I am not medically trained but it is my understanding that Lyme can cause damage that can appear on MRI similar to the damage caused by MS. When I was 28 my brain MRI scan had 7-8 lesions, a couple that were several cm in diameter near the corpus callosum, which gave worry that I had MS even though I was ultimately diagnosed with Lyme.
Lyme does not always cause lesions, though. Many people very sick from Lyme for a long time will have normal MRI's. Lyme is not diagnosed through MRI, but it can be diagnosed by blood tests and/or clinically through symptoms.
Do you think you have Lyme disease? Anyone being worked up for MS should look into Lyme as a possibility, in my opinion. While both can be very disabling, Lyme is more treatable.
I agree with Wonko's comments. Because MRIs cannot tell the difference between MS and Lyme, a Lyme specialist will often use another scan called a SPECT scan that operates in a different way from an MRI, so the test can find indications of Lyme that is clearly not MS.
Non-Lyme specialists tend to use MRI only, and the fuzzy spots that show up on an MRI look like MS to a doc who is not familiar with Lyme .... as many docs are not.
In your situation, I personally would find a Lyme specialist for a second opinion. My Lyme doc used a SPECT scan and it was very helpful in diagnosis, so then I was treated for Lyme and got well.
Wishing the same for you! Let us know if we can help further --
I have about 20 small fuzzy spots in my brain that look like small, old MS lesions (they're unenhanced). I had Lyme, Babesia, and Bartonella at the time they were found. I also had quite a few MS-like symptoms.
They don't know exactly why some Lyme patients get "lesions" and others don't. It is not a measurement of how sick you are, as some don't have any. Bartonella is believed to cause them, as well as the virus HHV-6. Migraines can also cause them, but I haven't had migraines as a symptom of Lyme.
So, if you're going through an MS work up, and you have some lesions, Lyme is still a possibility, even if you test "negative." I tested false negative on a screening test and a CSF test. I was also CDC negative on a Western Blot. IGeneX called my WB positive, though, as I had Lyme specific antibodies.
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