Bite me. Book review by Melissa Skinner

BITE ME by Ally Hilfiger is the autobiographical story of her life with lyme disease.  The adult daughter of fashion designer Tommy Hilfiger, she accounts how she went undiagnosed for approximately 10 years, and the book highlights her health trials before diagnosis and talks about the tried (and mostly failed) treatment options that she sought.  Even though it is primarily about her life story, it does give a lot of widely unadvertised information about lyme itself.  It is more prevalent than previously thought, and being an autoimmune disease, is often misdiagnosed or undiagnosed with about half of all lyme tests coming up as "false negative".  Also, lyme attacks so many body systems and mimics other illnesses such as rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, MS and even psychosis. 
 
This book discusses in depth the author's mental illness and subsequent hospitalization due to the now known fact that lyme bacteria can pass through the blood-brain barrier.  According to the American Psychiatric Association, antibodies to bacteria that cause lyme disease have been found in several psych patients, showing that lyme might possibly trigger mental illness.  This makes an important argument for evaluation for lyme disease with mental health issues.
It is a good book if you wish to have more information about lyme.  It doesn't read "textbookish", you just have to get past the ego of the author and some editorial errors in spelling and word use.
Check it out.  It may become an important resource for the health of your family or friends some day.

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