Lyme disease is one of the fastest growing infectious diseases in the United States and Western Europe. If untreated, it can become a severely debilitating illness affecting multiple organs, including joints, heart, brain and other parts of the central nervous system.
This is more than hepatitis C, HIV, colon cancer, and breast cancer, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Lyme disease is caused by Borrelia burgdorferi, a corkscrew-shaped bacterium that is transmitted to people and pets through the bite of an infected Ixodes tick (commonly called a blacklegged or deer tick).
Lyme disease doesn’t discriminate. Men, women, children, pets are all susceptible. Anyone who is exposed to infected ticks is at risk.
are officially reported because criteria and testing accuracy vary greatly.
95% of confirmed cases were reported from 14 states and the District of Columbia. While Lyme is most prevalent in the Northeast and upper Midwest, it has been reported in all 50 states and 80 countries.
25X The number of cases reported annually has increased nearly 25-fold since national surveillance began in 1982.
Government funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for research is disproportionately low when considering the footprint of the disease. This highlights the importance of private funding for research.
*Dollars in millions and rounded. Estimated funding in 2014 by National Institutes of Health (NIH).
Many patients go undiagnosed far too long, causing chronic disabilities.
Fewer than 50% of patients with Lyme recall any rash.
Fewer than 50% of patients with Lyme remember a tick bite.
It is estimated that 20%-30% of people who are treated for medically documented Lyme disease develop chronic pain, fatigue, and neurological symptoms.
The common ELISA test you receive at your doctor’s office misses 35% to 50% of culture-proven Lyme.