Dr Nicola L. is a biologist working in Cambridge. Since 2018, her now 18-year-old son has been seriously ill with Lyme disease. For Lyme Disease Awareness Month, Nicola spoke to Clare Sansom for East Anglia Bylines about the dangers of this disease, problems with its treatment and what we can do to protect ourselves.
CS: Tell me briefly the story of your son’s illness – how did it start, how did you get to the Lyme diagnosis and what treatment was he given?
NL: We don’t know exactly when it started. At the start of 2018, our son was a happy, healthy 13-year-old doing very well at school and enjoying sports. A year later he was struggling with pain, exhaustion, vision problems and debilitating ‘brain fog’. His symptoms continued with no respite into 2020, at which point our GP finally ordered blood tests. Results came back positive for Lyme disease, which is caused by Borrelia bacteria. He took two short courses of antibiotics during that year with no improvement; he stopped attending school in April 2020.