Debbie Gibson, 43, singer and songwriter, has recently opened up about her battle with Lyme disease. She appeared extremely thin in pictures following online photos taken recently and posted to her website, during her performances in Chile. Criticism quickly followed, prompting her to explain why she is so skinny.
Gibson explained on her website that she was diagnosed with the disease last year after feeling sick for some time, and not knowing why. She thought she might have mono when she developed muscle fatigue and nerve pain. She was unable to see doctors in person because of her touring schedule, so they would put her on short rounds of different antibiotics, during which time she would feel better. Despite their efforts, it takes a specific combination of medicine and antibiotics taken over an extended period, to deal with Lyme disease. She explained that it as “an elusive disease” because the symptoms can be attributed to other things, thus concealing the real cause of them. “It causes a lot of pain and discomfort” she wrote on her blog. The symptoms can also imitate stress and anxiety symptoms. She experienced fevers, migraines, night sweats, and nightmares.
Debbie Gibson also revealed that the illness greatly affected her diet. She began to notice sensitivities to certain foods and restricted her diet accordingly. Caffeine, sugar, specific oils, and starches affected her. The feeling was like “jolts of electricity” going through her body, she expressed. Eating proteins didn’t help her retain any weight, so she kept losing.
When Debbie Gibson opened up about her battle with Lyme disease on her blog, she mentioned that she became self-conscious as the weight kept dropping from her body. She turned to Botox to address the deep lines in her face. This only added to the torment being inflicted on her body. Her boyfriend noticed that she was mixing up words in her text messages. She had trouble with driving and directions. Gibson has since revealed that she would not put any toxins in her body to satisfy vanity, ever again.
By the time she found the doctor who would identify the disease and treat it, she was having problems with cognition, sleep, stamina, moodiness, and issues with her joints, and muscles. She was started on an intense round of medicines, including antibiotics. Now, she says she is feeling like herself again.
Gibson admits that she doesn’t know how she contracted the disease. The bacterial infection is transmitted to humans through black-legged ticks who are infected with the borrelia burgdorferi bacterium. Symptoms are flu-like, can include a rash, and can spread to the heart, joints, and the nervous system if left untreated. Some people have symptoms that aren’t very noticeable, or slight changes in mood. Usually, Lyme disease can make a full and quick recovery, if it is diagnosed and treated promptly. Since the symptoms are commonly associated with other illnesses and ailments, the disease can remain undiagnosed and untreated.
Other well-known people have suffered from Lyme disease in the past. Jamie Lynn Sigler contracted the disease in 2000. George W. Bush, Alec Baldwin, Parker Posey, and Amy Tan have also been afflicted with the bacterial infection.
Debbie Gibson is optimistic since opening up about her fight with Lyme disease. “No disease in the body can stop the spirit from soaring, the love from pouring, and nothing can stop the music” she said.
By Twanna Harps