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Canada Patient, researcher say a rapid tick test needed in N.S. Lyme fight

14:26  08 june  2018
14:26  08 june  2018 Source:   cbc.ca

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She tests these Lyme ticks at the request of those patients who send them because she knows Nova Scotians have no alternatives in the country. "There is still a lot of need to test a fix that shows someone," she said .

Patient , researcher say a rapid tick test needed in N . S . Lyme fight | CBC News. Testing for disease in a tick that's been removed from a human used to be an option in Nova Scotia. It isn't anymore. In 2016, the province moved to a new strategy to fight ticks .

a close up of an insect on a white plate: Blacklegged ticks, also known as deer ticks, carry the bacteria that causes Lyme disease.© AP Photo/Victoria Arocho, File Blacklegged ticks, also known as deer ticks, carry the bacteria that causes Lyme disease.

Margo Beveridge checks herself carefully for ticks every day after going outdoors. The Halifax woman has been bitten twice by ticks — once on the back and once on her eyelid.

"It's kind of a disgusting experience," she said of finding the embedded ticks.

Both times her doctor prescribed antibiotics out of a concern she would catch Lyme disease and both times she bagged the tick and sent it for identification.

Then Beveridge began to wonder how she could get more information about what had bitten her.

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“The sensitivity they showed just in early Lyme disease patients was very high, the highest I’ve actually seen,” she said . In an upcoming publication, the researchers I too have had negative Lyme tests (in 2009, IGG test negative with 1 pos. band and positive IGM). I was bit by a tick in 2006, had the

Lyme disease, also known as Lyme borreliosis, is an infectious disease caused by Borrelia bacteria, spread by ticks . The most common sign of infection is an expanding area of redness on the skin

a person standing next to a tree: Margo Beveridge walks through Point Pleasant Park in Halifax.© CBC Margo Beveridge walks through Point Pleasant Park in Halifax.

"Someone said to me, 'Why don't they test the tick?' And I thought that's a good question. Why don't they test the tick for disease?"

Testing for disease in a tick that's been removed from a human used to be an option in Nova Scotia. It isn't anymore. In 2016, the province moved to a new strategy to fight ticks.

"We now have established tick populations in Nova Scotia," said Dr. Robert Strang, the province's chief medical officer of health. "We know that."

He noted other provinces are still treating ticks and Lyme disease in the "emerging" stage.

Blacklegged ticks are shown in different stages of feeding and growth.© Patrick Callaghan/CBC Blacklegged ticks are shown in different stages of feeding and growth.

"They may still be encouraging people to submit ticks to help them with their surveillance," he said. "We're beyond that in Nova Scotia. So that's why we stopped."

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Patient , researcher say a rapid tick test needed in N . S . Lyme fight | CBC News. It is possible to find out what diseases a tick carries, but the chief medical officer of health says those results don't come back fast enough to be useful to doctors making medical decisions.

Finally, blacklegged ticks need to be attached for at least 24 hours before they can transmit Lyme disease. Tests for Lyme disease detect antibodies produced by the human immune system to fight off the bacteria While the term is sometimes used to describe illness in patients with Lyme disease

The provincial Department of Health says since ticks are established everywhere in mainland Nova Scotia, testing those submitted by the public would no longer give useful public health information about their spread.

Instead it has started collecting ticks directly from the woods and analyzing them for Lyme disease, anaplasmosis, babesiosis and Powassan virus.

Last year, the Health Department's testing showed between 22 and 59 per cent of the captured ticks had the bacteria that causes Lyme disease. On average, about 41 per cent of the ticks had Lyme.

a man wearing glasses: Dr. Robert Strang is the chief medical officer of health in Nova Scotia.© CBC Dr. Robert Strang is the chief medical officer of health in Nova Scotia.

Strang says another reason the province stopped testing submitted ticks is because it doesn't give results fast enough to be helpful to a doctor trying to treat a possible Lyme infection.

"We need clinical decisions far faster than you could ever get a turnaround time on identifying a tick," he said.

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Your Lyme Disease Test Results Are Negative, but Your Symptoms Say Otherwise. These components are designed to prevent the body from effectively “ fighting off” the Lyme The High Cost of Misdiagnosis for Patients with Lyme Disease and Other Tick -Borne Diseases.

Researchers once hypothesized that STARI was caused by the spirochete, Borrelia lonestari, however further research did not support this idea. Patients with STARI were more likely to recall a tick bite than were patients with Lyme disease.

Canada's National Microbiology Laboratory can generally provide results in two and six weeks. Clinical decisions about Lyme must be made in a matter of days.

But patients like Beveridge often want to get their ticks analyzed anyway.

Researcher Vett Lloyd of the Mount Allison University Lyme Research Network tests ticks submitted by New Brunswick and P.E.I. residents. She determines whether each tick is carrying the bacteria that causes Lyme disease and sends back a result.

a man wearing glasses: Vett Lloyd is a researcher with the Mount Allison University Lyme Research Network.© CBC Vett Lloyd is a researcher with the Mount Allison University Lyme Research Network.

Lloyd also receives between 300 and 500 ticks removed from people in Nova Scotia each year. She tests those ticks for Lyme at the request of the patients who submit them, because she recognizes Nova Scotians have no in-province options.

"There's still very much a need for testing a tick that shows up on someone," she said. "You find a tick on yourself, you find a tick on your child, you want to know whether that tick was infected."

She agrees with recommendations from the Public Health Agency of Canada and provincial health departments across the country that medical treatment in humans should never be based only on what was inside the tick.

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Almost all of Abid’ s tests for Lyme and other diseases are negative, except one 100 euro test from Germany that (Courtesy). “He has no objective evidence of Lyme ,” Goehringer said after reviewing all the files. Science Shortfall: Why Don't We Know How Best To Fight Ticks And Lyme Disease?

Lyme disease is a disease that is transmitted to humans by ticks that carry the Borrelia type of bacteria. Small quantity of the fat tissue is needed (that is why after activation process the stem cells can be at once injected to patient without necessity of What they say about us. Lyme disease.

However, judging by the demand from Nova Scotians who are sending ticks to her lab, she thinks a dedicated tick-testing service could be of use in this province.

This undated photo provided by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows a blacklegged tick.© CDC/Associated Press This undated photo provided by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows a blacklegged tick.

"Making it rapid is really just a matter of how many ticks that are tested," she said. "It takes a long time to test it in the one lab that does all of Canada's tick testing because Canada's a big place with a lot of ticks in it. A Nova Scotia tick-testing facility could deal with Nova Scotian ticks. That would be one way of making it faster. The technology itself is routine in research labs and hospitals.

"I think when you have that many people having their health impacted, being impacted by ticks, that is a signal that really proactive moves to help people determine the risk of getting a tick-borne disease is a really good idea."

Strang said he's not aware of any facility that has moved to such rapid testing.

"Maybe someday we'll have that kind of point-of-care testing," he said. "We also have to remember that lots of people come in without a tick. They may be in a tick-infected area and may have had a tick on them that is no longer there."

Beveridge no longer has the ticks that bit her, so she cannot submit them to a lab for testing.

She completed the courses of antibiotics and her health is fine. However, she says she and other patients may still have many questions that would be eased with more information.

a man wearing glasses: Margo Beveridge says she still has many questions about Nova Scotia's tick-response plan. She believes tick testing would help answer some questions patients may have.© CBC Margo Beveridge says she still has many questions about Nova Scotia's tick-response plan. She believes tick testing would help answer some questions patients may have.

"I would like to know if the ticks that I had, if they actually were carrying Lyme disease," she said. "Then I would be more vigilant about myself if I noticed any symptoms that might indicate that perhaps I had been infected.

"I might want to talk to my doctor about whether I should have a second, follow-up Lyme disease test done. I'd just like to be better informed."

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