Bonners Ferry man back in treatment for Lyme Disease

After years battling the debilitating effects from the most common vector-borne disease in the United States, Joseph Cook thought he’d finally overcome the effects of Lyme Disease, in his case acquired just three weeks after moving Bonners Ferry in early 2014. After a trip to Germany last year, he felt good for the first time in nearly a decade.

A self-employed carpenter, he was able to take on jobs again, and felt good to be working again. Earning. Paying off bills, making inroads on catching up. But when he began to think he might have achieved a cure, he said it all came roaring back earlier this month, the brain fog, icepick migraine headaches. The joints that hurt if someone so much as glanced his way.

Lyme disease is caused by the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi and rarely, Borrelia mayonii. It is transmitted to humans through the bite of infected blacklegged ticks, infecting about 300,000 in the U.S. each year. Left untreated, it can be fatal.

Many people infected barely know they’ve been infected, most go through a period of illness but recover in a relatively brief period of about a month. But some like Joseph, are beset by an almost capricious set of symptoms that vary in severity, disappearing entirely and inexplicably, then roaring back with what seems a terrible vengeance.

Doctors don’t know why.

From feeling strong and hopeful to feeling as if every ache and indignity he’d suffered over the past decade returned in one swoop, Joseph’s hope of being able to work and catch up are dashed. He is once again asking the community’s helps as he has had to leave his family for several weeks to receive treatment again.

A fund to help he and his family has been established at GiveSendGo, and all prayers, donations and support are appreciated.

“We are forever grateful to our Heavenly Father for his grace, strength and provision; to each of you who have donated to Joseph’s treatment in the past, and to those who walk with us during this renewed time of trial.”

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