Tick Boot Camp

Episode 410: Lyme in Norway - an interview with Paola Giometti

Join us in this compelling episode of the Tick Boot Camp Podcast as we explore the journey of Paola Giometti, a Brazil-born biologist now residing in Tromsø, Norway, who has been navigating the challenges of Lyme disease. Alongside our host, Matt Sabatello, and special guest co-host, Max Noir, we delve into Paola’s personal and professional life, her battle with Lyme disease, and her insights on overcoming the struggles associated with this tick-borne illness.

  • Introduction to Paola Giometti: Learn about Paola's background as a biologist specializing in cancer research, her early life in Brazil, and her move to Norway.
  • Early Symptoms and Misdiagnoses: Paola shares her experience with the onset of Lyme disease at 11 years old, the chronic fatigue, muscle weakness, and the series of misdiagnoses that followed.
  • The Lyme Diagnosis Journey: Discover the long and arduous path to receiving a proper Lyme disease diagnosis at the age of 39, including the challenges faced within the medical community in Norway and Brazil.
  • Treatment and Recovery: Paola discusses her treatment regimen, including the use of combination antibiotics and supplements, and the impact on her daily life and symptoms.
  • Life with Lyme: Insights into how Lyme disease has affected Paola's professional aspirations, social life, and her dream of being an athlete.
  • Advice for Lyme Warriors: Paola offers her advice to others battling Lyme disease and other tick-borne illnesses, emphasizing the importance of seeking a specialist and advocating for one's health.
  • Paola's Message of Hope: Despite the challenges, Paola shares a message of resilience and hope for others suffering from Lyme disease.

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Episode 409: Armur Health - an interview with Alexandra Brook-Clark

Welcome to a deeply inspiring episode of the Tick Boot Camp Podcast, where we sit down with Alexandra Brook-Clark, a resilient Lyme disease warrior, who has transformed her battle with Lyme into a mission of helping others. Residing in Marblehead, Massachusetts, Alexandra shares her incredible journey from blissful days in Brooklyn, New York, to facing the stark realities of Lyme disease and co-infections. Now, at 39, Alexandra's story is not just about struggle; it's about overcoming, learning, and thriving. Emma Pikoulas joins Matt Sabatello as a special guest co-host for this powerful interview.

Alexandra's Background:

  • Name: Alexandra Brook-Clark
  • Age: 39
  • Location: Marblehead, Massachusetts
  • Professional Background: Transitioned from a decade in the fashion industry to working in Workers Compensation Risk Management for her family's company. Alexandra has also embraced a role as a Lyme disease advocate, organically offering guidance and support to others affected by Lyme and tick-borne diseases.

Pre-Lyme Life: Alexandra reminisces about her life before Lyme—full of social engagements, work success, and joy with her husband Patrick, son August, and their dog Zeus in Brooklyn, NY. Her life, seemingly perfect, was abruptly interrupted by Lyme disease.

Lyme Disease Onset: At 36, Alexandra's world turned upside down. Post hip surgery and at the cusp of the COVID-19 pandemic, she began experiencing unexplainable and debilitating symptoms. Despite numerous misdiagnoses and a journey through the complexities of the healthcare system, her relentless pursuit for answers led her to self-order an IGENIX test, which confirmed Lyme alongside multiple co-infections.

Diagnosis and Treatment:

  • Age at Diagnosis: 37
  • Diagnostic Path: Negative results on the Western blot, a positive breakthrough with IGENIX.
  • Treatment Journey: Began with antibiotics and herbs under Dr. Casey Kelley's care, transitioning to a holistic and herbal approach with Dr. Linda Tao at the Morrison Center in New York, augmented by innovative therapies such as ozone IV, glutathione, and more.

Life Post-Diagnosis: Alexandra shares the profound changes Lyme disease brought to her life, from PTSD and fears of the outdoors to a newfound appreciation for life's simplicity and the importance of treating her body with kindness. Despite the ongoing challenges, including a battle with mold intolerance, Alexandra stands at 95% of her pre-Lyme self, actively working and enjoying a revitalized social life.

Healing Strategies: Emphasizing the importance of the brain-body connection, Alexandra credits her recovery to retraining her brain, alongside an arsenal of therapies including cold plunging, sauna sessions, and rigorous detoxification routines.

Advice to Others: For those battling Lyme, Alexandra offers hope and assurance of healing. Her preventive advice underscores the importance of vigilance against ticks, advocating for proactive measures like regular tick checks and the use of protective sprays.

Armur Health: Alexandra runs Armur, providing access to community support, expert advice, and a wealth of information to empower individuals on their journey to recovery from Lyme and other chronic infections.

Conclusion: Alexandra Brook-Clark's journey is a testament to the power of resilience, the importance of self-advocacy in health, and the transformative impact of a supportive community. Her story not only sheds light on the complexities of Lyme disease but also inspires hope and action in the face of adversity.

Closing Remarks: Thank you for tuning in to this compelling episode of the Tick Boot Camp Podcast with Alexandra Brook-Clark. Her courage, insights, and advice offer invaluable lessons on navigating Lyme disease with hope and determination. Join us next time as we continue to share stories of triumph and transformation in the battle against tick-borne illnesses.

Episode 408: ILADS Journey - an interview with Sarah Quillen


In this compelling episode of the Tick Boot Camp Podcast, hosts Matt Sabatello and Rich Johannesen are thrilled to welcome Sarah Quillen, the dynamic Executive Director of the International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society (ILADS), for an insightful conversation on battling Lyme disease. Adding to the excitement, special guest co-host Ali Moresco joins the dialogue, bridging her passionate advocacy work with ILADS' mission.

Guest Bio

Sarah Quillen: With a robust background in nonprofit leadership, particularly in health and human services, Sarah brings over 25 years of experience to her role at ILADS. Her career is marked by significant contributions to organizations like the National Hospice and Palliative Care Organization and Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Greater Washington, DC. A native of the Hudson Valley, NY, Sarah's personal and familial experiences with Lyme disease have deeply influenced her dedication to improving care and support for those affected by tick-borne illnesses.

Ali Moresco: A fervent advocate for Lyme disease awareness and support, Ali has been a vocal presence in the community, continuously working to amplify the conversation around Lyme and associated diseases. Her collaboration with Tick Boot Camp and ILADS underscores her commitment to driving change and providing resources for those in need.

Episode Highlights

  • Introduction to ILADS: Sarah provides an overview of ILADS' mission, emphasizing its dedication to the diagnosis, treatment, and education of Lyme and other complex inflammatory diseases, celebrating 25 years of unwavering commitment to science, research, and education.
  • Personal Journey: Sarah shares her personal connection to Lyme disease, reflecting on her upbringing in a region endemic to ticks and her father's challenging journey with Lyme disease and Babesia, including his participation in the Lymerix vaccine trials.
  • Professional Pathway: Highlighting her trajectory from the fields of hospice and palliative care to her leadership role at ILADS, Sarah discusses the alignment of her professional expertise with her passion for advancing patient care in the realm of tick-borne diseases.
  • Advocacy and Education: The conversation delves into the critical role of ILADS in educating healthcare professionals and the public about Lyme disease, with an emphasis on fostering a multidisciplinary approach to care and the importance of community engagement and support.
  • The Power of Collaboration: Ali Moresco discusses the synergy between her advocacy work, ILADS, and Tick Boot Camp, highlighting the collective effort to raise awareness and support individuals affected by Lyme disease.
  • Call to Action: The hosts and guests discuss the need for continued advocacy, education, and research to improve the lives of those dealing with Lyme disease, urging listeners to get involved and support ILADS' mission.

Closing Thoughts

Sarah and Ali leave listeners with empowering messages of hope and action, encouraging those affected by Lyme disease and their loved ones to seek comprehensive care, become educated advocates, and contribute to the growing community fighting for better awareness and treatment of tick-borne diseases.


This episode was brought to you by Tick Boot Camp, dedicated to liberating individuals from the suffering caused by Lyme disease and other tick-borne illnesses through validation, community building, and education.

Episode 407: Herbal Pathways - an interview with Lyme Specialist Monica Wilde

Welcome to a riveting episode of the Tick Boot Camp Podcast, where we delve into the fascinating world of herbal medicine with Monica Wilde, a distinguished herbalist, author, and a beacon of hope for those battling Lyme disease and its co-infections. Broadcasting straight from Scotland, Monica, also affectionately known as Mo, shares her unique journey into the realm of herbal medicine, emphasizing her specialized focus on Borrelia and Lyme's complex co-infection group.

In This Episode:

  • Meet Monica Wilde: Discover Monica's path from her early roots to becoming a research herbalist with a master's degree in herbal medicine, working at the forefront of Lyme disease treatment in Scotland.
  • Collaboration with Dr. Jack Lambert: Learn about Monica's collaborative work with Dr. Jack Lambert since 2019, focusing on Lyme disease and its intricate web of co-infections.
  • The Journey to Specialization: Monica discusses her decisive moment to specialize solely in Lyme disease patients, inspired by her experiences in the United States and her determination to uncover patterns in Lyme disease treatment.
  • Herbal Medicine and Lyme Disease: Monica sheds light on the power of herbal medicine in treating Lyme disease, emphasizing the importance of understanding the multifaceted nature of this condition and its co-infections.
  • The Role of Belief in Healing: Explore the critical role of belief and mindset in the healing process, as Monica and the hosts discuss the psychological aspects of battling Lyme disease.
  • Pattern Recognition in Treatment: Delve into Monica's approach to identifying patterns in Lyme disease symptoms and treatments, highlighting the significance of individualized care and the challenges of non-standardization.
  • Herbal Allies: Monica shares her insights on the most potent herbs in combating Lyme disease and its symptoms, including the underrated power of dandelion and Japanese knotweed.
  • The Future of Lyme Disease Treatment: Monica and the hosts engage in a thought-provoking discussion on the evolving landscape of Lyme disease treatment, the importance of a multidisciplinary approach, and the ongoing challenges faced by patients and practitioners alike.
  • Monica's Resources: Find out where to access Monica's wealth of knowledge, including her book and the work of the CLA Clinic in Scotland, dedicated to combating Lyme, COVID, and other infectious diseases through the integration of herbal medicine.

Join us for an enlightening conversation with Monica Wilde and special guest co-host Cassidy Colbert as we explore the intersections of herbal medicine, belief, and the complex world of Lyme disease treatment. Whether you're a patient, a practitioner, or simply curious about alternative healing modalities, this episode offers valuable insights and hope for those on the journey to recovery.

Episode 406: Pathobiome - an interview with Nikki Schultek

Welcome to another episode of the Tick Boot Camp Podcast, where today we're thrilled to have Nikki Schultek as our special guest. Nikki, hailing from Wake Forest, North Carolina, shares her journey from being a vibrant individual to facing severe health challenges like chronic Lyme disease, and how it led her to become a pivotal figure in the fight against chronic diseases through her work with the Alzheimer's Pathobiome Initiative and Intracell Research Group.

Nikki's Background and East Coast Roots

  • Originally from the East Coast, Nikki's accent gives away her roots despite her current residence in North Carolina with her family, including two boys, a golden doodle, and her supportive husband.

The Tick Encounter

  • Nikki recounts a critical moment of finding an engorged tick, mistaken for a watermelon seed, highlighting the importance of regular tick checks in her family's life, especially given their pet's history with ticks.

Educational Journey

  • Despite an initial interest in science, Nikki pursued a degree in marketing, French, and international business at Villanova University. She reflects on how her career in the pharmaceutical industry, including roles at Pfizer and Genentech, equipped her with a unique perspective on healthcare and disease management, particularly in neurology and stroke care.

Personal Health Crisis

  • Nikki shares a harrowing account of her health deteriorating in her early 30s, leading to severe respiratory issues, joint pain, and neurological symptoms. Her quest for answers led her to a life-changing Google search connecting her symptoms to chronic bacterial infections, including Lyme disease.

The Turning Point with Dr. Charles Stratton

  • The discovery of Dr. Charles Stratton's work on chronic infections was a turning point for Nikki. She details how his guidance and a regimen of antibiotic therapy, overseen by her empathetic primary care doctor, began her road to recovery.

The Path to Research and Advocacy

  • Motivated by her experiences, Nikki delved into research, advocating for a diagnostic approach that looks beyond symptoms to the root causes of diseases like Alzheimer's. She emphasizes the importance of interdisciplinary collaboration to bridge gaps in understanding complex diseases.

Alzheimer's Pathobiome Initiative

Advocacy for Precision Medicine

  • The conversation highlights Nikki's advocacy for precision medicine, emphasizing the need for a consensus in diagnosing and treating diseases rooted in chronic infections. She shares insights into the challenges and opportunities in this field, including the potential impact of COVID-19 on public and medical understanding of infectious diseases and their long-term effects.

Call to Action

  • Nikki encourages listeners to engage in their health advocacy and underscores the importance of collaborative research in tackling complex health issues. She calls for more research into the balance of microbes within our bodies and how it influences health and disease.

Closing Thoughts

  • Nikki's story is a powerful reminder of the resilience of the human spirit and the potential for scientific innovation to transform lives. Her work with the Alzheimer's Pathobiome Initiative stands at the forefront of a new approach to understanding and treating Alzheimer's disease, rooted in the intricate relationship between our bodies and the microbial world.

Contact Information

For those interested in learning more about Nikki Schultek's work or getting involved with the Alzheimer's Pathobiome Initiative, visit AlzPI.org and IntracellResearchGroup.com.

Learn More

Discover more enlightening and inspiring conversations on the Tick Boot Camp Podcast. Dive into our extensive archive of interviews featuring experts, survivors, and advocates in the battle against Lyme disease and other tick-borne illnesses. Each episode is designed to educate, empower, and connect our community, offering insights into prevention, treatment, and recovery. Join us on this journey to health and healing.

Episode 405: Lyme Mexico - an interview with Doctor Omar Morales

Introduction to Dr. Omar Morales

Welcome to this episode where we delve into the world of Lyme disease with our esteemed guest, Dr. Omar Morales, founder of the Lyme Mexico Clinic, renowned researcher, and dedicated member of the Board of Directors of ILADS (International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society). Join us as Dr. Morales shares his journey from construction to medicine, his pivotal role in Lyme disease treatment, and his advocacy efforts with ILADS.

Dr. Morales's Journey: From Construction to Medicine

  • Unexpected Beginnings: Hear how a promise of a truck from his father led Dr. Morales to a career in medicine.
  • Family Influence and Medical Career: Learn about the familial influences that shaped Dr. Morales's path and his early medical experiences.

Establishing the Lyme Mexico Clinic

  • Clinic Origins: Discover the story behind the founding of the Lyme Mexico Clinic and its evolution into a leading Lyme disease treatment center.
  • Patient-Centered Care: Dr. Morales discusses his approach to individualized patient care and the clinic's commitment to understanding and treating Lyme disease.

Lyme Disease: A Complex Challenge

  • Defining Lyme: Delve into the complexities of defining Lyme disease, chronic vs. acute presentations, and the systemic nature of the illness.
  • Insights from ILADS: As a member of the ILADS Board of Directors, Dr. Morales shares his perspectives on the latest Lyme disease research and treatment approaches.
  • The Detective Work in Understanding Lyme Disease: Dr. Morales emphasizes the complexity of Lyme disease, noting the existence of five different subtypes of Lyme and about 300 different sub-strains of Borrelia. He also highlights the significance of co-infections like Bartonella, Babesia, and Anaplasma, as well as the importance of considering both the genetics of the pathogen and the genetics of the patient in treatment strategies.
  • Pathogen-Induced Immune Responses: Dr. Morales has found that Bartonella can trigger an overactive immune system or autoimmunity in patients, whereas Borrelia (Lyme) more often triggers immune suppression, especially in those with genetic predispositions. This distinction is critical for understanding why some chronic Lyme patients have barely functioning immune systems while others have overactive immune systems.

Innovative Approaches to Lyme Treatment

  • Treatment Philosophy: Explore Dr. Morales's "less is more" approach to Lyme treatment, emphasizing the importance of timely and effective interventions.
  • Advancements in Treatment: Learn about the innovative treatment strategies employed at the Lyme Mexico Clinic, including intravenous treatments and the clinic's stance on maintaining patient homeostasis.
  • Four-Part Treatment Framework: Dr. Morales outlines his comprehensive treatment framework, focusing on treating infections, targeting persistent forms of bacteria like biofilm, supporting the immune system, and detoxing. He provides specific treatments for each of these areas during the interview.

Neurological Symptoms of Lyme Disease: Research Insights

  • In-Depth Discussion: We dive deep into the neurological symptoms associated with Lyme disease, an area where Dr. Morales has conducted extensive research.
  • 2024 Fall ILADS Conference in Germany: Dr. Morales will be presenting his significant findings on the neurological implications of Lyme disease at the upcoming ILADS Conference, showcasing his contributions to understanding and treating this complex aspect of Lyme.

Research and Collaboration in Lyme Disease

  • The Role of Research: Understand the critical role of ongoing research in advancing Lyme disease treatment and the importance of collaboration within the medical community.
  • Advocacy for Lyme Disease Awareness: Dr. Morales discusses his advocacy work with ILADS and the importance of raising awareness and support for Lyme disease research.

Patient Advocacy and Care Strategies

  • Commitment to Patients: Hear about Dr. Morales's dedication to patient care, including offering free initial consultations and personalized treatment plans.
  • Understanding Lyme Disease: Gain insights into the detective work involved in diagnosing and treating Lyme disease and the importance of listening to and understanding patients' experiences.

Conclusion: A Future Free from Lyme

We wrap up our Tick Boot Camp Podcast conversation with Dr. Morales by discussing the future of Lyme disease treatment and the importance of community support, early detection, and comprehensive care. Dr. Morales's work with the Lyme Mexico Clinic and ILADS exemplifies the ongoing efforts to improve lives affected by Lyme disease.

Episode 404: Triumph Over Lyme - an interview with Tabitha Veazey

Welcome to another episode of the Tick Boot Camp Podcast, where we shed light on the tick-borne illness journey, offering hope, insight, and advice to our community. In this special episode, we are joined by the resilient and inspiring Tabitha Veazey, a 35-year-old Lyme warrior from Memphis, Tennessee, and co-hosted by Lacey Anderson, alongside Rich Johannesen. Tabitha shares her profound journey from the shock of diagnosis to her ongoing battle with Lyme disease, providing invaluable advice for those affected by Lyme and other tick-borne diseases.

Episode Highlights:

  • Introduction to Tabitha Veazey: Discover Tabitha’s life before Lyme, filled with ambition, social activities, and academic pursuits, painting the picture of a bright future ahead.
  • The Turning Point: Tabitha recounts the moment she found a tick on her back and the onset of severe symptoms that led her to seek medical attention, marking the beginning of her Lyme disease journey.
  • Diagnosis and Treatment: Learn about Tabitha's path to diagnosis through a blood test confirmed by Dr. Timothy Callaghan and her comprehensive treatment involving Doxycycline, Amoxicillin, and Byron White herbs.
  • The Role of Community and Holistic Healing: Tabitha emphasizes the importance of the Lyme community on Facebook and the significant role of herbal tinctures and probiotics in her recovery process.
  • Adjusting to Life Post-Lyme: Tabitha shares how Lyme disease has altered her lifestyle, from her social activities to her dietary habits, and her approach to outdoor activities.
  • Tabitha's Advice for Lyme Warriors: Offering words of wisdom, Tabitha encourages staying positive, embracing a healthy lifestyle, and exploring holistic treatments. She stresses the importance of immediate action following a tick bite and the crucial role of Lyme-literate physicians.
  • Co-host Insights: Lacey Anderson and Rich Johannesen provide their perspectives, underscoring the importance of community support, early diagnosis, and the power of sharing personal stories to raise awareness and foster understanding.

Key Takeaways:

  • Empowerment through Education: Tabitha’s journey underscores the importance of being informed and proactive in the face of tick-borne illnesses.
  • The Power of Community: The support and knowledge shared within the Lyme disease community play a critical role in navigating the challenges of diagnosis and treatment.
  • Holistic and Maintenance Care: The episode highlights the significance of holistic treatments and the necessity of maintenance care for long-term health and wellness.
  • Advocacy and Awareness: Tabitha’s story is a call to action for increased awareness and understanding of Lyme disease, advocating for early detection, proper tick removal techniques, and the pursuit of Lyme-literate medical professionals.

Closing Thoughts:

Tabitha Veazey’s story is not just one of struggle, but of resilience, hope, and the journey towards healing. Her insights and advice offer a beacon of light for those navigating the complexities of Lyme disease. Join us as we explore Tabitha's inspiring journey, the lessons learned, and the path forward for Lyme warriors everywhere.

Thank you for tuning into the Tick Boot Camp Podcast. Remember, knowledge is power, and by sharing our stories, we can make a difference in the lives of those affected by Lyme and other tick-borne diseases. Stay tuned for more episodes that connect, inform, and empower our community.

Episode 403: Illness to Empowerment - an interview with Mandy Meehan

Welcome to a special episode of our Tick Boot Camp Podcast, where we dive deep into the world of chronic illness, focusing on Lyme disease. Today, we're honored to have Mandy Meehan, a Functional Nutritional Therapy Practitioner, Certified Dietary Supplement Professional, and Certified Lyme Specialist, share her incredible journey of battling and overcoming Lyme disease. Joining us as a special guest co-host is MTV Reality TV Star Kendall Darnell along with host Matt Sabatello from Tick Boot Camp, bringing their insights and experiences to today’s discussion.

Episode Highlights:

  • Introduction to Mandy Meehan: We start by introducing Mandy, who lives in Oklahoma with her husband, James, their son, Jace, and another child on the way. Mandy's story begins with her falling incredibly sick just two weeks before her wedding, leading to a 7+ year journey battling over 21 different infections, including Lyme Disease, Bartonella, Babesia, EBV, HHV-6, and more.
  • Mandy's Battle with Chronic Illness: Mandy shares the challenges she faced, including severe food intolerances, hormonal imbalances, hypothyroidism, and neurological issues. These conditions rendered her unable to work or care for herself, pushing her to the brink of despair.
  • Turning Point: Determined to reclaim her life, Mandy embarked on an exhaustive journey of research into nutrition, supplement protocols, and healing strategies. This not only sparked her passion for functional wellness but also led her to become a Functional Nutritional Therapy Practitioner.
  • Expertise and Empowerment: Mandy discusses her specialty in helping people with Lyme & co-infections, chronic fatigue, and toxicity issues, focusing on digestive health, thyroid function, and hormonal balance. Her approach emphasizes the belief in the body's ability to heal through proper nutrition and lifestyle changes.
  • Navigating Life with Lyme: The conversation shifts to Mandy's insights on parenting with Lyme, managing relationships, addressing mold exposure, and the ups and downs of living with chronic illness. She highlights the importance of community and sharing success stories to inspire others.
  • Healing and Giving Back: Mandy reveals the strategies and treatments that were pivotal in her recovery. She shares how she now uses her experience to give back to the community, helping others navigate their paths to wellness.
  • Hosts Matt Sabatello and Kendall Darnell: Host Matt Sabatello and special guest co-host Kendal Darnell share their perspectives, underscoring the importance of validation, community building, and the belief in healing. They discuss the role of their podcast in spreading awareness and offering hope to those affected by Lyme disease and tick-borne illnesses.

Closing Thoughts:

Mandy Meehan's story is a powerful reminder of the resilience of the human spirit and the potential for recovery against the odds. Her journey from suffering to healing and now to empowering others is a testament to the strength found in knowledge, support, and the relentless pursuit of health. We thank Mandy for a deeply insightful and inspiring episode.


Thank you for tuning in to this special episode. If you or someone you know is battling Lyme disease or any related condition, we hope you find solace and solutions in Mandy’s story. Remember, healing is possible, and you are not alone in this journey.

Episode 402: Overcoming Trauma - an interview with Caitlin Doody

Welcome to the Tick Boot Camp Podcast, where we aim to empower and uplift those affected by Lyme disease and other tick-borne illnesses. In this compelling episode, we are thrilled to have Caitlin Doody, a 37-year-old Advanced Practice Registered Nurse (APRN) from Fairfield County, CT, share her profound journey with Lyme disease. Alongside our special guest co-host, Claire Dalton, we dive deep into Caitlin's experiences, from her initial symptoms to her diagnosis, treatment, and life post-Lyme.

Episode Highlights:

  • Introduction to Caitlin Doody: Discover Caitlin's life before Lyme, her professional background as an APRN treating Lyme and other tick-borne diseases, and her aspirations towards earning a PhD.
  • The Onset of Lyme Disease: Caitlin recounts attending a wedding in a Lyme-endemic area and the subsequent appearance of symptoms that led her to self-diagnose Lyme disease after being dismissed by her primary care provider.
  • Diagnosis and Treatment: Caitlin shares her journey through the diagnosis and treatment of Lyme disease, including her self-diagnosis, the challenges she faced with healthcare providers, and the treatment regimen that followed.
  • Life After Lyme: Caitlin discusses the changes in her life post-treatment, highlighting how her battle with Lyme has made her stronger and more aware of tick-borne diseases. She emphasizes the importance of self-advocacy and trusting one's knowledge of their body.
  • Prevention and Advocacy: Learn about Caitlin's focus on prevention strategies and her efforts to protect families from tick diseases through education and her telemedicine clinic, offering prophylactic treatment for tick bites.
  • Caitlin's Advice: Caitlin offers invaluable advice for those currently battling Lyme disease and emphasizes the significance of finding a supportive medical provider. She also provides tips for preventing tick-borne diseases, underlining the importance of awareness and proactive measures.
  • Special Guest Co-host, Claire Dalton: Claire shares her insights and reflections on Caitlin's story, providing a unique perspective on the challenges and triumphs of living with Lyme disease.

Conclusion: Caitlin Doody's story is a testament to resilience, expertise, and the critical role of self-advocacy in navigating Lyme disease. Her journey offers hope, guidance, and inspiration to our community, reinforcing the belief that healing is possible and emphasizing the power of education and prevention in the fight against tick-borne illnesses.

Join us in this inspiring episode as Caitlin and Claire discuss the realities of Lyme disease, the importance of community, and the journey towards healing and empowerment.

Available Now: Tune in to this episode of the Tick Boot Camp Podcast on your favorite podcast platform. Don't forget to subscribe, rate, and review to help us spread the word and support our mission of liberating individuals from the suffering caused by Lyme disease and other tick-borne illnesses.

Episode 401: Lyme Empowerment - an interview with Jennifer Russel

Join us for a compelling episode of the Tick Boot Camp Podcast featuring Jennifer Russell, CEO and founder of the Illinois Lyme Association. Co-hosted by Jenny Buttaccio, this episode explores Jennifer's journey from rural living to becoming a major force in the fight against Lyme disease.


  • Welcoming Jennifer Russell and her influential role in the Lyme disease community.
  • Introduction of special co-host Jenny Buttaccio.

Jennifer's Early Life and First Encounter with Lyme

  • Jennifer discusses her upbringing in Alo, Illinois.
  • Early experiences with ticks and the initial lack of Lyme disease awareness.

The Onset of Lyme Disease in Jennifer's Family

  • The story of Jennifer's daughter’s mysterious symptoms and the struggle for a diagnosis.
  • How Lyme disease became a pivotal part of Jennifer's life.

Advocacy and Legislative Efforts

  • Jennifer’s proactive approach to raising Lyme disease awareness.
  • The challenges and triumphs in the legislative process for Lyme disease recognition.

Founding the Illinois Lyme Association

  • The inception and goals of the Illinois Lyme Association.
  • Jennifer’s role in community building and education.


  • Lauryn Russell Lyme Disease Prevention and Protection Law: Grants doctors immunity to treat Lyme disease outside CDC guidelines without risking their license.
  • Insurance Coverage Law (2019): Ensured coverage for Lyme disease in state-regulated insurance plans and Medicaid.
  • Lyme Task Force: appointed to Illinois Department of Public Health’s Lyme Disease Task Force.

Future Aspirations for Lyme Disease Advocacy

  • Jennifer's vision for the growth and impact of the Illinois Lyme Association.
  • Plans for expanding Lyme disease awareness through hiring writers and volunteers.


  • Key insights and takeaways from Jennifer's journey.
  • The importance of advocacy, community support, and perseverance in combating Lyme disease.
The goal of the Tick Boot Camp Podcast is to help people liberate themselves and others from suffering caused by Lyme disease through validation, community building, belief that healing is possible, and modeling success. Listen to our Tick Boot Camp podcast using all major podcast streaming services such as Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and Google Podcasts. Our podcast is also integrated with smart home devices, such as Amazon Alexa and Apple TV. Ask your device to "play the Tick Boot Camp Podcast!"