Discussion Response

Submitted byResponse to
From: Joel
How reliable is tick test?

Date: 31-Mar-2000 at 10:11 AM EST
Host: spider-te011.proxy.aol.com /

Document Title: Re: How reliable is tick test?


1. Prophylactic treatment now is the best course. The risks of a short course of abx is minimal as are the costs. The risks of untreated infection are MAXIMAL. Why wait until testing which may or may not be reliable comes back to begin?

2. Doxycycline is contraindicated in children. Treatment of choice is amoxicillin. Biaxin is a good alternative.

3. Tick testing reliability varies from lab to lab. Results may take a while. Also: even labs doing tick testing do not routinely screen for babesiosis, ehrlichiosis and other coinfections.

4. The tick that was discovered may not be the only tick that bit her. The attached tick provides evidence that your niece was in an area in which ticks can be found. She might have had other ticks on her undetected! Testing the one tick that was found may lead to a false sense of security.

5. Recalling that reported incidence of Lyme disease understates the true incidence of the disease for several reasons (surveillance criteria utilized is not for diagnosis and understates the disease; doctors fail to report at least 9 of 10 cases that would meet surveillance criteria despite 'mandatory' reporting according to New Eng Jour Of Med so the actual incidence is AT LEAST 10X the reported #; misdiagnosis further multiplies the true incidence of disease) try this link for info on Illinois:

According to cluster maps, Southern Illinois is a pretty endemic place for Lyme!

6. It is important to note that SOME labs do ONLY tick IDENTIFICATION (what type of tick, deer tick, dog tick etc) and that is NOT THE SAME as tick testing for Lyme. Here are a few labs doing tick testing: http://www.igenex.com
http://www.bbii.com/ http://www.mdlab.com/ http://tickitt.com/

The pediatrician treating your niece might want to contact an LLMD or even better you might get her to one.

The pediatrician featured in this story is usually willing to speak to other doctors: http://www.fairfieldweekly.com/articles/kidlyme.html

If you need info on how to contact him, email me.

Dana, Good Luck to you and your niece!

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