Complexities of Lyme Disease


About Health, 8/14/23 on KPFA radio—94.1FM

One of the many health impacts the climate crisis has had in recent years is an increase is vector-borne diseases, including diseases caused by ticks, such as Lyme and Babesiosis. Lyme has been a challenge regarding diagnosis and treatment for a long time, leaving many patients with inadequate testing, high medical bills, and doctors who dismiss the varied, debilitating, and inconsistent symptoms of Lyme.

A young women, Olivia Goodreau, has made it her mission to raise awareness, support research efforts, and create a user-friendly app to identify tick populations, which are seen worldwide. She has suffered from the chronic effects of tick-borne illness on a daily basis. After seeing over 50 doctors to find out what was wrong with her, she met Dr. Richard Horowitz, who gave her the attention and care she had been hoping and praying for. Olivia Goodreau and Dr Horowitz will join me to discuss Lyme disease, including some of the new efforts and treatments on the horizon.



Olivia Goodreau’s recently published memoir is, But She Looks Fine – From Illness to Advocacy”. This is the story of how she turned the physical challenges and emotional hardships she has faced since she was a little girl into an engaged life of advocacy for others. She is the founder (at age 12) of LivLyme Foundation, a nonprofit that provides financial assistance to children and their families struggling with Lyme and other tick-borne diseases. LivLyme also supports the work of researchers and scientists who are dedicated to finding effective treatments and cures for tick-borne diseases. Olivia is also the inventor of the free global TickTracker App, the Tickmojis App, and her latest free app, LongHaulTracker.

Olivia has testified twice in front of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, Tick-Borne Disease Working Group, and both the House and Senate in Maryland. She helped pass the Kay Hagan Tick Act at the request of Senator Susan Collins of Maine, which appropriated $150 million dollars for tick-borne diseases. Olivia lobbied with the Center for Lyme Action and spoke at their inaugural “fly in” helping to increase the tick-borne diseases congressional budget by $91 million.

So many young people are faced with life-changing hardships from illness and disease. What Olivia discovers through her journey with chronic Lyme, is that inside of every predicament is also a possibility. Olivia will be attending UCLA in the fall of 2023, majoring in political science with a double minor in public health and international business.



Dr. Richard Horowitz is a board-certified internist and medical director of the Hudson Valley Healing Arts Center, an integrative medical center specializing in the treatment of Lyme and other tick-borne diseases. He has treated over 13,000 Lyme and TBD patients in the last 30 years and is one of the founding members and past president elect of The International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society (ILADS). Dr Horowitz has published multiple peer-reviewed articles on effective diagnostic and treatment options for Lyme and co-infections and served as a member of the Health and Human Services (HHS) Tick-borne Disease Working Group in 2017-2018. He was also co-chair of the HHS Tick-borne Co-infection subcommittee which gave recommendations to Congress on the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of tick-borne illness, and he was recently elected to the NYS Department of Health Tick-borne Disease Working Group. For dedicating his life to helping those stricken with this devastating illness, he has been awarded the Humanitarian of the Year award by the Turn the Corner Foundation and awards from Project Lyme.

Dr Horowitz also published the first peer reviewed article in the world literature on the role of glutathione deficiency in COVID-19, which has now been cited over 200 times. He is the author of two best-selling books on Lyme disease, Why Can’t I Get Better? and How Can I Get Better? He also recently released his first science fiction/climate change novel, Starseed R/evolution, The Awakening, which contains innovative scientific solutions for our climate crisis.

Inherited Trauma and Resilience

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KPFA Radio, 94.1FM,  7/31/23 

Joining me was author Elizabeth Rosner, discussing her book, Survivor Café: The Legacy of Trauma and the Labyrinth of Memory, where she looks at how descendants of atrocities cope with inherited trauma.


Elizabeth Rosner is an author, teacher, and lecturer whose work focuses on the redemptive power of storytelling and deep listening. Her books have been translated into ten languages and have received several literary prizes in the US and abroad. Her most recent book of creative nonfiction, Survivor Café: The Legacy of Trauma and the Labyrinth of Memory, explores the intergenerational aftermath of atrocities while offering hard-won hope for individual as well as collective resilience. Raised in upstate New York as the daughter of two Holocaust survivors, Elizabeth’s writing interweaves personal reflection with scholarly research, revealing the profoundly resonant impacts of the past upon the present. She leads writing workshops locally in Berkeley as well as internationally; her teaching carries forward a message of perseverance and tenacious optimism.

More about all of her work can be found on her website:




Pain: How It Works And Why We Have It

Pain is an unpleasant signal and complex experience when something hurts. It’s an important message to let us know something is wrong, and to help us to take action to prevent further harm. Pain will often go away on its own, but it can also persist and become chronic pain, which is one of the most common reasons people seek out medical care.

My guest, Dr. Rachel Zoffness, will help us understand the three important domains of chronic pain: biology, psychology, and social factors. Successful treatment often requires addressing these three prongs of pain.

Listen now to About Health (7/10/23) on 94.1FM—KPFA.ORG


Dr. Rachel Zoffness is a leading global pain expert, international speaker, author, and thought-leader in medicine, revolutionizing the way we understand and treat pain. She is a pain psychologist, Assistant Clinical Professor at UCSF, and lectures at Stanford. Dr. Zoffness is the author of The Pain Management Workbook and The Chronic Pain and Illness Workbook for Teens, the first pain workbook for kids. A passionate pain educator, she is a regular guest on popular health podcasts, and her episodes have over 6 million downloads. Dr. Zoffness was trained at Brown University, Columbia, UC San Diego, NYU, and Mt. Sinai Hospital. You can learn more at


A Brain Surgeon’s Insights On Living And Dying

 Listen now to About Health on KPFA radio–94.1FM, 6/26/23 

We discussed the complexities of neurosurgery, brain disorders, physician burnout, talking to patients and families about death, and ghosts.


Gary Simonds, MD is a retired neurosurgeon who’s treated tens of thousands of patients. He’s the Founding Chief of Neurosurgery at the Carilion Clinic, Virginia Tech Carilion School of Medicine, and the author of three non-fiction books on burnout and psychological distress in healthcare providers. His first novel, Death’s Pale Flag, has just been published. (June,2023).

Dr. Simonds has written and spoken widely on the subjects of neuroscience, medical school admissions, humanism, medical socioeconomics, medical ethics, burnout, personal wellness, spirituality, death and dying, and the interface between science and religion. For more information go to

Foot and Ankle Care: The Podiatrist Is In!

About Health––94.1FM 6/5/23

When all is well, we go about our day without thinking about how important our feet are. We walk, hike, run, play sports, or go shopping with ease. But when something is wrong and we have pain in our feet or ankles, it’s all we can think about. How are your feet doing? And what questions do you have? Do you experience Plantar Fasciitis, Metatarsalgia, Arthritis, Neuropathy, or Bunions? Do you wonder what shoes to wear or if your ankle swelling is normal? Maybe you’ve broken your ankle and are still healing from a fall.

** Listen Now 


Dr. Sireesha Battula, DPM, is a board-certified podiatrist and foot and ankle surgeon at Bay Area Foot and Ankle Center in Albany California. She provides quality care and advanced treatments for men, women, and teens. Her 16 years of experience have given Dr. Battula the skills and knowledge to provide superior service to patients who have foot or ankle problems. She has expertise in treating complex disorders and injuries like gait abnormalities, complex fractures, and diabetic foot problems, as well as the more common conditions like hammertoe, bunions, and toenail fungus, as well as heel pain from plantar fasciitis.

You can learn more about her practice at

Responding To Emergencies

We never know when an accident or emergency will happen. Are you prepared?

Listen now to About Health on—94.1FM

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We discussed topics such as child safety, poisoning, drowning, CPR, choking, bleeding, and what to put in a first aid kit. This is a good time to think about safety and be prepared so you can stay as calm as possible if an accident or emergency occurs.


Anna Griffin is an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) with more than 20 years’ experience teaching CPR and First Aid classes. She is an instructor certified by the American Red Cross and the Health & Safety Institute (HSI) and teaches CPR and First Aid to undergraduates at Cal State East Bay. She worked for many years at Washington Hospital in Fremont, recertifying the staff in BLS (Basic Life Support) and has also taught community classes in Baby and Child CPR at hospitals in San Francisco, Daly City, and Berkeley. Bilingual in English and Spanish, she currently offers classes for parent and neighborhood groups, school teachers, office workers and non-profits. Learn more at