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Why Can't I Get Better? Solving the Mystery of Lyme and Chronic Disease
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Why Can't I Get Better? Solving the Mystery of Lyme and Chronic Disease

4.41  ·  Rating details ·  381 Ratings  ·  42 Reviews
From one of the country's foremost doctors comes a ground-breaking book about diagnosing, treating and healing Lyme, and peeling away the layers that lead to chronic disease.

You may not know that you have Lyme. It can mimic every disease process including Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia, autoimmune conditions like MS, psychiatric conditions like depression and anxie
Hardcover, 544 pages
Published November 12th 2013 by St. Martin's Press (first published September 3rd 2013)
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Why Can't I Get Better? Solving the Mystery of Lyme and Chron... by Richard I. HorowitzRecipes for Repair by Gail PiazzaHealing Lyme by Stephen Harrod BuhnerThe Top 10 Lyme Disease Treatments by Bryan RosnerOut of the Woods by Katina I. Makris
Lyme Disease
40 books — 13 voters
The Disease Delusion by Jeffrey S. BlandThe Epigenetics Revolution by Nessa CareyThe Brain That Changes Itself by Norman DoidgeThe Hacking of the American Mind by Robert H. LustigThe End of Alzheimer's by Dale Bredesen
Healthy Aging
299 books — 21 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Darcia Helle
Nov 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: health, nonfiction
First, I want to emphasize that this is not easy reading material. While, Dr. Horowitz does his best to break the information down into easy to understand chunks, the content is comprehensive and highly scientific. For the average person, this is the type of book requiring time and concentration. For those in the medical profession, this is an absolute must read.

I've had a lifetime of health problems and have a list of diagnoses containing words like 'chronic' and 'idiopathic'. Finally, five yea
Nov 11, 2013 is currently reading it
Just received an advance copy of this book to review. It goes on sale on Nov. 12, 2013. Updated points will be posted here as I work through this book.
Firstly, thank you to Dr. Horowitz for tackling the job of writing a book about the darkness we, as Lyme disease patients, face every day.
Oct 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: health
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
If you have Lyme Disease you can not be without this book.
Justin Reilly
Sep 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
The Master Speaks!

If you have ME"cfs", Fibromyalgia, ALS, MS or are undiagnosed with serious physical and mental fatigue, pain and/or neurological symptoms and tired of going from doctor to doctor looking for an answer, GET THIS BOOK! Sorry to shout, but this is very important.

I have been sick for 12 years with an ME"cfs" diagnosis. Only two years ago did I find out the CDC's recommended test, which they and the Infectious Disease Society of America claim is 100% accurate (sensitive and specifi
Feb 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This is a must read for anyone suffering from Lyme disease, arthritis, chronic fatigue or any of several difficult, chronic diseases---or for anyone who knows and loves such a person. Dr, Horowitz is thoughtful, open and and systematic. He takes a difficult subject which has been misunderstood, and, I think, mistreated, for years by most of the medical community, and gives hope and new perspective. It is rather technical, so to read it, you must be committed or truly concerned.
Mar 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Jul 04, 2016 rated it did not like it
"Cognitive Behavioral Therapy" and "exercise" improve symptoms in patients with CFS, Fibro, and Lyme?? Really?? So Post Exertional Malaise is not a hallmark of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, according to Dr Horowitz?! And, what, some of the fatigue is just in our heads and can be corrected through behavioral therapy? I can't take this. I just can't. This is why patients are forced to become their own doctors. Drs who bother to write 500+ page books about a disease really ought to make sure all their ...more
Jun 09, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone sick
Recommended to Rosemary by: Melanie
got a new copy.. back and forth through out the book. looking up stuff.
Great book. Found a dr to treat me but won't do my SSD papers. so i quit.
May 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Also a great book for providers- at the back is an Appendix for MD's showing how and what etc to prescribe.
Oct 10, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Excellent information.
Louis Lapides
Jul 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
If you have been diagnosed with chronic Lyme, then you or someone you trust needs to read Dr. Horowitz's book on Lyme disease. Horowitz is a medical detective and in dealing with his patients he does not stop with one protocol and send the patient home still ill if the protocol does not work. The doctor will try another protocol and then another until he sees improvement.

I've read other books on Lyme and if you can only read through one, this is the best one. Have you doctor read it, even if he
Greg Allan Holcomb
Oct 26, 2013 rated it really liked it

This isn’t the first book on Lyme to read, but it possibly should be the second. There’s little to no mention of spirochetes or biofilms or incompetence, so you do need to be familiar with the subject.

This was my summary of chapter two: "So Horowitz's solution for diagnosing co-infections is wonderful. It's like he grabbed the medical community by the neck, shook it like you don't shake children, made eye contact, and said with all the condescension and contempt of a middle schooler "Duh" with
Jun 27, 2014 rated it really liked it
Very detailed. Enjoyable to read at times, but also difficult at times. Every doctor should have this book as a reference for the treatment of Lyme Disease,and its co-infections, especially for patients with multiple health issues. Lots of good information to sort through, but don't regard it as the authority on Lyme as there are many other good books on the topic. Read more than one. Cure Unknown is an excellent read.
Dec 22, 2013 rated it really liked it
This book was very informative and I learned a lot about Lyme disease and chronic illness in general. I also went to my latest doctors appointment with my Lyme doctor with a ton of questions and he asked me if I had read this book.

I will also say this also made me slighly more paranoid about tick borne illnesses than I already am.
Renee Coppola
Nov 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Incredible for anyone suffering with Lyme and co-infections but is a tough read written for both practitioners and patients alike.
Sep 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Reading for 3rd time! IT'S THAT GOOD! A MUST-READ!!!
Laura Garner
Jul 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
Complex and insightful. A lot of information and detail to take in, for someone who's had Lyme for 30+ years, but what I could glean was helpful.
Charmand Elegance
Sep 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
the best
Feb 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
5 stars for the book. Negative 2000 stars for our health insurance industry denying coverage for anything after 2 weeks.
Lillian Martin
Oct 11, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Very well written, medically informative book of Dr. Horowitz' clinical practice and his various approaches to treating chronically ill Lyme patients. This man is a detective, and unwilling to just let his patients stay sick. Lyme affects all systems in the body. I especially liked how each chapter took a system or illness/symptoms and broke down the how and why and what to treat it with. For example, in one chapter, he explains why people with allergies might have a harder time getting rid of L ...more
Karen Badea
Jan 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book should be on everyone's list to give to their family practitioners. Dr. Richard Horowitz is a foundation pillar for all those suffering Lyme.... His You Tube videos have helped me out so much in my Chronic Lyme journey. I cannot say enough about his wonderful detailed work that he has put together in this book. This book is literally a 'life saver'...... If you have Lyme or have a loved one with Lyme, please gift them this book. Sadly, Lyme is a 'political disease'. Without physicians ...more
Dec 28, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Dr. H, was my Dr before the great Lyme disease war. I contracted 3 tick diseases, and lived the roller coaster ride along with him. What he went through for us, almost losing his license, being considered a quack by other physicians, and fighting Insurance Companies. He touches on the war, but we really don't feel the pain come through in his book. This is more of his findings and research. What he did to help us. Hopefully some day, the ignorant Dutchess County Drs that still don't get it, will ...more
Mar 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is the first time in months since being diagnosed with Lyme disease that I don't feel completely insane! The author delves in to all of the symptoms that can linger on after a traditional round of oral antibiotics and traces them to their parasite origin while providing patient narratives regarding their experience to that particular case. What is so uplifting about the book is most of the patients find relief, even if it is after years of treatment; which has been quite the opposite point ...more
Jun 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Brilliant. Even for those that are just interested in chronic diseases and Lyme and the co-infections. It explains in a readable way how these diseases work, what is missed and how we can recognize these things. The worrisome part is how much of these things go undiagnosed or stay hidden from the general public. I knew almost nothing about these afflictions and I feel like I've learned so much regarding the current debate around medical problems an failures in diagnostics. Highly recommended
Aug 02, 2016 rated it liked it
Good book if you're suffering from fibromyalgia or chronic disease. But you kind of have to wade through the many names of drugs and treatments. It gets kind of tedious but he mentions that he does this so that doctors will get a good idea on how to treat someone they suspect of having Lyme's disease.
Jan 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This book was absolutely fantastic - anyone who has been battling chronic medical issues that no on can seem to find a cause or diagnosis for - this is a must. Even if it ends up being something other than lyme disease this book has extremely pertinent information for all chronic disorders and all possible causes.
Greg Kepler
Nov 10, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I can see this book being the missing link to a lot of people with Lyme disease getting better. It's pretty dense with medical and biological details that are just way over my head, but it's balanced with some helpful case studies and practical tips to people suffering from Lyme and MSIDs. Highly recommended if you or someone you know is going through any sort of chronic health issues.
Yessi Young
Feb 25, 2015 rated it liked it
Yessi Young4 stars for content, 2 stars for organization

Check out for the "Cole's Notes" of this book!
Patty Welsh
Apr 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This has been one of the most important books I've read. With a new diagnosis of Lyme in the family, the information is crucially helpful. However, I think anyone with a chronic condition that isn't responding to treatment, or if you aren't sure what is going on with you - this book will help.
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“This is usually accomplished by taking X-rays of the affected joints and analyzing blood for an ANA and rheumatoid factor (RF). Unfortunately, Lyme disease can cause false positive ANAs and rheumatoid factors due to a patient’s overstimulated immune system. This can lead to a mistaken diagnosis of lupus or rheumatoid arthritis. This is why drawing a CCP (cyclic citrullinated peptide) is so important. It is a specific marker for rheumatoid arthritis and will help determine whether the patient has true rheumatoid arthritis or not. Patients with a positive ANA or RF often are prescribed immunosuppressive drugs, such as steroids or immunomodulatory drugs, like Enbrel or Arava. These treatments can have dire consequences for the Lyme disease patient who is co-infected, since they are already immune-suppressed, and steroids can cause their underlying infections and subsequent manifestations” 1 likes
“The majority of Lyme patients I see in my practice have peripheral neuropathy. It presents as burning sensations in different parts of the body, or tingling and numbness that often comes and goes. Patients usually describe this in the upper and lower extremities, and often on their face and scalp. Many patients have gone to the emergency room for a CAT scan of the head or an MRI of the brain to rule out a transient ischemic attack (TIA) or stroke/cerebrovascular accident (CVA), since they had numbness, which was new or increased, in one part of their body. The doctors would rule out a TIA or stroke and send them home without a diagnosis, often telling them to follow up with their primary care physician and a neurologist.” 0 likes
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