Woman, 25, ‘facing a death sentence’ after bug bite ’20 years ago’ leaves her battling Lyme disease

A WOMAN has been left wheelchair-bound and fears she is facing a death sentence after a tick bite left her battling Lyme disease.

Juliet Rose, 25, was diagnosed with the debilitating condition last year but believes she has suffered with the condition since she was four years old after being bitten while playing outside.

Juliet was diagnosed with Lyme disease when she was 24
The former illustration and visual communication student, from Harrow in northwest London, now weighs a tiny five stone and needs a full-time carer.

“I was always a really outdoorsy child, playing in forests with deer, or other wild animals, which are known to be carriers of Lyme disease,” she said.

“I would get bitten by all sorts, it was just part of being outdoors, so when I was bitten by a tick, I probably didn’t even notice.

“The Lyme disease had probably been in my body for decades, too, without me knowing what it was.”

Juliet has suffered with health problems since she was four years old and believes that is when she was bitten by the tick that infected her
Juliet lives with her family and has experienced vomiting, a weak immune system and fatigue since she was a child.

As a teenager her problems became worse and she developed chronic fatigue syndrome, depression, anxiety and irritable bowel syndrome.

In early 2016 she saw a private doctor about her ongoing symptoms and was diagnosed with Lyme disease.

Lyme disease is a bacterial infection spread to humans by infected ticks.

Juliet has suffered a range of different health problems including heart and digestive problems

Juliet relies on her sister, Hannah, to be her full-time carer
Ticks that carry the bacteria responsible for Lyme disease are found throughout the UK and in other parts of Europe and North America.

Its early symptoms include high temperature, tiredness, muscle and joint pain but it can lead to swollen joints, nerve and heart problems.

By the time Juliet was diagnosed she also had underlying heart and digestive problems, which lead to a partial blockage of her small intestine.

Juliet has constantly battled with her weight and is confined to a wheelchair as she is only able to walk short distances at a time.

She relies on her sister Hannah, 28, who acts as her full-time carer.

Juliet regularly needs to visit the hospital to keep up with her treatment
“I can barely do anything for myself anymore,” she said.

“My whole day revolves around when I take medication and having small pureed meals.

“I’m very weak and tired all the time. I had to give up studying illustration and visual communication at university and have lost a lot of my friends, because I really can’t leave the house.

“Going out, except to hospital appointments, is a real struggle.

“I also struggle to eat and I am in constant pain. I have no quality of life.”

Juliet fears her condition will be a death sentence and is crowdfunding to help her pay for private treatment
Now, fearing she could die due to lengthy waitlists for treatment on the NHS, Juliet believes her only option is to seek private therapy.

“My organs are slowly failing and I’ve lost so much weight,” she added.

“I worry about how long my body can keep going like this.

“I’ve written letters telling the people I love how much they mean to me.

“I can’t disclose what’s in them, as it’s private, but I feel like I need to be prepared for this situation.

“I do try to have hope and wake up every day feeling glad that I am still alive, but I just don’t know how much longer I can go on like this.”

Lyme disease is a bacterial infection spread to humans by infected ticks.

Ticks that carry the bacteria responsible for Lyme disease are found throughout the UK and in other parts of Europe and North America.

It’s estimated there are 2,000 to 3,000 new cases of Lyme disease in England and Wales each year, with about 15 per cent of cases occurring when people are overseas.

Early symptoms:

Many people develop a distinct circular rash at the site of the bite, usually around three to 30 days after being bitten.

It is often described as looking like a bullseye and can span six inches across.

Some people also experience flu-like symptoms such as tiredness, fatigue, muscle pain, headaches and high temperature.

Later symptoms:

More serious symptoms develop weeks, months, or even years after the bite.

pain and swelling in the joints
problems with the nervous system – numbness, tingling, paralysis
heart problems
inflammation of membrane surrounding brain and spinal chord
A few people with lyme disease may go on to develop long-term symptoms similar to those of chronic fatigue syndrome.


If you develop the symptoms you will normally be given a course of antibiotics for two to four weeks.

If your symptoms are particularly severe, you may be referred to a specialist to have antibiotic injections.

Some of the antibiotics used to treat Lyme disease can make your skin more sensitive to sunlight.

There’s currently no clear consensus on the best treatment for post-infectious Lyme disease because the underlying cause is not yet clear.

Source: NHS Choices

Her condition became so bad that in 2014 she was admitted to hospital with bacterial pneumonia.

“Since then, I have had to come to terms a lot with the idea of this leading to my death,” she continued.

“I know it’s not something most people my age think about, but for me, it’s a real possibility and I want to make sure I leave things in order in case I suddenly get even worse.

“I need specialists who can help me as quickly as possible.

“We raised almost £8,000 online, but I have already spent that on private appointments.

“I am now considering decompression surgery to help with my digestive problems, followed by treatment for Lyme disease at the specialist Breakspear clinic in Herefordshire.

“I’m unsure at the moment what the exact cost is, but it’s the only way I can get my life back.”

Juliet is now crowdfunding for her treatment and also post video blogs about her condition on YouTube.

You can donate to Juliet’s cause at her Go Fund Me page here.

Veronika Valentova talks about her battle with suspected chronic Lyme disease

Source: https://www.thesun.co.uk/fabulous/5510990/bug-bite-lyme-disease-woman-left-wheelchair-bound/

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