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We’d all like to believe that our journey with a disabling disease was foretold, a regrettable side effect, perhaps, of getting mono as a teen. An unlucky bellyflop off the gene pool high dive. An unavoidable short straw in the game of life. But what if it’s not always that?"

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about dave

Sit Down Before Reading author Dave Bexfield was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2006 at the age of 37. After his diagnosis he founded ActiveMSers.org, a not-for-profit, science-based website to help others manage the disease, growing it into one of the longest running and largest MS websites in the world. Recognized as a leading health advocate, Dave has been highlighted in The New York Times, promoted in The Wall Street Journal, and featured on the covers and in the pages of countless health publications. 

Despite these achievements, every attempt to slow his own MS met with failure as he tried 7 disease modifying therapies, volunteered for 5 clinical trials, and underwent the most aggressive treatment available for MS: a hematopoietic stem cell transplant. Over $2 million has been spent on his unsuccessful care, leaving him profoundly disabled, restricted to a wheelchair, and heavily reliant on daily caregiving assistance from his unbelievably patient wife of 31 years, Laura.

In the fall of 2021—after 15 UTIs in 15 months and a frightening bout of psychosis—Mr. Bexfield made an astonishing discovery: he had been misdiagnosed. Bitten by a tick 17 years earlier in Lyme, CT, he instead was suffering from a neurological form of Lyme disease, Lyme encephalomyelitis. But then Dave faced a new unbelievable challenge. Without a confirming positive Lyme test, no physician would administer the one treatment regarded as medically necessary for his condition.

Desperate and out of options, the professional writer began penning Sit Down Before Reading, a real-time memoir to expose this travesty. But in his research, he made a horrific discovery. The flawed laboratory tests for Lyme disease—those approved and promoted by the CDC and infectious disease societies globally—appear to have resulted in countless cases of the tickborne illness circulating undetected worldwide, misdiagnosed as MS and myriad other autoimmune diseases and medical conditions. Had he uncovered one of the greatest failures in modern medicine?

Follow his journey of discovery as Dave unravels this health mystery in his memoir Sit Down Before Reading.

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