Letter to the Editor,
Borrelia burgdorferi, (better known as Lyme) is spread by the bite of a tick, which can be as small as the period at the end of this sentence. May is LYME Awareness Month. Borreliosis is the greatest vector (insect) borne disease, with now over 400,000 new cases each year in the US alone.
Current testing is unreliable. A clinical diagnosis must be made. Unfortunately most doctors in our area are not properly trained to recognize and treat Lyme. It is called “The Great Imitator” as it can be confused and misdiagnosed as arthritis, MS, Parkinson’s, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, as well as many other diseases, even Alzheimer’s. The symptoms, which include but are not limited to join muscle pain, swelling of the knees, irregular heartbeat, terrible fatigue, sharp shooting pains, low grade fever, headaches, brain fog, (all of which may come and go) and can be different in each individual dependent upon which strains you are infected with.
Ticks are most active May through October but may be found throughout the year. Migrating birds can bring them into your yard. Wear tick repellant, along with proper clothing (long sleeve shirts, pants tucked into socks, shoes, and a hat) and learn how to properly remove ticks should you find one.
More information may be found at www.ilads.org or www.lymedisease.org.
Glen L. Myers