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Definition of LYME DISEASE
: an acute inflammatory disease that is caused by a spirochete (Borrelia burgdorferi) transmitted by ticks (genus Ixodes and especially I. dammini), that is usually characterized initially by a spreading red annular erythematous skin lesion and by fatigue, fever, and chills, and that if left untreated may later manifest itself in joint pain, arthritis, and cardiac and neurological disorders —called also Lyme
: an acute inflammatory disease that is usually characterized initially by the skin lesion erythema migrans and by fatigue, fever, and chills and if left untreated may later manifest itself in cardiac and neurological disorders, joint pain, and arthritis and that is caused by a spirochete of the genus Borrelia (B. burgdorferi) transmitted by the bite of a tick especially of the genus Ixodes (I. scapularis synonym I. dammini in the eastern and midwestern United States, I. pacificus especially in some parts of the Pacific coastal states of the United States, and I. ricinus in Europe)—called also Lyme, Lyme borreliosis
Tick-borne bacterial disease. It was identified in 1975 and named for Old Lyme, Conn. It is caused by a spirochete, Borrelia burgdorferi, transmitted by ticks, which pick it up in the blood of infected animals, mostly deer. Humans can be bitten by ticks in tall grass or fallen leaves. Lyme disease has three stages: a target-shaped rash, often with flulike symptoms; migrating arthritic pain and neurological symptoms (disturbances to memory, vision, or locomotion); and crippling arthritis with symptoms like those of multiple sclerosis and sometimes with facial paralysis, meningitis, or memory loss. Most cases do not progress beyond the first stage, but those that do reach the third stage within two years. Prevention involves avoiding tick bites. Diagnosis can be difficult, especially if the initial rash is not noticed. Early antibiotic treatment can prevent progression. Advanced cases need more powerful antibiotics, and symptoms may recur.