Marquel's fight with Chronic Lyme

Marquel Fleischacker's struggle with Chronic Late Stage Neurological Lyme Disease  

For the past 6 years Marquel has been silently struggling, unknowingly with Lyme disease. Misdiagnosed for years and prescribed a plethora of different medications, during which symptoms only intensified and continued to damage her organs as additional symptoms developed; Marquel felt like she was hopelessly spinning in circles. 

Only recently, in October 2017 was Marquel diagnosed with Chronic Late Stage Neurological Lyme disease – and 3 co-infections, one of them Babesiosis, a rarer tick borne illness. Babesiosis bacteria attacks and destroys red blood cells, decreasing the oxygen supply to Marquel's brain and other organs.  This also causes her to feel like she's always out of breath or suffocating. 

Marquel never had the traditional bulls-eye rash and does not remember a tick bite.  Since these ticks are the size of a poppy seed they are often never seen.  These tiny ticks do not have to burrow into your skin; it only takes a bite from an infected tick to contract Lyme disease. 

The diseases have caused damage to most of her organs, most severely her heart, brain, liver, and thyroid. She has constant infections, swollen lymph nodes, severe joint pain and swelling, muscle tremors, twitches/tics, migraine headaches, dizzy spells and trouble with her balance. Brain swelling and inflammation causes intense psychological symptoms and re-current stress responses from her heart and other organs even at rest. The diseases hit her nerves causing relentless and constant shooting pain and numbness in her arms, legs and back. Marquel’s digestive system is compromised, causing frequent nausea and vomiting.

Mentally, Marquel deals with extreme anxiety, panic attacks, depression and PTSD.  Marquel is a junior in college, Pre-Med major.  She has been forced to drop her classes because of extreme brain fog, confusion, blurred vision, difficulty with concentration, short term memory struggles and inability to absorb and process new information. Problems with speech and word block sometimes become so severe, Marquel is unable to speak full sentences or carry on conversations. Insomnia and vivid nightmares keep Marquel from getting the sleep she needs.

The psychological impact - Marquel’s fight or flight response is ALWAYS working. Even small things become frightening and make her feel like she’s in danger, or she experiences an overwhelming feeling of impending doom and hopelessness. This causes her to experience extreme social anxiety, loneliness and constant convictions that no one believes her because they can't see what the Lyme is doing to her on the on inside.

Physically, mentally and emotionally Marquel is struggling and we are asking for your financial support, prayers and understanding.

Marquel is grateful to have a Lyme Literate Medical Doctor overseeing her treatments. She’s been prescribed treatments of high powered antibiotics along with many other medications since October 2017.  She will need to continue the regiment of high powered antibiotics for an additional 8 to 10 months at approximately $3200.00 per month followed by an additional 9 month Recovery/Support Program – at a cost of $550.00 per month.  Unfortunately, her Lyme treatments, prescriptions and medical care costs are NOT covered by her family’s medical insurance.

We, the relatives and friends of Marquel are asking for your financial assistance to help defray Marquel’s medical cost. Please know any donations are greatly appreciated. Thank you for your prayers and interest in learning about Marquel’s Lyme’s disease fight. Please share this on social media or any other outlet to raise awareness of Lyme’s disease and how devastating and debilitating it can be. 

Marquel is a bright, kind, caring, and quiet young woman who is always willing to help others.  Her struggle with Lyme’s disease has strengthened her passion for medicine and caring for others who are struggling with debilitating diseases.



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Margo Mackedanz, Maureen Schaefer, Lynn Mergen 
Winona, MN
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