By Amy Silverman
By Olivia LaVecchia
By Monica Alonzo and Stephen Lemons
By Chris Parker
By Michael Lacey
By Weston Phippen
"I would be very careful about this and ask for some references of people who have used it," the friend wrote. "One thing that stuck out to me is 'long-distance sessions available.' It seems like a hoax."
Lynn Goodale says she should have listened to her friend, but she didn't.
"My daughter was sick, and I was in kind of a panic," she says. "Bad mistake."
In November 2009, Alyssa Goodale and her parents stepped into Love Healing Center not knowing what to expect. Their first impression of Janet Love was excellent.
"Janet said some people were leery of her practice and the benefits that people get from her," Alyssa says. "She was very thorough and detailed and combed through every aspect of my life, more like a doctor. She was very put together, very impressive, and very nice."
Love's stirring account of her own long fight back to health from Lyme disease is her biggest selling point. She is a warm and engaging person who makes visitors feel welcome.
The former real estate agent says she discovered "energized medicine" about 2005 after supposed misdiagnoses by several doctors over a period of about 15 years.
"I would have died if I hadn't figured out what was wrong with me and how to deal with it," she says. "I was told that I had just about everything but what I had. I came to learn that Lyme is multiple layers of infection — a super-bug. It teams up with other pathogens in your body to mess you up. The [energy] machines saved me. I know [inventor] Bill Nelson may be a little nutty, but his machines work."
(Love may be referring to the fact that Nelson is a flamboyant cross-dresser who also goes by the name Desiré Dubounet.)
Alyssa says she spent four hours hooked up to the SCIO machine that Saturday afternoon in 2009. As she reclined in the comfortable black chair and the device did its "readings," Love asked her parents to go into another room to watch Under Our Skin, a 2009 documentary that won many good reviews.
The filmmakers billed it as "a dramatic tale of microbes, medicine, and money." It is emotionally gripping in parts, especially when people discuss how their illnesses have affected their lives.
Under Our Skin depicts a one-sided war of good versus evil, with the good being misdiagnosed Lyme disease victims and the bad being a powerful and sophisticated cabal of government public-health workers, doctors, and scientists.
Lynn Goodale became a Lyme-ite before the final credits rolled.
"As I was watching, I was thinking, 'That is what is wrong with Alyssa! That's it!' Lynn says. "I so much wanted to believe, so I did."
Alyssa says Janet Love immediately reported the machine's readings after studying them on her computer screens.
"She said it was serious, that my Lyme levels were really high, and I needed to do a lot of work," she says.
The bill that day totaled about $1,300, including about $800 for supplements available at Love's clinic and the fee for the SCIO tests.
A few months later, Janet Love and Dana Rosdahl opened their new business, Remnant Health Center, in Chandler.
Alyssa says she was feeling worse as time passed, not better. She says she sadly quit her job at the bakery because she felt so weak and then found herself homebound much of the time.
She says Rosdahl and Love reassured her that everything would be fine. They explained a process called "herxing" (named after a German dermatologist) that occurs when toxins are released into the body as bacteria during antibiotic treatment.
The bacteria die faster than the body can remove the toxins, and that leads to fever, muscle pain, skin lesions, and headaches.
"Janet said I needed to base my life on my sickness," Alyssa says. "She wanted me isolated in my room to work on myself because I was going to lose friends anyway. She said I would be stronger in the long run. I was thinking, I'm going to end up without friends, no job, and no boyfriend, lonely and alone."
The girl alternated between visits to Love and Rosdahl, always accompanied by her mother, Lynn, who now was caring for her almost around the clock.
"Sometimes I would have a couple of good hours after one of my [energy machine] treatments," Alyssa says, harkening back to Dr. Loeben's earlier comment about the placebo effect.
Just before Christmas 2009, Alyssa's parents took her to a Mesa urgent-care center after six days of diarrhea and a relentless stomachache.
Dr. Paul Dizon's medical chart that day noted that the Goodales were wondering whether their daughter needed an IV for dehydration, "as she is being presently treated for lung infection by her primary-care provider, Dr. Rosdahl."
Alyssa says the doctor phoned Rosdahl and that she and her mother overheard a heated conversation.
"They were lashing out at each other over how to treat me," she says. "He was saying that all I had was fever and some diarrhea."
Dr. Dizon noted the prescription drugs that Alyssa was taking at the time.
The list included an antibiotic usually used to treat tuberculosis, an anti-viral that attacks cold sore viruses on the skin, another antibiotic used to treat bacterial infections affecting the skin and respiratory systems, a drug to treat depression and anxiety, and Darvocet — a narcotic painkiller that was withdrawn from the U.S. market late last year.