UMEM Educational Pearls

Category: Infectious Disease

Title: A new form of Lyme Disease

Posted: 2/10/2016 by Michael Bond, MD (Emailed: 2/13/2016) (Updated: 2/13/2016)
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Borrella mayonii a new species

There is a new bacteria that is causing Lyme disease. Borrella burgdorferi is the typical bacteria associated with lyme disease, but now several cases of Borrelia mayonii have been isolated from patients and ticks that live in Minnesota, Wisconsin and North Dakota. What is unique about this new species is that it is associated with nausea, vomiting, diffuse macular rashes, and neuro symptoms [e.g.: confusion, visual disturbance, and somnolence) along with the typical lyme disease symptoms of arthralgias and headaches.

Current lyme tests should detect this new species and treatment is the same as Borrella burgdorferi. The take home pearl is that we may see patients with "atypical" lyme disease symptoms so this should be on our differential for patients presenting with rashes, nausea, vomiting and neurologic complaints.