Defining Moment: Should We Reconsider How We Are Defining Lyme Disease?

In order to solve a problem, you must first be able to define it. I think most of us can agree on that.

One of the interesting things about Lyme disease is that it doesn't currently have a definition that's universally agreed upon, something that has led to a great deal of rancour, confusion, and wildly unproductive conversations. I've come across many situations where it hasn't been totally clear that everyone involved is talking about the same illness. I mean, they're all calling it Lyme disease, but often the name is the only thing they can agree on.

Lies, Damn Lies & Statistics

In Canada, Lyme disease has been nationally reportable since 2009 which means, in essence, that whenever a doctor diagnoses a patient with it or a test conducted by a public health laboratory comes up positive, those cases are supposed to be reported to the proper authorities who can then use them to track important information relating to Lyme disease in this country.

The Mystery of Chronic Lyme Disease

I'd like to take a moment to reflect on the major theories regarding the causes of chronic Lyme disease symptoms. Keep in mind that these are not the only theories. Rather they're the ones that have clawed their way to the top of the heap since Lyme disease patients first started reported lagging symptoms back in the 1970s, long before before Borrelia burgdorferi was identified as the illness's causative agent.

Holding Pattern: Conference on Lyme Disease Delivers Few Solutions

The "Conference to Develop a Federal Framework on Lyme Disease" ended on Tuesday with a recognition that public health policy on Lyme disease has fallen far short of what Canadians demand. As conference co-chair Dr. Gregory Taylor put it, "If what we are doing is not making a difference to individual Canadians, it's not good enough." And it was clear to everyone that what health authorities have done for Lyme sufferers so far is not nearly good enough.