Fatigue can be overlooked as a “sign” of Lyme disease

There are several objective signs of early Lyme disease, including Bell's palsy, synovitis of the knee, the presence of an erythema migrans (EM) rash, uveitis, bursitis of the hip and shoulders, and sacroilitis. However, severe fatigue has also been described as a sign of early Lyme disease (LD).

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You can’t count on testing of engorged ticks

A recent study published in the Journal of Ticks and Tick-borne Diseases examined the prevalence of ticks in the Quebec region, along with the frequency of Borrelia burgdorferi (Bb) infection in engorged versus non-engorged ticks.

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How can doctors determine if patients with systemic autoimmune joint disease following Lyme disease don’t have a persistent infection?

Doctors at Massachusetts General Hospital have described a series of 30 patients who developed systemic autoimmune joint disease following Lyme disease. "Fifteen had rheumatoid arthritis (RA), 13 had psoriatic arthritis (PsA), and 2 had peripheral spondyloarthropathy (SpA)," according to Arvikar and colleagues. [1]

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Quality of Life for Lyme Disease patients in the Netherlands can be grim

Three trials sponsored by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the USA have demonstrated the poor Quality of Life (QOL) for patients diagnosed with Lyme disease. [1,2] A recently published clinical trial in the Netherlands entitled "Persistent Lyme Empiric Antibiotic Study Europe (PLEASE)" found the Quality of Life for Lyme disease patients in the Netherlands was equally as poor.

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Steroid use can lead to long-term treatment failure for Lyme disease patients

Several studies have documented the consequences steroids pose to patients with Lyme disease. Most recently, researchers from Massachusetts Eye and Ear and Harvard Medical School published a retrospective study which described an "association between corticosteroid use in acute LDFP [Lyme disease-associated facial palsy] and worse long-term facial function outcomes." [1]

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Women with chronic Lyme disease may suffer from a severe immune response triggered by the disease

Women with chronic manifestations of Lyme disease (LD) are often told they suffer from a variety of other illnesses including depression, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome or unexplained medical symptoms.

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How big is the risk of Lyme disease to your job?

As many as 440,000 people are diagnosed with Lyme disease each year, with an average of $3,000 spent annually per patient on treatment. Overall, the financial costs to society are staggering. Our healthcare system is spending between $712 million and $1.3 billion each year to treat Lyme disease and any lingering illnesses associated with it. [1] But what is the cost to the patients who find themselves too sick to work as they once did? Aside from the physical and emotional impact, the illness can drive individuals and families into financial ruin.

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How important are T-cell chemokines in chronic manifestations of Lyme disease?

Researchers at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine recently conducted a study to investigate the potential association between post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome (PTLDS) and immune mediator levels during the acute phase of illness.

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Tick bite prevention methods are failing our children

Children make up an estimated 25% of all Lyme disease cases in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The highest number of reported cases occurs among boys ages 5 to 9 years old. [1, 2] Despite the oft-made recommendation for tick checks, the number of children and adolescents developing Lyme disease continues to rise. Now, a new study, published in Vector Borne Zoonotic Diseases, looks at the incidence of tick bites among various age groups and the associated risk of exposure to tick-borne diseases.

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How to kill a tick on your clothes

In 2013, a 16-year-old high school student from Braintree, Massachusetts wondered how long it would take to actually kill a tick in a dryer. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) had long insisted that it took at least one hour on high heat in a dryer to successfully kill ticks. But their recommendation was only based on one published study.

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