Kayla HammittW109 January 16, 2018 Reading Response 2Thebook entitled, Cure Unknown: Inside the Lyme Epidemic by Pamela Wientraub isnot only a groundbreaking but also a controversial narrative investigation intothe history, science, politics, medical, and for the above all, patientexperience Lyme disease. She says, “The cure unknown is my six-year-long,aggressive investigation into the history, patient experience, science, andpolitics of Lyme disease-at once a memoir, a dramatic narrative history, and anaccounting and deconstruction of the violent 30-year war”. The question onwhether Weintraub successfully researched her topic and established herself asunbiased authority is one that calls for intense debate. Careful analysis ofthe entire research clearly show that Wientraub was a great researcher, henceundoubtedly established herself as an authority in evidenced from her robustintroduction and review of literature. Despite the answer is only to beaddressed using evidences from part two of this research study, one canauthoritatively report that the development and organization of this studyright from the introduction to the conclusion was indeed incredible. Therefore,her excellent introduction, her power analysis of literature to justify hertopic of discussion, and her appropriate choice of methodology makes herundistinguished researcher and unbiased authority in this field of research.
In thebackground, she is able to justify her extraordinary ability as undistinguishedauthority by providing a detailed or in-depth personal story of herself and thedisease. She properly unearths the setting and scope of her study, all of whichare incredible components of any research. She demonstrates how early 1990smarked a paradigm shift in her life both to the better as they were moving tothe United States, a nation described by many as the land of opportunities andto the worse as her entire family was attacked by Lyme disease.
She says, “Then, in 1993, I moved with myhusband and two sons, then aged five and nine, to Chappaqua, a town in suburbanWestchester County just north of New York City.” Her family had made their mindto move to relocate to idyllic wooded neighborhood based in the Suburban partsof the United States. However, while staying there, the entire family membersdeveloped the illness, which was characterized by a laundry list of confoundingsymptoms. She says, “From 1993 to the year 2000, we all began to get sick”. Shefurther asserts that “At first, the illness was subtle: the headaches, jointpains, and bone weariness seemed par for the course in our busy suburban lives.But as the years passed, the symptoms intensified and multiplied, burgeoninginto gross signs of disease”. These symptoms included painful swollen kneejoint, pounding headache, crushing fatigue among other symptoms.
It was afterexperiencing these symptoms that the author realizes that they had encounteredLyme disease from the infected deer ticks present in the beautiful woodsoutside their respective doorsteps. The manner in which she develops the scopeand setting of her study is incredible, making her undisputed authority in thisfield. Further,she was able to demonstrate her extraordinary ability by providing a detailed pointbackground of the events that happened while with her family in the US. Forinstance, she vividly displays a disturbing picture crippling uncertainty andintense controversy that surrounds Lyme disease. Despite being new to the US,they were welcome with Lyme, a disease that attacked Wientraub’s entire familyleaving her confused on what to do to save lives. She appropriately disclosesher odyssey in the land of Lyme as a result of her husband, their two sons, andher developing a serious Lyme disease at the commencement of the 1990s. She isable to show how dangerous the Lyme disease is and the effects that the diseasehas had on her family, as well as, her not only physically but also psychologically.She displays the need or the rationale for developing strategies and mechanismsto ensure that preventive strategies are integrated as soon as possible.
Ashighlighted in the book, Lyme disease is dangerous and can quickly claimsomebody’s lives if not addressed in good time. Shealso displayed statistics to show how severe and harmful the Lyme disease was. For instance, she usesthe data from the Center for Disease and Prevention (CDC), a renowned researchorganization to provide statistical information about the Lyme disease.
Fromthe analysis, she argues that the CDC approximated two hundred thousand newcases of Lyme disease, showing that it has overtaken TB and AIDS and now it isthe fastest spreading infectious disease in the US. Based on the nature of the disease, somephysicians have been unable or out rightly unwilling to diagnose Lyme, sincethey understand the consequences the disease can have on a human body. Thedisease if left untreated, it not only becomes chronic but also causesdisabling conditions that are either difficult or may not be cured for life. It’sclear that she was able to provide an authentic evidence to justify heranalysis with reliable statistics. Shecriticizes other scientists for only remaining interested on money and failingto provide detailed research about the effects of the disease.
For instance,she says “Fromwhere I sit, a group of scientists, motivated by money and politics and perhaps most ofall by ego and turf, have vastly oversimplified an emerging epidemic involving Lyme aswell as associated tick-borne infections right in our own backyards. They have steamrolleredscientifically complex findings about Lyme, proven by other academic researchers,with cookie-cutter guidelines and dogmatic points of view”The above criticism alsopaints her as unbiased authority in this field. She also outlines theconsequences that have resulted from the failure of scientists to be honest andfocus on developing a robust research about the Lyme disease rather thanfocusing on the selfish interests, which is money. She asserts, “In their wakethey have left a tragedy, thousands of patients, including children, who couldhave been diagnosed early and cured, who went on instead to a chronic illnessthey suffer through every day.
In its late stages, Lyme can be a devastating,disabling disease”. Insummary, it is clear from the above analysis that Weintraub did not onlymanaged to successfully research her topic, but also establish herself asunbiased authority. She developed a robust literature analysis and providedstatistics from authoritative organizations, like the CDC, as an evidence thatthe Lyme disease was extremely dangerous and there was a need to address how tocurtail its effects in society. Weintraub conducted a literature analysis tonot only argue out her point but also show how the Lyme disease was dangerous.In fact, she was able to effectively use authoritative databases for purposesof collecting her literatures.
This makes her literature findings highlyreliable and valid. Therefore, the findings in her study could be used as aguide or a blueprint for developing policies for preventing the Lyme disease. WorkCitedWeintraub,Pamela.
Cure Unknown (Revised Edition): Inside the Lyme Epidemic. Macmillan,2013