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Lyme Disease Awareness (Read 806 times)


Black-Toe-Nailed

    This post is indented to be a reminder to everybody that we runners are all in the risk group for contracting this disease.

     

    To avoid duplicating work, here is the Wikipedia page with the symptoms, etc:

     

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lyme_disease

     

     

    For my fellow Dutchies (born here or 'imported') there is a new web site that shows the risk zones much like Buienradar.nl (a wheather site):
    https://www.tekenradar.nl/

     

    Some important considerations:

     

    • There is no vaccine for this disease
    • Treatment is easy and it responds to antibiotics as long a it's caught at an early stage.

    It's preferable to annoy your doctor with a false alarm than exposing yourself to a damage to your joints or nervous system.

     

    Well, best of lucks to everybody and enjoy the spring with health!

    --

    "If one can stick to the training throughout the many long years,
    then will power is no longer a problem. It's raining? That doesn't matter.
    I am tired? That's besides the point. It's simply that I just have to."

    Emil Zatopek


    A Dance with Monkeys

      It's preferable to annoy your doctor with a false alarm than exposing yourself to a damage to your joints or nervous system.

       

      On what do you base this assertion?

        It's preferable to annoy your doctor with a false alarm than exposing yourself to a damage to your joints or nervous system.

         

        I had Lyme disease about 6 years ago. It sucked but I was lucky that my doctor ordered bloodwork to test for it. It was an easy test and we caught it early enough that oral antibiotics did the trick. If in doubt ask for the bloodwork. There is no good reason not to test. Many, if not most, people never see the tick or bite.


        A Dance with Monkeys

          There are great reasons not to test. The lyme-carrying tick only lives in certain parts of the world. If you are in Middle TN, for example, and do not travel, you will never get Lyme disease. But texting costs money and incurs risk of false positives.

          xor


            >> But texting costs money

             

            On my plan, it is way cheaper than calling your ass.

             

              There are great reasons not to test. The lyme-carrying tick only lives in certain parts of the world. If you are in Middle TN, for example, and do not travel, you will never get Lyme disease. But texting costs money and incurs risk of false positives.

               

              But if you live in New England, like I do, it's not a bad idea. For the patient it's a simple blood draw, which involves no risk.

               

              If you are worried about the cost of texting you should adjust your plan to include unlimited texting.


              A Dance with Monkeys

                *testing

                 

                All medical procedures, including blood draws, have risk.

                 

                Yes, living in New England incurs a pretest probability that alters the medical decision making in a way that increases the potential benefit of blood testing. But incorporating pretest probability is different from simple testing just cuz it is easy.

                 


                Feeling the growl again

                  On what do you base this assertion?

                   

                   

                  If someone has some reason to believe they may have been exposed, are you saying that the patient should try and make a definitive diagnosis themselves before going in to the doctor on suspicion of lyme disease?  This would seem inconsistent with your prior advice (such as when blood appears in your urine after a run) to rule out what could turn into a serious medical problem, even though odds say it's probably nothing.

                   

                  My sister had lyme disease.  It was not caught immediately.  It sucked for awhile. 

                   

                  Ticks are among the things I find most disgusting and this warm spring has been lousy for it.  They are so bad I need to keep extra clothes in the garage to put on when I work outside as the first time I wore jeans through long grass then came inside I had 4 ticks on them.  I've pulled half a dozen off the dog already...MOST of them already dead from his medication but not all.

                  "If you want to be a bad a$s, then do what a bad a$s does.  There's your pep talk for today.  Go Run." -- Slo_Hand

                   

                    *testing

                     

                     

                     

                    I also seem to recall a follow-up test to confirm the initial antibody test then another test after several weeks to confirm I was back to normal. Then he checked for antibodies with my next physical. My doctor spent a lot of time explaining the tests to me.

                     

                    I'm not sure throwing all testing and risk for treatment in the same barrel is a good idea. Some tests are consistently better or worse than others. Plus, I'd say going on oral antibiotics might have, for most people, been a lower risk than letting Lyme Disease worsen.


                    A Dance with Monkeys

                      If someone has some reason to believe they may have been exposed, are you saying that the patient should try and make a definitive diagnosis themselves before going in to the doctor on suspicion of lyme disease?

                       

                      I get patients all the time who have never left Middle TN. They see some massive tick on them and get all worried about Lyme. They never have Lyme. But they get all freaked out, cost dollars, etc. And if you really want to test, you need to test 2 or more times over 6-12 months.  And yet these folks never worry about the tick borne illnesses they are truly at risk for, such as ehrlichia or rocky mountain spotted fever.

                       

                      A patient demanding a test for Lyme is like a patient demanding any test or treatment that may not be indicated. It is far better to go back to the original concerns, symptoms and exam findings, apply pretest probabilities, and go from there rather than be anchored to some random diagnosis.

                       

                      That you find ticks disgusting does not mean that you have Lyme disease, as you know.

                         

                        My sister had lyme disease.  It was not caught immediately.  It sucked for awhile. 

                         

                         

                        My father in law had it. It was not caught immediately. He missed a lot of work.


                        A Dance with Monkeys

                          Not knowing exactly where your relatives live, I would note that Melrose, MA and Indiana both are in/near Lyme endemic areas. In those places, testing is likely to be indicated.

                           

                          But that does not mean it is indicated as a general rule.

                            I had a neighbor who called it “the Lymes”, as in “Carol got the Lymes”.

                             

                            I wanted to bring Carol some Corona.

                             

                            Sneaky little ticks. Wicked, tricksy, false!

                            Come all you no-hopers, you jokers and rogues
                            We're on the road to nowhere, let's find out where it goes


                            rhetorician

                              friend of mine had it, badly; had facial paralysis, meningitis, partial blindness - 3 years on he is fully recovered, other than slight paralysis; I wouldn't assume that the maps showing distribution necessarily keep pace - this was contracted from bracken in the West of Ireland, and the disease progressed to the extent that it did because (allegedly) you can't get Lyme disease in Ireland. Well, actually, you can.

                              2012 goals

                               

                              lose 8lbs

                              run injury free

                              run 3000k

                              run sub 60 min 10k

                              run 2 hour half

                               

                              2013 goals

                               

                              run 1750 miles

                              run injury free

                              sub 55 10k

                              sub 25 5k

                              sub 2 hour half


                              A Dance with Monkeys

                                Well, in the United States, there is a robust surveillance program, and the maps remain up-to-date. I cannot speak for Ireland. That also sounds like a fairly a typical case of lime disease, and I wonder if there may have been some other factor.
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