In 2002 I didn't know much about Lyme. My patient suffered with a paralyzed diaphragm. He was in misery with every breath: only one lung could expand. A trillion specialist said he was a medical mystery. Idiopathic. Once I heard Gabe Mirkin say: Idiopathic means the doctor is an idiot and the patient is pathological. True in this case. My notes show I actually thought of Lyme even back then. He became one of those troubling patient, anathema to every primary clinic. So many complaints! fatigue, depression - at times suicidal, brain fog, memory loss, total body pain - the list went on. I was empathetic and used all the tools in my box - band aids. Somewhere along the trail I became "Lyme literate." Antibiotics helped a little. The diaphragm still wouldn't move and overall improvements were modest. In 2008 if finally sent off a blood sample to Clongen.Positive Babesia PCR. The PCR was positive!
In short, Mepron turned his life around. He could breath. Everything got better. He was even happy. Unfortunately, every time Mepron was stopped he crashed. Nothing else worked.
Recently,his employer suddenly cancelled Cigna. He was now pushed into Kaiser. He was told that his "Cadillac plan" had to go.
Today he came in just to lament.
He tells me the new Kaiser doctor mumbled something about about hindsight which didn't make any sense. The doctor told him there was no way he was going to prescribe Mepron for something "they" didn't believe in.
The doctor said he didn't know what a PCR is, and there is no box to check on the lab requisition to order a PCR. No Box. I had to repeat this over and over again to make sure I got it right.
The patient doesn't know what to do. He can't afford $1100.00 a month for the drug.