocery store, my target is not reading the labels on food, but instead I shoot for a goal of trying to make 90% of my food come without a label. Instead I buy lots of fruits and vegetables and fresh foods that I take home and prepare myself. Being part of the food preparation process is a wonderful part of life, and of being part of the food environment.

If you can, shoot for a goal of looking at your cart and saying, “90% of this doesn’t have a label on it,” or, “It’s basically a single ingredient like a carton of milk or a tub of butter.” And then avoid foods where you’re looking at the label and thinking, “Wow, I don’t understand some of these ingredients on this label.” Those are better left on the shelf.

Now, it’s hard to do that with everything. I don’t make my own mayonnaise, I don’t make my own ketchup, so there are certain things I buy. If you can aim for that 90% goal, you’re going to cut out a lot of those high-carb processed food products that are harming people.

The high-carb processed food products derived from wheat, corn, and soybeans are a leading cause of illness in our country today. If you make that rule of making your own food from fresh ingredients, you’re going to cut all of that processed stuff out at the beginning.

Guideline #3: Eat healthy protein and fat sources. Top of my list for protein is predominantly fish and eggs. Right now, the most cost-effective and available source of good protein on the planet is fresh wild-caught salmon from Alaska. It’s remarkably inexpensive compared to other protein sources. So, I eat healthy fish and eggs.

I also eat some poultry. I occasionally eat red meat, but not very often because of the high fat content and the other things that come with it. So if you can, shoot for good, healthy protein and fat sources.

Another great fat source includes olive oil. That’s my main cooking oil, but I don’t cook it at a high temperature so I don’t burn the oil. I eat a lot of avocados. I use a little bit of ghee (clarified butter) in my cooking because it adds another dimension to the cooking that’s really special, and ghee doesn’t burn when you heat it on the stove. It doesn’t disrupt the fats like some of your refined vegetable oils.

Those are the top three things. If you can really focus on those things alone, you will do wonders for your diet and well-being.


More on Diet:



Powassan Confirmed in Dutchess County

Rare, tick-borne Powassan virus confirmed in Dutchess County

A rare, sometimes fatal tick-borne virus has been confirmed in Dutchess County.

Allison Kaufman, county public health advisor, said a case of the virus was confirmed in late July. The person who contracted the virus reported they had been ill since June, Kaufman said.

It is the second confirmed case of the virus in 2018; the first was confirmed in Columbia County in June.

“I think residents need to keep in mind this is a very serious disease but also a very rare disease,” Kaufman said. “The level of concern has to be proportional to the level of risk.”

She said county residents should maintain diligence in preventing tick bites to not only avoid the Powassan virus but also Lyme disease, anaplasmosis disease and babesiosis disease.

Powassan virus has symptoms that range from mild, flu-like symptoms to life-threatening encephalitis, an inflammation of the brain.

Kaufman said there is no “grace period” of tick attachment before the Powassan virus is transmitted. The virus could be transmitted in as little as 15 minutes as opposed to the 24-hour period connected with Lyme disease.

“Lint rollers can remove visible ticks crawling on clothes without having to touch the tick,” Kaufman said.  Video here
Most Americans know that ticks can make them sick, and many take steps to avoid them.
Four cases were reported in the state last year, including one reported in Dutchess County. 

According to the Center for Disease Control, 21 cases of Powassan virus were reported between 2007 and 2016 in the state.

State and county health officials urge outdoors enthusiasts to take steps to protect themselves from tick-borne diseases.

These include:

  • Wear light-colored clothing with a tight weave to spot ticks easily, as well as enclosed shoes, long pants and a long-sleeved shirt. Tuck pant legs into socks or boots and shirt into pants.
  • Check clothes and any exposed skin frequently for ticks while outdoors.
  • Consider using insect repellent.
  • Stay on cleared, well-traveled trails. Walk in the center of trails. Avoid dense woods and bushy areas.
  • Bathe or shower as soon as possible after going indoors, preferably within two hours, to wash off and more easily find ticks.
  • Do a final, full-body tick check at the end of the day and remove ticks promptly. Also, check children and pets.

The mid-Hudson Valley, and Dutchess County in particular, have been a hot spot for Lyme disease, also a tick-borne illness, for years. More than 12,000 cases were diagnosed in the county between 2000 and 2016, according to the most recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  Video here on Ella Buss who has Lyme.

Ryan Santistevan:; 845-437-4809; Twitter: @SantistevanRyan



Please know that just because something is rarely reported doesn’t mean it’s rare.

  1. Powassan can be spread in minutes
  2. Lyme can be spread in hours – it does not take 24-72 hours:  Get ticks off you ASAP!
  3. We really need to revisit this idea of a “grace period” with tick attachment.  Really?

I recognized the little face in the second video on Ella Buss who has Lyme Disease.  Here is her story:



Milford Pathologist Fires Broadside at CDC Motion to Discuss

Milford Conn. Pathologist Fires Broadside at CDC Motion to Dismiss

Carl Tuttle
Hudson, NH
AUG 15, 2018 —

2044 Bridgeport Avenue
Milford, CT 06460
August 15, 2018
Media Contact: Kevin Moore, 203-788-8497


Milford Conn. Pathologist Fires Broadside at CDC Motion to Dismiss in Groundbreaking $57.1 Million Lyme Disease Lawsuit

Demonstrates that CDC relied on “unreliable” Wikipedia as source to discredit Dr. Lee

Milford, Conn… Sin Hang Lee, M.D., the Connecticut pathologist who, in May, filed a $57.1 million lawsuit against the Centers for Disease Control, in a legal opposition to the CDC’s motion to dismiss his lawsuit, informed the U.S. Court of Federal Claims, that the CDC had relied on unverifiable, non-peer reviewed Wikipedia as a source for informational support to back its motion to dismiss.

To suppress direct detection tests for Lyme disease,” said Dr. Lee, referring to the Sanger DNA sequencing testing method that he employs, and, which is at the heart of his lawsuit, “the CDC is willing to exhaust all of its administrative remedies. When its patented metabolomics technology could not stop Sanger sequencing in science, the CDC told its lawyers to look up Wikipedia for help in a motion to dismiss my lawsuit.”

In 2013, after testing two panels of Lyme disease reference serum samples from the CDC by Sanger sequencing, Dr. Lee informed the CDC that some of the archived serum samples taken from patients with Lyme disease in fact were positive for Borrelia miyamotoi and a novel unnamed relapsing fever borrelia, and published the data in a peer-reviewed article. Years later, the CDC claimed in social media that Dr. Lee published “inconsistent results” ( ) while promoting its own, newly patented, unproven metabolomics technology for diagnosis of Lyme disease.

In order to deny the facts that clinical Lyme disease may be caused by a diversity of borrelial strains of bacteria, the CDC instructed its lawyers to quote Wikipedia, an online encyclopedia with no peer review, as the alternative science to discredit Dr. Lee’s work in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. The CDC attorneys then filed the following with the U.S. Court of Federal Claims:

“However, Borrelia miyamotoi is not a causative agent of Lyme disease. Wikipedia, miyamotoi p. 1 (“Although infection [with Borrelia miyamotoi] can cause some similar symptoms [as Lyme disease] including fever, headache, fatigue, and muscle aches, acute Lyme disease often presents with rash, while infection with B. miyamotoi does not; it remains unclear whether B. miyamotoi causes a relapsing fever syndrome”).

In the PLAINTIFF’S RESPONSE TO MOTION TO DISMISS filed on August 13, 2018, Dr. Lee’s attorney, Mary Alice Moore Leonhardt, countered with the following statement:

“The Defendant relied on the inherently unreliable website Wikipedia in its attempt to discredit Dr. Lee, rather than the CDC’s own data. The CDC expressly acknowledges that Borrelia miyamotoi causes hard tick relapsing fever and Borrelia miyamotoi infection causes fever, chills and headache which are common symptoms in Lyme disease, and may cause skin rash in about 8% of the patients (4/51). (CDC, Borrelia miyamotoi Disease, available at
CDC, B. miyamotoi, available at Thus, Dr. Lee’s test results detected the presence of two tick-borne illnesses, including Lyme disease and a disease that presents in similar ways to Lyme disease. These results were 100% accurate as confirmed through the DNA sequencing with the Gene Bank.”
The CDC should come out to debate the science and technology in direct detection testing for the diagnosis of Lyme disease instead of hiding behind a wall of lawyers and Wikipedia encyclopedia,” said Dr. Lee. “Accurate diagnosis of Lyme borreliosis must not be stopped by CDC lawyers.”

* The official documents with Appendix filed in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims can be accessed through the Drop Box. Complete filing here:

Milford Molecular Diagnostics Laboratory:  
Milford Medical Laboratory offers the first reliable DNA test for Lyme disease bacteria and B. miyamotoi, the spirochete causing a Lyme disease-like infection.


Vermont Resident Dies of Rare Lyme Disease Complication (That isn’t Rare)

Vermont Resident Dies of Rare Lyme Disease Complication

39065003tick_20010809_01054.jpg(L-R) An adult tick and a young, nymph tickGetty

August 07, 2018

A Vermont resident has died of a rare Lyme disease complication, called Lyme carditis.

The Franklin County resident, whose name, sex or age was not released, is the first person to die of Lyme carditis in the state.

Lyme carditis occurs when the disease bacteria moves into the heart tissue, and alters the normal heart rhythms, something the CDC says is called “heart block.” Along with the common symptoms of Lyme disease like body aches and a fever, those with Lyme carditis often have heart palpitations, shortness of breath and fevers.

“It’s my sad duty to report this loss,” Vermont Health Commissioner Dr. Mark Levine said, according to NBC 5 in Burlington. “While Lyme disease is increasingly common in Vermont, Lyme carditis itself is very rare.”

According to the CDC, just 1 percent of all reported Lyme disease cases in the U.S. become Lyme carditis. Between 1985 and 2018, there have been nine cases nationwide.

The Vermont health department sent out advisories to all doctors to watch out for any patients complaining of heart issues.

“Lyme and other tickborne diseases can cause serious illness,” Levine said. “But Lyme disease, including Lyme carditis, is treatable.”



Here we go again.  Another supposedly “rare” Lyme disease complication….

In the following link CDC expert Dr. Forrester comments that 4-10% of Lyme patients get carditis.  If we take the CDC’s estimate that 300,000 people contract Lyme each year, that’s 12,000 –  30,000 with Lyme carditis.  Does that sound rare to you?  (There are many tick borne illnesses besides Lyme that can cause carditis. An Ontario heart specialist is warning doctors to look for it as numerous people with heart symptoms were admitted to the ER two to three times before anyone even considered it. He also states many don’t get the bullseye rash or notice vague symptoms of fever and muscle aches.)

This research shows natural autoantibodies being present in the pericardial fluid with significant correlation of mycoplasma, Lyme, and chlamydia antibodies in patients with heart disease:

This research is linking Ticks to heart disease:  Excerpt:  “Lyme expert Dr. Daniel Cameron has done a nice job of summarizing five cases in a blog.
Cardiac Tropism of Borrelia burgdorferi: An Autopsy Study of Sudden Cardiac Death Associated with Lyme Carditis. (March 2016)

“Fatal Lyme carditis caused by the spirochete Borrelia burgdorferi rarely is identified. Here, we describe the pathologic, immunohistochemical, and molecular findings of five case patients.”

There is a world of difference between something being rarely identified and something being rare.


Bbsl Infected Ticks in Canadian Songbirds

Far-Reaching Dispersal of Borrelia burgdorferi Sensu Lato-Infected Blacklegged Ticks by Migratory Songbirds in Canada.

Scott JD, et al. Healthcare (Basel). 2018.


Lyme disease has been documented in northern areas of Canada, but the source of the etiological bacterium, Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato (Bbsl) has been in doubt. We collected 87 ticks from 44 songbirds during 2017, and 24 (39%) of 62 nymphs of the blacklegged tick, Ixodes scapularis, were positive for Bbsl. We provide the first report of Bbsl-infected, songbird-transported I. scapularis in Cape Breton, Nova Scotia; Newfoundland and Labrador; north-central Manitoba, and Alberta. Notably, we report the northernmost account of Bbsl-infected ticks parasitizing a bird in Canada. DNA extraction, PCR amplification, and DNA sequencing reveal that these Bbsl amplicons belong to Borrelia burgdorferi sensu stricto (Bbss), which is pathogenic to humans. Based on our findings, health-care providers should be aware that migratory songbirds widely disperse B. burgdorferi-infected I. scapularis in Canada’s North, and local residents do not have to visit an endemic area to contract Lyme disease.



Second posting today of infected ticks being in places they supposedly shouldn’t be.  I think we need to truly accept the fact Lyme/MSIDS is everywhere.  Make sure you spread the word to medical practitioners, your family and friends – and frankly anyone who will listen.  Infected ticks found in unlikely places including beaches.

Increasing Bbss in Tennessee Ticks

Increasing Prevalence of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu stricto-Infected Blacklegged Ticks in Tennessee Valley, Tennessee, USA.

Hickling GJ, et al. Emerg Infect Dis. 2018.


In 2017, we surveyed forests in the upper Tennessee Valley, Tennessee, USA. We found Ixodes scapularis ticks established in 23 of 26 counties, 4 of which had Borrelia burgdorferi sensu stricto-infected ticks. Public health officials should be vigilant for increasing Lyme disease incidence in this region.



Another study showing infected ticks in places most don’t suspect and the importance of spreading the word.  I pray long gone are the days when a doc stares at a CDC map and announces it can’t be Lyme because it doesn’t exist in their state.  Infected ticks are virtually everywhere.