Cat Seven was officially diagnosed with Lyme Disease in September of 2015 (first positive test was March 2015). She had a positive Elisa. Along with medical changes, She ended up pregnant. She and her husband focused on a healthy pregnancy. Cat found her first LLMD in August 2015, got the Igenex test, and she had 8 out of 10 markers show up positive. Then, Cat had her co-infections test done and she was diagnosed with Bartonella as well (cat scratch fever). We had the pleasure of speaking with Cat about the importance of Lyme awareness and why other Lyme warriors should spread the word!
Why should Lyme Warriors Raise Awareness About Lyme?
"This past year we’ve lost more people than ever to this illness. I hate saying this, for when I do, others start looking at me differently. However, people need to take it seriously. People are asking questions and they should continue to do so - How easy it is to get Lyme? Is it blood born, passed through in vitro, or more ways? The CDC has yet to provide the answers. As cases continue to soar due to of lack of education, the CDC better be ready to have answers for questions on why it was never approached sooner. In more than one way, Lyme is an invisible illness – both due to its symptoms and the lack of attention being allocated to research and education. All Lyme Warriors have to raise awareness - because if we don’t do it, who will?"
How do you take care/protect your PICC line?
"I am so thankful my LLMD has requested a nurse to come to my house each Tuesday! She changes my dressing and takes my blood work. My life is much easier a Mighty Well PICC line cover. They allow me to use the dressing for longer without any black ends or curling up. It keeps it out of exposure to more bacteria and environmental threats."
What advice would you give to a patient that has just being diagnosed with Lyme?
"My best advice is to don’t give up. Look for an answer. You know your body. If something isn't right, keep reaching out and find a doctor that doesn't stop fighting for you. Be your own advocate. I know it's hard with all of our symptoms, but no one else will do it; if you don't like the answer from your doctors, ask them to keep searching or find another doctor. Join support groups, talk to other patients, and find referrals. There are so many doctors that only go off textbook practice, but with Lyme, you need someone willing to step outside textbook knowledge, listen, and explore."
Whether you know someone with Lyme, or have been diagnosed yourself, it is important to raise awarenes for current and potential patients. We believe that a strong, supportive community will truly be a helpful outlet for people in need. We thank Cat for taking the time to share her thoughts with us. Awareness is a positive step forward for all Lyme Warriors and we urge all to keep it up!