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Study: Lyme Disease Increasing In High-Risk Areas

| by Michael Allen

A new study claims that Lyme disease is increasing in high-risk areas of the U.S.

Lyme disease is transmitted to humans by infected deer ticks.

According to NBC News, "There are now 260 counties where the risk of catching Lyme disease is at least twice the national average, up from 130 a decade earlier," per a study by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine, Vermont, Virginia, Pennsylvania, New York, Iowa, Michigan and Minnesota include expanding high-risk areas.

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However, some counties in Virginia, Georgia, Missouri and North Carolina have dropped out of the high-risk category.

People often recover from Lyme disease with antibiotics, but if there is no treatment, the disease can lead to numerous physical problems and be a chronic issue over a lifetime.

Between 20,000 to 30,000 Lyme disease are reported annually in the U.S., but it is believed that the total number could be 10 times those numbers.

The CDC website states: "Risk for encounters with infected ticks, even within high-incidence counties, is influenced by human behavior and varying landscape characteristics that impact tick abundance and small mammal species composition."

Sources: NBC New York, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Image Credit: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention