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Mary Beth Pfeiffer: "Lyme: The First Epidemic of Climate Change"


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They are crossing continents and climbing mountains, are hatching invisibly by the billion, and are carrying diseases that may be coming to a neighborhood near you. As ticks move into new areas and enjoy longer seasons, they are changing millions of lives, driving up healthcare costs, and infusing a simple walk in the woods or picnic in a city park with fear.

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Lyme: The First Epidemic of Climate Change is a disquieting look at how Lyme disease has proliferated in a warming world. In it, investigative journalist Mary Beth Pfeiff er combines new research with years of extensive reporting to show how human activities have propelled this growing menace, and how modern medicine has underestimated its danger. Drawing from international research trips, dozens of expertinterviews, and conversations with scores of Lyme sufferers and advocates from around the world, Lyme describes harrowing symptoms and explores why the medical establishment has minimized the nation’s biggest vector-borne disease.The book also highlights scientists finding ingenious ways to track and count ticks and researchers innovating new technologies.

“This book throws new light on one more danger caused by climate change, and is a stark warning that Lyme is but the tip of the iceberg.” ---Jane Goodall

Lyme disease receives relatively little media attention and funding and challenges medical dogma that has dictated care for two decades. Pfeiffer systematically exposes the failure of government and medicine to prevent rapidly spreading infection, address poor diagnostic tests, and help many thousands of patients whose symptoms—body pain, crippling fatigue, and neurological, psychiatric, and memory issues—can linger long after treatment.

Mary Beth Pfeiffer has been an investigative reporter for three decades and is the author of Crazy in America: The Hidden Tragedy of Our Criminalized Mentally Ill (Carroll & Graf Publishers/Basic Books, 2007).