Randy Sykes started getting ill the fall of 1999. He went to the doctor with flu like symptoms and was told it was viral and it would have to run its course. He does not remember a tick bite nor did he get the classic bull’s eye rash. What he does remember is tramping through the woods to check out the repeater station for the Police radios. They were full of mice and mice nests.
By Christmas time, the fatigue and just feeling lousy persisted with a vengeance and he developed phenomia. He was placed on antibiotics for the phenomia. He noticed that along with feeling better from the phenomia, the other symptoms started to lessen until the Spring of 2000. The fatigue, headaches and joint pain got worse and worse.
In the Fall of 2000 he decided to go Lahey Clinic which he thought was world renown on helping diagnose difficult illnesses. There he saw 7 doctors who diagnosed him with possibly Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, possibly the start of MS and then recommended he see a psychiatrist. He came home and started doing his own research. When he typed in his symptoms Lyme disease kept popping up. He found Chris Montes and gave him a call. Chris gave him the name of doctors he could consult. That’s when he was finally diagnosed with Lyme disease.
That was the Winter of 2001. Since then, Sykes has hooked up with Chris Montes and started a support group to help those people find reputable doctors that understand the complexities of this hideous disease The Connecticut Greater Hartford Lyme Disease Support and Action Group is for victims of Lyme disease and their family members to gain support and information regarding the tick borne illness; as well as to form action groups designed at informing elected officials about the need for better access to treatment of chronic and long term cases.
In 2003 The Greater Hartford Lyme Disease Group helped a former Actress from Litchfield organize a Lyme symposium in Milford CT with over 200 people attending. In 2003 The Greater Hartford Lyme Group started working to have a hearing with Atty General Blumenthal and Robert Galvin, Commissioner, Ct Department of Public Heath with patient and doctors panel testimony to help bring light on the problems associated with this very misunderstood illness and how Lyme disease has the medical community polarized on how to treat the disease.