PART 4 of "Four Tickborne Diseases: Lyme Disease, Ehrlichiosis, Anaplasmosis and Babesiosis"
This article explores the diagnosis and treatment of Babesia, a tick borne illness. It is part four of the four part series “Four Tickborne Diseases: Lyme Disease, Ehrlichiosis, Anaplasmosis and Babesiosis” .
Diagnosis can be challenging, as the tick bite may not have been noticed, clinical symptoms may be non-specific, and laboratory confirmation of infection can be problematic, especially early in the course of these diseases. At times clinicians may need to treat on clinical suspicion alone.
Written for the Curious (Non-Medical) Reader
By Stuart M. Caplen, MD
Babesiosis is typically caused by a microscopic parasite Babesia microti that infects red blood cells. There are other species of Babesia that can cause infection, but B. microti is the most common. It is transmitted by bites from infected Ixodes scapularis ticks (also called blacklegged ticks or deer ticks), but occasionally can be transmitted by blood transfusion, or congenitally from mother to infant. It is typically seen in the Northeast and upper Midwest. In 2018, 2,161 cases of babesiosis were reported to the CDC. . . .
Read more about:
Babesia Life Cycle and Feeding Cycle
Symptoms of Babesiosis
Laboratory Findings in Babesiosis
Testing for Babesiosis
Treatment of Babesiosis
The conclusion to Part 1-4 of this article is available in the FibonacciLIBRARY
The CME version of this article is available for the medical community with an online CME test in the APP.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Stuart M. Caplen, MD, FACEP, MSM
Dr. Caplen is a retired emergency medicine physician and former emergency department medical director, who also has a Master of Science in Management degree, and green belt certification in Lean/Six Sigma.
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