What is Lyme Disease?
Lyme disease is a serious bacterial infection transmitted by ticks to humans, and the most common cause of bilateral facial paralysis. It is transmitted through a bite from a specific type of tick. The animals that most often carry these insects are white-footed field mice, deer, raccoons, opossums, skunks, weasels, foxes, shrews, moles, chipmunks, squirrels, and horses.
Lyme disease occurs in three phases:
- Early localized disease (with skin inflammation)
- Early Disseminated disease (with heart and nervous system involvement)
- Late disease (with motor and sensory nerve damage, brain inflammation, arthritis)
The first phase begins at the site of the tick bite with an expanding ring of redness. In the early stages of Lyme disease, you may experience flu-like symptoms that can include a stiff neck, chills, fever, swollen lymph nodes, headaches, fatigue, muscle aches, and joint pain. In more advanced cases, Lyme disease may cause arthritis, Bell´s palsy, and heart, brain, and nerve problems.
Lyme disease on the rise
The number of reported cases of Lyme disease, as well as the number of geographic areas in which it is found, has been increasing recently. Lyme disease has been reported in nearly all states in the country, although most cases are concentrated in the coastal northeast, Mid-Atlantic States, Minnesota, and California.
Lyme disease imitates a variety of illnesses and its severity can vary from person to person. If you have been bitten by a tick and live in an area known to have Lyme disease, such as California, make sure you seek treatment as soon as possible.
If you have been bitten by a tick or are experiencing Lyme disease-like symptoms, schedule a consultation with the Facial Paralysis Institute today by calling (310) 657-2203.
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