A woman diagnosed with Lyme Disease believes her symptoms actually came from something else entirely: an old tampon.
Melanie Galeaz (TikTok user @melaniegaleaz) took to the app to share about her experience of getting Lyme Disease and then discovering she might not have Lyme disease at all, but symptoms from leaving a tampon in for too long.
In the now-deleted TikTok video, Melanie explained, “When I was little, I got bitten by a deer tick, and had all the symptoms of Lyme disease.”
She went on to say that the tests were “kind of confusing” and didn’t show if she actually had Lyme disease or not. However, given that she had symptoms and had been bitten by a tick, the doctors prescribed her medicine for it just in case and “sent me on my way.”
Time passed and during her Sophomore year of high school she said she “started getting all these pains in my body and some really gross stuff was happening down south.”
In the video, she said that she went to the doctor but he was dismissive and she was embarrassed to talk about all of her symptoms. After two years, though, the symptoms hadn’t improved so Melanie went back to the doctor but this time she saw a gynecologist.
She said, “She cranked me open, looks and she gasps. I’m like ‘well, that’s not what you want to hear.’ Then she says, ‘you have a tampon stuck horizontally under your cervix.'”
Melanie said the process to remove it was painful and unpleasant, but she thinks it was the tampon that was causing her issues all along. “I don’t think I even had Lyme disease,” she said.
Melanie shared the clip, which she later deleted, in hopes of spreading awareness about tampons and toxic shock syndrome.
According to Johns Hopkins Medicine, toxic shock syndrome can result from using “super-absorbent tampons.”
Symptoms include fever, chills, headache, fatigue, rash, vomiting, and more. Symptoms can start small and rapidly progress so those who suspect they’re suffering from TSS should contact a medical provider immediately.