Monday, July 6, 2009

Of Dog Days And Deer Ticks...

Don't fret. That's a centimeter, not an inch, in the photo. Be more afraid that the hyperbaric medical community's view on Lyme disease has at least as many legs and lurks in a thicket where your pleasant stroll may end with a sharp bite.

As we busily prepare new site content and links for self-guided research, we started waffling about how to handle this indication. We were relieved the National Institutes of Health shares our confusion about chronic Lyme disease (CLD) and post-Lyme disease syndrome (PLDS). Meanwhile, the Infectious Diseases Society of America lists HBOT among its

therapeutic modalities not recommended [for Lyme disease]...because of a lack of biologic plausibility, lack of efficacy, absence of supporting data, or the potential for harm to the patient....

So how's this for biologic plausability? When a blacklegged tick (or any insect or spider) bite becomes seriously infected by bacteria, the wound then enters a clinical realm shared by a number of approved HBOT indications—namely, chronic wounds, necrotizing infections, intracranial abscess, osteomyelitis, and gas gangrene—all well supported by clinical data on efficacy and safety.

Change that scale from centimeters to nanometers. Now we're ready to talk.

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