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  • WKBN

    Local teen shares Lyme disease experience

    By Abigail Cloutier,


    HUBBARD, Ohio (WKBN) – A new CDC report shows Lyme disease cases in Ohio and Pennsylvania spiked in recent years.

    Now, a Hubbard teenager wants to raise awareness for the disease she’s lived with since she was 9. She warns it’s more than a simple infection.

    Malia Crump was nine years old when she was covered in bullseye rashes and had severe pain. She was diagnosed with several tick-borne illnesses including Lyme disease and spent weeks in the hospital.

    “I don’t ever wish this upon any adult, any child,” Malia Crump said. “I went from being a very happy child to a very miserable child.”

    She took antibiotics for months but her health was still deteriorating.

    Now 18, she still struggles with health issues from the disease that, at one point, left her wheelchair-bound.

    “Your body hurts. It genuinely just hurts every day. You could have a good day and then go home getting better. Turn around the next day and it’s like, ‘What just hit me?’ It really takes a toll on you,” she said.

    After years of struggling with brain fog and pain, Crump eventually sought intense treatment at a holistic clinic in Florida

    Though she can walk – not every day is a good day.

    “My legs would just periodically give out,” she said, adding treatment can take a toll.

    “I’m on supplements morning, noon, evening and bedtime four times a day. I take a handful of pills,” she said.

    She wouldn’t be able to get through her disease without the support of her parents, brother and younger sisters.

    Pictures from her Hubbard High School graduation party last year that proved even when she was in a wheelchair – her sisters never left her out.

    “We make it work. They always included me in things and they never left me out. If they went somewhere it was ‘Mailia, come on!’ If I decided I wanted to go somewhere, they were right there with me,” she said.

    Now, Malia has her CDL, is working on her pilot’s license and races motorcycles.

    But she wants people to know Lyme is an insidious disease and can create long-lasting health issues.

    She said if you’re bitten by a tick, “Don’t wait. Don’t take ‘no’ for an answer.”

    Copyright 2024 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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