Lyme Disease

Overview

A vector-borne (results from an infection transmitted to humans and other animals by blood-feeding arthropods such as mosquitoes, ticks, and fleas) disease characterized by four specific species of bacteria, including Borrelia burgdorferi, Borrelia mayonii, Borrelia afzelii, and Borrelia garinii. The most common way for the condition to be transmitted is via the bite of infected black-legged ticks (deer ticks).

Common Symptoms

Fever, chills, headache, fatigue, muscle and joint aches, swollen lymph nodes, erythema morgans rash, neck stiffness, facial palsy, arthritis, intermittent pain in tendons, muscles, joints, and bones, heart palpitations and irregular heartbeat, dizziness, shortness of breath, episodes of dizziness or shortness of breath, brain or spinal cord inflammation, nerve pain, numbness/tingling in the hands/feet, neurological issues, eye inflammation, and liver inflammation.

Coexisting Diseases and Conditions

Lyme carditis, Bell’s palsy, meningitis, hepatitis, babesia, bartonella, rickettsia, ehrlichia and anaplasma.

Risk Factors

Those who live near or spend time in grassy/heavily wooded areas where ticks exist are at higher risk of contracting Lyme disease, particularly if they have exposed skin. Ticks must be removed promptly (within 36 hours) to remove the likelihood that the bacteria will enter the bloodstream and cause illness.

Sources

  1. Article Sources and Footnotes
    1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2021, May 28). Lyme Disease. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/lyme/index.html

    2. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2021, January 15). Signs and Symptoms of Untreated Lyme Disease. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/lyme/signs_symptoms/index.html

    3. Mayo Clinic Staff. (2020, October 24). Lyme disease. Mayo Clinic. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/lyme-disease/symptoms-causes/syc-20374651

    4. International Lyme and Associated Diseases Education Foundation. (2018, July 13). Lyme Disease FAQ. ILADEF. https://iladef.org/education/lyme-disease-faq/

    5. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2018, November 16). Lyme Disease Co-Infection. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. https://www.niaid.nih.gov/diseases-conditions/lyme-disease-co-infection

    6. LymeDisease.org. (n.d.). People with Lyme disease co-infections experience more severe illness. LymeDisease.org. https://www.lymedisease.org/lyme-basics/co-infections/about-co-infections/

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