Symptoms and Treatment of Lyme disease
Lyme disease is the most common infectious disease in the world transmitted by ticks. It is caused by the spirochete borrelia burgdorferi.
What is Lyme disease?
Lyme disease, or TB, is one of the most well-known tick-borne diseases. Lyme disease is a relatively new disease because the first diagnoses date back to the second half of the 1980s.
Lyme disease is caused by bacteria classified as spirochetes and this is the only cause. There are different types of Lyme disease, some cause typical joint complaints, others cause neurological disorders. There are also bacteria that contribute to the appearance of skin lesions.
Lyme disease - Symptoms
Lyme disease manifests itself in a variety of ways, including through:
- skin changes
- skeletal muscle disorders
- neurological symptoms
- damage to the lymphatic system,
- cardiac disorders
- inflammation of the liver
- lungs and kidneys
- systemic symptoms.
Phases and symptoms of Lyme disease
We can distinguish three clinical phases: early local (limited), early disseminated and late.
No matter what the type or level of advancement, Lyme disease attacks muscle, nervous and connective tissue. The first symptoms of the disease, i.e. the early local (limited) phase, occur within 1 to 3 weeks after the tick bite. The most common skin symptoms are erythema migrans. Migrating erythema is characterized by redness that spreads up to several centimeters on the body at the bite site. It can be very painful and convex.
If no antibiotics are given in this phase, the disease transforms into the next phase - the disseminated phase. Here, within 2 months, secondary symptoms may appear, i.e. arthritis or neurological or cardiological disorders.
After about a year after infection, Lyme disease goes into a late phase, i.e. it takes a chronic form, here there are such symptoms as: neurological symptoms, dizziness, muscle paralysis or vision problems.
The most common symptoms of Lyme disease include: chills, headache, sore throat, joint pain and stiffness, fatigue, hypersensitivity to alcohol, neck pain, hair loss, vision or hearing impairment.
The patient may undergo only one stage of the disease or all. The disease can also develop asymptomatically up to the second or third phase. The similarity of the symptoms of Lyme disease with those of other diseases is a major diagnostic challenge.
Lyme disease tests
The very sad information for us is the fact that none of the available tests can 100% detect or exclude Lyme disease.
A negative result of one of the tests cannot rule out Lyme disease.
Antibodies appear in the serum too late, only after a few weeks after infection, when the disease is already developing. There is also a high probability that the bacteria are moving and then the concentration of antibodies in the blood drops. The effect is that in patients with live spirochetes in the body, the test result will be unfortunately negative.
In our country, the most popular and most widely used is the ELISA test - very often it comes out that it goes false negative. His credibility is 30%.
Another, better test is the Western Blot test. It gives up to 70% credibility, but it can be done only after min. 3 weeks from a tick bite.
The most accurate diagnosis can be obtained by performing a PCR test, i.e. a test involving the search for bacterial DNA in the blood or urine or cerebrospinal fluid. This test is available in several places in Poland and can be carried out a few days after the bite.
Lyme disease treatment
Lyme disease is most often treated with antibiotics. To the question of how to treat Lyme disease and how long does the treatment take for this disease, or half a year or a few weeks, the answer is: how long did this disease last until the correct diagnosis was made? A low carbohydrate diet is recommended for Lyme disease. You should also eat high-quality protein products, eat lots of vegetables and drink vegetable juices, and eat whole grains. You should also consider the use of supplements, probiotics that will increase our immunity. Herbs (oregano oil, cat's claw, ginseng, yarrow, horsetail and birch leaves) are also very effective in the fight against Lyme disease. However, it is best not to be blindfolded and take advantage of a professional diet consultation, on which the appropriate diet and supplementation will be selected. At Revitum, we offer dietary consultations with high-quality specialists.
It is very important to strengthen immunity after biting. The tick is quite a dirty insect and transmits not only Lyme disease, but also chlamydia, mycoplasma, anaplasma, protozoa causing babesiosis and many other germs. The antibiotic and immunity of your body are important.
Let us remember!
Let's take care of ourselves especially in summer, when we can meet a lot of insects outside that can hurt us. Let's protect ourselves with various preparations and be vigilant, because the first moments after a bite can be crucial in the fight for our health.