Springtime Infectious Diseases: From Spring Fever To Lyme Disease
There are many factors that cause some infectious diseases to follow seasonal patterns. Changes in temperature and precipitation influence biotic and abiotic environments, disease vectors and hosts, and human behavior, including the amount of time spent outdoors . On a molecular level, the numbers of circulating lymphocytes and other immune cells have been observed to vary depending on the season. This may occur as a result of the circadian nature of adrenocortical hormones coupled with fluctuating vitamin D and melatonin levels . Additionally, temperature, moisture, and UV light can affect the infectivity of pathogens. The disease pathogens themselves, and their animal and plant reservoirs, insect vectors, and other factors ebb and flow with changes in temperature, rainfall, and many other influences. These unique pieces of seasonal infectious diseases or even some chronic infectious diseases are incredibly important to infectious disease epidemiology as is seasonal disease incidence.
Relationship Between Histories Of Tick Bites And Serum Ige Antibodies To Alpha
From questionnaire results, it was clear that a large proportion of the subjects with serum IgE antibodies to alpha-gal had a history of tick bites. However, tick bites are now common in central Virginia. Among 125 subjects, including patients with delayed anaphylaxis, as well as patients with asthma and controls, a positive response to questions, including Have you ever had local reactions to tick bites last for weeks or longer? correlated highly significantly with the presence of IgE antibodies to alpha-gal . We have now assayed sera or received results on over 300 subjects who presented with anaphylaxis or urticaria, and about whom we knew where they lived at the time of their first reaction. Although this is by no means a random sample, the results are interesting. Plotting positive cases on a map of the United States showed a striking similarity to the known distribution of A. americanum.13
New Lyme Disease Test Distinguishes Between Early And Late
For those who live in an area blighted by ticks, the threat of Lyme disease can cast a shadow over the joy of spring and summer. These blood-sucking arachnids can transmit bacteria into the bloodstream of their unsuspecting host, causing the disease. Early treatment is essential, but current tests are not usually sensitive enough to detect the disease in early-stage patients. A recent study in open-access journal Frontiers in Microbiology reveals a new test for Lyme disease, which is the first to reliably distinguish between early- and late-stage patients. The test detects a genetic sequence left by a virus that resides in Lyme-causing bacteria, and can detect just one bacterial cell in a small blood sample.
As the most common tick-borne infection, Lyme disease affects nearly 500,000 people in the U.S. every year. Symptoms include fever, fatigue, joint pain, and a distinctive ‘bullseye’ rash, but if left untreated, the disease can cause paralysis and even death. As such, early diagnosis is important, but difficult.
“Early diagnosis of Lyme disease is absolutely vital in reducing suffering, because early Lyme can be treated, but late Lyme is very difficult to treat,” explained Dr. Jinyu Shan of the University of Leicester, lead author on the study. “Current tests cannot typically detect the low numbers of bacteria in early-stage patient blood samples. Our goal was to design a highly sensitive test to help doctors to identify Lyme disease as early as possible.”
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Managing Food Allergies In Children
Because fatal and near-fatal food allergy reactions, like other food allergy symptoms, can develop when a child is not with his or her family, make sure your childs school, daycare, or other program has a written emergency action plan with instructions on preventing, recognizing, and managing these episodes in class and during activities such as sporting events and field trips.
If your child has been prescribed an auto-injector, be sure that you and those responsible for supervising your child understand how to use it. See an allergist for expert care and relief from meat allergy.
This page was reviewed for accuracy 5/8/2019.
The Cdc Reveals The Truth About Lyme Disease
Lyme disease is a bacterial infection caused by the bite of an infected black-legged tick, also known as a deer tick. Lyme and its numerous co-infections can mimic or cause virtually any medical, neurological, or psychiatric condition. It is called the great imitator and has been vastly underdiagnosed in the U.S. due to inadequate testing methods and general lack of acknowledgment by the medical community. A nasty relative of the STD syphilis, Lyme causes a multitude of medical, neurological, and psychiatric impairment issues, yet is much harder to cure.
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Common Symptomatology Between Lyme And Autism
When speaking with children who are chronically ill, it can be difficult to understand what is causing their symptoms. Children, naturally, might not know how to accurately describe their pains or illness. When there are multiple symptoms, it can be even more challenging as they grow and change so quickly. For children with autism or other language disorder, they may be limited or unable to communicate why they feel the way they feel.
Autism Spectrum Disorder and Lyme disease are examples of what seem to be entirely different diseases, but they share an overlap of symptoms. While autism is usually seen as a developmental disorder and Lyme an infectious disease, the two have more in common than you might think. There are interesting connections between the two, especially when diagnosed in children.
Symptoms Shared by Both Autism and Lyme:
- Neurological symptoms that include difficulty with communication and confusion, disorientation, muscle twitching, sensitivity to light, brain fog, and delayed development.
- Psychological problems that impact behaviors, obsessive-compulsive disorder, an increased sense of doom, anxiety and outbursts.
- Physical health issues such as muscle weakness, arthritis, and rashes.
- Gut health issues including food allergies, bloating, constipation or diarrhea, and abdominal pain.
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Subacute Parkinsonism As A Complication Of Lyme Disease
Medicine is always on the lookout for reversible causes of common illnesses. And while parkinsonism has been reported in a few patients with Lyme disease, the relationship between the Borrelia burgdorferi infection and parkinsonism has been questioned. In the review Subacute parkinsonism as a complication of Lyme disease, published in the Journal of Neurology, the authors describe two cases where patients developed reversible subacute parkinsonism due to Lyme basal ganglia ischemic or inflammatory lesions.
The article describes a 55-year-old patient with a 2-month history of chronic neck pain with progressive marked asthenia. Clinical examination revealed a dysarthria which disappeared in less than 1 hour, a left upper limb cerebellar ataxia and a bilateral asymmetric mild akineto-hypertonic parkinsonism, according to Pische´ from the Department of Neurology, CHRU Strasbourg, Strasbourg Cedex, France.
The second case involves a 63-year-old woman who developed a rapidly deteriorating severe walking disorder over a 6-month period. Clinical examination revealed lower limbs weakness, increased reflexes, bilateral extensor plantar, and dysuria, as well as a left akineto-hypertonic syndrome. Facial palsies were also described.
Brain MRIs showed vascular demyelination, typically seen in inflammatory, infectious, drug induced, or paraneoplastic vasculitis conditions.
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Can Asthma Symptoms Change During Pregnancy
Yes, asthma symptoms often change during pregnancy. Sometimes they get better and sometimes they get worse. We dont really understand what causes these changes.
Getting the flu can set off serious asthma symptoms. Be sure to get a flu shot in October or November every year.
Heartburn also can make your symptoms worse. Heres what you can do to help with heartburn symptoms:
- Sleep with your head up on a pillow .
- Eat smaller meals several times a day.
- Dont eat within 2 hours of bedtime.
- Ask your provider about medicines you can take.
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What Is Air Hunger Anyway
byJennifer Crystalon March 22, 2018
Chronic Lyme disease & its co-infections, like Babesia, can produce unique symptoms. One of them is referred to as air hunger.
Listen to the audio version of this blog here:
When I tell people I have chronic Lyme and some of its co-infections, they often look at me quizzically and ask: Whats a co-infection? I explain that in addition to Lyme ticks can transmit other diseases as well. I get an understanding nod until I say the names of the diseases. Rarely have people heard of them: Babesia, Ehrlichia, and Bartonella. One of my graduate school professors got so tired of trying to say Babesia that he jokingly renamed it babelicious.
I get a similar reaction when I tell people that a chief symptom of Babesia is air hunger. Some hear the term and think of marathon runners or asthma patients. Most really have no idea what it actually means. Literally, it means to be hungry for air. But how is that related to Babesia, and what does the symptom actually entail?
Babesia is a parasite that eats the oxygen in red blood cells. This result is low blood oxygen levels in the body. When you are hungry for food, your stomach might grumble, and you might feel a gnawing or emptiness, a craving for sustenance. You might become lightheaded or even faint. The same is true when your blood is hungry for oxygen, except you feel the hunger in your cells rather than in your stomach.
What Causes Lyme Disease
Lyme disease is caused by bacteria that is spread to humans by tick bites. The ticks that carry the bacteria are:
Black-legged deer tick
Western black-legged tick
Ticks prefer to live in wooded areas, low-growing grasslands, and yards. Not all ticks carry the Lyme disease bacteria. Depending on the location, anywhere from less than 1 in 100 to more than half of the ticks are infected with it.
While most tick bites are harmless, several species can cause life-threatening diseases. Tick-borne diseases include:
Rocky Mountain spotted fever
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What Does Lyme Disease Cause
The most common complaint at the beginning is a rash. The rash can look a lot like a bulls eye. The rash does not have to appear in the area of the tick bite. The rash usually does not create any discomfort and has not been reported as having an itchy sensation. Other symptoms can include the following:
How Does A Person Get Lyme Disease
Lyme disease is transmitted by the bite of an infected deer tick, which also is known as the black-legged tick. Immature deer ticks can be very small, about the size of the head of a pin adult deer ticks are slightly larger. Both can be infected with and transmit Lyme disease. Deer ticks acquire the bacteria by feeding primarily on small mammals infected with the bacteria, particularly the white-footed mouse. Deer ticks infected with the bacteria that cause Lyme disease have been found in Illinois. Areas in the United States where deer ticks are most frequently infected with Lyme disease are the northeastern United States , northern California, and north central states, especially Minnesota and Wisconsin. However, Lyme disease has been reported in almost all states in the United States as well as in many countries throughout the world.
Image source: /content/dam/soi/en/web/idph/files/pictures/babesiosis.jpg
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Spondylitis With A Twist Of Lyme
In June of 2000, just 6 years after my AS diagnosis, I woke up unable to move, with a level of pain and stiffness I couldnt have ever imagined. My fever spiked at 104, my eyes were bulging out, my head was full of angry bees, and I thought I was on my way to death.
It was really bad!
Three weeks after symptoms started, I was diagnosed with Lyme Disease. This was not surprising because I was living in rural New Jersey and had just returned home from school in Connecticut. Both areas were literal Lyme hot spots. And for the record, I never saw a bulls-eye rash, so fortunately I had a doctor who knew what else to look for.
Much like my ankylosing spondylitis in my teen years, I sorta forgot about my Lyme in my 20s. Or, at least, I didnt think it played a major factor in my health. I continued to treat my AS, but nothing I took really seemed to help.
I wonder why?
It wasn’t until I watched the Lyme Disease documentary Under Our Skin that I even considered that my Lyme was still active. And by considered I mean, it was 100% obvious that I didnt defeat my Lyme back in 2000. I looked at the patients in the film, and saw a whole lot of myself.
I decided to get treatment.
Cardiologists: Know The Signs Of Lyme Disease
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Spring has arrived, and along with warmer weather and blossoming tree buds, a seasonal risk looms, especially for outdoor enthusiasts. The risk for Lyme disease, and the cardiac complications that can be associated with it, increases as people spend more time outdoors.
Lyme disease is an infection caused by a species in the spirochete pathogen Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato group and is spread through tick bites.
Lyme disease is often overlooked by physicians, but its important to recognize and treat because of the cardiac complications that can occur if left untreated. Every cardiologist should be able to recognize signs and symptoms,Nieca Goldberg, MD, cardiologist in the department of medicine, Leon H. Charney division of cardiology, and director of the Joan H. Tisch Center for Womens Health at NYU Langone Medical Center, told Cardiology Today.
Often, the first sign is a rash at the site, known as a bulls-eye rash with a red ring and red center, Goldberg said.
According to the CDC, the rash is usually not painful or itchy, so it may be overlooked.
In the early localized stage, symptoms can include a rash, fatigue, chills, fever, headache, swollen lymph nodes and joint aches, similar to symptoms for many other diseases, including influenza or a common cold.
Disclosure: Goldberg reports no relevant financial disclosures.
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Theyve Faced Asthma Allergies And Lyme Disease Meet The Teens Who Are Suing Canada Over Climate Change
VANCOUVERSierra Robinson, 17, wants to swim in the Cowichan River again.
The teen climate activist grew up in the Cowichan Valley, where she remembers being able to swim and play in the local river with friends. But in the past several years, droughts have begun to dry up the rivers and lakes in the region, she says.
Little seven-year-old me was playing in the river catching frogs, and now Im 17 and going to the river and there is no river, Robinson told The Star Vancouver. Its really upsetting and really scary. What will happen in the next 10 years?
Those concerns about the future have now spurred Robinson and 14 other youth to take legal action against the federal government.
Gluten Intolerance And Celiac Disease
About 4% of the global population have a doctor-diagnosed wheat gluten intolerance, and its growing. Everyone at some level has some kind of celiac gluten sensitivity or gluten intolerance, thats my untrained opinion. You only have to look at the symptoms and then watch what people suffer from them to varying degrees, to see the impact.
Some people can definitely handle eating gluten because their digestive systems can take it better than others. But it doesnt mean its good for them. There are an estimated 500,000 people suffering from celiac disease thats 1% of the UK. But thats the tip of the iceberg.
So, what is Gluten? Gluten is a protein found in wheat products and other cereals, like spelt and barley. The very word should be a warning GLUTEN. Gluten helps food maintain shape because it acts as a glue. It sticks to your intestines, blocking essential receptors that take nutrients from food. It also cuts through your intestines. Our intestinal cells regenerate very quickly, but the food passes through the wound before it closes.
Food is then loose inside the body. This will cause an autoimmune response, simply because its not meant to be there. Thats why over time we become sensitive to certain foods weve eaten for years without a noticeable problem.
Gluten is used as a food additive to thicken up, soups, gravies and ready meals for example. If you are celiac even a small amount of gluten will cause a severe reaction.
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Can Lyme Disease Be Treated
Yes. People treated with appropriate antibiotics in the early stages of Lyme disease usually recover rapidly and completely. Antibiotics commonly used for oral treatment include doxycycline, amoxicillin, or cefuroxime axetil. People with certain neurological or cardiac forms of illness may require intravenous treatment with antibiotics such as ceftriaxone or penicillin. For additional information, please consult the CDC webpage at .