Lyme patients know that Lyme disease is not only just a single infection of the spirochete Borrelia, but rather a multitude of different diseases that ticks carry called "co-infections". Some co-infections such as the Powassan virus are more deadly than others (which kills around 33% of people it infects, whom the latest victim is Joseph Elone (1)), but then there are other chronic co-infections such as mycoplasmas. (2, 3) Mycoplasmas are Gram-positive bacteria's which are the smallest living cells we have ever discovered, so small that 4,000 mycoplasma bacteria's can fit inside a single red blood cell. The link between mycoplasmas and cancer is becoming well documented and depending on the species of the mycoplasma, a person's risk for developing many different types of cancers significantly increases which includes (4) ovarian, lung, prostate, breast, cervix, renal, gastrointestinal, (including colon, esophagus, stomach), and glial (brain, CNS) cancer. Mycoplasmas can increase the risk of cancer by causing the breakage of DNA, inhibit apoptosis (which means they prevent cells from dying) and they interfere with normal host cell DNA repair centers. A normal and healthy immune systems can generally kill cancer cells as they grow, but then some species of mycoplasmas such as the mycoplasma hyorhinis (5) are known to weaken the immune system's ability to kill cancer cells. This may be the reason why Lyme patients can also develop cancer, but because Lyme disease is not taken seriously, and tick born diseases are not well studied or understood, there may be many other factors involved in the development of cancer among Lyme patients.
My personal observations (opinion) on why Lyme patients are better off than others with cancer.
When Lyme patients becomes sick with Lyme disease and it becomes chronic, they are involuntarily entered into the Lyme disease wars whether they like it or not. Lyme patients (outside of the Lyme community) will generally go from doctor to doctor either being misdiagnosed, or be written off as faking their symptoms. This is occurring because the doctors they are seeing have strong faith in the guidelines of the Infectious Disease Society of America (IDSA) and believe everything published by the IDSA is based solely on science. If the IDSA claims there are four trials that proves there are no benefits to long term antibiotic usage for Post Lyme, then we have to trust in their conclusions because their job is to interpret the scientific data, right? But then what happens when independent researchers decide to look at the scientific data cited to form the IDSA guidelines and discover that the scientific data actually contradicts the IDSA guidelines? (6) The actual findings of the four studies goes like this; 2 of those 4 studies had inconclusive results, and the other 2 showed significant improvement among Lyme patients (7) who receive long term antibiotics to treat chronic Lyme disease.
Many doctors have to still put their faith in these guidelines (and all other guidelines used in their medical practice) for a number of reasons including how busy their practice is, and the lack of time they have in their daily lives, but even if a doctor discovers that the guidelines they are using are wrong, they cannot deviate from the guidelines or they risk losing their medical license. But regardless, Lyme patients see this reality in our medical community and understand that truth is not correlated with either popularity nor the interpretations of a small minority of people. Many Lyme patients have learned how to go straight to the scientific research and see for themselves what the actual data says, rather than believing the top results of a simple Google search or a quick glance of Wikipedia. In a world that trusts the opinions of a small minority of doctors, Lyme patients have no problem asking for a second or third opinion, and they also have no problem going straight to the scientific studies on a given issue.
Books on cancer that everyone should:
1. Dr. Otis Brawley "How We Do Harm" chief medical and scientific officer of The American Cancer Society
2. Overdiagnosed by Dr. Welch, Dr. Schwartz, and Dr. Woloshin
3. Dr. Brownstein's books on cell apoptosis and iodine. Dr. Brownstein was a licensed Medical Doctor who has many years of experience in hospitals and medical research.
4. Defeat Cancer: 15 Doctors of Integrative & Naturopathic Medicine Tell You How
How to search for a Complementary practitioner: