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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.

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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