LYME AND OUR IMMUNE SYSTEM

LYME AND OUR IMMUNE SYSTEM
The latest edition of the Dutch Journal of Medical Microbiology primarily focuses on autoimmunity, including an article by the Lyme Borreliosis Centre of the Academic Medical Centre in Amsterdam on the role of our immune system in Lyme disease (1). Fortunately, this article is somewhat more constructive than previous Lyme disease articles coming from this quarter. Let’s hope this means that the AMC and NVMM are willing to follow a new route to the planned Lyme Centre of Expertise. The article offers starting points for a discussion on treatment of Lyme disease, a discussion that is now often limited to the question whether or not more antibiotics are needed (yes or yes, according to some patients and their representatives).
Made ill by defence
The article’s central stand is that Lyme disease symptoms are primarily caused by the immune response to the Borrelia bacterium and not by toxic effects of the bacterium itself. I concur with this premise, although there are some disputable aspects. It is not a popular message among patients: they often see Borrelia as a devilish little monster that causes death and destruction and must be destroyed at any price, if necessary with an overdose of antibiotics or other heavy poisons. Some would even prefer a continuous intake of preventive antibiotics (‘pre-exposure prophylaxis’) just in case they might again encounter a tick ;-( I believe that this attitude is an emotional reaction that might make sense psychologically but is not based on sound facts or arguments.....
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Lyme and our immune system The latest edition of the Dutch Journal of Medical Microbiology primarily focuses on autoimmunity, including an article by the Lyme Borreliosis Centre of the Academic Medical Centre in Amsterdam on the role of our immune system in Lyme disease (1). Fortunately, this articl…
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