Oh. You’re stil reading, even after the disclaimer. All righty then.
First off, I have obviously been watching the new series “Salem” on WGN (and Hulu of course) that has Shane West with long hair and Seth Gabel with long hair–on his face. They both make it work. There are other great actors on this show, of course, like Xander Berkeley, and it only took me until the second episode to realize the connection between Shane and Xander. I blame the disease. And the fact I was distracted by all the hair.
So of course I had to connect the whole witch trial theme with how doctors who treat Lyme are being persecuted. I suppose it is not an exact match, but it is similar. People were punished for being “witches” when there were really other, scientifically unknown at the time, factors going on.
It is not like the Lyme literate doctors (LLMDs) are NOT really Lyme doctors, it is that those doing the persecuting are saying that is a BAD thing. They are acting like the LLMDs are doing “magic” and not treating people. And the truth is, what the LLMDs are doing is more scientifically proven than the IDSA guidelines. The IDSA guidelines are made up of mostly expert opinion, not peer reviewed evidence (that they seem to like so much until it applies to them).
So what happens when a doctor starts seeing more and more patients with Lyme? Usually they research it more and find out that you need to treat it with more antibiotics than listed in the IDSA guidelines. Then they are looked at sideways by other doctors; insurance companies get angry because of the costs they are seeing from this physician. And then the charges start coming.
I understand insurance companies need to do what they need to do to make money. The ability to refuse claims can be taken away (justly) by getting rid of the IDSA guidelines.
However, other doctors/nurses who scoff at the LLMDS I do NOT understand. The LLMDS are helping people after researching the facts about a terrible disease that is becoming more and more common. The doctors and nurses who soldier on after being labeled quacks (or Loons) are honorable. They don’t do it for money. They don’t do it for fame. They are doing it for the patients.
I see the character John Alden, wonderfully portrayed by Shane West, as admirable. Trying to find the truth. Doing the best for others no matter the cost to him. Seth Gabel’s character of Cotton, the flawed priest, I see as the mainstream doctors. They are being played. We Lyme advocates are like Mr. Sibley with the IDSA constantly trying to jam a toad down our throats, making us look like we are demented, drooling fools. But why does Mary keep Mr. Sibley from talking in the first place?
**Because he knows the truth. And that is what they fear the most.**
So pick up your (figurative) magic wand and wield it at them. We do have the power to take them down.
And watch Salem! It’s a pretty good show — even though I’m half expecting Maggie Q to drop in and kick everyone’s butt.