Dr. Neil Spector Book Signing
Date: Sunday, October 23rd
11am at Unity Church of Dallas • 6525 Forest Lane, Dallas, TX 75230
2pm at Barnes & Noble • Preston Royal, 5959 Royal Ln Suite 616, Dallas, TX 75230
Neil Spector, MD is a cancer expert. After facing his own mortality in 2009, he now is a Lyme expert. A physician informed him on a Friday that he would be dead by Monday if he did not receive a heart transplant. Dr. Spector’s heart had been destroyed by Lyme disease, which had gone undiagnosed for four years, despite his repeated requests for help from his doctors.
On Sunday, October 23, at Barnes & Noble on Preston and Royal at 2pm, Dr. Spector, leading cancer researcher at Duke University Medical Center and author of Gone in a Heartbeat: A Physician’s Search for True Healing, will share his inspirational story of how he persevered with years of mysterious heart palpitations and survived heart failure. His tale offers hope for Lyme patients and a new perspective for Texas doctors. As Dr. Spector looked for answers, his physicians repeatedly told him that stress was to blame for his fatigue, muscle aches and erratic heart beats, and that his Lyme test was negative. Like Dr. Spector, many severely ill people in Texas are going undiagnosed. Some suffer with heart palpitations. Others have joint pain, migraines, panic attacks, depression or a host of other symptoms. After years of living with diagnoses of fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, MS, ALS, Bell’s palsy, arthritis and other chronic conditions, some of these frustrated patients finally discover the elusive cause – Lyme and/or other co-infections.
Lisa Todd Reed in Dallas is one patient of thousands in Texas who have searched for years for an answer. “I pulled a tick off of my head and brought it to the doctor and he said ‘there is no way you have Lyme.” As many other physicians claim, he said “ There is no Lyme in Texas.” The next seven years were filled with pain, fatigue, anxiety and other symptoms before Ms. Reed asked to be tested again for Lyme, which came back positive. “If my doctor had accurately diagnosed and treated me early on, I would not be dealing with chronic, late stage Lyme today,” she said. “I’ve always had a fond place in my heart for Texas since my days as a resident at Parkland Hospital/UT Southwestern,” Dr. Spector said. “I hope to raise awareness that there is Lyme in Texas, and it’s a clinical diagnosis, NOT dependent on a lab test result alone.” Many doctors won’t treat if the lab test is not positive, and an early case of Lyme could be easily treated with a course of antibiotics. “When doctors do not treat, and the disease goes undiagnosed, it can lead to persistent chronic infection and debilitating chronic symptoms, or even death.” “I hope more physicians will be open minded regarding the deficiencies in current diagnostic testing for Lyme disease,” Dr. Spector said. He also promotes that “patients advocate for themselves, instead of giving away control of their health and lives to physicians who may not understand the nuances of Lyme disease.” He encourages patients to not be afraid to ask that they be tested for Lyme and co-infections. “Trust your gut instincts. No one knows your body better than you do.”
Dr. Spector has led the development of FDA-approved targeted cancer therapies and teaches medical oncology fellows at Duke University Medical Center. He is currently the Sandra Coates Chair in Breast Cancer Research. In addition, he speaks nationally on the topic of Lyme disease.