BMJ, Gulf War Syndrome and Lyme borreliosis

BMJ Journals Rapid Response 19th April 2005

Minerva highlights an interesting hypothesis as to how the spirochaetal disease, Lyme borreliosis, could have been involved in the development of Gulf War Syndrome.

What a pity this idea has not been addressed by the various bodies commissioned to investigate the health of victims of the syndrome. Large amounts of time have been spent examining not only the signs and symptoms of the syndrome but also upon speculation regarding psychological

Were the syndrome to be causally linked to Lyme borreliosis, then the clinical picture might become clearer. Spirochaetal illness would, after all, explain the variability of signs and symptoms reported by victims. Moreover, spirochaetal illness would also explain why a percentage of the
victims manifest symptoms that appear to be psychological or psychiatric in origin. These symptoms could be spirochaetal manifestations also. Such phenomena are recorded in other spirochaetal diseases, syphilis being the most obvious example. If this were to be so, then nobody need deny the
clinical findings of the syndrome, and, even better for the patients, an explanation would be at hand. More can be found on this topic at

Stephanie Woodcock

Lyme Disease Action
Registered Charity Number 1100448

See also 2004 Conference Dr David Owen, Is Gulf War Syndrome actually chronic Lyme disease?”