Lyme Disease – Acusera Infectious Disease (Serology) Controls

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Lyme Disease

Lyme disease is caused by the spirochete Borreliella (Borrelia) burgdorferi and is transmitted by the bite of infected ticks. It’s the most common vector-borne illness in the United States and Europe [1].

People suffering from Lyme disease may react to it differently, and the symptoms can vary in severity. While Lyme disease is commonly divided into three stages — early localized, early disseminated, and late disseminated — symptoms are known to overlap.

Lyme Disease Stages & Symptoms [2]

• Stage I: Early localized disease (days to weeks) – migrating redness, generally accompanied with flu-like symptoms.

• Stage II: Early disseminated disease (weeks to months) – multiple erythema multiforme (EM) lesions, disturbances in heart rhythm, which can be caused by Lyme carditis, neurologic conditions, such as numbness, tingling, facial and cranial nerve palsies, and meningitis.

• Stage III: Late persistent disease (months to years) – arthritis of one or more large joints, brain disorders, such as encephalopathy, which can cause short-term memory loss, difficulty concentrating, mental fogginess, problems with following conversations and sleep disturbance, numbness in the arms, legs, hands, or feet.

Diagnosing Lyme Disease

Lyme disease can be difficult to diagnose. It has similar symptoms to other conditions and there’s not always an obvious rash [3]. Initially, the diagnosis will begin with a review of a patient’s health history, including reports of tick bites within local proximity. Serologic testing is the mainstay of diagnosis. Blood tests are usually most reliable a few weeks after the initial infection, when antibodies are present. The lack of sensitive, relatively easy, fast, direct tests for the presence of B. burgdorferi is one of the main challenges in the laboratory diagnosis of Lyme disease [4]. It is important that diagnosis is made clinically using and interpreting all test results carefully with reference to the clinical presentation. Lyme Disease testing is mainly performed using serology tests with antibodies against B.burgdoferi. [5]

Preventing Lyme Disease

The most effective way to prevent Lyme disease involves decreasing your risk of experiencing a bite. Some simple precautions to help reduce the risk are:

• Covering Up – When in wooded or grassy areas, wear shoes, long pants tucked into socks, as well as a long-sleeved shirt/jacket.
• Avoid long grass – Ticks are known to be more common in areas of long grass therefore it is recommended to stick to trails when in woodlands.
• Use insect repellent – Using insect repellent should help prevent tick bites.
• Be cautious – Following time spent in woodlands or grassy areas, be sure to check yourself, children, clothing and pets for any potential ticks.
• Remove a tick immediately – If you find yourself, or anyone else, has a tick attached be sure to remove as soon as possible.

How Randox Can Help

Randox offer laboratories a human-based, liquid ready-to-use control for the analysis of this infectious disease. Designed to detect Borrelia burgdoferi (Lyme) IgG and Borrelia burgdoferi (Lyme) IgM, the Randox Acusera Lyme Disease control is suitable for use on a wide range of immunoanalysers.

 

Want to know more?

Contact us or visit our Serology page to learn more.

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  • References

    [1] Marques, A. (2018). Revisiting the Lyme Disease Serodiagnostic Algorithm: the Momentum Gathers. Journal of Clinical Microbiology, [online] 56(8). Available at: https://jcm.asm.org/content/56/8/e00749-18 [Accessed 18 Nov. 2019].

    [2] Healthline. (2019). Everything You Need to Know About Lyme Disease. [online] Available at: https://www.healthline.com/health/lyme-disease#prevention [Accessed 18 Nov. 2019].

    [3] nhs.uk. (2019). Lyme disease. [online] Available at: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/lyme-disease/ [Accessed 25 Nov. 2019].

    [4] Marques, A. (2016). Laboratory Diagnosis of Lyme Disease – Advances and Challenges. Molecular Biotechnology, 3(1), pp.75-75.

    [5] Lymediseaseaction.org.uk. (2019). Tests | Lyme Disease Action. [online] Available at: https://www.lymediseaseaction.org.uk/about-lyme/tests/ [Accessed 10 Dec. 2019].



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