I went to see a new doctor last Wednesday, a Dr. Lindsley out in Bloomer, WI. Dr. Lindsley is a chiropractor by trade but has become known as a kind of “Lyme healer” in the area, due to his excellent track record of healing people from Lyme in the upper Midwest. He himself had Lyme, and many in his family and community as well, and so over time he immersed himself in the study of the natural treatment of Lyme, in order to help himself and those around him. We found out about him through a contact of my mom’s, who was treated by him and then subsequently referred other contacts to him. They were all treated as well. After I watched his videos online, I felt like he had a very interesting and logical approach, and decided to make an appointment to see him. And so began the three month wait to get in to his very in-demand office.
In the mean-time, I was taking some herbs that he recommended (Formulas 1 & 3 off of his website). His office told me the herbs are safe even if you don’t have an exact diagnosis, so it didn’t hurt to start them while we were waiting for the appointment. I did feel some positive effects from beginning on the herbs, but after a while the progress seemed to plateau, so I was really looking forward to getting in and receiving more specific recommendations on how to move forward.
So, on Wednesday we set out for Bloomer. The drive was about two hours from Minneapolis. About an hour and a quarter on the freeway, half an hour on a country highway, and 15 minutes on back roads. As we turned onto the back roads, we started to scan the acres of agricultural fields for a sign of the Lyme Healer. After a while, we saw a sign and pulled into the driveway of a big red barn, in the center of a beautiful valley, with rolling meadows all around. Even in early February (10 degrees F) it was beautiful, and very serene.
We walked inside and signed in, and then took our spots in the waiting room. In the 15 minutes we were waiting, at least one person called to make an appointment for Lyme. I could imagine what the person on the other end of the line was saying and thinking as the receptionist responded, “Yes, he brings all kinds of people back to health” and took the appointment for three months out.
After a few minutes we were called back and settled into a large-ish room with a whiteboard, and walls covered in diagrams and depictions of chemical processes in the human body. There was a large cabinet full of vials (more on that later) and a chiropractic table in the center of the room. Not long after we were settled, Dr. Lindsley walked in, and we all acquainted ourselves. He spent a few minutes looking through some of the labs I had brought with, as we discussed my journey with Lyme. Every once in a while he would get excited about something and go to write a chemical equation on the whiteboard, or explain the significance of a certain number in the body’s ability to make energy.
I should back up. Energy is at the center of Dr. Lindsley’s approach to fighting Lyme. He believes that if the body is unable to make energy (a.k.a. the Krebs cycle for chemistry nerds) we will never get better, no matter what medications we are using or food we are eating. Because of the damage that Lyme and coinfections wreak, many of us lose our ability to make energy – whether from autoimmune conditions or the toxins that Lyme releases as it moves throughout the body. So when Dr Lindsley treats Lyme, he tries to figure out where the process is breaking down, and how to restore that so that our body has the energy to naturally heal itself. If you’re interested in this, there is much more in the video section of his website.
Back to the story…Once he had seen enough of the labs, I was invited to lie down on the table. He then began a process which I believe is unique to his practice. Basically, while I lay there, he moved different vials of Lyme bacteria and its common coinfections, over different parts of my body. While he did this, he monitored for reactions, a sign that my body was resisting the contents of the vials. If I had a strong enough reaction, it is assumed that my body already contains the substance in question. Dr. Lindsley compared it to tuning a guitar, when the tuning fork and the guitar are at the same frequency, one causes a vibration in the other (a better explanation, here). He claims to feel something like that when holding the vials of Lyme and co-infections close to a person’s body. I can’t explain it as well as he did, but I believed that he understood what he was doing.
Through this process, he told me he is fairly certain that I’ve gotten rid of the Lyme. However, I did register a response for a couple of the co-infections – Bartonella and Babesia. Co-infections is the name given to other microbes commonly spread along with Lyme bacteria (yes, there’s more in those nasty ticks than just Lyme). The doctor that I saw in the fall suspected that I had at least Bartonella, as it can cause bladder problems and anxiety like I’ve had. And I had been wondering if I had low-grade Babesia for a while, after I discovered that it can cause chest and lung problems, as well as bladder symptoms. So I wasn’t really surprised to hear that I had both of those. I was pleasantly surprised, however, to hear that I might be done with Lyme! The co-infections are no party to get rid of either, but at least we’re moving in the right direction!
He then began what’s called a muscle test (or applied kinesiology). I sat up, and held one of the vials either up to my forehead, or in my hand. As I did this, I stuck my other arm out straight, and he tried to press down on it. If I was able to resist the pressure, and keep my arm straight, it was assumed that the substance in that particular vial was not affecting me. If I became weak and unable to resist, we had a good idea that my body was already affected/overrun by that substance. For the vials that I showed a reaction to (a.k.a. Became weak) he would then put a vial with the antidote next to it, and most of the time I then felt much stronger. This way he was able to recommend to me the herbs and supplements that I needed to add into my regimen.
I have had a lot of Lyme anxiety over the past few years, and Dr. Lindsley explained to me that 1) Lyme loves the brain and 2) Lyme bacteria secretes ammonia into surrounding cells wherever it goes. This fries the nerves in the brain and makes them over-excited – hence leading to anxiety. It was a relief to know that there is a biological explanation and I’m not just going crazy (although sometimes it still feels that way). At one point he held a vial of ammonia up to my head and I felt physically sick – weak and dizzy all over. I feel secure that he is onto something here, because the toxins that he found explain the large majority of the symptoms I have been experiencing for a long time.
Regarding my energy, something we discussed during the appointment was a possibility of thyroid problems and/or an autoimmune problem (most likely Hashimoto’s thyroiditis). I’ve wondered for a while if something is wrong with my thyroid, as it would explain some of my symptoms and I have a family history of thyroid problems, but haven’t been able to get other doctors to look seriously at it. The hypothesis right now is that dealing with the Lyme has potentially caused my immune system to attack my thyroid, making it harder for my immune system (and thyroid) to deal with the Lyme. This is just a hypothesis right now though, I should be seeing the results of some blood tests this week, to know how to move forward. Fingers crossed that I won’t be dealing with an autoimmune condition as a result of Lyme, but even if I am I feel confident that I will be able to find a way to reverse it naturally. More updates on that to come soon. So, in summary…
Still Fighting: Bartonella & Babesia
Jury’s Still Out: Thyroid Problems/Autoimmune Condition
A lot of people probably will read this post and think it sounds crazy, and if it wasn’t me, I’d probably feel the same. But I also acknowledge that there are so many dimensions to the world, and medicine, that we don’t know that well. Just because we don’t know it doesn’t mean it’s not real or true. This is the path I’ve chosen to go forward with my treatment for Lyme & coinfections, and I feel confident and optimistic in it. Plus, Dr. Lindsley has a great track record.
Feel free to reach out with questions if you (or someone you know) are looking for treatment for Lyme, I’m happy to talk more about my experience.