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Australian Dr finds 95% of his 300 M.E patients have evidence of Lyme.

Discussion in 'Lyme Disease and Co-Infections' started by justy, Jan 15, 2016.

  1. justy

    justy Donate Advocate Demonstrate

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    According the the authorities Lyme disease does not even exist in Australia.

    http://www.perthnow.com.au/news/wes...y-does-not-exist/story-fnhocxo3-1226886911487
     
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  2. Marky90

    Marky90 Science breeds knowledge, opinion breeds ignorance

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    Thanks for sharing Justy,

    That estimate sounds highly unlikely, and I think it`s quite unprofessional of him, to be honest. Being positive on the tests he`s referring to, does not neccesarily mean one have lyme disease.
     
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  3. Esther12

    Esther12 Senior Member

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    If he'd had a control group of healthy Australians, and the tests had been double-blind, then that might have been interesting.
     
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  4. duncan

    duncan Senior Member

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    There needs to be a genus-based test, i.e., one that broadly identifies if Borrelia is at play at all.

    In lieu of that - since it does not exist as far as I am aware - what does it take to convince people that someone is infected with Bb once it has progressed beyond acute stage? @Esther12? @Marky90? From what I can see in this article, this doctor does take western blots and PCR's into account.
     
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  5. msf

    msf Senior Member

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    Being positive on any test for Lyme disease (except culture which almost no one, even those who definitely have Lyme disease, is positive for) does not necessarily mean you have Lyme disease. Therefore you would be equally justified in saying what you said if someone claimed that 10% had Lyme disease on the standard tests. The only reason to say that about someone claiming 95% and not about someone claiming 10% is that you estimate that the number of people with ME who actually have Lyme is closer to 10% than it is to 90%. However that estimate cannot be based on testing, for the reason I gave above. So what is it based on? The fact that you think ME/CFS is a heterogeneous disease? The response to Ritux?
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2016
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  6. Jonathan Edwards

    Jonathan Edwards "Gibberish"

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    And goes fishing with no controls. This is the classic bad science scenario. At least he makes it clear he is doing things badly.

    I suspect some of those overseas 'accredited labs' are saying 'ouch!'.
     
  7. msf

    msf Senior Member

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    Isn´t that because he is assuming that the tests have decent specificity?
     
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  8. msf

    msf Senior Member

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    Actually, before everyone gets worked up, it doesn´t say in the article that 95% of the doctor´s ME/CFS patients have Lyme Disease, it says 95% of his 300 most ´chronic cases´ (non-specific, there could be some with antibiotic-refractory Lyme, for instance) have Lyme Disease, and that the doctor has an interest in ME/CFS and fibromyalgia. Perhaps you should change your title, Justy, if only to give us all an evening off.
     
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  9. Hip

    Hip Senior Member

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    I wonder what is the total number of ME/CFS patients this doctor has seen, that these 300 cases were extracted from. That would give us a better figure for the percentage of patients with ME/CFS-like symptoms that test positive for Lyme.
     
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  10. msf

    msf Senior Member

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    Exactly, perhaps someone can find out whether he has stated that anywhere, then we can carry on with our argument.
     
  11. sarah darwins

    sarah darwins I told you I was ill

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    Idiot’s question: when an antibiotic meets a bacterium — a spirochete, for example — and the bacterium dies …. what happens to the dead bacterium? Do little bacterium corpses float around in the bloodstream for a while? Or what? And are the remains ever used in any kind of diagnostic test?
     
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  12. jimells

    jimells Senior Member

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    :rofl:
     
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  13. Antares in NYC

    Antares in NYC Senior Member

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    My humble theory on this is that, until recent years, Australia had no confirmed cases of Lyme, but they had a longer history of ME/CFS. As we all know in these boards, the symptoms of both conditions can be identical, so lacking any training or knowledge of Lyme, these 300 patients may have been diagnosed ME/CFS.

    Later on, as Lyme has become an issue in Australia and awareness is raising, some of these patients may have been reassessed, and positive Lyme labs came in, framing their illness in a new context. That seems like a logical explanation to me.

    I don't think we need to bash "foreign testing labs" as a knee-jerk reaction. I think there may be a valid possibility that many of these people had Lyme all along.

    Keep in mind the worrisome and fast spread of borrelia in recent years. The CDC went from estimating 30,000 cases per year to 300,000 in the US alone. Germany, Austria, England, the Scandinavian countries and Belgium have experienced a major spike in Lyme cases, and the same goes for Australia.
     
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  14. msf

    msf Senior Member

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    Yes, and yes. That is one of the problems with PCR, that it does not necessarily show an active infection, even though it shows that you have bits of the bacteria (or virus) in your body.
     
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  15. msf

    msf Senior Member

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    That´s a very good point - you would expect the percentage of people with ME who actually have Lyme disease to be higher in Australia than anywhere else, since Lyme disease was ignored their for longer than anywhere else.
     
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  16. sarah darwins

    sarah darwins I told you I was ill

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    Okay, now you mention it I know about PCR tests. I suppose I was wondering if there was something different detectable while an antibiotic treatment was ongoing.
     
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  17. msf

    msf Senior Member

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    You mean, can you detect not that there is bacterial DNA in the body, but that the bacteria are being killed by the antibiotic? Well, if the amount of bacterial DNA being excreted increased that would be a fair assumption, I guess.
     
  18. justy

    justy Donate Advocate Demonstrate

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    @Antares in NYC beat me to it. It's highly likely that NONE of these cases were refractory Lyme as the Australian authorities say Lyme does not exist there.
    In light of the above I don't think I will - and you CANNOT have a night off. I'm just passing on an article of interest to the Lymies round here, I didn't invite the deniers in. ;)
     
  19. duncan

    duncan Senior Member

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    @Jonathan Edwards , I think this doctor may have made some errors, but I don't think the control thing is it necessarily.

    For instance, PCR for Lyme has crappy sensitivity; he seems to suggest otherwise.

    Still, the WB data would be interesting to see.

    But on a purely logical basis, this doctor's argument has legs.

    To suggest the Australia has NO Borrelia is like suggesting all of North America has no b garinii of b afzelii - even though NA ticks are thoroughly capable of carrying the latter two, and we know migratory birds coming from Europe and Asia carry both species.

    And then there is b miyamotoi - originating in Russia and Japan - which also demonstrates that Borrelia recognizes no borders, as New England and California and the Mid-Atlantic States in the US can attest.

    Ultimately, I suspect what needs to be determined is the species - and maybe it will prove to be a new one.
     
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  20. msf

    msf Senior Member

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    Yes, I thought of that, but some cases of Lyme that must be recognised, those that come back to Australia with a bull´s eye on their forehead with a tick in the middle, for instance.
     
    Mel9 likes this.

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