Rain On A Distant Roof: A Personal Journey Through Lyme Disease in Canada

Author: Vanessa Farnsworth
Publisher: Signature Editions
Book Publication: 2013

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control stunned the world in August 2013 by revising the number of Lyme disease cases occurring annually in the U.S. upwards from 30,000 to 300,000. In doing so, they inadvertently threw a spotlight on the Public Health Agency of Canada, whose most recent figures indicated that just 258 Canadians were diagnosed with the disease in 2011.

“There is no chance that the number of Lyme disease cases reported by the Public Health Agency of Canada is even remotely accurate. The failure of the agency to recognize the existence of the majority of Lyme cases in this country is increasingly placing the health of Canadians at risk,” says Vanessa Farnsworth, author of Rain on a Distant Roof: A Personal Journey Through Lyme Disease in Canada.

Although Farnsworth doesn’t remember being bitten by a tick, one day after a routine visit to the dentist she fell ill. As her symptoms increased in number and intensity, she sought medical help. But the ER doctor who examined her came to the conclusion that only someone mentally ill would claim such a dizzying array of symptoms – and sent her packing. And so began her wild ride with Lyme disease. When she was finally admitted to hospital months later, in full system breakdown, her condition was diagnosed. Sort of. There were differing opinions among the medical practitioners studying her case, and it wasn’t until Public Health stepped in with test results that her condition was acknowledged for what it truly was. By then, the treatment was too little, too late.

A trained journalist, writer, and Lyme disease sufferer, Farnsworth has spent years researching the complexities of Lyme disease in Canada. The result is Rain on a Distant Roof, a groundbreaking book that relies on the latest in scientific and medical knowledge to explore the considerable challenges surrounding Lyme disease in this country. Alternating between a journal created from notes taken throughout her battle with Lyme disease, and background material on the disease, Farnsworth delves into the proper diagnosis and treatment, medical testing, treatment guidelines, and a public health response that is problematic.

Rain on a Distant Roof is an excellent read. I recommend it. Our politicians at all levels and physicians of every ilk should read it as well.” ~ (Jim Wilson, President, Canadian Lyme Disease Foundation)

Rain on a Distant Roof offers uncompromising access to a very personal experience with Lyme disease, an unpredictable, debilitating and potentially fatal illness that is becoming more prevalent across Canada. Vanessa Farnsworth combines a journalist’s tenacity with a writer’s sensibility, presenting her struggle with the disease but also with a health care system that too often leaves sufferers misdiagnosed and undersupported. Her book is a clarion call to pay attention to a serious health crisis in the making.” ~ (Charlene Diehl, Director, Winnipeg International Writers Festival)

Visit Vanessa Farnsworth’s Lyme disease website at: www.lymediseasebook.com

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