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Lyme Disease: A nationwide concern

Lyme Disease_ A Nationwide Concern-1

Lyme disease is an infection transmitted by ticks. The infected tick bites a host (in this case a human) and transmits an infectious microorganism, Borrelia burgdorferi, to the host and causes highly inflammatory symptoms, which altogether are classified as Lyme disease.

Common symptoms of Lyme disease include:

  • Fever and/or chills

  • Headache

  • Bell’s palsy

  • Neck stiffness

  • Fatigue

  • Muscle or joint aches/pains

  • GI symptoms: nausea, vomiting, diarrhea

  • Change in cognitive or psychological status

  • Loss of appetite

  • Weight loss

  • Anemia

  • Enlarged, tender lymph nodes

  • Rash (especially a red, bullseye-shaped rash)

  • Painful abdomen

  • Dizziness or shortness of breath

  • Numbness or weakness in limbs

If not treated appropriately or soon enough after the tick bite, the infection can spread and affect the heart, joints, and nervous system.

Tickborne diseases have more than doubled in the last 13 years, according to the CDC, and account for up to 77% of vectorborne illnesses. Vectorborne illnesses are diseases transmitted through an intermediate carrier, such as a tick or mosquito, which bites the infected animal or human, and then bites another uninfected host, transmitting the microorganisms to the uninfected person and spreading the disease.

Lyme disease accounts for the majority of tickborne diseases, but also included in diseases spread by ticks are:

  • Anaplasmosis [1]
  • Babesiosis [2]
  • Bartonellosis [3]
  • Ehrlichiosis [4]
  • Rickettsiosis [5]
  • Rocky Mountain spotted fever (RMSF) [6]

It was previously thought that Lyme disease was limited to the Northeastern United States, and parts of the Atlantic coast, however, recent epidemiology findings have shown that Lyme disease cases have been found in 49 states, excluding Hawaii. [7]

The CDC also reports that an estimated 300,000 people are diagnosed with Lyme disease in the United States each year. [8]

Screen Shot 2019-02-19 at 9.15.37 AMA Highly Sensitive Testing Solution

Previously, healthcare providers struggled to accurately diagnose infected patients because testing methods available were less sensitive and often missed cases of tickborne diseases that had been established for months, or even years.

In 2018, Vibrant launched a revolutionary new test that is able to detect Lyme and other coinfections at much more sensitive level than competitors, yielding the most accurate tickborne infections test on the market.

For more information, or if you are a healthcare provider interested in Vibrant’s Tickborne Diseases panel, visit us at: