Easy to see why patients are prone to exploitation: I have treated patients in the East Valley for almost 20 years. Some come in with chronic fatigue syndrome, which they attribute to Lyme disease, candidiasis, Epstein-Barr virus, [or] parasites ("Lymeaid," Paul Rubin, May 5).
They often have been to many different offices before seeing me, and they bring in extensive computer printouts, books, or medical records to show me why they need antibiotics, anti-parasitics, or other treatments. Some bring "parasites" in a cup, jar, Kleenex, or pocket for me to look at. I usually send these to a pathology lab to evaluate; none has ever come back as a true parasite.
It is certainly easy to see why unethical practitioners would be tempted to give such willing customers course after course of whatever drug or treatments they wish, while charging them for visits, medications, and equipment.
Many of these patients are unhappy if they do not receive what they are looking for immediately, and never return again if a workup is suggested. A usual comment is, "I've been checked for everything, and my tests are all negative."
Review of their records often indicates no testing for thyroid problems, valley fever, or other common causes for their complaints. Many are on cocktails of various prescription and non-FDA-regulated supplements, and they refuse to stop these to see whether some of their symptoms are drug-related. Some available supplements contain toxic metals or other harmful substances.
Lyme advocacy groups [are] profiting from [such] inappropriate Lyme treatment.
Steven Oscherwitz, MD, Tempe
"Energy machine" inventor was misrepresented: Your story was very, very sad.
I must tell you, I was very sick and treated with the SCIO [energy] machine. It was the only diagnosis that eventually restored my health and quality of life.
I do think you misrepresented Bill Nelson, who is totally against pharmaceuticals, so the fact that these women were treating with pharmaceuticals is absurd. His belief is [about] lifestyle changes, dietary changes, homeopathy, and herbs. He would not be happy knowing the amount of money charged for these [women's] services.
Alternative-healthcare practitioners have enough to deal with, without one of their own misrepresenting the goals. This story is about traditional and alternative medicine being misused and abused.
Carol Gadd, Rochester, New York
Lyme diagnosis set back cancer patient's treatment: To quote one of the people in your story, "Wow!"
I'll have to add your headline to my list of Lyme-literate, quack-survivor quotes. Here's [another]:
"In my heart, I know it delayed my opportunity for treatment," the 45-year-old father said of his Lyme diagnosis, which was actually a rare form of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma that had spread.
My Lyme doc told me and my wife that if we had kids, they would be born with Lyme disease. We now have two beautiful boys — Lyme-free, of course. As am I.
What I have are stage four non-Hodgkin's marginal zone lymphoma and stage four Hodgkin's lymphoma. My stupid side trip down Lyme Road slowed my diagnosis.
Edward McSweegan, Crofton, Maryland
Watch out for Remnant on 48 Hours someday: When I first started reading this article, it was so unbelievable. I thought it was a joke. Another [spoof] courtesy of New Times.
But I found Remnant Health Clinic is listed with the Better Business Bureau, and [it has] a website. I expect to see Dana Rosdahl and Janet Love featured on 48 Hours soon, when they finally succeed in killing someone.
Sadistic psychopaths come in many forms, even "caring" nurse practitioners — whose weapon of choice is a combination of dangerous meds.
Tracey Hunter, city unavailable
More about scamming than treating: These two snake-oil saleswomen [Rosdahl and Love] fit right into Arizona's wanting to turn back the clock to 1880. Everyone gets a gun and a bottle of laudanum! Yippy-ki-yay, motherfuckers!
The things that these two "nurses" do are not covered under insurance. Their business model is more in line with scamming people out of their money than with healthcare.
Tim Hanner, city unavailable
Seems kind of harsh, David: Can anyone seriously believe these crazy, evil women?
They tried to take everything from Alyssa Goodale. So all she had to focus on was how she was sick.
These two woman are surely going to burn in hell for this, and it puts a smile on my face knowing that. Manipulation can only be taken so far before your fraudulent side is exposed.
I propose that these idiotic women be stripped of their licenses, money, and belongings, and then forced to take every pill Alyssa did.
Parents need to take some responsibility, too: No one ever asks why the patient doesn't question a doctor who put her on 100 pills a day. You should be able to trust that doctors have your best interest in mind, but, frankly, you can't.