Lyme disease

Lyme disease is caused by a bacteria known as Borrelia burgdorferi. The bacteria is carried by the black-legged tick, and transmitted in tick bites. A transmission is extremely unlikely if the tick has been attached to a person for less than 24 hours and no prophylactic antibiotic treatment should be initiated in these cases. Generally it takes at least 36-48 hours for enough bacteria to enter the human body to cause an infection.  In 70 to 80% of cases, bites leave a red rash, known as erythema migrans, meaning a red rash that moves. The rash can take on a characteristic target-like appearance, although it can form other shapes as well. The rash is not itchy or painful. Other signs and symptoms (especially in later stages) of Lyme disease involve the nervous system, joints, heart, or whole body:

  • Inflamed brain and spinal cord
    • Headache and stiff neck
    • Drooping muscles on one or both sides of face
    • Nerve pain
    • Shooting pains, numbness or tingling of extremities
  • Joints
    • Swelling and painful knees and other joints
    • Intermittent pain in joints, muscles, tendons, bones
  • Heart
    • Fast heartbeat (tachycardia)
    • Irregular heartbeat
  • Whole body
    • Fever
    • Chills
    • Fatigue
    • Swollen lymph nodes

Treatment consists of antibiotic therapy:

  • Doxycycline (a tetracycline) 100mg twice daily by mouth for 10 to 14 days
  • Amoxicillin (a penicillin) 500mg by mouth three times a day for 14 days
  • Cefuroxime (a cephalosporin) 500mg twice daily by mouth for 14 days

Prophylaxis of Lyme disease:

  • Doxycycline (a tetracycline) 200mg as a single dose

Where to get treated for Lyme Disease?

Did you know? QuickMD can treat your Lyme disease remotely by telemedicine and prescribe doxycycline online.

 

 

 

 

 

January 9, 2022

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