Lyme disease symptoms course treatment

Lyme disease: symptoms, course& TreatmentLyme borreliosis is a disease caused by an infection with bacteria of the species Borrelia. It is transmitted to humans by tick bite (tick bite). What to do in case of a tick bite and symptoms of Lyme disease, you can learn here!

First aid for tick bite

If you notice a tick bite, you should act immediately! The sooner you remove the tick, the lower the risk of contracting Lyme disease.

The following should be observed:

1. Grasp tick with tweezers, tick card or tick forceps and slowly pull out close to the skin (at the tick head)! Do not pull with your fingers! 2. Do not twist the tick or touch it on the body while pulling it out! If you crush it, the tick's saliva and intestinal contents can easily be squeezed into the wound, potentially infecting you with pathogens. 3. Do not use home remedies such as glue, nail polish remover, alcohol or oil and do not try to burn the tick under any circumstances! As a reaction, it might empty its saliva or intestinal contents into the wound. You therefore increase the risk of infection. 4. Clean and disinfect your wound as soon as the tick is removed! Remaining remains of the tick should be removed by a doctor. 5. In the weeks following the tick bite, watch for changes at the bite site and observe for flu-like symptoms.

What is Lyme disease?

Lyme disease is a disease caused by an infection with bacteria of the species "Borrelia burgdorferi" (Borrelia bacteria) is triggered. The course of the disease and its symptoms vary greatly from person to person. Borrelia infection can affect various organs and mainly affects the skin, joints and nervous system. The triggering bacteria can be transmitted everywhere in Germany by infected ticks. The risk of infection is particularly high in the period between March and October. Lyme disease is the most common tick-borne infectious disease in Europe. In very rare cases, it can also be contracted via mosquitoes. Horseflies are transmitted. A direct infection from person to person is not possible. Unlike TBE (also a tick-borne disease), there is no vaccination against Lyme disease.

Lyme disease: Causes

The cause of Lyme disease is Borrelia bacteria. There are four different types of the bacteria, which belong to the so-called Borrelia-burgdorferi-(sensu lato) complex:

– Borrelia burgdorferi – Borrelia spielmanii – Borrelia garinii – Borrelia afzelii

What are Borrelia?

The bacteria have the shape of a spiral and have a hair-like structure at the end, the so-called flagella. They resemble a propeller. Move forward in a rotating manner. The bacteria can be found in the blood of small rodents (e.g.B. Birds. Ticks become infected when sucking blood from infected animals. Can transmit the bacteria to humans or other animals in the next bite. Ticks become infected when sucking blood from infested animals. Can transmit the bacteria to humans or other animals the next time they are bitten. Inside the tick the Borrelia bacteria are located in the intestine. Once the tick has found a new host and starts sucking blood, the bacteria migrate to the tick's salivary gland. Since saliva is also released into the skin during a tick bite, the bacteria are transferred into the blood.

Which symptoms do infected persons have?

A Lyme disease infection cannot always be immediately identified as such, because the symptoms can be very different. The complaints can also occur individually or in combination.

Bacterial infectious disease is divided into three stages with typical symptoms:

Stage I: Early Lyme disease

This can begin just a few days after the tick bite or occur up to three months later.

– Migratory redness (erythema migrans): This refers to a circular, red skin appearance in the vicinity of the injection site. It causes neither pain nor itching, spreads from the bite site, can have a diameter of up to 65 cm and in most cases disappears again spontaneously. The center of the reddened area is lightened. – Weakness – Headache, joint pain, muscle pain – Swelling of lymph nodes – Excessive and unusual irritability – Conjunctivitis

Stage II: The early disseminated stage

This is characterized by flu-like symptoms. They occur a few months after the tick bite. Affects not only the skin but also the organs.

– Disease of the nervous system (neuroborreliosis): the second stage can be recognized by meningitis and nerve root inflammation. Paralysis, pain and neurological deficits occur. The symptoms originate in the nerves of the spinal cord. Furthermore, a single body nerve or even a facial nerve can be paralyzed. This leads to a one-sided drooping of the corner of the mouth. – Pericarditis and myocarditis: Triggers cardiac arrhythmias. – Inflammation of the eyes: this primarily affects the middle skin of the eye. – Skin manifestation (lymphadenosis cutis benigna): The skin swells and red-bluish spots appear on earlobes, nipples or scrotum. – Impairment of the musculoskeletal system – Impairment of the psyche

Stage III: The late stage

This occurs months to years after the tick bite.

– Lyme arthritis: Inflammation of the joints in episodes or chronically, affecting single or several joints at the same time. In most cases the knee joints are affected. There is pain of the tendons and muscles. – Skin manifestation: the skin on the feet and hands becomes bluish and very thin. – Nerves: These can be further damaged. In severe cases parts of the body are paralyzed. – chronic exhaustion – changes in character – mood swings

Lyme disease left untreated can be fatal in the worst cases.

How is Lyme disease diagnosed?

In most cases, the diagnosis is made without extensive preliminary examinations. First symptoms like. B. Wandering redness are so typical that they are sufficient for a diagnosis. A blood test becomes obsolete. If, however, in addition to the tick bite, only general complaints are present, e.g. B. headache or pain in the limbs, the doctor can use a number of methods to diagnose or rule out Lyme disease.

Antibody detection: Patients who have had contact with Borrelia show antibodies against the pathogen in their blood. A blood test can prove the existence of the antibodies. If the result is positive, however, this does not necessarily indicate Lyme borreliosis. If additional symptoms such as wandering redness, headache, muscle pain , swelling of the lymph nodes or fever occur, the disease is very likely to be.

Addiction tests& Confirmation tests: The screening tests like z. B. the ELISA test (Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay) also belongs to the antibody detection tests. Furthermore, more elaborate confirmatory tests such as the immuno-blot or the Western blot are also common. These tests guarantee that a positive search test was really correct. For this purpose, in case of a positive screening test, a confirmatory test is performed on the same day.

In addition to antibody detection in the blood, a test for antibodies in the nervous fluid can be performed. This is recommended if the spinal cord or brain are affected by the infectious disease (neuroborreliosis). If neuroborreliosis is suspected, the doctor takes nerve fluid from the affected person with the help of a cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) puncture.

Pathogen detection: If the disease has only recently broken out, antibodies may not yet be detectable. The doctor can diagnose the infection with certainty if the bacteria are detectable. Since direct microscopic detection is not possible, another method is often used for diagnosis: the polymerase chain reaction (PCR). This detects the genetic material of the pathogen. Another option is to grow the bacteria.

Lymphocyte transformation tests (LTT): This test is often used, but is not very conclusive and often leads to false-positive results. The LTT measures the reaction of the immune system to certain antigens. The doctor draws blood from the patient. Exposes to the antigens of Borrelia bacteria. If certain lymphocytes (white blood cells) then multiply, this is considered evidence of an active infection. If a positive LTT is not followed by further tests that directly detect the pathogen, a misdiagnosis is very likely and unnecessary treatment with antibiotics may be necessary.

The Lyme disease treatment

The treatment is mainly carried out by taking antibiotics for several weeks. When selecting the active ingredients and the dosage, the doctor takes into account the stage of the disease and the age of the person affected. The earlier the therapy begins, the better the chances of cure and the lower the complication rate.

Therapy in the early stage

In the early stage, adults receive the antibiotic "doxycycline" in the form of tablets. These are taken daily over a period of 2 weeks. If the patient cannot tolerate doxycycline, the physician may use e.g. B. also prescribe cefuroxime axetil.

Pregnant and breastfeeding women are prohibited from taking doxycycline. In these cases, Lyme disease therapy is carried out in the early stages with amoxicillin.

Therapy in the late stage

In this phase, the antibiotics ceftriaxone, cefotaxime and minocycline are used for treatment. The first two are administered directly into a vein (intravenous administration) in order to guarantee the highest possible active level in the blood. Minocycline is available as a tablet.

The duration of therapy at this stage depends on the course of the disease. If an antibiotic does not work, treatment should be switched to another agent after about 4 weeks.

In patients with chronic joint inflammation, it may well be advisable to use painkillers and anti-inflammatory drugs. These include z. B. Diclofenac. Ibuprofen. Diclofenac and Ibuprofen.

Treatment for neuroborreliosis

In acute neuroborreliosis, treatment is mainly with doxycycline tablets over a period of 2 weeks. Other antibiotics can also be administered directly into a vein (ceftriaxone, cefotaxime or penicillin G). This intravenous therapy is used when the affected person only responds to doxycycline with a delay.

Intravenous antibiotics are also used for chronic neuroborreliosis. This is done with the active ingredients penicillin G, ceftriaxone or cefotaxime over a period of 2 to 3 weeks.

If symptoms are still evident after 6 months and there is an elevated white blood cell count in the cerebrospinal fluid, antibiotic therapy should be repeated.

Lyme disease: natural therapy

Since antibiotic therapy does not always guarantee a cure, many sufferers rely on naturopathy. This considers Lyme disease as a result of weakened defenses. Natural treatment is based on two pillars: strengthening the natural defenses and eliminating harmful substances. Not only the Lyme disease bacteria, but all toxins in the organism are considered as harmful substances.

These are discharged in the naturopathic practice in such a way:

Excretion through the kidneys by the use of diuretic medicinal plants such as goldenrod herb, birch or nettle leaves. The detoxification work of the liver is supported with medicines containing bitter substances (z. B. with milk thistle preparation or liver tea). Special medicines and dietary supplements are used to bind toxins (z. B. Chlorella algae, wild garlic, coriander, black cumin oil, high doses of vitamin C).

Further therapy approaches of naturopathy:

– Locating and remediation of interfering lesions that weaken the immune system of the affected person (e.g., the skin). B. a dead tooth, an inflammation at the root of the tooth) – sweat bath under medical supervision, which is usually carried out two to three times a week – whole-food, lactovegetarian diet with lots of fruit and vegetables (large amounts of carotenoid and chlorophyll-rich vegetables such as e.B. carrots and leafy vegetables, in the form of salads and freshly squeezed juices) – defense-strengthening spices and herbs (basil, bear's garlic, garlic, onion, garden cress, turmeric, ginger, nasturtium, coriander, peppermint, sage, thyme and cinnamon) – deacidification cure on the basis of an alkaline powder sanitizes the intestinal flora – treatment with the root "cardoon" – is considered to be a remedy for the "kidney essence" and the "liver blood strengthen – Another immune-boosting medicinal plant is "Una de gato" aka cat's claw (Uncaria tomentosa) – clearing up mental conflicts is said to release self-healing powers

Lyme disease – What does the DFV cover??

The outpatient supplementary health insurance DFV-AmbulantSchutz reimburses you for the statutory co-payments for medicines, dressings, remedies and aids as well as travel costs in the context of outpatient treatment. The DFV-AmbulantSchutz also offers you extended preventive services and also stands by you financially if a serious illness is diagnosed.

FAQ about Lyme disease

What is the risk of contracting Lyme disease after a tick bite??

The occurrence of Lyme disease pathogens in ticks varies greatly and can be up to 30%. In Germany, a maximum of 6 out of 100 stung people become infected with the disease. Overall, 0.3 to 1.4% of tick bites are likely to cause symptoms of disease.

How long does a tick have to suck in order to infect a human being??

The risk of infection increases after a sucking time of more than 12 hours. If the tick is removed early, the risk of transmission is low.

Is one immune after a past infection with the pathogens?

No, a new infection after a tick bite is not excluded.

How many cases there are annually in Germany?

According to estimates by the Robert Koch Institute, there are about 214 tick infections in Germany every year.000 cases of Lyme disease after a tick bite.

What is the difference between Lyme disease and TBE??

The viral disease TBE (early summer meningoencephalitis) is transmitted by a tick bite, as is Lyme disease, but only in certain regions of Germany. Currently, large parts of Bavaria, Baden-Wurttemberg and parts of southern Hesse and Thuringia are considered TBE risk areas. Ticks infected with Borrelia, on the other hand, occur in all regions.

Like this post? Please share to your friends:
Leave a Reply

;-) :| :x :twisted: :smile: :shock: :sad: :roll: :razz: :oops: :o :mrgreen: :lol: :idea: :grin: :evil: :cry: :cool: :arrow: :???: :?: :!: