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Boston Area Specialist in Treating Lyme Disease?
August 9, 2012 8:13 AM   Subscribe

Lyme Disease specialist in the Boston area? Asking for a coworker who has been terribly stricken with Lyme in the past year and wants to find someone in Boston who really can help her out.

Figuring we're in Boston, land of teaching hospitals, there's GOT to be some expert who can help her. She's done the various courses of pills but her symptoms just recur and she's not getting better. Her regular GP can't seem to offer much help.

Does anyone know who she could see?
posted by kinetic to Health & Fitness (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 
The guy who freaking discovered Lyme disease is at Massachusetts General. You may not be able to get an appointment with him as such, but you can probably get an appointment in his practice group there.
posted by valkyryn at 8:20 AM on August 9, 2012


WBUR just did a series on Living with Lyme, so it may be worth digging through the archives to see whose name comes up. Dr. Mark Drapin at Newton-Wellesley Hospital comes up several times.
posted by athenasbanquet at 8:23 AM on August 9, 2012


you or she could post this question to lymenet's "seeking a doctor" forum, and someone will respond with a list of doctors in a day or two. names of lyme-literate doctors (LLMDs) are kept somewhat under wraps for fear of repercussions due to their controversial treatment of some-say-nonexistent chronic lyme, hence the lack of readily available list.
posted by nevers at 9:31 AM on August 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Hospitals in the Boston area are denying privileges to doctors doing new and controversial treatments for chronic Lyme (on the grounds that they're endangering public health by off-label uses of antibiotics, primarily).

So docs aren't advertising that they have special interests in Lyme for that reason (what nevers said, in other words).

A general recommendation is for Visions Medical Center in Wellesley. It is an integrative health center that can be a bit heavy on the woo at times, but they have excellent doctors who will order very comprehensive labs and who spend time with each patient.
posted by Sidhedevil at 10:58 AM on August 9, 2012 [1 favorite]


Ugh! This is a really tough one, and it honestly depends on luck.

Allen Steere is a bit controversial in LD circles, especially because he seems to dismiss the possibility of Chronic Lyme (although some of the criticisms can definitely veer into tinfoil-hat territory).

So much depends on whether your coworker has had a positive blood test. Non-serological Lyme exists (and, based on my research, seems to be more common than that proved by a blood test), but many doctors do NOT KNOW THIS. Even doctors in the Boston area, who should flipping know this.

Many, many people go from doctor to doctor with their list of non-specific symptoms, including supposed Lyme specialists, to become only poorer and more frustrated in the process. Many people drive for hours to see the right doctor.

If your coworker has a diagnosis, and wants it confirmed, she could go to the Columbia University tickborne disease research center. If she needs diagnosis and/or treatment, she'll probably see a number of doctors before she finds the right one. I hope she doesn't end up having to treat herself, but that happens too.

I think a great first step would be locating a local Lyme support group. They are all over New England and they'll have the best and most recent word of mouth on doctors and the like.
posted by heigh-hothederryo at 6:45 PM on August 9, 2012


Non-serological Lyme exists (and, based on my research, seems to be more common than that proved by a blood test), but many doctors do NOT KNOW THIS. Even doctors in the Boston area, who should flipping know this.

Doctors at the Visions Center are absolutely aware of this, so that's something to consider about meeting with someone there.
posted by Sidhedevil at 6:55 PM on August 9, 2012


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