This article explores the diagnosis and treatment of Lyme disease, a tick borne illness. It is part one of a 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
Although there are only about 30,000 cases of Lyme disease reported to the CDC per year, the CDC estimates the actual total is about 476,000 cases per year in the United States.
As can be seen on the map below, most cases of Lyme disease occur in the Mid-Atlantic states, New England and the Midwest, although there is significant distribution around the country. . .
Read more About Lyme Disease:
Tick Life Cycle and Infection Transmission
How to Remove a Tick
Should a Tick be Sent for Laboratory Testing?
Lyme Disease Testing
Symptoms of Early Lyme Disease
Possible Signs and Symptoms of Disseminated Lyme Disease
Recommended Treatment for Lyme Disease - Antibiotic Prophylaxis
Recommended Treatment of Erythema Migrans Rash/Early Lyme Disease
Treatment of Disseminated Lyme Disease
Post-Treatment Lyme Disease
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.
Not an APP member? Membership info.
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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