Saturday, July 11, 2009

Doxycyline, or, Alline Opens a Big Can o' Whup Ass

Update: I do NOT have Lyme's disease. Score one for the Californian. However, I do most likely have Ehrlichiosis, another tick-born disease. The very cool thing is that I found the bull's eye within a couple of days and was able to get treatment immediately.

My initial freak-out was from years ago, when doctors didn't quite know what to do with Lyme's and other tick diseases, and the little buggers were allowed to run their course, resulting in debilitating arthritis and other maladies.

Now, with an immediate course (in my case, 21 days) of antibiotics, the bacteria is simply wiped out. I have my own army of little Terminators running through my veins, hunting out and destroying the erlichiae bacteria. Semper fi, dude.

So, a word to the wise: if you are traveling in tick country (see the map, here) dress appropriately when walking in tall grass/weeds. And if you get the following symptoms, consider that you might have more than a simple virus:

"The early clinical presentations of ehrlichiosis may resemble nonspecific signs and symptoms of various other infectious and non-infectious diseases. It is unclear if all persons infected with ehrlichiae become ill. It is possible that many infected persons develop an illness so mild they do not seek medical attention or perhaps have no symptoms at all.

Patients with ehrlichiosis generally visit a physician in their first week of illness, following an incubation period of about 5-10 days after the tick bite. Initial symptoms generally include fever, headache, malaise, and muscle aches. Other signs and symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, cough, joint pains, confusion, and occasionally rash."

I do hope that this will not dissuade people from visiting Dancing Rabbit, or the Milkweed Mercantile. I've been here for ten years and not had any problems - I just got lazy, and went picking black raspberries in a dress and sandals. Normally, when hunting for morel mushrooms or violets in the spring I am careful to wear long pants, tuck them into my socks, and take a shower immediately after. Ticks are what we get in exchange for fireflies, prairie wildflowers, native songbirds and stupendous thunder storms. I think it's worth the trade offs.

1 comment:

yer mama said...

Well at least now you have a solid excuse for any malaise or confusion you may be experiencing. What was your excuse before? ;-)