What bacteria causes Lyme disease?
Borrelia burgdorferi is the predominant causative agent of Lyme disease in the United States.
How long does a tick need to be on before Lyme disease transmission takes place?
In most cases, the tick must be attached for 36 to 48 hours or more and have taken a blood meal before the Lyme disease bacteria can be transmitted.
When does a person need to become suspicious of Lyme disease?
Symptoms vary, but many typical symptoms include: brain fog, chronic fatigue, depression, anxiety, joint pain, headaches, tingling in hands and feet, and muscle weakness.
What are the long term effects of Lyme disease?
If Lyme goes untreated, it can develop into chronic lyme which can be a long road of IV antibiotic treatments.
How common is a Lyme disease recurrence?
Underlying Lyme disease can be triggered by a traumatic event. Things like whiplash, extreme physical exertion, surgery, car accidents, and dental procedures can cause Lyme to flare up.
Can Lyme disease be triggered by emotional stress?
Typically Lyme is not triggered by emotional stress, but rather physical stress.
Is there Lyme disease in California?
Yes. We are a California based clinic and we treat many people who contracted Lyme right here.
Can Lyme disease by sexually transmitted?
Yes. Although relatively rare, the transmission of Lyme disease can occur via unprotected sexual intercourse (especially when Lyme is not in a dormant state).
Can Lyme disease be cured?
No. The goal of treatment is to send the disease into a dormant state where you will be virtually asymptomatic.
What tests should be done to confirm Lyme disease?
Chronic Lyme disease is confirmed by Lyme Western blot. However; a positive Lyme Western blot means that the patient has acquired a Borrelia infection at some point in time. With a single serological test it is not possible to decide whether this infection is active or dormant.
In our clinic we use the following laboratory markers for Lyme disease activity:
– Patients with active Lyme disease are characterized by the increased blood levels of C4a
– Patients with chronic Lyme disease are characterized by low count of CD57+ NK cells in peripheral blood
– The increased blood concentration of immune complexes is found in patients with various chronic infections
– IgM antibodies to phospholipids (APL antibodies): the presence of low affinity IgM APL antibodies is seen in various chronic infections
– Anti-histone and anti-chromatin antibodies: autoantibodies frequently found in patients with autoimmune and chronic infectious diseases
How do you determine the optimal route of antibiotic administration (intravenous/intramuscular/oral)?
This question does not have a generic answer. In general, patients with more severe manifestations of Lyme disease require more aggressive therapy with intravenous antibiotics. In addition, patients with various gastrointestinal problems tolerate intravenous antibiotics better than the oral ones. In our clinic, majority of the Lyme patients end up on hybrid protocols combining oral an injectable or intravenous antibiotics plus food supplements and anti-microbial herbs.
What is the “feed and kill” protocol designed to do?
When we are dealing with chronic infectious processes some are active and some are dormant. Antibiotics are only effective on active forms when the infection is replicating. Because dormant ones have a very slow metabolic rate they do not intake antibiotics from the surrounding environment and are ineffective. Because of this, we designed protocols specifically for individual infectious agents accelerating their transition from dormant into active state thus making them more susceptible to antibiotics. In general, this approach is commonly used in oncology to make tumor cells more susceptible to chemotherapy.
I am pregnant and just found out I have Lyme disease. What should I do?
If you are pregnant and suspect you have contracted Lyme disease, contact your physician immediately. Untreated Lyme disease during pregnancy may lead to infection of the placenta and possible stillbirth.
No serious effects on the fetus have been found in cases where the mother receives appropriate antibiotic treatment for her Lyme disease.
In general, treatment for pregnant women with Lyme disease is similar to that of non-pregnant adults, although certain antibiotics, such as doxycycline and azithromycin, are not used because they can affect fetal development. A better choice for treatment is penicillin.
How can Lyme disease be prevented?
- Be cautious when walking in the woods, avoiding bushy and grassy areas.
- Wear long pants and long-sleeved shirts.
- Wear light colored clothing to see ticks better.
- Wear insect repellent containing DEET on exposed skin.
- After walking in wooded areas, thoroughly check the skin for the poppy-seed sized ticks, paying particular attention to the scalp, armpits, ears, behind the knees, and groin.
- Consider premethrin tick repellent on your clothes, shoes, and gear.
Is there a vaccine for Lyme disease?
There is no vaccine for Lyme disease. The best protection against getting bit is to wear protective clothing, use DEET on your skin, use permethrin on your clothing and gear.
Permethrin insecticide: the ultimate protection against tick bites
- Permethrin treated clothing kills ticks on contact making it the most powerful tick repellent available.
- When applied to clothing it dries and bonds to the cloth fibers.
- It is odorless, non-staining, exceptional resistance to UV rays and virtually non-toxic to humans.
- It does not bond to the skin and therefore does not provide any benefit to skin application (use DEET for this).
- Lasts for 2-6 weeks on clothing even after washing.
- Can also be applied to suitcases, bags and shoes for protection.
How do you use permethrin?
- After treating your clothes need to dry for a couple of hours, so you will want to do this either the day before you will be outside or several hours before going out.
- Soak or spray your clothing in a well ventilated area paying special attention to the cuffs of pants and shirt sleeves. Soaking time is recommened at 2 hours, while spraying is much quicker.
- Treat shoes, socks, hats, tents, backpacks, sleeping bags…
- Let air dry.
- There may be a slight odor when first applying, but this disappears once dry.
Where can I buy permethrin?
How to remove a tick
- Use tweezers or tick removal tool to remove tick. Gently pull the tick up and away from your skin. Do not squish the tick.
- Do not try to burn the tick or use any chemical (or kerosene). These prompt the tick to release more saliva.
- In order to get the whole tick out (not just part of it), grip the tick firmly as close to the skin as possible and steadily pull it out.
- Do not twist or jerk whilst removing it – or the tick mouthparts may break off and remain in the skin, causing irritation/infection.
- Swab the skin with a disinfectant and dispose of tick.