If you live in Saskatchewan and you’re wondering how you can get diagnosed with Lyme disease, the answer is – go to Alberta.
Saskatchewan does not currently have any Lyme Literate doctors that have current knowledge and access to the newest testing methods.
I know of 2 Lyme Literate doctors in Calgary, but for the most current information regarding the closest available doctor to you, visit the ILADS website and click on the ‘Contact’ link at the top of the page. You will then see the link for ‘Physician Referral’, or you just simply click here. Fill in the required information and they will get back to you.
(ILADS is the International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society. This non-profit organization is the global leader for Lyme awareness and advocate for proper Lyme treatment protocol that puts patients first – as opposed to politics and money, which is the current driving factor behind all the Lyme controversy.)
The Calgary based Lyme Literate doctor I see is:
Dr. Aisha Hernandez Vargas, ND (on behalf of Dr. Aparna Taylor, ND)
Provital Health & Wellness
P: 403-685-4520 | E: firstname.lastname@example.org
Dr. Aisha works at Provital 2 days/week (she is permanently employed at another Calgary clinic). Dr. Aisha works at Provital to assist Dr. Taylor with her Lyme patients. Dr. Taylor recently came back from maternity leave and last I heard was back working at the clinic part time.
Dr. Aisha is a young intelligent woman who is very caring and understanding. She is very knowledgeable and you can tell that her priority is the best interest of her patients. I have only spoken with Dr. Taylor once, who made time for a last minute phone appointment I needed while Dr. Aisha was away. She was also extremely kind and knowledgeable. These traits make all the difference in the world if you have been going from doctor to condescending doctor trying to get help. I highly recommend Dr. Aisha and Dr. Taylor.
They are both Naturopathic Doctors, not medical doctors, which is something you need to be aware of. As you still need assistance from your family physician, you may have trouble if they don’t think highly of the naturopathic field. Dr’s. Aisha & Taylor have a holistic approach that combines the best of western medicine and naturopathy for a well-balanced approach to treating Lyme.
The other Calgary based Lyme doctor that I know of is:
Dr. Rebecca Risk, TCMD (doctor of Traditional Chinese Medicine)
P: 403-668-1174 | E: email@example.com
I am in touch with a fellow Saskatonian named Shelley, who was also recently diagnosed with Lyme and is being treated by Dr. Risk. Shelley has advised me that Dr. Risk treats Lyme solely by natural methods, and does not prescribe antibiotics. Dr. Risk has had Lyme disease herself (which she most likely contracted in Saskatchewan years ago: read her Lyme story here.)
I don’t know enough about Dr. Risk to give a strong recommendation, so I guess it depends on if you want to try antibiotics or not.
NOTE: antibiotics are NOT a cure for Lyme. Long courses of antibiotics over a long period of time (months to years) has helped many people improve. However, most patients take many natural remedies and naturopathic treatments along with the antibiotics which helps immensely.
Lab Testing for Lyme:
Your Lyme Literate doctor will decide which lab test is best for you based on your symptoms.
The Igenix lab in California has a fairly accurate test for Lyme. (This was where my blood was sent.) Dr.’s Aisha & Taylor as well as Dr. Risk send their patient’s blood samples to Igenix as part of their clinical diagnosis process.
The test Igenix uses is called ‘Western Blot’ and is much more accurate than the old ‘ELISA’ test (which Saskatchewan currently uses). However, even the Western Blot can result in false negatives as it is not quite sensitive enough.
Dr. Taylor has been looking into a lab in Germany that may have a more accurate test, although it will obviously cost more money.
Ceres, a lab in Virginia, has developed a urine test for Lyme disease, called ‘NanoTrap Lyme Antigen Test’. It is based on nano-technology that can detect trace amount of the Lyme bacteria (borrelia burgdorferi). Visit their website here.
This article states that any physician in the States can order this test for their patient. I do not know if Canadian physicians can order this test.
When searching for your Lyme Literate doctor, ask them if they have any knowledge and/or recommendations regarding this new test. This may help you decide which doctor to see.
Please share this article with everyone you can – I know of many people in the province who are struggling with a “mystery” illness and their doctors are unsure what is wrong with them.
I strongly encourage anyone with a weird mystery illness to get checked for Lyme. It can manifest differently in different people and it mimics so many other illnesses like multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, ALS, rheumatoid arthritis, Lupus, Chronic fatigue syndrome, and the list goes on. Your Saskatchewan doctor will not help you with the most current Lyme test (I am always hoping someone will prove me wrong on this!) so you really have to take your health into your own hands.
Help yourself, stay strong and be well.