Report When To Stop Looking For Cause? in Dysautonomia Discussion Posted July 8, 2010 Hi all,My improvement over the last year has been drastic. I became sick over three years ago, following living in rural Africa for eight months. Before leaving for Africa, I was in top-notch health, and my friends frequently commented on how I was never sick. I ran at least three miles a day in sometimes 115 degree weather, no problems.I returned from Africa and was living in Pennsylvania for a couple of months. About a month, or a little less after returning, I was suddenly crippled with extreme panic attacks, major facial flushing, swollen lymph nodes and racing heart. Literally one day I was on run feeling like the world was my oyster and the very next day it seemed everything was failing. I was not sick, nor had been for a long time prior to this. Everything degraded from there and for two years I was very sick. No doctor, to this day, has ever been able to offer a diagnosis, but it has seemed very clear that I have an autonomic dysfunction, so the POTS label got stuck with me (though my tilt was negative for POTS but positive for a sudden rapid heart reaction to the adrenaline injection -- which occurred upon lowering, not standing).Since then, like I said, I have improved so much. It is impossible for me to even really remember how much I suffered those years. I know that it happened and I can very vividly remember how often I thought I was dying, but I can't physically remember how horrible it felt to actually experience that. I still have rapid heart rates and some other discomforts here and there, but largely, I don't think a huge deal about my symptoms, which used to be all I could think about.I still feel very concerned about what caused all of this, especially because no diagnosis was ever offered. I did have a doctor strongly suspect lyme's disease, especially because of where I was located at the time I became sick (tick country) and I worry about that a great deal because I know it can "hide" for a long time. But at the same time, I don't think I would see the pretty constant remarkable improvement I have had. One symptom, which has disappeared but really bothers me because it doesn't fit a "POTS" profile, was this bizarre arthritis I had developed. My fingers became sausages and burst out with these little red nodules on my finger joints that were intensely painful. This lasted several months and disappeared. The arthritis (not the nodules) came and went in my fingers for a couple of years, but hasn't returned for the last two years. I fully believe that something was inside of me, whether it was lyme's, some parasite, virus, etc. Something caused the arthritis and swollen lymph nodes that lasted for several years.I am fairly plagued with fear that whatever it was inside of me is just hiding and that I will go through all of that again. I am finally getting a taste of life again and am trying to get rid of the last remaining symptoms, which are a cake walk compared to before. So I am truly terrified of ever going back, and because I never received any treatment, I wonder if something inside of me causing this could just disappear, or if something is just lurking in my cells waiting for me to get sick again so that it can return.Does anyone else worry about this? At what point do I just accept that I'll never know and move on? Is it worth trying to figure out if something infected me, though I am relatively high functioning? Do I pursue the lyme's treatment, despite its major expenses and the fact that I am improving?