New Tick Borne Disease◀ Back To Blog
April 4, 2013
According to the Hudson Valley’s Poughkeepsie Journal, a new potential health threat spread by tick bites is emerging in New York and elsewhere.
Similar to the pathogen that causes Lyme disease, the new threat, Borrelia miyamotoi, can bring on flu-like symptoms, including repeated bouts of fever, but often without the telltale bull’s-eye rash.
More worrisome, the pathogen can be transmitted from infected female ticks to their eggs. The pathogens that cause Lyme disease and other common tick-borne diseases do not transmit from females to their eggs. Tick Borne Diseases
The first human cases of infection were found in Russia in 2011, according to a study published in January in the New England Journal of Medicine. Since then, signs of human infection have been found in New England and southern New York.
“We don’t know whether this disease is going to emerge and spread,” said Richard Ostfeld, disease ecologist at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in Millbrook. “But from the track record of other tick-borne diseases, it seems quite likely.”
Ostfeld’s comments came Monday at a bipartisan forum on tick-borne diseases at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York. The event sought to draw attention to the increasing threat of tick-borne diseases, the need for more research and the plight of victims who have suffered debilitating symptoms.
Victims of Lyme disease have long argued that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention needs to review its treatment guidelines. Since health insurance companies base their coverage on those guidelines, there is often little to no coverage available for aggressive, cutting-edge treatments.
Doctors, scientists and politicians at the forum said the need for more study is especially urgent now that other tick-borne diseases are beginning to spread including malaria-like maladies — babesiosis and anaplasmosis. Most alarming, one tick bite can spread all of the pathogens to a person.
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