Lyme Disease is a bacterial infection transmitted by deer ticks. Typically this disease is noticed in the Northeast, northern California and upper Midwest in the U.S. Lyme disease is also noticed in Europe, Asia and Australia. Ticks latch on to the person and transmit the disease-producing bacteria such as Borrelia burgdorferi. The bacteria passes through the bloodstream and produces symptoms that may resemble fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue syndrome or joint disorder.
Symptoms of Lyme Disease include a rash that can be noticed at the site of the tick bite. The red bumps are warm and tender to the touch. The rashes resemble a bull's eye. Patient suffering from Lyme Disease is likely to suffer flu-like symptoms along with the rashes. There is severe joint pain. Other symptoms of Lyme Disease include difficulty in concentration and remembering. The disease progressively affects the heart and central nervous system.
The ELISA test is used to detect Lyme disease. Other diagnostic tests include Western Blot test and Polymerase chain reaction test. Oral antibiotics such as doxycycline or amoxicillin are used to treat Lyme disease in the early stage. If the disease has progressed, intravenous antibiotic treatment may be required. Persons in tick-infected areas must cover themselves completely with long sleeves and pants. They must check for any attached ticks after going out. Remove any tick with a pair of tweezers and then disinfect the site of the bite. Use of repellant may help.
Powassan disease is spread by the bite of a tick. It is a very rare disease that spreads by the bite of infected ticks. The disease is named after a town where it was identified first. This virus is not directly transmitted from person to person.
The spread of the disease is mostly during the periods in the year when ticks breed. People who work outdoors and are involved in gardening, camping, hiking and in wooded environments are more at risk. Blood tests and testing the spinal fluid helps in diagnosing the disease. There is no specific treatment for the disease. Healthcare providers work towards providing relief from symptoms associated with the disease. There are no home remedies that can cure the disease other than using tick repellant.
The incubation period lasts between a week and a month. Symptoms tend to appear within 4 weeks from when the person has been bitten by the tick. Symptoms include mild flu, headaches, vomitting, confusion, seizures and loss of coordination. While this is life-threatening, memory loss and weakness can be permanent for some patients. The Powassan virus can lead to encephalitis and meningitis.
Powassan disease affects a tick that bites an infected mouse or other infected mammals. This tick in turn bites humans thus spreading the infection. Deer tick or the black-legged tick spread the infection to humans. This is the same tick that spreads Lyme Disease. No vaccines or anti-viral are available; prevention is the best method to keep away from the disease. Proper precaution helps reduce the exposure to Powassan disease.
This disease has been mostly reported in the US. Most cases were reported in the Northeast and Great Lakes regions of the US, especially during late spring and early summer. Health officials have asked people in these areas to take utmost precautions to avoid infection. This disease spreads
Handling tick attached to clothes:
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Collection of Pages - Last revised Date: January 27, 2023