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Lyme Disease in South Shore Massachusetts: What is Chronic Lyme?

There are few people in Massachusetts who don’t know someone who has been affected by Lyme Disease. Typical cases of Lyme Disease are successfully treated with antibiotics, and the patient goes on to live a normal productive life. This is the case more and more now that Lyme Disease has gotten more news coverage and people have become more aware of the signs and symptoms of Lyme Disease.

What may be confusing to many is that the cases of Lyme Disease brought to light by celebrities in the news seem to be much worse than what we report as the typical case of Lyme Disease illness. While the statistics are up for debate, reports anywhere from 10-39% of patients experience symptoms of what is known as Chronic Lyme Disease or Post-Treatment Lyme Disease Syndrome (PTLDS). These cases usually occur when a patient was not treated, not treated properly, not treated early, or undertreated.

The Symptoms of Chronic Lyme Disease

Patients with chronic Lyme disease are quite often debilitated. They are often unable to work and experience a quality of life reported as worse than most other chronic illnesses. Symptoms of chronic Lyme disease can include lingering fatigue, pain, and joint or muscle aches. Chronic Lyme can cause negative health effects in the brain, nervous system, muscles, joints, heart, circulatory system, digestion, reproductive system and skin. Symptoms can come and go for months.

Treatment for Chronic Lyme Disease

The CDC reports treating chronic Lyme with prolonged antibiotics, but that studies show antibiotics didn’t speed up recovery versus patients using placebos. Chronic Lyme usually resolves on its own, but it can take months to recuperate fully.

Dangerous of Chronic Lyme

Chronic Lyme disease can have detrimental effects on a person’s life. They can lose their job, become disabled and suffer tremendously. There are only a few cases of death related to Lyme Disease, and they are attributed to a condition called Lyme Carditis. Approximately 1% of Lyme cases result in Lyme Carditis, a potentially life-threatening symptom that occurs when Lyme bacteria enters the tissue of the heart. Lyme Carditis requires antibiotics, sometimes intravenously if the case is severe enough. reports 23 known cases where Lyme carditis has lead to sudden death, making it a very rare condition.

Public Lyme Disease education is one of the best ways to lower the incidents of chronic Lyme disease. It is vital to know the symptoms of Lyme, how to check for ticks and what to do if you become ill from a tick bite. At Mosquito Squad of Southeastern Mass, we know preventing tick bites by lowering the number of ticks in your yard is another great way to lower your risk for Lyme Disease. Our 100% satisfaction guaranteed tick treatment can lower the number of ticks on your property by 85-90%. Call today to sign up for the season. 

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