C.F. asks from Ashburn, VA on June 18, 2008
Lyme Disease - Ashburn, VA
Help! I think my husband has got Lyme Disease. He got 3 ticks on him on 6/2/08 and now has what appears to be a bulls eye rash. He has a doctor's appointment for tomorrow. Does anyone have any experience with this? A doctor that was particularly helpful? Home remedies?
J.K. answers from Washington DC on June 19, 2008
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M.D. answers from Washington DC on June 19, 2008
Hi C. -
Are you positive that the ticks that were on your husband were deer ticks? Those are the specific ticks that carry lyme disease. also were the ticks on his body for longer than 36 hours? It takes 36 hours for the tick to transmit the disease to you, so you would have to have not known about them for 3 days. There are no home remedies for lyme disease it can be a very serious disease if not caught early. I have a family member with lyme disease. If it is caught early it is much easier to deal with. I would just hold tight until your husband has his doctor's appointment. Good luck with everything, I know that it can be scary.
D.U. answers from Washington DC on June 19, 2008
First I would take a picture of the rash. My daughter had lyme a year ago. She had spots all over and rings on her torso. I was able to get to the Dr. within hours, but by the next day or so the rash was gone. Had they disappeared before the doctor seeing them, it would have taken several days for the blood test to come back. Treatment was easy - 3 weeks on antibiotic. She has been fine ever since. If caught early and treated there usually aren't lingering problems, so don't panic. You are lucky it showed a rash, sometimes it doesn't. I would insist on getting him treated before the blood test results - the earlier it is treated the better. Also, it often doesn't show up in blood tests for a couple months, so the test isn't totally reliable. Also, there is debate about how long the tick has to be on you to get lyme, so I wouldn't go by that. Hope all works out well for your husband.
C.T. answers from Washington DC on June 19, 2008
Unfortunately, Lyme disease/deer ticks are endemic to this area of the East Coast. If your husband has a characteristic "bulls-eye" rash he has likely bought himself, at a minimum, bloodwork and antibiotics for a month.
There are no known herbal remedies to treat Lyme and the sequelae is worse than the primary infection, so I think it is prudent that your husband see his PCP this week.
A.M. answers from Washington DC on June 19, 2008
I developed the same symptom after mowing the yard where deer frequently feed. It started as a red spot on my shoulder, but got bigger each day. After three or four days, I figured out what it was.
The MD will give him the scoop. I never got sick, though the doctor did say some people may have a relapse even with the meds.
Now I cover up while doing lawn work. Not as comfortable, but I'm less likely to get ticks. I never saw mine. This can be serious if it is not treated. See the MD!