Stage : Late Disseminated Lyme Disease
Late disseminated Lyme disease occurs when the infection hasnt been treated in stages 1 and 2. Stage 3 can occur months or years after the tick bite.
This stage is characterized by:
- arthritis of one or more large joints
- brain disorders, such as encephalopathy, which can cause short-term memory loss, difficulty concentrating, mental fogginess, problems with following conversations, and sleep disturbance
- numbness in the arms, legs, hands, or feet
- park or wildlife management
The majority of tick bites happen in the summer when ticks are the most active and people spend more time outside. However, its also possible to get Lyme disease from tick bites in early fall, and even in late winter if the weather is unseasonably warm.
Lyme disease prevention mostly involves decreasing your risk of experiencing a tick bite.
Take the following steps to prevent tick bites:
Contact a doctor if and whenever a tick bites you or your loved ones.
My Struggle With Lyme Disease
A July 2014 wedding on Long Beach Island, N.J., was the start of my nightmare.
It was a beautiful weekend filled with love for two of our dearest friends, who were, after 14 years together, finally legally able to marry. There was lobster and champagne and a crazy Gordon Gekko-style house on the beach. I sang a few songs, made a toast, and cried happy tears.
I woke up two days later, back home in New York City, with a crushing head and neck ache. It was weird but I figured I would sleep it off and be better in the morning. It took a few days, but I recovered.
That Saturday, I got out of the shower and saw a faint red circular rash on my shoulder with a bug bite in the middle. My knees buckled. I called for my husband, Andy. “HUNNEEEE! I have LYME!” He really didn’t think so. I banged on my neighbor’s door, still in my towel, “Rachel! Look! Lyme!” She told me, No way.
But I knew, and I walked to the ER.
The fresh-faced doc took a quick glance at my shoulder and said it looked like Lyme. She also said to be glad we caught it in time. I filled the twenty-one days of doxycycline she prescribed and fully believed I’d be ok.
I followed-up with an infectious disease specialist a few days later to be safe. He reassured me that I would have no complications since I caught the bite within a week. I was relieved.
My gut said, Hes wrong.
My radar was blaring.
What Happens If Ive Been Bitten By A Tick
If youve been bitten by a tick and the tick is attached to your skin, tell your parent/guardian so they can help you remove the tick as soon as possible. Only ticks that are attached to the skin can release the bacteria into the host. The longer the tick is attached to the skin, the more risk of getting infected with Lyme disease.
If you are sure it was a tick, simply flush it down the toilet. Dont:
- Do NOT use bleach, nail polish remover, petroleum jelly, or other ointments on your skin these wont remove the tick!
- Do NOT burn the tick out-this does NOT work and it can burn your skin and cause scarring.
- Do NOT twist the tick out-this may cause the tick to break apart and not come out completely.
- Do NOT squish or crush the tick with your hands to kill it.
Recommended Reading: Antibiotics To Prevent Lyme Disease
Alternative Medicine And Womens Health
What we call alternative medicine today was called holistic 50 years ago. Holistic medicine looked at the whole that is, how the systems of the body work together, and how the bodys health is connected to our environment, our histories and our everyday experiences and lifestyles.
This philosophy is the basis of all traditional forms of medicine, from the folk medicine of primitive peoples to the ancient systems of Ayurvedic medicine and Traditional Chinese Medicine . Holistic medicine has resonated with women for thousands of years because it addresses how the body naturally functions.
Alternative medicine today is far more advanced, more scientific, and better accepted than ever before. Over half of all doctors claim to offer alternative and complementary methods, and half of all medical schools claim to teach these methods, though this is still more lip service than real. The NIH regularly spends millions in support of clinical trials of alternative therapies. They are only following consumer demand. Visits to alternative practitioners exceeded those to conventional doctors over 20 years ago, and the margin has only widened since.
Symptoms Of Lyme Disease
People with Lyme disease may react to it differently. Symptoms can vary in severity.
Although Lyme disease is commonly divided into three stages early localized, early disseminated, and late disseminated symptoms can overlap. Some people will also present in a later stage of disease without having symptoms of earlier disease.
These are some of the more common symptoms of Lyme disease:
- a flat, circular rash that looks like a red oval or bulls-eye anywhere on your body
These symptoms may occur soon after the infection, or months or years later.
You may also notice some psychological symptoms in your child. According to a , some parents reported the following psychological issues in their child with Lyme disease:
- anger or aggression
If your child seems to be acting differently and cant explain why or what theyre feeling, its important to talk with their doctor, as these changes could be a sign of many conditions, including Lyme disease.
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What Causes Lyme Disease
Lyme disease is caused most often by a bite from an infected deer tick. The deer tick is much smaller than the dog tick. There are other illnesses that are caused by ticks, but Lyme disease is definitely the most common type of tick-borne illness in North America and Europe.
A tick becomes infected when it attaches itself and feeds off the blood of an infected host . Lyme disease is spread when an infected tick attaches itself to the next host and releases the bacteria in the bloodstream. Most tick bites do not cause Lyme disease, but the longer an infected tick stays attached to the host, the greater the risk of getting it. For transmission the tick usually needs to be attached for 2-3 days.
Are Video Visits With An Ob
Most insurers provide coverage for video visits at the same cost as in-person visits. You can search on Zocdoc specifically for OB-GYNs in Old Lyme who accept your insurance for video visits by selecting your carrier and plan from the drop-down menu at the top of the page. We recommend you check with your insurance carrier directly to confirm your coverage and out of pocket costs for video visits.
Also Check: What Are The Lasting Effects Of Lyme Disease
Pelvic Floor Physical Therapist Serving Southeastern Ct
At One Womens Health, your healing is my top priority. Together, we take a comprehensive approach to your pelvic health. One rooted in care and compassion, focused on the whole body with individualized treatment plans. We will work together to find and treat the root cause of your pain or discomfort to provide you with lasting results.
Hey! Im Rachel, owner of One Womens Health!
We are an independently-owned orthopedic and pelvic health physical therapy practice serving Southeastern Connecticut. I believe true healing can only come with a whole body and individualized approach to treatment. We will work together to develop a thorough treatment plan to improve your movement, function, and overall quality of life. A treatment plan that actually focuses on you and your needs, not one that requires us to jump through health insurance hoops.
Because I know firsthand how frustrating our healthcare system can be.
From my time in the United States Coast Guard to becoming a mother to my daughter, Sydney, and my son, Beckett, I routinely encountered siloed, ineffective, and sometimes outright hostile womens health care.
I wanted to be part of the solution, not the problem.
This is why Ive pursued a focus in womens health and pelvic floor therapy.
*As a random side note. All the artwork and background images are pictures my kids created. Thanks guys!
Peculiar Views On Womens Health
When most women think of being healthy in the absence of a diagnosed illness their usual concerns are being attractive, thin and youthful looking. These are not really health concerns they are concerns about how others view us.
The problem with these concerns is the same as choosing high heels despite their affect on your feet. Letting others define our health priorities in terms of how we look takes our power away, sometimes to the point of helplessness. Dont be a fashion victim. This focus on appearances displaces what should be our real priorities. It makes us believe in purple pills magical substances that give us the things we want. Lots of people are making money off women who wish for purple pills.
Instead, we should be asking are we hormonally balanced? Is our diet and digestion healthy? Do we have strong muscles and bones and cardiovascular conditioning? Do we have systemic inflammation? When we have the right answers to those questions, good health is almost inevitable. Well have a healthy glow and lots of energy and endurance. Well look younger than our years. Well resist disease and age gracefully.
Recommended Reading: Chronic Neurological Lyme Disease Symptoms
How To Spot And Remove Ticks
Once youve come in from outside, one of the best ways to check yourself for ticks is to take a shower and bath.
Other than that, do your best to check your clothes, especially the folds of your clothes, knowing that ticks can be very small and hard to spot. Running your hands through your hair is also a good idea.
Big Pharma And Womens Health
Its no coincidence that drug company profits have reached historic highs. We take more drugs to treat medical problems in the U.S. than in any other major country about 46% of the population takes at least one prescription medication. The average 50 year old woman takes four prescription drugs usually on a semi-permanent basis many elderly patients take a dozen or more. And we pay more for these drugs too, compared to other countries. Average annual spending on prescription drugs is over $1,000 per person and 16.7 percent of overall personal health care spending.
Doctors prescribe drugs even when natural treatments such as healthy eating and exercise are clinically proven to be at least as effective, in part because doctors dont think patients are interested in making lifestyle changes. But its also because in our system of conventional-medicine-reimbursed-by-insurance, the doctor cant counsel a patient in a six-minute appointment on such complicated matters he cant bill for it, either, which gives him an incentive not to mention it at all.
Every woman needs to know that Big Pharma is over a trillion dollar industry about 25% as big as the whole Federal budget in the United States. Its profits exceed that of any other industry, and while Big Pharma eagerly publicizes how much it reinvests in research and development , this is disingenuous. The truth is that the industrys profits exceed its R& D spending, and its marketing budget is almost as big as its R& D.
Read Also: How Do You Get A Tick Tested For Lyme Disease
How Can I Find A Top
You can use Zocdoc to find OB-GYNs in Old Lyme who are highly rated by other patients. These ratings are based on verified reviews submitted by real patients. Every time a patient completes an appointment booked on Zocdoc, theyre invited to review their experience. Each review must comply with Zocdocs guidelines.
Who Is At Risk For Lyme Disease
Anyone can get Lyme disease, but people who spend time in woody or brushy areas where deer ticks and Lyme disease are more common are at a greater risk of becoming infected. People with a deer tick attached to their skin for more than 72 hours are at a much greater risk of getting infected than those with a recently attached tick.
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Womens Health Center At Windham Hospital Is A Family
The Windham Womens Health Clinic draws on the expertise of primary care providers, a certified nurse midwife and specialists in other areas of medicine. Three members of the team, including the nurse midwife, speak fluent Spanish.
Hartford HealthCares Healthy Beginnings Program, brings information and support directly to new moms, and includes home visits and connecting new moms to resources that they might not even know about. The goal of program is to help establish healthy behaviors and community connections while fostering a feeling of connectedness during the postpartum period that is historically lonely for a new mom. Learn more > >
The Center team and our internal network of specialists offer individualized care for each woman, with a focus on preventive care and wellness. Our goal is to promote, maintain and restore physical and emotional well-being for women of all ages.
Our certified nurse midwife offers an alternative to an obstetrician-gynecologist for women with pregnancies that are considered low- to moderate-risk. She offers care during pregnancy, delivery and the postpartum period, working with physicians to continue managing pregnancies if complications arise. Babies are delivered at Backus Hospital. Our lactation consultant is available to help families on their breastfeeding journey.
What Is The Treatment For Lyme Disease
The standard treatment for Lyme disease is antibiotics taken by mouth. The best antibiotic is Doxycycline, but Amoxicillin and Cefuroxime are also good for treatment. The length of treatment may vary depending on symptoms and the type of antibiotics used. If you are taking Doxycycline you may only receive one single dose or you may receive a 10-28 day course, depending on symptoms. If symptoms progress, intravenous antibiotics may also be prescribed, requiring hospitalization. . The Food and Drug Administration warns people not to take an injectable medicine called Bismacine for Lyme disease which is sometimes prescribed by alternative medicine practitioners.
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Stage : Early Localized Disease
Symptoms of Lyme disease usually start 3 to 30 days after the tick bite. One of the earliest signs of the disease is a bulls-eye rash.
The rash occurs at the site of the tick bite, usually, but not always, as a central red spot surrounded by a clear spot with an area of redness at the edge. It may be warm to the touch, but its not painful and doesnt itch. This rash will gradually fade in most people.
The formal name for this rash is erythema migrans.
Some people with lighter skin have a rash thats solid red. Some people with darker skin may have a rash that resembles a bruise.
The rash can occur with or without systemic viral or flu-like symptoms.
Other symptoms commonly seen in this stage of Lyme disease include:
Youll have a general feeling of being unwell. A rash may appear in areas other than the tick bite.
This stage of the disease is primarily characterized by evidence of systemic infection, which means infection has spread throughout the body, including to other organs.
Symptoms can include:
- disturbances in heart rhythm, which can be caused by Lyme carditis
- neurologic conditions, such as numbness, tingling, facial and cranial nerve palsies, and meningitis
The symptoms of stages 1 and 2 can overlap.
A System That Frustrates Women And Doctors Alike
You probably have a mother, sister, or close friend who has struggled for years with a chronic illness or chronic symptoms and they usually have a sad story to tell of a trail of doctors, battles with hospitals and insurance companies over billing and reimbursement, side effects that often seem as troublesome as the initial illnesstheyve been given more pills to deal with those side effectsthe side effects increase over time while the effectiveness of the drugs declines and always, remorselessly, a steady worsening of their condition. This may be your own story.
Its beyond frustrating. What we spend on healthcare and health insurance, if we have it is at an historic highso high that many cant afford it. In the USA we spend 50% more per person on health care than any other country in the world. What this health care is supposed to deliver better health just isnt happening for many women.
If you think were bashing conventional doctors, we are not. The system is a trap for doctors too. While record numbers of women have become doctors, an increasing number of doctors want to leave their profession. More doctors now work for medical companies than ever before, and they are pressured to treat patients in less and less time. What can you do with a patient in six minutes except prescribe her a drug?
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How Is Lyme Disease Diagnosed
Lyme disease can be hard to diagnose because not everyone has symptoms. The most common symptom is a rash, which 70-80% of people with Lyme disease get. Therefore, diagnosis is usually based on symptoms, history of a tick bite, and/or recent time spent in areas where Lyme disease is common.
A blood test is usually done to check for antibodies to Lyme disease . However, because our bodies dont make antibodies until a few weeks after an infection, the blood test may be negative if checked early and with treatment may never be positive.