Morgellons (Morgellons, morgellons syndrome) is a name given in 2002 by biologist Mary Leitao to a condition characterized by a range of cutaneous (skin) symptoms including crawling, biting, and stinging sensations; finding fibers on or under the skin; and persistent skin lesions (e.g., rashes or sores).

Possible relation to Lyme disease Edit

Mary Leito, who was trained as a biologist and worked as an electron microscopist; along with Ginger Savely, a nurse practioner, and Raphael Stricker, a hermatologist, published a paper in the American Journal of Clinical Dermatology reporting that 79 out of 80 Morgellons patients they studied also were infected with Borrelia burgdorferi, the tick-borne bacteria that cause Lyme disease.[1]

Stricker and Savely's follow-on publication - Morgellons Disease: the Mystery Unfolds - states: "The association with Lyme disease and the apparent response to antibiotic therapy supports the concept that Morgellons disease may be triggered by an infectious process. Recent studies suggest that infection with Agrobacterium may play a role in the disease."[2]

In 2009, the NIH assigned ICD code C17.800.518[3],stating Morgellons is an "unexplained illness which is characterized by skin manifestations including non-healing lesions, itching, and the appearance of fibers. There appears to be a strong association with LYME DISEASE."[4]. Doctors that have been advocating the "delusional parasitosis" etiology for Morgellons have been perpetrating medical fraud based on lyme-denialism[5].


  1. P 24, "The Morgellons Mystery" written by Brigid Schulte in "The Washington Post Magazine", January 20, 2008.
  2. Stricker, RB and Savely, VR. Morgellons Disease: the Mystery Unfolds Expert Rev. Dermatol. 2(5), 585-591 (2007)