LiveStories

Lyme Disease and Other Vectorborne Illnesses
for Data County, USA

What are vectorborne illnesses?

Vectorborne illnesses are caused by living organisms, typically bugs or ticks, that transmit infectious diseases between humans or from animals to humans.

recent CDC report found that the number of reported vectorborne illnesses almost tripled from 2004 (27,388 cases) to 2016 (96,075). These figures can vary significantly year to year due to epidemics, particularly with mosquitoborne viruses such as Zika, West Nile, and dengue. Tickborne diseases include Lyme disease and Rocky Mountain spotted fever.. 

In the United States, tick-borne illnesses account for more than 75% of all reported vector-borne diseases. Of this percent of tick-borne illnesses, lyme disease accounts for 82% of cases and has been steadily rising over the last few years. 

Lyme Disease: Signs and Symptoms

Lyme disease is one of the most common vectorborne illnesses. It is diagnosed based on symptoms and the possibility of exposure to a tick. Symptoms range from fever, headache, fatigue, and various types of skin rashes. 

How to Avoid It

Lyme disease is best prevented by avoiding tick bites. Ticks are alive year-round, but are most active in the summer months between April and September. They live in shrubs and bushes, so to avoid bites, stick to the centers of trails, and wear clothes that cover your skin well. If you are bitten, the tick must be removed within 24 hours of its attaching to prevent Lyme disease. 

What to Do if Diagnosed

Most cases of Lyme disease can be treated with a course of antibiotics. When treated in the early stages, people with Lyme disease will usually recover quickly and completely. According to studies by the National Institute of Health (NIH), most people recover after a few weeks of antibiotic treatment. 

Number of Lyme Disease Cases, by Age and Season

Data Source: Data County, USA.