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Jeff Sutherland

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Recent Research on Lyme Disease

New Ideas About the Cause, Spread
and Therapy of Lyme Disease

by Dr. James Howenstine
Townsend Letter for Doctors and Patients, July 2004
Lyme Disease was initially regarded as an uncommon illness caused by the spirochete Borrelia burgdorferi (Bb).  The disease transmission was thought to be solely by the bite from a tick infected with this spirochete.  The Bb spirochete is able to burrow into tendons, muscle cells, ligaments, and directly into organs.  A classic bulls-eye rash is often visible in the early stage of the illness.  Later in the illness the disease can afflict the heart, nervous system, joints and other organs.  It is now realized that the disease can mimic amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, multiple sclerosis, Bell’s Palsy, reflex sympathetic dystrophy, neuritis, psychiatric illnesses such as schizophrenia, chronic fatigue, heart failure, angina, irregular heart rhythms, fibromyalgia, dermatitis, autoimmune diseases such as scleroderma and lupus, eye inflammatory reactions, sudden deafness, SIDS, ADD and hyperactivity, chronic pain and many other conditions.
Biology professor, Lida Mattman, author of Cell Wall Deficient Forms: Stealth Pathogens, has been able to recover live spirochetes of Bb from mosquitos, fleas, mites, semen, urine, blood, and spinal fluid.  A factor contributing to making Bb so dangerous is that it can survive and spread without having a cell wall (cell wall-deficient CWD).  Many valuable antibiotics kill bacteria by breaking down the cell wall.  These antibiotics often prove ineffective against Bb.

Lyme Disease is now thought to be the fastest growing infectious disease in the world.  There are believed to be at least 200,000 new cases each year in the US and some experts think that as many as one in every 15 Americans is currently infected (20 million persons).  Dr. Robert Rowen knows a family where the mother’s infection spread to 5 of her 6 children1 all of whom recovered with appropriate therapy.  It is difficult to believe that these children were all bitten by ticks and seems more plausible that person to person spread within the family caused this problem.  Dr. Mattman states “I’m convinced Lyme disease is transmissible from person to person.”  In 1995 Dr. Mattman obtained positive cultures for Bb from 43 of 47 persons with chronic illness.  Only 1 of 23 control patients had a positive Bb culture.  Dr. Mattman has subsequently recovered Bb spirochetes form 8 out of 8 cases of Parkinson’s Disease, 41 cases of multiple sclerosis, 21 cases of amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and all tested cases of Alzheimer’s Disease.  The complete recovery of several patients with terminal amyotrophic lateral sclerosis after appropriate therapy shows the great importance of establishing the diagnosis of Lyme Disease.