Lyme-Aid Disease Information

Lyme disease is spread by the bite of infected ticks and cases have been reported from all 50 states. Lyme disease can cause serious symptoms in both people and pets. The early signs and symptoms of Lyme disease are similar to the flu. If you've been bitten by a tick, you should keep an eye out for: a "bull's-eye" rash, chills, fever, and headache or muscle pain. If you experience any of these symptoms after a tick bite, you should consult your doctor immediately.

Scanning electron microscope image of the Lmye disease bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi
Photo Credit: Janice Haney Carr1

When Lyme disease goes untreated, more serious symptoms can arise including: paralysis of the facial muscles, pain or swelling in the joints, abnormal heart rhythm, and memory disorders. If Lyme disease is not treated quickly, symptoms can last for months or even years.

Typically, Lyme disease is treated with an antibiotic called doxycycline. There are common side effects associated with this drug, including: diarrhea, upset stomach, and sore mouth. In addition, it is not recommended to treat children, pregnant or breast feeding women, or women taking oral contraceptives.

Characteristic bulls-eye rash assoicated with Lyme disease infection
Photo Credit: James Gathany2

More information on Lyme disease for scientists and medical professionals can be found here.

Photo Content Credits

  1. CDC/Claudia Molins 2011
  2. CDC/James Gathany 2007