A note on Lyme -- make sure to see a Lyme specialist to get tested, otherwise it can go misdiagnosed for WAY too long. My cousin in Toronto had it and for 9 months the doctors were looking or brain tumors but we finally convinced her to see a specialist in Boston and sure enough: Lyme (her symptoms were mainly neurological as it was quite advanced Lyme, Boston doctor estimated she'd had it for nearly 3 years!!). While it's a long recovery road back she definitely is improving.
lyme is a nasty, tricky, complicated disease! Make sure to see someone who really knows it!
Can't speak much on the others as I have no experience with them whereas 60% of my extended family has had Lyme (plus 3 dogs and 2 horses) but obviously you want to rule out everything and anything possible!
Okay so my doctor called me last night with my test results.
He said I definitely tested positive for Lymes disease and they feel I've had it for about a year.
I never remember being bit so it's just a guess.
It's beginning to effect my nervous system as I get the tingles in my arms and legs and the arthritis like symptoms.
I start treatment tomorrow. It'll be a series of shot and two months of antibiotics.
He said it will probably get quite a bit worse before I gets better because the antibiotics will essentially stir up the bacteria.
Does this sound right to everyone? I trust him explicitly and would prefer to have him treat me if at all possible.
It sounds about right. Many people do not recall being bit by a tick. Yes, you might feel worse before you feel better (it is called a Herxheimer reaction, and it is because the spirochetes are dying off). I'm guessing that the shots are bicillen shots, which is a recognized treatment. (They can be painful, fyi, though my then-11 year old tolerated them well). Did he say how long you'd be on the shots?
Re: the antibiotics, many doctors give a combination, including tindamax or flagyll to kill the Lyme spirochete in all its forms (it can morph into something called the "cyst form" and as far as I know the only drugs that are effective for this stage are tindamax and flagyll).
A really good website to go to is the Columbia University Medical School's Lyme Disease Center one. Lyme, as you may discover, is a hugely controversial disease. There is not consensus in the medical community as to how to treat, and how long to treat. I find the Columbia Lyme Center's site to be scientifically accurate, and relatively unbiased. Another website is ILADS.org.