Cases of poorly understood Lyme disease continue to grow in Alberta

 

BY  ,CALGARY SUN August 16, 2014

While it has yet to establish a real foothold in Alberta, the prevalence of Lyme disease is increasing, meaning it will likely one day be here to stay, says the province’s medical officer of health.

Caused by a bacteria known as Borrelia burgdorferi, Lyme disease is transmitted to people — and pets — by the black-legged tick, an insect about the size of a poppy seed usually found in grassy and forested areas.

Picked up when the insect grabs onto an animal as it passes by — usually the hair of a deer or moose or the clothing of a person — ticks are attracted to warmest parts of the body, which in humans is the head, armpits and groin.

The tick will burrow itself into the body then feed on its host’s blood supply.

And if the tick is a carrier, it can leave behind the Borrelia burgdorferi bacteria, which causes Lyme disease.

Symptoms of Lyme disease are usually flu-like at first, including chills, dizziness, fever and swelling of joints and lymph nodes and muscle pain, but can also include memory problems.

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1 Comment

  • Penny Trask says:

    My 25 yr old daughter has suffered for the last 13 yrs and has just been positively tested for Lyme. I have written our story and sent it to newspapers in the edmonton area. I am trying to contact global news to do a piece as well. She began treatment 12 days ago but suffered complications so they are looking at a gentler approach. Her health is quickly deteriorating and that is why I want to go public with her story.