In the spring of 1993, I became very ill and was diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome that fall by an Infectious Disease physician. I went back to school that fall and struggled to continue with my teaching career. With no improvement in my health I went to Johns Hopkins in February of 1994 and was diagnosed with Neurally Mediated Hypotension after having a Tilt Table Test. The illness roller coaster ride continued for the next fifteen years seeing multiple physicians for a multitude of problems including pulmonary, cardiac, GI, etc.
My life consisted of going to work, coming home for dinner and then bed. The weekends were spent sleeping to catch up in order to make it through the next week. I did a horrible job teaching because of severe fatigue, being constantly light headed, and brain fog. Each year my symptoms increased and by 2007 muscle weakness and shortness of breath had increased. In August of 2008 I fell from the top fifth step and fractured my nose. After seeing a Cardiologist from Hopkins as well as a Neurologist and having multiple tests, they said I was fine. Yet I had shortness of breath while sitting, brain fog, debilitating fatigue just to name a few. I was unable to do my job although physicians said there was nothing wrong.
Since I was unable to do anything for myself, my seventy seven year old mother researched and found a physician that treated chronic illnesses. When she shared my symptoms she was told it sounded like Lyme. Since I never saw a tick or a bull’s eye I didn’t see how it could be Lyme, especially since my Primary Care Physician tested me for Lyme and it was negative. Little did I know that this test is severely flawed.
When my tests came back from Igenex and Fry Laboratories I was positive for not only Lyme, but also Babesia and Bartonella. I am finally getting my life back after the correct diagnoses in December of 2008, long term antibiotics as well as many other things. If I had received the correct diagnoses in 1993 chances are I would not have lost my twenty seven year teaching career to this dreadful disease. It has taken almost three years of treatment for me to start getting my life back.