Morgellons Disease

UPDATE-  A recent study found that 98% of Morgellons disease patients had positive Lyme disease tests and/or a tickborne disease diagnosis confirming the association between Morgellons and a spirochetal infection.  (Direct detection methods were utilized in Morgellons patients to detect & confirm Lyme disease- PCR and sequencing, immuno-fluorescent staining, electron microscopy and silver stains).

UPDATE-  The 10th Annual Scientific Conference on Morgellons disease will be held in Austin, TX on April 29-30, 2017.  For more information on the conference please click here


It starts with itching and a crawling (bug-like) sensation under the skin.  Here you see lesions and scars from the later stages of Morgellons Disease.




Please visit the Charles E. Holman Foundation website for the most updated, scientific based Morgellons information.

Morgellons Disease is often dismissed or misdiagnosed by health care professionals causing confusion and undue stress for patients suffering from this condition.    

The most common misdiagnoses conferred upon Morgellons patients have been 1.) drug induced formication and 2.) delusions of parasitosis.

1.)  Patients who present to Emergency Rooms or doctor's offices and complain of itchiness, bugs biting them, or a feeling of bugs crawling under their skin are often falsely accused of being drug addicts (having "coke mites", "meth mites", etc.). Although drug addiction can be a concern with those who have a history of abusing drugs, it is not the only explanation for these symptoms.  

2.)  As far back as the early 20th century scientists cautioned that a delusional diagnosis (parasitophobia) should never be given until after a patient was given a complete physical exam. Further exploration of all possibilities is essential.  Today an increasing number of people who were previously considered to be suffering from delusional parasitosis have been confirmed as having Morgellons disease.  

Although Morgellons disease has been mistaken for delusional parasitosis, the occurrence of the disease in children, the lack of pre-existing psychopathology in most patients and the presence of subcutaneous fibers on skin biopsy indicate that the disease has a somatic origin.   

Consequences can be severe and even tragic when someone is casually misdiagnosed with delusional parasitosis by those who haven't kept up with the science or considered all possible explanations.  

In the past (and still today), isolation and suicide were options often considered by those who reported "itching, crawling skin sensations" who were dismissed by health care and other professionals; however as science progresses there is often a "real" explanation found for this particular symptom.  One of them is Morgellons disease. 

Morgellons disease is predominantly a skin disorder that was first described over 300 years ago.  The disease is characterized by an itchy, crawling feeling in skin and later by fiber-like strands extruding from the skin.  It can also be associated with a variety of dermatologic manifestations and other neurological and psychological signs and symptoms. 

Recent scientific literature confirms an association between Morgellons and Lyme disease and the apparent response to antibiotic therapy supports the concept that Morgellons disease may be triggered by an infectious process.  

Symptoms

Morgellons disease is a debilitating, painful and life impacting condition consisting of slow-healing skin lesions, overwhelming fatigue, GI disturbances and an array of neurological symptoms.  
Stinging, biting, or crawling sensations on or under the skin, lesions and 'brain fog' have all been linked to Morgellons.  

Additional signs and symptoms of Morgellons disease can be found here and here.  

Treatment 

It is important to realize there is no cure or specific one-size-fits-all treatment for Morgellons disease known at this time. Treatment must be individualized for each patient's condition. 

Please be cautious of those who dismiss Morgellons as a fallacy or purely a psychiatric disorder, as well as those who promote "snake oil type" treatments, and those who are trying to make a quick dollar off another's suffering, misery, and desperation.

Additional information about Morgellons at the following links: 

 
Morgellons: The legitimization of a disease: 

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Photos donated by a Morgellons/Lyme patient.

back-lesion-scab-top-200x.jpg

Fiber threads



Lesions and scars caused by Morgellons











Lesions healing on the arm of a Morgellons patient



Scientific Studies



identification of Borrelia burgdorferi in Morgellons disease patients

Association of spirochetal infection with Morgellons disease


From patients with Morgellons disease


A comparative approach to Morgellons disease


Analysis of a population with clinically confirmed microscopic 
subcutaneous fibers of unknown etiology




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Articles


Morgellons Disease:  The Search For A Perpetrator

ABC News Report

Science Baffled; The Case of the Mysterious Morgellons Disease







Last Updated April 2017
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