February 28, 2018 – Chronic Lyme
Anchor lead: A very specific group of people who’ve had Lyme disease may develop a chronic form, Elizabeth Tracey reports
If you’ve had Lyme disease or know someone who has, chances are good you also know that some people insist they’re still having problems even after treatment, while the medical community has largely disparaged such claims. Now John Aucott, a Lyme expert at Johns Hopkins, has published a study saying there is such a syndrome.
Aucott: Chronic Lyme disease is real in that there are subgroups now, specifically the subgroup called post treatment Lyme disease syndrome, that we have shown that you can identify, there’s two crucial characteristics: one is that we can demonstrate through a meticulous review of their medical records that they in fact had Lyme disease. It could have been six months ago, six years ago, and they had Lyme disease and they got treated but they remained ill. So the second part of the definition is they never recovered. :30
Aucott notes that making such a diagnosis requires an experienced clinician and careful workup. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.