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CDC Issues a Lyme Disease Update

According to the latest CDC update, in the majority of cases a deer tick must be attached for 36 to 48 hours or more before Lyme Disease bacterium can be transmitted.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued an information update, dated Jan. 11, 2013, concerning Lyme Disease. [Lyme Disease bacterium is also known as Borrelia Burgdorferi and is spread through bites by the deer tick (Ixodes scapularis).]

It has been known that a deer tick needs 10 minutes to two hours to latch onto the host’s skin, cut through it, and insert its feeding tube. However considerably more time is required for the disease-causing bacteria to travel from the tick to the host.

According to the new CDC update, in the majority of cases a deer tick must be attached for 36 to 48 hours or more before Lyme Disease bacterium can be transmitted. Other and earlier reports had indicated that this time is about 24 hours.

The deer tick (also called the "blacklegged" tick) has been responsible for the spread of Lyme Disease in the states of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut and other parts of the Northern Hemisphere. Lyme Disease was named after Lyme, Connecticut where it was first encountered in 1975.

The deer tick has eight legs, a lifecycle of about two years and can feed on mammals, birds, reptiles, and amphibians. It does not fly or jump. It sucks blood from an infected host and transmits the infection to its next host.

The types of deer ticks that carry Lyme Disease are:

  • Nymphs (a major threat) which are small and difficult to spot and feed during the spring and summer
  • Adult ticks which are active during cooler months and are much easier to notice because of their larger size

The CDC update reported that Lyme Disease cannot be transmitted by eating venison but hunters need to be aware because hunting and dressing deer can result in contact with infected ticks. It pointed out that “there is no credible evidence that Lyme Disease can be transmitted through air, food, water, or from the bites of mosquitoes, flies, fleas or lice.”

It also stated, “Although dogs and cats can get Lyme Disease, there is no evidence that they spread the disease directly to their owners. However, pets can bring infected ticks into your home or yard. Consider protecting your pet, and possibly yourself, through the use of tick control products for animals.”

In addition to tick control products, tick removal products intended for fast, easy and safe removal of ticks from dogs have recently entered the marketplace. Called Tick-SR, they are available from its producer or on the Internet at amazon.com.

The CDC is a federal agency reporting to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Bacterial Diseases Branch, Foothills Campus, Fort Collins, CO 80521, 1-800232-4646.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1600 Clifton Rd. Atlanta, GA 30333, USA, 1-800-CDC-INFO (1-800-232-4636). www.cdc.gov/lyme

Tick-SR, Karykion Corporation, 101 Wall St., Princeton, NJ, 1-800-720-2950, sales@tick-sr.com, 1-800-720-2950, www.tick-sr.com

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

SocialHostLaw.com February 16, 2013 at 03:07 PM
The two major problems are that it is difficult to know how long a tick had been on your body (there is no sensation when bit), so one must assume it's been enough time to get infected and that the lack of any reliable blood tests makes it difficult to get diagnosed in the early stages. A rash indicating infection is helpful but not always visible or in a convenient spot. Patients should always assume transmission and go immediately to their physician for antibiotics. According to epidemiologists, infected tick rates in our area are now over 75%.
Tia Welch February 27, 2013 at 10:47 PM
This is SO WRONG on so many points. In less than 30 minutes of a bite from an infected tick, lyme can invade the brain and the entire nervous system. And, as for the tick needing 10 minutes to 2 hours after finding its host to bite, that's ridiculous. I've seen a tick land on skin, attach and bite in less than a minute. The CDC, NIH and IDSA are NOT at all lyme literate. Do not trust your life to what they say about lyme. Also remember that ticks carry far more than just lyme. For the truth about lyme, go to ILADS.org and also lymedisease.org - just put the www. in front of each.
joshua tanner February 28, 2013 at 12:52 AM
Good luck with Lyme under Obama-care. I had to sort through four MDs until I found one that knew what was going on. Be careful with those jokers at Valhalla Lyme center too because they will get kids crippled.
Teleman February 28, 2013 at 12:58 AM
Imagine everything else we trust our government with- why do you vote for people like Obama?
william tell February 28, 2013 at 02:29 AM
Tia, are you aware of the blood brain barrier?

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