Annmarie is sharing her story in an effort to raise awareness for Lyme disease, Bartonella, and other co-infections.
Trying to Find Answers
In those two years, I saw six doctors- all of whom attributed the sudden onset symptoms of intense fatigue, brain fog, bloating, sleep issues and muscle aches to GI dysfunction —focusing on the low hanging fruit; a positive test for Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO).
I used to eat anything and everything. I never dieted, had no allergies, and was always healthy and athletic with a ton of energy. Suddenly, getting out of bed in the morning became an alarming struggle, and I was having intense reactions to just about everything that I put into my body (gluten, dairy, legumes, sugar, alcohol etc). My stomach would blow up so large after just two beers that people would ask if I was “expecting.” My brain would get so foggy that I’d forget where I was going when I was driving. I’d forget simple words, feel completely overwhelmed, and be unable to perform simple tasks. I started experiencing significant mood swings, anxiety and depression. All of which I had never suffered from in the past.
I treated SIBO for one year, strictly following the Low Fodmap diet. During this time, I lost ten pounds (making me 121 pounds at 5’10) and my hair began to fall out in clumps. The bloating had slightly subsided but in its place, I started experiencing extreme joint pain, scary neurological symptoms and increased muscle aches. The range of motion in my neck was so bad that one day that my husband called a massage therapist to come over to our home. Feeling privileged and embarrassed, I immediately divulged all of my health issues, rattling off each symptom. She froze and said,
“Look, I’m not a doctor but it sounds to me like you have Lyme disease. Have you been tested for that?”
I explained these exact symptoms to six doctors but the first person to ever even mention Lyme was a massage therapist.
On the Right Path
GLA is currently fundraising for The Bartonella Discovery Program, a research project bringing together some of the top researchers world-wide who are experts on Bartonellosis. These researchers will learn more about the bacteria and which treatments are most likely to cure all patients. None of the work GLA has accomplished would be possible without your support.
*Opinions expressed by contributors are their own