Big Lake woman seeks stem cell treatment for chronic Lyme disease
Some days are better than others.
But lately, those days are rare and far between for Big Lake resident Kristi Hellen.
“I’ve never felt great,” Hellen, 38, said. “No, I never have great feeling days. Sometimes there would be a period 5 to 30 minutes a day that I would feel good. Now, that’s down to just 5 to 10 minutes.”
For the past 16 years the mystery surrounding Hellen’s crippling pain remained that, a mystery.
“I’ve been diagnosed with depression, anxiety, chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia,” Hellen said. “I’ve been on a few medications, but those would only make me feel like 20 percent better.”
It wasn’t until about a year ago – and with the gentle persistence of a close friend – that Hellen would get tested for a disease she feared: Lyme.
Those test results have since given Hellen something she hasn’t had for almost two decades: hope.
Growing up in the Elk River and Zimmerman area, Hellen said she would spend a lot of time outdoors in her parents’ wooded yard.