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My brother sent me a movie called “Under Our Skin“. It’s about chronic Lyme disease, its dramatic effects and how most of the medical community doesn’t recognize it as a disease. You can blame our capitalistic health care system and conflicts of interest for that.

The movie points out that the Lyme disease agent is a bacterium known as Borrelia (there are 3 strains), which is shaped like a spiral, allowing it to bore into human tissue. Another spirochetal (spiral-shaped) bacterium that causes disease in humans is Treponema pallidum. This causes syphilis. What I find hard to believe is that the chronic Lyme naysayers claim that the Lyme bacteria cannot affect the brain, yet syphilis’s effects on the brain are well-known. (When you watch the movie, you’ll see that Lyme does indeed affect the brain, even though many physicians will tell those with chronic Lyme that “it’s all in their heads” as a way to dismiss their disease. Ironically, they are right, but they’re not actually helping.)

The movie hinted that, like syphilis, Lyme disease may be sexually transmitted, although I’m not sure enough is known about this.

The best time to treat Lyme is at the very beginning, once you are bitten by a tick. My brother also suggests asking for the more expensive, but more accurate, test for Lyme right at the get-go. The test that’s usually done has an extremely high false-negative result and if an insurance company sees a false-negative, it won’t pay for treatment.

If you know someone with Lyme disease or you live in an area with a high concentration of ticks that carry Lyme, this movie is a must-see.