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About ticks

 Ticks are hematophagous ectoparasites feeding on wide variety of verebrates, including human. Beside the fact, that ticks suck blood of the host, they can also transmit variety of very dangerous pathogens. Ixodes ricinus is such a significant vector in area of western and middle Europe. Ixodes ricinus (female).


    

 

    These ticks are able to transmit three most important human diseases: Lyme disease (Lyme borreliosis), Tick-born encephalitis and Ehrilichiosis (Human granulocytic anaplasmosis).

 


    Lyme disease



    Lyme disease is caused by bacteria Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato. The course of Lyme disease can be very variable and depends on both the severity and the localization of the disease. The less severe forms progress without any symptoms. The worse disease scenario includes skin irritations (erythema migrans, acrodematitis chronica atrophicans), joint inflammation (arthritis), central nervous system damage (meningitis, meningo-encephalitis, encefalitis). Lyme disease is treatable by antibiotics, nevertheless, there is no effective vaccine for human yet. To see more information about the course of the disease click here. It is possible to get the tick tested for presence of Lyme disease causing bacterias. The knowledge of whether the tick was infected or not may significantly help your medical doctor (your "strenge" symptoms becomes suddenly clear); it is also possible to undergoe preventive antibiotic treatment. For more information click here.


    Tick-born encephalitis


    This disease is caused by tick-born encephalitis virus. Its course differ according to age of the patient. While children tolerate TBE quite well, adults and older people can suffer from more severe form. Nevertheless, TBE presents serious disease of central neural system. In the most severe cases unconsciousness or even paralysis of body parts can occur, where the paralysis may be permanent. The most powerfull defence againts TBE is vaccination.To see more information about the course of the disease click here. It is possible to get the tick tested for presence of TBE-virus, for more information click here. As primary symptoms can remind of influenza, this information may be beneficial for your medical doctor in order to set correct diagnosis and prevent further development of this dangerous disease.



    Human granulocytic anaplasmosis (Ehrlichiosis)


    This disease is caused by bacteria Anaplasma phagocytophilum (former Ehrlichia phagocytophila). Its less frequent occurence leads to little awareness of people, although this disease (when untreated) can be as dangerous as lyme disease or TBE. It presents danger especially for people with immune system defficiency. Anaplasmosis develops as central nervous disease treatable with antibiotics.  To see more information about the course of the disease click here. It is possible to get the tick tested for presence of Anaplasma phagocytophilum - more information here.

 

 

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