Kerry Filmmakers’ Documentary On Lyme Disease On RTE ONE Next Week

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James Pembroke and Brian Hurley who made ‘Living With Lyme Disease’.

A DOCUMENTARY made by Kerry filmmakers will broadcast next week on RTE ONE.

‘Living with Lyme Disease’, presented by Kerry native Brian Hurley and co-produced by James and David Pembroke from Currow will be broadcast on Thursday, October 4 at 10.15pm.

The programme examines how a tiny tick bite can dramatically change people’s health and wellbeing. In conversation with a number of people in Ireland suffering with Lyme disease, the programme makers document the struggles around getting the correct initial diagnosis and then the appropriate treatment for a disease.

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In the programme the patients interviewed discuss their frustration with being diagnosed in Ireland and how the diagnostic tests in the country are outdated and inadequate. Lyme patient Anthony Morris from Killarney explains how he had seen 15 doctors and 8 specialists before getting the correct diagnosis.

Another patient Jacqui Hurley (wife of the presenter Brian), a mother of three from Tralee describes how she just wanted to give up as a result of the constant pain she was in “I remember nights lying in the bath thinking you can’t do it. This is not for me; if this is my life moving forward then I can’t be here.”

A number of doctors and specialists feature in the documentary including Dr. John Lambert who is a Dublin based consultant in Infectious Disease. Dr. Lambert states “I think there needs to be more public awareness but I actually I think there needs to be more physician awareness as well.”

Although Lyme disease has been around for decades it is only in recent years that it has come to the fore with a number of high profile celebrities going public about the illness.

Recently actor Alec Baldwin has talked about the debilitating effects of Lyme, musician Kris Kristofferson’s memory loss was not due to Alzheimer’s but Lyme and singer Avril Lavigne admitting that she thought she was dying as a result of the bacterial infection.

The CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) tells us that Lyme disease is the fastest growing vector-borne infectious disease in the world and here in Ireland the numbers of reported cases have increased in recent years.

Many patients find themselves traveling abroad for tests and treatment which is costly, frustrating and disruptive to their everyday lives.

A number of politicians in Ireland have raised the issue of Lyme disease at a local and national level citing the need for a more reliable diagnostic test for sufferers and the need to create more awareness amongst the medical profession and the general public.

The show will air on RTE ONE on Thursday October 4th at 10.15pm and also via the Irish Post online media channels in the near future.

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