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Do You Ever Get Over Lyme Disease

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Does Lyme Disease Ever Go Away On Its Own

What Its Like to Live with LYME DISEASE | Bustle

Some people may be able to clear the infection on their own without treatment, but it isnt recommended. This is because of the severe complications that can occur when it is left untreated. The infection can hide in the body for a while and then cause problems down the road. This makes it important to schedule an appointment at Kotsanis Institute in Grapevine, TX when you suspect you have a tick bite.

What Are The First Signs And Symptoms Of Lyme Disease

In the first early localized stage of Lyme disease the skin at the site of the tick bite becomes infected with Borrelia burgdorferi bacteria which can cause an expanding round or oval red skin lesion called erythema migrans. This may or may not be associated with flu-like symptoms within days to a month after the tick bite such as achiness, chills, fever, sweats, fatigue, malaise, headache, stiff neck, muscle soreness, joint pain, swollen lymph nodes, and sore throat. The combination of the skin lesion and flu-like symptoms are the primary manifestations of acute stage Lyme disease. Acute Lyme disease is not associated with typical cold-like symptoms of runny nose, prominent cough, or prominent diarrhea.

Why Are Antibiotics The First Line Of Treatment For Lyme Disease

The use of antibiotics is critical for treating Lyme disease. Without antibiotic treatment, the Lyme disease causing bacteria can evade the host immune system, disseminate through the blood stream, and persist in the body. Antibiotics go into the bacteria preferentially and either stop the multiplication of the bacteria or disrupt the cell wall of the bacteria and kill the bacteria . By stopping the growth or killing the bacteria the human host immune response is given a leg up to eradicate the residual infection. Without antibiotics, the infection in Lyme disease can evade the host immune system and more readily persist.

Also Check: What Are Tests For Lyme Disease

What Causes Lyme Disease

Lyme disease is caused by infection with the spirochete Borrelia burgdorferi. In regions of the U.S. where Lyme disease is common, risk factors for getting bitten by a tick include:

  • Spending a lot of time outdoors
  • Proximity to areas between forest land and lawns, particularly if the area contains low-lying grasses or shrubs

Ticks can also attach to pets who may bring them into the home. The pet may become infected with Lyme disease. If the tick does not attach to the pet, it can attach to a human and transmit the infection.

What If A Tick Bites My Dog

Inside Lyme Disease

The more ticks in your region, the likelier it is that your furry pal will bring them home.

Your dog is much more likely to be bitten by a tick than you are. And where Lyme disease is common, up to 25% of dogs have had it at some point.

About 10% of dogs with Lyme disease will get sick. 7-21 days after a tick bite, your dog might seem like theyâre walking on eggshells. They also might have a fever and enlarged lymph nodes. Plus, they might seem tired. Dogs also get antibiotics for Lyme.

What if my dog brings ticks into my home?

Use a tick control product on your pet to prevent Lyme disease. Also, have your dog vaccinated against Lyme.

Check your dogâs whole body each day for bumps. If you notice a swollen area, see if thereâs a tick there. If you find a tick, wear gloves while you use tweezers to separate it from your dog. Then, put it in soapy water or alcohol, or flush it down the toilet.

Use alcohol to clean the spot on your dog where the tick was attached. Keep an eye on that spot, and also on your dog to make sure theyâre behaving normally. If you notice any changes, check with your vet.

Show Sources

John Aucott, MD, assistant professor of medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine director, Johns Hopkins Lyme Disease Clinical Research Center.

CDC.

Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report: âVital Signs: Trends in Reported Vectorborne Disease Cases — United States and Territories, 2004-2016.â

American College of Rheumatology.

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Diagnosis Testing And Treatment

You may have heard that the blood test for Lyme disease is correctly positive only 65% of the time or less. This is misleading information. As with serologic tests for other infectious diseases, the accuracy of the test depends upon how long youve been infected. During the first few weeks of infection, such as when a patient has an erythema migrans rash, the test is expected to be negative.

Several weeks after infection, FDA cleared tests have very good sensitivity.

It is possible for someone who was infected with Lyme disease to test negative because:

  • Some people who receive antibiotics early in disease may not have a fully developed antibody response or may only develop an antibody response at levels too low to be detected by the test.
  • Antibodies against Lyme disease bacteria usually take a few weeks to develop, so tests performed before this time may be negative even if the person is infected. In this case, if the person is retested a few weeks later, they should have a positive test if they have Lyme disease. It is not until 4 to 6 weeks have passed that the test is likely to be positive. This does not mean that the test is bad, only that it needs to be used correctly.
  • If you are pregnant and suspect you have contracted Lyme disease, contact your physician immediately.

  • Telford SR, Wormser GP. Bartonella transmission by ticks not established.Emerg Infect Dis. 2010 Mar 16 379-84.
    • Report being bitten by a tick, or
    • Live in, or have recently visited, a tick-infested area.

    Touched By Lyme: Recovery Is A Long Slow Balancing Act

    Guest blogger Jennifer Crystal says there is no magic secret to getting over chronic Lyme disease.

    After each blog I post, I receive dozens of emails from Lymies asking what I did to get better. People question whether I tried certain treatments, whether Ive considered herbal therapies, whether I can tell them the magic secret to getting over chronic tick-borne disease. Rather than continue to email the same response, I thought it might help to address these questions in a post.

    The first and more important thing I must tell you is that there is no magic secret. There is no set protocol for treating tick-borne diseases, because every case is different. Variables such as duration of infection without treatment, spread of infection to different areas of the body and brain, and presence of co-infections make it impossible for doctors to treat any two cases the same way. Lyme manifests itself in myriad ways, and people respond differently to various treatments. Some patients suffer more from joint pain, while others chief complaints are neurological. Its important to find a Lyme-literate physician who can assess which treatments are best for your specific case. My LLMD spent two hours with me on our first visit getting my complete medical history since that appointment, Ive felt confident that he is treating the patient, not just the disease. Thats half the battle in conquering complex cases.

    Recommended Reading: Can Dogs Live With Lyme Disease

    Learn More About Lyme Disease Treatment

    When you suspect youve been bitten by a tick, its important to seek help from Dr. Constantine Kotsanis at the Kotsanis Institute of Functional Medicine. He has years of experience treating patients that may have been infected by a tick. He understands the seriousness of Lyme disease treatment and is committed to ensuring his patients stay as healthy as possible, even after a tick bite. He can offer diet, nutritional supplements, and other tips to maintain your health after Lyme disease.

    Learning how to protect yourself from ticks is important since you can get Lyme disease more than once in your life, so clearing an infection doesnt make you immune to getting it again. However, Lyme disease is curable, in most cases, so getting effective Lyme disease treatment will help resolve your symptoms.

    Yes Treating Lyme Without Antibiotics Is Possible

    How To Cure Lyme Disease

    Yes, treating Lyme without antibiotics is possible. Lets take a closer look at how you can do this.

    Theres a lot of conflicting information out there about lyme disease.

    Lyme isnt a chronic condition vs. Lyme can certainly be chronic.

    Just take antibiotics for a few weeks and youll be cured vs. Take antibiotics for years, but you still wont be cured it will just be in remission.

    Antibiotics are the only thing that works for Lyme vs. Antibiotics dont work well for treating Lyme.

    Lyme can be cured vs. Lyme cant be cured.

    Its enough to make your head spin. And to make things worse, if youre the unlucky one with the Lyme diagnosis, youre probably not thinking all that clearly due to the intense brain fog.

    Also Check: Joint Pain After Lyme Treatment

    Treating Lyme Without Antiobiotics 18 Months Later

    Ive been treating Lyme without antibiotics for about 18 months. For some, that might sound like an eternity. For those who have been struggling with Lyme, you probably know thats really not a lot of time to be treating this horrific disease.

    I still dont know all of the answers. But I do know, that a no-antibiotics approach to Lyme treatment has worked remarkably well for me.

    After 18 months, I am probably about 80% better. Im pretty ecstatic about the progress Ive made. I feel blessed that Ive experienced this much healing. Early on, I hit Lyme really hard. I did absolutely everything my doctor suggested. It was a lot. It was expensive. But it paid off.

    You can read more here

    A Reasonable Approach To Post

    If you are being treated for PTLD, there is no magic bullet to treat this problem, but here are some important steps to consider:

    • Choose a doctor you trust and who can work closely with you.
    • If your doctor agrees to start antibiotics for several months, make sure you talk about the risks and cost, as this can be dangerous and expensive.
    • Make sure not to rely solely on antibiotics. The evidence for a benefit from antibiotics is weak, and we rely mostly on physicians clinical experience and interest in the disease to design a personalized therapeutic plan. For some, a more holistic approach may be the way to go.
    • If you try supplements, ask about their source and purity, as they are not FDA-regulated.
    • Consider looking for services in medical school hospitals or clinics where they may have programs with ongoing research on how to diagnose and treat Lyme.

    Also Check: What Antibiotic Is Used For Lyme Disease

    My Lyme Disease Is In Remission How Do I Keep It That Way

    byJennifer Crystalon October 20, 2020

    The first time my doctor said the word remission for my late disseminated Lyme disease, I cheered. Id been in treatment for Lyme and two of its co-infections, babesiosis and ehrlichiosis, for over a year. Id been on a PICC line, I had experienced many Herxheimer reactions, and I had finally regained some energy. I was having more good days than bad, could exercise at physical therapy, and my brain fog had dissipated enough for me to be able to write a book. I was doing so well that my doctor decided to take me off of antibiotics entirely.

    Less than three months later, I relapsed.

    Not fully understanding what it meant to have a chronic illnessone that wasnt entirely going away, even when it was in remissionId acted as if I was completely over Lyme. After living with family during my convalescence, I was ready to get back out on my own, so I moved to a different state and started a new job. This turned out to be too large of a leap. The stress of taking care of my own needs, working part-time and worrying about finances, and the lack of defense in my body created a perfect situation for dormant Lyme bacteria to start replicating and spreading once more.

    Accepting that tick-borne illnesses can relapse is not easy, but shifting my perspective and practicing good maintenance routines has helped me to stay healthyand happy, too.

    How Is Lyme Disease Diagnosed

    Safety Quiz: Ticked Off

    In areas where the ticks that carry Lyme disease are found, when a patient comes to a doctor with probable erythema migrans , blood tests are performed to diagnose the condition, including:

    • Step 1: Enzyme immunoassay or immunofluorescence assay – Total Lyme titer or IgG and IgM titers
    • Step 2: Western blot testing only performed if step 1 test results are positive

    Other tests that may be indicated include:

    • Joint aspiration to see if there is another cause for fluid buildup on the joints
    • Cerebrospinal fluid analysis – in patients with meningitis
    • Electrocardiogram – to identify Lyme carditis or arrythmias

    Also Check: What Medicine Is Used To Treat Lyme Disease

    When To See A Healthcare Provider

    Prompt treatment for Lyme disease reduces the risk of lingering symptoms and complications. If youve already been treated with antibiotics but continue to experience issues, talk to your healthcare provider to determine if additional treatment is necessary. Patience and proactive communication with your healthcare professional will help you get back to your usual state of health.

    What Are The Side Effects Of Lyme Disease Treatments

    Antibiotics, like all medications, have the potential for side effects. Any antibiotic can cause skin rashes, and if an itchy red rash develops while on antibiotics, a patient should see their physician. Sometimes symptoms worsen for the first few days on an antibiotic. This is called a Herxheimer reaction and occurs when the antibiotics start to kill the bacteria. In the first 24 to 48 hours, dead bacterial products stimulate the immune system to release inflammatory cytokines and chemokines that can cause increased fever and achiness. This should be transient and last no more than a day or two after the initiation of antibiotics.

    The most common side effect of the penicillin antibiotics is diarrhea, and occasionally even serious cases caused by the bacteria Clostridium difficile. This bacterial overgrowth condition occurs because antibiotics kill the good bacteria in our gut. It can be helpful to use probiotics to restore the good bacteria and microbiome balance.

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    Can One Die Of Lyme Disease

    Lyme disease is an inflammatory disease typically marked by a fever, headache, chills, and bulls-eye rash, and later by arthritis, cardiac, and neurological disorders, caused by bacteria that are spread by ticks. Lyme disease is common in North America, Europe, and Asia and is caused by the bacterium borrelia burgdorfi, and infected ticks spread the disease by biting people and/or animals. There are two kinds of ticks that carry Lyme disease in the U.S. They are the deer tick, found in the Northeast and Midwest, and the western black-legged tick, predominantly found along the Pacific coast in northern California and Oregon.

    Stage : Late Disseminated Lyme Disease

    Can You Ever Be Truly Cured of Lyme Disease?

    Stage 3 or late disseminated Lyme disease is the final stage of the disease. A person may enter this stage if they did not receive treatment for Lyme disease in the early stages, or if their symptoms persisted despite treatment. As such, doctors sometimes refer to this stage as chronic or post-treatment Lyme disease .

    Stage 3 Lyme disease can occur after an infected tick bites a person.

    A person with stage 3 Lyme disease may experience additional symptoms, including:

    • severe joint pain and swelling, known as chronic Lyme arthritis
    • heart palpitations or irregular heartbeat, due to Lyme carditis
    • inflammation of the brain and spinal cord
    • mental fogginess

    Read Also: Lyme Disease Doctor Staten Island

    What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of Lyme Disease

    Lyme disease can affect different body systems, such as the nervous system, joints, skin, and heart. The symptoms of Lyme disease are often described as happening in three stages. Not everyone with Lyme has all of these, though:

  • A circular rash at the site of the tick bite, typically within 12 weeks of infection, often is the first sign of infection. It’s considered typical of Lyme disease, but many people never get one.

    The rash sometimes has a “bull’s-eye” appearance, with a central red spot surrounded by clear skin that is ringed by an expanding red rash. It also can appear as an growing ring of solid redness. It’s usually flat and painless, but sometimes can be warm to the touch, itchy, scaly, burning, or prickling. The rash may look and feel very different from one person to the next. It can be harder to see on people with darker skin tones, where it can look like a bruise. It gets bigger for a few days to weeks, then goes away on its own. A person also may have flu-like symptoms such as fever, tiredness, headache, and muscle aches.

  • The last stage of Lyme disease happens if the early stages weren’t found or treated. Symptoms can begin anytime from weeks to years after an infectious tick bite. In kids and teens, this is almost always in the form of arthritis, with swelling and tenderness, particularly in the knees or other large joints.
  • Lack Of And Elusive Lyme

    And even if you happen to follow this route to your favor, physicians who call themselves Lyme-literate may just be using the title as a marketing ploy.Just like family practitioners, Lyme-literate physicians can be really good and be just what you need, or they can be horrible — not a true Lyme-literate physician — and further keep you from getting better. If only you knew to seek out an ILADS trained physician, but even still, as with any business, it doesnt matter what certifications a business person has, theyre still human and theres no guarantees of getting the service youve paid for. Oh right, speaking of paying for professional medical services for getting over Lyme…

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