Looking at Lyme

33 Episodes

By: Canadian Lyme Disease Foundation

Looking at Lyme is an educational podcast created by the Canadian Lyme Disease Foundation, designed to increase awareness and empower listeners with expert knowledge. Join host Sarah Cormode as she explores various perspectives about Lyme disease and its impact on human health. Throughout the series, we will learn alongside doctors, entomologists, geneticists, community leaders and other experts. Come learn how to stay safe in the outdoors!

32. Past, Present and Future of Lyme Disease in Canada with Jim Wilson of CanLyme
Yesterday at 2:55 PM

In today’s podcast, Sarah is joined by Jim Wilson, founder and President of CanLyme — the Canadian Lyme Disease Foundation. After contracting Lyme disease 30 years ago in Nova Scotia, Canada, Jim dedicated his time and energy to improving the lives of Lyme patients and their families, helping to bring a balanced perspective of Lyme disease to the forefront.

31. A whole body approach to Lyme, with medical detective Dr. Kenneth Bock

Sarah explores an integrative approach to medicine with Dr. Kenneth Bock from the Hudson Valley, in New York. Dr. Bock’s natural curiosity, investigative approach, along with his appreciation for complex medical cases set the foundation for his integrative practice. His first Lyme patient in 1985 initially came in with a swollen toe that didn’t seem to have a medical cause. After a thorough investigation which included researching Lyme disease, he discovered that the patient had travelled to Block Island, an area known to be endemic for Lyme. The patient was subsequently diagnosed with Lyme disease and was successfully treated.

30. Understanding posttraumatic growth, with Dr. Richard Tedeschi

Posttraumatic growth is not only the topic of today’s podcast, it is also the process that birthed the Looking at Lyme podcast. Sarah explores posttraumatic growth with Dr. Richard Tedeschi, Professor Emeritus of Psychology at the University of North Carolina, faculty member of the Posttraumatic Research Group and distinguished chair of the Boulder Crest Institute for Posttraumatic Growth.

29. Pain management with neural therapy

Sarah discusses the use of neural therapy for pain management with Dr. Kumar Biswas, a Canadian naturopathic doctor on Vancouver Island. Developed in the early 1900’s in Germany, neural therapy is now practiced across Europe and North America. Dr. Biswas explains that biological medicine, which is practiced throughout Europe, integrates alternative medicine and modern medicine. While modern medicine is based on diagnosis, biological medicine is based on functional physiology, and aims to understand and correct imbalances in the body. He further explains that functional medicine has developed in the US in recent years as a marriage of the art and sc...

28. Dr. Ginger Savely on the role of nurses in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of Lyme disease

In today’s podcast, Sarah explores Lyme disease from a nursing perspective with Nurse Practitioner Dr. Ginger Savely. Dr. Savely has specialized in the treatment of patients with tick-borne illnesses for the past two decades, and has authored and co-authored many articles in nursing and medical journals. Now living in Washington, DC, she first started researching Lyme while living in Texas, when her 16 year old daughter became very ill with the disease. Dr. Savely later became quite ill with the disease, eventually leading her to make it the focus of her own practice. She notes that many healthcare providers research an...

27. Outdoor education, checklists, and staying safe in the outdoors, with Mike Horembala

Today we explore one of the many ways the CanLyme Educators’ Resource can be put into action. In this podcast, Sarah reaches Mike Horembala in the Foothills of Alberta. Mike, known to his students as “Mr. H’, is a Vice Principal and teacher with a passion for the outdoors. He developed a program within the Foothills School District called “Go Wild,” where students can learn about the outdoors while earning credits. Students participate in day trips and multi-day expeditions... hiking, canoeing, kayaking, backcountry skiing and snowshoeing amongst many other outdoor activities.

26. Climate change, migratory birds, and four season tick awareness

We turn our gaze northward to Thunder Bay, Ontario to chat with entomologist Dr. Ken Deacon. While working on a contract with the Thunder Bay District Health Unit, he saw the first wood tick in the Thunder Bay area in 2003. He then saw the first black-legged tick in 2005 and has continued to follow the progression of their habitat expansion. He points out that ticks can now be found in northern areas where they never existed in the past, and sees this as a clear indicator of climate change. Not only are the ticks living further north, they are also surviving...

25. Optometry, eye-brain connections and Lyme disease

In the words of Optometrist Dr. Cameron McCrodan, “you don’t see with your eyes, you see with your brain.” What is the relationship between the eyes, the brain and some symptoms of Lyme disease? Dr. McCrodan explains that our brains are not only tasked with receiving visual stimuli, they also influence how the information is interpreted and how our eyes function. Although these topics were touched upon during his optometry education, his engineering mindset drew him to further explore this relationship between the eyes and the brain. As his knowledge expanded, he found that some of the symptoms his own fa...

24. Let's talk astrocytes, gut bacteria and neuroinflammation with Dr. Francisco Quintana

Sarah explores the latest research on astrocytes, gut bacteria and neuroinflammation with scientist and medical researcher Dr. Francisco Quintana. Dr. Quintana is a Professor of Neurology at Harvard Medical School and an Associate Scientist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts. He describes some of the causes of neuroinflammation including infection, tumours and auto-immune disease.

23. Angela Naeth tells us about life as a triathlete with Lyme disease

Join us for a candid conversation with Ironman athlete, Angela Naeth. Angela contracted Lyme disease in 2018, the same year she completed the Ironman race in Kona, Hawaii. Born in Prince George BC, and now living in Massachusetts, Angela has had to continually adapt and evolve in order to optimize both her own health and her performance as an athlete. She describes the learning curve that many Lyme patients are faced with in trying to navigate this complicated disease. After seeing many doctors and finally receiving a Lyme diagnosis, she had to research various treatments and be her own advocate to...

22. Lyme and outdoor safety for teaching children

Sarah is excited to announce a new Educator Resource for Lyme disease, and speak with the lead resource developer, Lauren Hudson. Lauren is an educator and parent with a passion for science, life and for going into nature with her students and her family. She took a deep dive into the world of Lyme disease to help develop an educator resource to help other teachers both learn and teach about ticks and tick-borne illnesses. Lauren recalls her own journey of learning about tick-borne illnesses from members of the Lyme Education Awareness and Prevention (LEAP) team, through her own research and...

21. Sarah and Tim Tchida talk tick safety in treeplanting

What can employers do to protect staff who work in the outdoors? In today’s podcast, Sarah explores some answers to that question with Tim Tchida, Owner and CEO of Summit Reforestation in Smithers BC. When Tim first heard about Lyme disease, he never imagined getting the disease himself. Tim recalls first learning he had Lyme disease after receiving a positive Canadian Lyme test (western blot) following mild symptoms of the disease. As time went on, he realized how fortunate he was to receive a diagnosis in light of so many others who have found it very challenging to receive a...

20. Tick testing, active surveillance, and participatory science, with Dr. Vett Lloyd from Mount Allison University

This week, we are very excited to speak with one of Canada’s foremost tick and Lyme disease researchers, Dr. Vett Lloyd, who heads up a dynamic research team at Mount Allison University in Sackvillle, New Brunswick. Her curiosity, passion for community and collaboration and sense of humour have endeared her to her colleagues and her community. Dr. Lloyd starts a typical day in her lab where she is currently working on a community science initiative in which people send ticks they find on themselves or on pets or other animals. Her research team tests the ticks for various pathogens, a...

19. Continuing medical education for physicians

As Dr. Maloney says, “Research is our way out of this.” This is our kind of expert leading the way in the field. In today’s podcast, Sarah explores a comprehensive (and free!) online education program designed for healthcare professionals, which was founded by Lyme disease expert, Dr. Betty Maloney. Dr. Maloney became interested in Lyme disease when she realized that what she was seeing in her medical practice did not align with her medical training and scientific education. This led her to apply her clinical skills, listen carefully to her patients, and eventually help educate other physicians regarding Lyme diseas...

S2 E1: Welcome back! Dr. Theoharides tells us about mast cells and neuroinflammation

Welcome back to Season 2 of the Looking at Lyme podcast. Buckle your seatbelts, because we are going on a science adventure with Dr. Theoharis Theoharides, Professor of Immunology at Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston. Dr. Theoharides has been on the leading edge of mast cell research and recounts the fascinating history and physiology of mast cells.

The end of season one

Well that was fun! And did we ever learn a lot from season one. We feel very fortunate to have interviewed so many incredible doctors, scientists, journalists, and educators. It was a really interesting year to deepen our understanding about tick-borne illnesses. We're at the end of season one, and we'll be back with season two in 2021.  We've just released the first draft of a https://www.lookingatlyme.ca/resource/ (teacher resource). Please share it with any educators or guides that you might know.  Thank you for your support. Stay safe in the outdoors! https://www.lookingatlyme.ca/2020/11...

S1 E17: Speaking with Mary Beth Pfeiffer, author of Lyme: the First Epidemic of Climate Change

In today’s podcast, Sarah talks about ticks, Lyme disease and climate change with investigative reporter Mary Beth Pfeiffer. She lives in New York State, an area of the US which is highly endemic for Lyme disease, and has been investigating this disease for the past 8 years. Her search for answers revealed that there was not only a denial from the US CDC and Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) regarding what patients were telling them about Lyme disease but also a disdain for this patient population. Mary Beth describes how her own book, Lyme: the First Epidemic of Climate Ch...

S1 E16: Wilderness first aid training and Lyme prevention

In today’s podcast, Sarah examines the importance of adequate training in wilderness first aid skills. She speaks with expert Michael Crawford, an instructor at Slipstream Wilderness First Aid in Victoria, BC. Michael points out some of the differences between regular first aid and wilderness first aid. Anyone performing first aid on a patient in a wilderness setting will likely need to care for them for a longer period of time than in a city situation. It is also important to know and differentiate between which health issues need to be addressed immediately and those that can wait. In th...

S1 E15: Managing risk in the outdoors, with Steve Smith

In this podcast, Sarah speaks with Steve Smith, an expert in outdoor risk management. Steve has worked for many years teaching, leading, planning, and consulting about ways to manage risk in the outdoors. Steve recently presented at the 2020 NOLS Wilderness Risk Management Conference. Steve begins by explaining the difference between safety and risk management, and why this distinction is necessary when it comes to taking people into the wilderness. Every day we take risks and some degree of risk is not only unavoidable, it’s a necessary part of being human. Sarah and Steve discuss many of the benefits of ho...

S1 E14: Heading to Finland to find ways to accurately diagnose tick-borne diseases

In this episode Sarah talks with Canadian researcher Dr.Leona Gilbert, originally from Thunder Bay, and currently living in Finland. Dr. Gilbert tells us about an interaction with a patient that led her to focus on testing for Lyme disease. She points to research showing that patients who suffer from long term effects of Lyme disease often test positive for multiple microbes.  Tickplex is a diagnostic kit that tests for six different forms of borrelia, ten other forms of microbes as well as antibodies which correlate to three different disease stages - all in one test! Dr. Gilbert explains...

S1 E13: Back to the lab with Dr. Melanie Wills from the G. Magnotta Research Lab at the University of Guelph

In this episode Sarah talks research, Canadian research that is, with Dr. Melanie Wills. She is the Director of the G. Magnotta Lab at the University of Guelph, conducting research and studying the diagnosis, prognosis and treatment of Lyme disease. She became interested in researching Lyme disease while working on her PhD, when her own health history intersected with her research interests. When a doctor suggested she may have symptoms of Lyme disease, Dr. Wills agreed that her symptoms were similar, but she had been tested, and Lyme disease had been ruled out. At the doctor’s recommendation, she explored fu...

The importance of prevention and adequate early treatment of Lyme disease

In this episode, Sarah hears from Alexis Chesney, a naturopathic physician in Vermont who specializes in Lyme disease and other tick-borne illnesses. She is also author of the book “Preventing Lyme and Other Tick-Borne Diseases”. Alexis became interested in Lyme disease when a previously healthy friend and colleague developed many mysterious symptoms which turned out to be caused by Lyme disease. Dr. Chesney describes some of the treatments she has found effective over the years including antibiotics and herbal medicines. She also explains a Herxheimer reaction, a worsening of symptoms, which is caused by toxins that are released when bacteria die...

Exploring co-infections, Bartonella, and the importance of clinical diagnosis, with Dr. Thomas Moorcraft

In this week’s podcast, Sarah speaks with Dr. Thomas Moorcroft, a physician from Connecticut who specializes in Lyme disease and Lyme-related infections. He explains what co-infections are and differentiates between infections that are contracted from a tick bite, and concurrent infections that people with Lyme disease may experience. During the 2020 International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society (ILADS) conference, he presented several cases of known tick bites in which individuals tested positive for 3-5 different pathogens. He explains the implications of having more than one infection on disease expression and test accuracy.  Dr. Moorcroft talks about Bartonella, a co-infection of...

S1 E10: Discussing the effects of Lyme disease on the brain with Dr. Leo Shea

In this episode Sarah talks about the effects of Lyme disease on the brain with Dr. Shea, a senior staff psychologist, professor and President of Neuropsychological Evaluation and Treatment Services in New York City and Boston. Dr. Shea starts off by explaining many of the effects that Lyme disease has on the brain including the ability to process information, changes in memory, multitasking and high level reasoning. He also explains the importance of understanding the effects on the brain and mental health in terms of what is going on physically to cause these changes. He uses neuropsychological evaluation to measure...

S1 E9: Elizabeth May speaks to the challenge of updating medical best practices and the continued rise of ticks and Lyme disease

In this episode, Sarah speaks with another champion for Canadians living with Lyme, Green MP Elizabeth May. She describes how she first learned about the severity of Lyme disease when speaking to a woman from Pictou, Nova Scotia who required a wheelchair for mobility. After moving to British Columbia, Elizabeth met others who were experiencing life-altering illness due to the tick-borne diseases. She was frustrated to learn that these patients were dismissed and told there was no Lyme disease where they lived. Elizabeth was determined to develop a Private Member’s Bill to address Lyme disease in Canada after meeting so...

S1 E8: How to protect your pet from Lyme disease

In today’s episode, Sarah speaks with veterinarian Dr. Joe Bloom to find out more about Lyme disease and other tick-borne illnesses, and how they could affect our pets. Dr. Bloom works in an endemic area of the United States and sees many dogs with Lyme disease in his practice, explaining signs and symptoms that dogs might experience. He also describes the different kinds of tests he uses to diagnose Lyme and other tick-borne diseases in dogs.  Did you know that some dogs can have Lyme disease but not show symptoms? Dr. Bloom explains how further testing can help de...

S1 E7: Dr. Ralph Hawkins explains the challenges of detecting Lyme disease through testing

In this episode of Looking at Lyme, Sarah speaks with Internal Medicine Specialist and Canadian Lyme expert, Dr. Ralph Hawkins. Dr. Hawkins has been treating Lyme patients in Canada for many years, gaining a wealth of knowledge about the disease. He recounts his introduction to the shortcomings of Lyme disease testing in Canada while treating a patient with a history of multiple previous tick bites, many common symptoms of Lyme disease, but a negative Canadian Lyme test. Dr. Hawkins had the patient’s blood tested at a University Lab in New York, revealing test band patterns consistent with Lyme disease. He...

S1 E6: Talking research, testing, and treatment of Lyme disease with Dr. Sam Donta

In this episode, Sarah interviews an Infectious Disease Physician who has treated Lyme patients in the US state where Lyme disease was first identified - Connecticut. Dr. Sam Donta has gained a wealth of knowledge and expertise treating Lyme patients for almost 40 years. As a result of his expertise, he was appointed as one of 14 members of the Tick-Borne Disease Working Group, established by the US Congress in 2016.  Dr. Sam Donta emphasizes the importance of early treatment for Lyme disease, noting that as time passes, the disease becomes much more difficult to treat. He discusses some of the challenges...

S1 E5: How Lyme disease can impact children and family

In today’s podcast, we start to explore Lyme disease in children. Sarah welcomes her father, Dr. Ted Cormode, to the podcast. He understands Lyme disease both as a pediatrician and as a parent supporting and advocating for his child. Dr. Cormode talks about his experience as a parent when Sarah first became ill. In medical school, he did not learn about Lyme disease so he spent the next years digging deeper into medical research. Dr. Cormode walks us through some of the unique challenges of understanding Lyme disease in children. He describes an interesting case study of a child wh...

S1 E4: Understanding symptoms and treating the whole person

In this episode, Sarah speaks with Dr. Bruce Hoffman, a Functional Medicine physician from Calgary. Dr. Hoffman describes Functional Medicine and explains how numerous factors influence a patient’s health. He highlights the importance of taking an in-depth patient history to understand and document symptoms. This helps determine whether a patient might have other underlying health concerns that may need to be addressed.  Dr. Hoffman explains that there are several approaches to treating Lyme disease. He gives us insight into why there is such a variety of symptoms amongst patients with Lyme disease and describes how symptoms often wax an...

S1 E3: Entomologist Janet Sperling tells us about the spread of ticks and Lyme disease

In this episode, Sarah speaks with Canadian entomologist Janet Sperling, who specializes in tick microbiomes. Sarah sets the stage with a quick history of Lyme disease, including how it got its name and how long it’s been around. We’ll find out why it’s important to know the different kinds of ticks found in Canada and what habitats they need to survive.  Janet Sperling explains how ticks are able to stay attached for days and how they transmit pathogens to us. Did you know ticks can travel thousands of miles on birds? That’s one of the reasons...

S1 E2: Justin Wood takes us deep into the world of ticks

In this episode, Justin Wood takes us deep into the world of ticks. We will find out what makes ticks tick, including their feeding patterns and life stages. We learn about the different kinds of ticks found in Canada, as well as valuable information about how to identify ticks and know which ones can transmit pathogens to humans.  Did you know that many people don’t feel anything when a tick bites? Justin fills us in about how ticks are able to attach and feed undetected, even after several days! We learn about some of the pathogens that ticks ca...

S1 E1: Exploring Lyme disease with Dr. Liz Zubek

In this episode, we meet host Sarah Cormode and explore Lyme disease through the perspective of a Canadian family physician during her interview with Dr. Liz Zubek.  Sarah draws upon her expertise in education, research and outdoor adventure to explore all things Lyme. She reflects back on her own experience with Lyme disease after being bitten by a tick in her backyard in 2012, then ventures out to speak with a wide variety of experts to better understand this disease. Guided by her own experience with Lyme disease, Sarah reveals a distinctly Canadian perspective of Lyme disease. More about this...