My name is Karen, and, sadly, my Lyme story is all too common. Because I had not only worked in the medical field but also in the pharmaceutical industry, I thought I would have been well informed about Lyme disease. It wasn’t until I personally experienced it, walking into a world that is highly misunderstood, that I realized how wrong I was. Even with this kind of work experience and the benefit of two degrees from an Ivy League Institution, I had many misimpressions. After discovering the truth, I decided that when I was well, I needed to become active in public awareness, education and advocacy so that others did not have to experience what I experienced.
One of the things I am involved with currently is the upcoming Lyme and Tick Borne Disease Conference being held on April 11-12, 2014, in Hershey, PA. It is being sponsored by ILADS and is hosted by PA Lyme Resource Network. Last year, we held our first one and had a sell out crowd. I did the legwork so that nurses could attend and receive CEU credits. As a former nurse myself, I know full well that nurses are the eyes and ears for the doctors. Therefore, it is crucial for the nurse to know how to screen for Lyme disease. I am in the midst of working on that for our 2014 conference so we can allow for even more nurses to attend this year’s conference.
In addition to my work with ILADS and the PA Lyme Resource Network, I am busily working on my website. When I was in my initial stages of investigation, I stumbled upon a few helpful websites in which Lyme sufferers shared their stories and pointed me towards help. They were of great encouragement to me.
I developed this website for similar reasons:
1) I want to share my journey so that if you are suffering with Lyme and you are feeling alone, you will know that you are not;
2) I want to provide information to you, a fellow Lyme sufferer, so that you can be informed and get the right kind of treatment; and
3) I want to point you to resources so that as you are coming out the other side, you are better equipped to enable change in your own community, wherever that might be.
5) I want to provide listings of reputable medical resources and conferences to you if you are a healthcare practitioner wanting to know more about diagnosing and treating this disease;
4) I want to use it for others to be able to donate towards my treatment so that I can come out on the other side as well.
Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions. I will provide you the answers or direct you to someone who can. Others did this for me when I was new to the Lyme world, and I want to do the same for you.
Most importantly, hold on to hope. Together we can work to bring an end to this dreaded disease.