Vermont Resident Dies of Rare Lyme Disease Complication

39065003tick_20010809_01054.jpg(L-R) An adult tick and a young, nymph tickGetty

August 07, 2018

A Vermont resident has died of a rare Lyme disease complication, called Lyme carditis.

The Franklin County resident, whose name, sex or age was not released, is the first person to die of Lyme carditis in the state.

Lyme carditis occurs when the disease bacteria moves into the heart tissue, and alters the normal heart rhythms, something the CDC says is called “heart block.” Along with the common symptoms of Lyme disease like body aches and a fever, those with Lyme carditis often have heart palpitations, shortness of breath and fevers.

“It’s my sad duty to report this loss,” Vermont Health Commissioner Dr. Mark Levine said, according to NBC 5 in Burlington. “While Lyme disease is increasingly common in Vermont, Lyme carditis itself is very rare.”

According to the CDC, just 1 percent of all reported Lyme disease cases in the U.S. become Lyme carditis. Between 1985 and 2018, there have been nine cases nationwide.

The Vermont health department sent out advisories to all doctors to watch out for any patients complaining of heart issues.

“Lyme and other tickborne diseases can cause serious illness,” Levine said. “But Lyme disease, including Lyme carditis, is treatable.”



Here we go again.  Another supposedly “rare” Lyme disease complication….

In the following link CDC expert Dr. Forrester comments that 4-10% of Lyme patients get carditis.  If we take the CDC’s estimate that 300,000 people contract Lyme each year, that’s 12,000 –  30,000 with Lyme carditis.  Does that sound rare to you?  (There are many tick borne illnesses besides Lyme that can cause carditis. An Ontario heart specialist is warning doctors to look for it as numerous people with heart symptoms were admitted to the ER two to three times before anyone even considered it. He also states many don’t get the bullseye rash or notice vague symptoms of fever and muscle aches.)

This research shows natural autoantibodies being present in the pericardial fluid with significant correlation of mycoplasma, Lyme, and chlamydia antibodies in patients with heart disease:

This research is linking Ticks to heart disease:  Excerpt:  “Lyme expert Dr. Daniel Cameron has done a nice job of summarizing five cases in a blog.
Cardiac Tropism of Borrelia burgdorferi: An Autopsy Study of Sudden Cardiac Death Associated with Lyme Carditis. (March 2016)

“Fatal Lyme carditis caused by the spirochete Borrelia burgdorferi rarely is identified. Here, we describe the pathologic, immunohistochemical, and molecular findings of five case patients.”

There is a world of difference between something being rarely identified and something being rare.


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