Babesia in dogs – implications for people

babesia in dogs
A dog can be man’s best friend, particularly when it comes to helping identify the risk of tick-borne diseases for humans. The true spread of Babesia may currently be underestimated, under-reported, and untreated, writes Mahachi and colleagues in the journal Parasites Vectors.¹ But new research indicates that hunting dogs can offer insight into the distribution of Babesia in the Southern and Western USA.

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Cavalier attitude towards Lyme infection is misplaced

man with lyme infection looking up in woods
Some medical professionals and their patients have dismissed Lyme disease, believing the prevalence and potential damage a Lyme infection can cause is over-exaggerated. But what happens if your family is directly affected? A researcher from the University of Pennsylvania shares his story “Lemons and Lyme” in the Journal of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society.

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Could POTS and Lyme disease patients suffer impaired cognitive function when standing?

woman with pots and lyme disease holding her forehead
Postural tachycardia syndrome (POTS) is a chronic form of orthostatic intolerance which affects circulation or blood flow. It’s typically triggered when a person suddenly stands up after lying down. The primary symptoms include lightheadedness, fainting and an uncomfortable, rapid increase in heartbeat.

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No evidence single doxycycline dosage for Lyme disease prevention is effective in children

removing tick on scalp to avoid doxycycline dosage for lyme disease prevention
A recent article by Carriveau and colleagues recommends that a single dose of doxycycline should be prescribed to children following a tick bite to prevent Lyme disease.¹ Unfortunately, there is no evidence to support this recommendation.

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Disseminated Lyme disease more likely in those with weakened immune system

Sick woman sitting on couch with disseminated Lyme disease
Individuals with a weakened immune system are more susceptible to developing infections, such as COVID-19. A review study has also found that people with compromised immune systems are at a greater risk of developing disseminated Lyme disease. The authors of “Erythema Migrans: Course and Outcome in Patients Treated With Rituximab” investigated patients diagnosed with Lyme disease, who were also taking Rituximab, a medication known to impair immunity. [1]

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4 distinct post-treatment Lyme disease syndromes?

Man holding head, looking tired from post treatment lyme disease
In a recent editorial, Dr. Allen Steere describes the clinical features and proposed mechanisms triggering what he believes are 4 distinct post-treatment Lyme disease syndromes (PTLDS) in patients who fail antibiotic treatment for Lyme disease. [1]

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New treatments for Lyme disease on the horizon?

medication chart showing new treatments for lyme disease
Patients with Lyme disease are typically treated with a standard antibiotic, which may include doxycycline, amoxicillin, or cefuroxime, for a 2 to 4 week period. However, studies have shown that between 36-63% of treated patients continue to suffer with persistent symptoms. [1]

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Central sensitization syndrome worsens Lyme disease symptoms?

girl holding hands over ears has central sensitization syndrome
Chronic pain, debilitating fatigue, and heightened sensory disturbances are common in Lyme disease patients. In their article, “Post-Treatment Lyme Syndrome and Central Sensitization,” Batheja and colleagues suggest that, in some cases, such symptoms may be due to central sensitization syndrome (CSS). [1]

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Lyme disease increases risk of atrial fibrillation

Boy with Lyme disease and atrial fibrillation being resuscitated by EMT
Atrial fibrillation, the most common type of arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat), can increase your risk of strokes, heart disease or other heart-related complications. In many cases, atrial fibrillation is associated with a history of cardiac inflammation, writes Szymanska et al. in their article “History of Lyme Disease as a Predictor of Atrial Fibrillation.”

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Will late stage Lyme disease treatment include azlocillin?

Woman sleeping in car who needs late stage lyme disease treatment
A study by Stanford Medicine indicates that a drug called azlocillin “completely kills off the disease-causing bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi at the onset of the illness.” [1] In addition, the authors say, azlocillin “could be effective for treating [Lyme disease] patients infected with drug-tolerant bacteria that may cause lingering symptoms.”

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