By Kenneth Liegner, MD. Published October 2015
Review on Amazon.com written by Pat Smith:
In the Crucible of Chronic Lyme Disease is a serious book, written by a serious physician about a serious disease. The book is not for casual reading but is an excellent resource for physicians, advocates, patients, and policy makers. It informs those who want to understand the history of Lyme disease and glean insights into why and how a disease which now afflicts about 400,000 people annually in the US has become one of the most controversial diseases in history, with no end to the controversy in sight.
Correspondence, documents and captioned photographs provided by Dr. Liegner run the gamut of government-related information such as those concerning the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), including the infamous Dearborn Conference that forever changed the testing for Lyme disease (excluding 2 bands in the Western Blot many patients exhibit) and including Congressional Lyme-related activity carried out by Congressmen Chris Smith (NJ) and Chris Gibson (NY), both of whom have made an impact on Lyme disease legislation in Washington, DC.
The role of physicians, researchers, and advocates are acknowledged. Many pioneers who shaped the early Lyme movement are recognized such as Dorothy Pietrucha, MD; Joseph Burrascano, MD; Pathologist Paul Duray, MD; researchers Willy Burgdorfer, PhD; Steven Schutzer, MD; and Brian Fallon, MD. Lyme disease non-profits who have funded many studies on Lyme and other tick-borne diseases are included, such as the Lyme Disease Association (of which I am president) and Lyme Research Alliance.
With tenacity from diagnosis to treatment and through the subsequent setbacks experienced by these seriously ill patients, Dr. Liegner has devoted his practice to complex Lyme cases− those that others have not wanted to tackle. He refuses to allow history to forget the case of one of his patients, Vicki Logan, featured on the cover of the book. Perhaps his inspiration, she succumbed to what her autopsy called chronic Lyme disease with brain inflammation. Her insurance company refused to cover her antibiotic treatments despite them helping her. The rational discourse about chronic Lyme that fills the book demands that readers look at the reality of Lyme: it is an epidemic; it is still misunderstood; it is a disease that kills people; and only quality science, dedicated doctors, and educational efforts by patients and advocates will eventually stop the devastation caused by chronic Lyme disease.
Kenneth Liegner, MD, long-time Lyme disease practitioner and member of the LDA Professional & Scientific Advisory Board. His book is available exclusively through the publisher and is a documental history of the struggle to characterize the nature of Lyme disease in the late 20th and early 21st centuries. In the words of the author, “The goal is to ‘make a difference’ and ‘move things forward.’ ” There are informative private documents about Lyme since its inception, and many photographs of individuals and organizations who have been influential in the Lyme movement appear in the book, including the Lyme Disease Association. The Vicki Logan story is featured.
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