New Tick-Borne Illnesses – Babesiosis

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According to HealthDay News, a tick-borne disease that causes symptoms similar to malaria is becoming more widespread in the northeastern United States, researchers say.

Babesiosis invades red blood cells and is carried by deer ticks, which also carry Lyme disease. Between 2000 and 2008, towns in Connecticut reporting cases of babesiosis increased from 30 to 85, according to the researchers. Since babesiosis was first reported in Connecticut in 1991, cases in the state have risen from three to about 100 a year. Symptoms include fever, chills, fatigue, sweats, headache and muscle pain.

“Today’s findings underscore the shifting landscape of tick-borne diseases, whose rapid emergence can challenge the best efforts of science and medicine to diagnose, treat and prevent their occurrence,” Dr. Peter Krause, a researcher at the Yale School of Public Health in New Haven, Conn., said in a society news release.

Dr. James Kazura, the society’s president, said this “is a real-time illustration of the inter-connectedness of human and animal health that many people don’t often think about.” Ticks carry many human diseases, he said, adding that “efforts like this offer timely information that is of regional and clinical importance.”

Lyme disease is the most common tick-borne disease in the United States, with 20,000 to 30,000 cases reported each year. But a growing number of diseases are carried by deer ticks and becoming more widespread in the United States, experts warned.

Symptoms of babesiosis are similar to those of Lyme disease but it more often starts with a high fever and chills. As the infection progresses, patients may develop fatigue, headache, drenching sweats, muscle aches, nausea, and vomiting. Babesiosis is often so mild it is not noticed but can be life-threatening to people with no spleen, the elderly, and people with weak immune systems. Complications include very low blood pressure, liver problems, severe hemolytic anemia and kidney failure. (source)

According to the National Pest Management Association, here are tips to avoid and remove ticks.

How to Avoid Ticks:

  • Use a tick repellant when outdoors.

  • Wear light colored long sleeves and long pants outdoors to easily spot ticks.

  • Inspect your clothing and body for ticks after being outdoors. Be sure to carefully check children and pets, too.

  • Keep grass mowed and trim around fences, sheds, trees, swing sets, shrubs and swing sets.

  • Eliminate woodpiles and other debris from lawn and landscape.

How to properly remove a tick:

  • Pull slowly and steadily on tick’s body – you do not want to break off mouthparts in the skin.

  • Dispose of tick by flushing down a toilet and wrapping in tape before discarding in trash receptacle.

  • Wash hands and bite area thoroughly with soap and water.

  • Seek medical attention if irritation occurs.

Living in and around the Capital Region it is inevitable you will come across ticks. Unfortunately, keeping these insects away from your property is nearly impossible, but our pest management services can help. With simple precautions you can potentially avoid encounters with these biting insects. Thomas Pest Services, your pest control experts can help reduce you and your families’ risk. If you live in Clifton Park or elsewhere in the Capital Region and need assistance getting rid of ticks , fill out our contact form today!

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