By Julianna LeMieux — August 21, 2017
In certain areas of the country, "tick checks" are an everyday activity - especially for the kind of ticks that carry diseases like Lyme disease. However, even if ticks are found and removed, it is not simple or easy to recognize if that tick left Lyme disease behind.
Now, new research published in Science Translational Medicine may lead to a new test that takes the guessing game out of diagnosing Lyme disease. Even better, it could distinguish Lyme disease from other tick-borne illnesses that share many of the same symptoms.
Lyme disease is caused by a bacterial infection with Borrelia burgdorferi, which is passed through the bite of the deer tick. The tick must be attached for 36-48 hours or more before the bacterium can be transmitted. The infection can result in the nonspecific flu-like symptoms of fever, chills, fatigue, and aches. But, the telltale sign is the rash known as erythema migrans - or bull's eye rash. The problem is that this rash does not appear in every case of Lyme disease or may be missed if it is located in a hard to see area such as the back. Alternatively, other bites, from a spider for example, may appear like a bull's eye rash to an untrained eye. The bottom line is that Lyme disease can be difficult to diagnose, even with a rash that resembles the the bullseye rash......... Read More......