Lyme Disease Symptoms and Treatment in New York

Lyme disease was first reported in 1975 in a region of Lyme, Connecticut, which led to the name of this tick-borne disease.

Lyme disease or Lyme Borreliosis is an infection transmitted to the human body by carriers known as black-legged ticks (deer ticks). When infected ticks bite, the saliva of the tick, containing bacteria, enters the bloodstream causing the disease.

The common causative organism of this infectious disease is the bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi; Borrelia mayonii may also cause the infection but in rare cases in the United States. Borrelia afzelii and Borrelia garinii species are known to cause Lyme disease in Asia and Europe, respectively.

Deer ticks cause infection mainly in summer and spring. While in the summer, adult deer ticks cause the infection. In spring, the nymphs or immature deer ticks, the size of a pinhead, make an appearance and end up with bacteria after consuming rodents infected with B. burgdorferi.

Symptoms

Lyme disease symptoms are often confused with flu symptoms, and the diagnosis of Lyme disease becomes problematic as it's diagnosed as another ailment. The symptoms may include:

Common symptoms:

  • Bull's eye rash is a red-colored rash seen in patients infected by Lyme disease within three to thirty days after the bite. The rash is warm to the touch and is a characteristic feature of Lyme disease.
  • The rash is raised around the edges and may enlarge over time.
  • Many individuals may not develop the rash even though they are infected.
  • Headache, joint pain, and muscle pain
  • Fatigue
  • Stiff neck
  • Typical flu-like symptoms include sore throat, fever, and body aches.

Less common symptoms:

  • Paralysis of the face
  • Numbness or tingling sensation
  • Irregular heart rhythm
  • Eye swelling

Diagnostic Tests

In cases where the 'bull's eye rash,' the classical sign of Lyme disease, doesn't appear, it is difficult to diagnose whether it's a tick-borne infection or another ailment. Medical practitioners often ask about the patient's medical history and places they've visited to ensure whether the region they visited has Lyme disease cases.

Doctors recommend the tests mentioned below to confirm or eliminate the diagnosis:

1. ELISA (Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay test): Upon the entry of Borrelia burgdorferi into the blood, the immune system makes antibodies to fight against the infection. An enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay test detects these antibiotics to check the presence of Lyme disease.

2. Western Blotting: Doctors get patients to get a Western Blotting test, a type of blood test to confirm the diagnosis, as ELISA techniques are known to produce false positive results sometimes.

The Best Lyme Disease Treatment

Early diagnosis can help to prevent the advancement of Lyme disease to the later stage where the treatment options available might not work effectively. At the moment, antibiotics are used for Lyme disease treatment.

The following antibiotics are prescribed during Lyme disease treatment:

Oral Antibiotics They are often given for the treatment of early-stage Lyme disease. Common oral antibiotics for Lyme disease treatment are amoxicillin, doxycycline, and cefuroxime. The prescribed course of oral antibiotic treatment is 14 - 21 days. Antibiotics should be taken correctly, as suggested by a doctor.

Intravenous antibiotics or Antibiotic injections Healthcare practitioners prescribe a 14 - 28 day course of intravenous antibiotics when the disease has advanced to the central nervous system. Although intravenous antibiotic Lyme disease treatment helps to recover, it brings a series of side effects..

Antibiotics are the only existent and proven as the best Lyme disease treatment. There is no other scientifically proven alternative Lyme disease treatment.

After antibiotic treatment, many patients experience post-Lyme disease symptoms with no underlying cause or explanation.


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