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"I didn't think that I could find a solution to my chronic condition. However, after finding New Life Medical, that all changed. They saved my life, and I will never forget them."

Ongoing fatigue, flu-like symptoms could be Lyme disease

The Daily Courier
Saturday, February 16, 2013

After years of declining health - flu-like symptoms, chronic fatigue and misdiagnoses of fibromyalgia, Crohn's disease, lupus, adrenal dysfunction, post traumatic stress disorder and even multiple sclerosis - Prescott resident Jamey Mauk still had no answers.

"I was at the point of being bed-ridden," he said. "I wasn't able to work. I was just getting worse over time," he said, adding he suffered episodes of seizures and muscle spasms and had to use a wheelchair or crutches to get around.

This grim picture painted Mauk's life, until he saw a movie on Netflix, "Under Our Skin."

"As I was watching, my family started gathering in shock," he said. "Looking at the people in the documentary was like looking at me on TV."

As Mauk would find out, he suffers from the movie's subject, Lyme disease, a bacterial illness caused by a bacterium called a "spirochete."

His doctor, Brent Korn, D.O., said, "Lyme disease is considered to be the great masquerader today, much like syphilis of long ago. It's hard to diagnose. If you don't look for it, you don't find it."

The day after seeing the film, Mauk, 47, consulted a naturopathic physician, who sent blood samples to a lab that specializes in diagnosing Lyme disease. It took three weeks, but when the tests came back it was positive that Mauk had Lyme.

Jamey Mauk uses a device to treat his Lyme disease Friday afternoon at his Prescott home. Mauk has had Lyme disease for the past eight years and was misdiagnosed multiple times.

Even though Mauk began treatment with Korn's practice just last fall, his saga began in summer 2003 when he was "a driven business owner and avid cyclist."

Living in Wisconsin in the woods on a lake at the time, "we had plenty of ticks there," he said, recalling that he had found one on his hip, "fully engorged." He also noticed a rash, but he pulled the tick off, and thought little about it.

"By August 2003, everything started going haywire," he said, and symptoms accelerated without a diagnosis. "One doctor said to me, 'I don't know what to do,'" he said.

Hoping that leaving Wisconsin's extreme weather would help, Mauk, his wife Andrea and family moved to Prescott in 2010 and opened Cuppers Coffee House.

They heard about Korn's New Life Medical practice in Gilbert from friend and customer Robin Bitz, who believes her daughter, Haven, 12, contracted Lyme disease during a visit to Colorado last summer. As the family returned to Prescott, Haven started feeling sick. At first, a doctor said it was probably a viral infection and "dots" on her body were probably an allergic reaction. Soon enough, an infected-looking red ring appeared around Haven's ankle, along with more "bug bites."

A local doctor suspected Lyme disease and prescribed amoxicillin and ordered blood tests, which came back negative. "My brain started thinking," Bitz said. "This is not normal," so she got on the Internet and discovered Korn's practice. "He did the right tests," she said, and found "Lyme was really active in her body."

Korn has a degree from Ohio University's College of Osteopathic Medicine. He describes New Life Medical's treatment of Lyme as "the use of conventional treatments, such as IV antibiotics, with alternative therapies as well.

"The treatment success rate has improved significantly," he said of a disease that "is ubiquitous and not limited to classically endemic areas but is more widespread. We suspect it is transmissible by other vectors, possibly mosquitoes, bed bugs, horse flies, dust mites and wolf spiders."

Mauk and Glendale resident Chris Scott got to be buddies when they underwent treatment at New Life Medical at the same time. Scott thinks he picked up Lyme disease while hiking in Flagstaff last year.

He, too, heard he "had the flu" when symptoms began to manifest themselves But, his health worsened - he had severe pain in his joints, difficulty standing, chills, shaking, fatigue, racing pulse and even neurological difficulties.

Scott's wife, Christina, got on the Internet, learned about New Life Medical, and if the practice's team had not put him on the protocol, "I don't know where I would be today," he said. "I'm probably 90 to 95 percent back to normal."

New Life Medical does not make any guarantees with respect to clinical outcomes. Clinical results may vary, as patient treatment protocols are formulated on an individualized, case-by-case basis.

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