Spring is here! And so are the ticks, mosquitoes and various other "buzz" and insects. We had our first tick alert of the year from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Some places praise this year as a banner for the ticks population. Immediately, our thoughts turn to Lyme disease, which is valued what about 50 percent of deer or black-legged ticks carry most often.
But Lyme disease is not everything. This qualifies for a negative enjoyment of the Worst Case Scenario (WCS). For fun, we will "check off" some others to increase the anticipation of the big out-of-doors. Remember that not all ticks carry the microbes. (They have no hands, just legs.)
When making a list (and double checking), the early symptoms of almost all tick-borne diseases were the same: fever, chills, headaches and muscle aches. The initial presentation is almost always so unspecific that it is not possible to determine which one is the culprit without testing and perhaps waiting.
The CDC reported that Minnesota had 26,886 cases of Lyme disease between 2004 and 201
Anaplasmosis (AN-ah-Plaz-MOH-sis) is a type of bacteria called Rickettsia. A tick may possibly transfer it after mounting for 12-24-48 hours. Caused by Anaplasma phagocytophilum, it is much less common than Lyme. It was first recognized in Minnesota and West Wisconsin in 1993 and has been classified as human granulocytic ehrlichiosis but re-classified in 2003.
Ehrlichiosis is also a rickettsia strain of bacteria. His first description was confused with Lyme disease without rash. A form of ehrlichiosis of Ehrlichia chaffensis is found in the southeastern and south-central US, borne by the Lone Star tick. (Texas can keep it, as well as other things.) A form of ehrlichiosis caused by Ehrlichia muris was first found around Eau Claire in 2009, and has since been reported in both states.
Babesiosis (ba-BEE-see-o-sis) is caused by a protozoan similar to malaria and was called American malaria. It penetrates into red blood cells, destroys them and causes anemia and high fever. About 20 percent of these infections have Lyme disease from the same tick. Occasionally an anaplasmosis or ehrlichiosis can occur. More for your money
Powassan virus has been reported in the upper Midwest and Northeast. Named after Powassan, Ontario, where it was first found, it's an import, no extra charge.
While quite rare in Minnesota, Rocky Mountain spotted fever can be seen. Wood / dog ticks transmit this Rickettsia. Its characteristic feature is a patchy rash that begins at the wrists and ankles and continues to the torso.
Two other borrelia, similar to Lyme borrelia, have been identified. In 2011, B. miyamotoi, which causes a picture of tick relapsing fever, was found, and in 2013 B. mayonii was discovered, which causes symptoms similar to Lyme. Nothing to do with the consumption of Mayo.
Tularemia, or rabbit fever, is spread via wooden ticks and biting flies from wild reservoirs such as rabbits, squirrels and rodents. It's pretty rare in Minnesota.
The only one that does not cause the viral-like set of symptoms is tick-paralysis of certain wood-ticks. As long as the tick feeds and injects its saliva, which contains a specific protein / toxin, it causes paralysis in the legs that rise, and can lead to respiratory failure and death. Once the tick is removed, the paralysis disappears in hours to days.
For the sake of brevity we have omitted some other conditions. Prevention is the last point. Ticks live on the ground and in the foliage. They do not fall from trees. Repellants on you and clothes are good and safe, especially DEET up to 30 percent. When out in the open, tuck your pant legs into your socks. It slows you down when you drive on your forest path. Then check yourself if they are hiding in your hiding place. If you find one, slowly pull it back. Deer ticks are smaller and seem to bury themselves in comparison to wooden ticks.
After reading this list of potential illnesses available from some of our natural roommates in the world, please do not (I have to say it was about.
Frank A. Bures is a semi-retired dermatologist in Winona.