Monday, August 20, 2012

Not Time for Lyme

Non-stop madness, no time for anything and we get about 3 people at once for "tick bite", "I think I have a tick bite", and "is this a Lyme disease rash".  One turned out to be a mole, one was a mosquito bite and the rash?  Who knows.   Not Lyme.

You would think that if people were living in one of the biggest Lyme corridors in the country that they would educate themselves on what to do if they encounter a tick on or near their person.  Sometimes people bring ticks they have recovered from their PETS to have them "analyzed to see if it is a deer tick".  No.  We don't do that.  Mostly it's unidentifiable tick parts.  Or spiders.

Even if they have consulted Dr. Google, people seem to skim over the bits about how tick-borne illness is acquired and  symptoms to watch for.  But they still come screaming into the ER as if they had just found a black widow spider in their Underroos, paying no attention to the fact that the Lyme disease tick is quite tiny.

Just a general informational tidbit here: ticks cannot fly.  If it has wings, it is NOT a tick.
It depends on the doctor how much of an intervention will be carried out in the ER.  Mostly we just give them a dose of antibiotics and kick them to the curb.

The tick may be removed with a little plastic spoon with a notch cut into it.  Or a 20 gauge needle.
The area might be anesthetized and the tick removed with a scalpel

The patient may or may not have a Lyme titre done.  This is kind of useless as an indicator for Lyme if a tick has been on your body for 10 minutes.

Not to be an alarmist but there are many, many more tick borne illnesses to be afraid of.  Very afraid.  Don't even get me started on rabies exposure.