How Lyme Disease Is Diagnosed
- Self-Checks. Though you can’t diagnose or rule out Lyme disease on your own, you can look for the tell-tale symptoms and make sure you understand when you need to see
- Clinical Judgment. In some cases, laboratory testing is used to support a suspected diagnosis.
- Labs and Tests.
- Differential Diagnoses.
- Early vs.
How can I tell if I have Lyme disease?
Your doctor is the person who can tell for sure if you have Lyme disease, but here are two common signs: feeling tired and achy all over, like you have the flu. developing a red, circular rash (often called a bull’s-eye rash) at the site of the tick bite.
Why is Lyme disease so difficult to diagnose?
Another factor that can make Lyme difficult to diagnose is the symptoms can wax and wane, said Dr. Andrew Nowalk, an assistant professor of pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and an infectious disease specialist at the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.
Could you have Lyme disease and not even know it?
” It happens frequently that people have Lyme disease and don’t know it ,” says Andrea Gaito, M.D., a rheumatologist with a private practice in Basking Ridge, New Jersey. Lyme disease is a bacterial infection transmitted by tick bites, especially those from deer ticks. Approximately 70 percent of deer ticks are infected, says Gaito.
What is the most accurate test for Lyme disease?
The most accurate way to detect Lyme disease is with a two-stage blood test. The first is a screening test called an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (often referred to as ELISA) that looks for certain antibodies (immune proteins) that are the immune system’s response to the infection.
What to do if you think you have Lyme disease?
If you think you’ve been bitten and have signs and symptoms of Lyme disease — particularly if you live in an area where Lyme disease is prevalent — contact your doctor. Treatment for Lyme disease is more effective if begun early. Consult your doctor even if signs and symptoms disappear — the absence of symptoms doesn’t mean the disease is gone.
How long does it take for Lyme disease symptoms to show up?
These details are crucial to making a diagnosis of Lyme disease. Early symptoms that usually occur within the first month after a tick bite can include: Symptoms that show up in the weeks to months after a tick bite include: Symptoms that come and go are common with Lyme disease. They will also depend on the stage of the disease.
What is the diagnosis for Lyme disease?
Lyme disease is a clinical diagnosis—based on the patient’s medical history, symptoms and exposure to ticks. This symptom checklist was developed to assist patients and physicians in the diagnosis of Lyme disease. The Symptoms Checklist is NOT a self-diagnosis tool.
What is the best way to prevent Lyme disease?
Untreated Lyme disease can cause: The best way to prevent Lyme disease is to avoid areas where deer ticks live, especially wooded, bushy areas with long grass. You can decrease your risk of getting Lyme disease with some simple precautions: Cover up.