Early Disseminated Lyme Disease Symptoms
Recurring Lyme Disease Symptoms
In the early disseminated stage of Lyme disease symptoms, including the erythema migrans rash and joint pain, may re-appear at sites across the body, far away from the initial infection. Those contracting Lyme disease in Europe, but not usually in North America, may develop borrelial lymphocytoma which is an inflammation of a lymph node. Common sites for this purplish lump are the ear lobe, nipple, and scrotum, although it can occur on the face or other area of the body. General swelling of the lymph glands may also occur as the body tries to fight the infection, leading to tenderness around the lower jaw, neck, armpits, and groin.
Early disseminated Lyme disease symptoms also include heart palpitations and dizziness, migrating and intermittent aches and pains in the muscles, joints, and tendons, and acute neurological problems. Neuroborreliosis is thought to occur in around 5-15% of patients who do not receive treatment and the most common symptom is facial palsy which can occur either unilaterally or bilaterally. The development of neurological symptoms of Lyme disease varies between geographical region due to the differing nature of the infectious spirochaete. In the US it is thought that around 60% of patients with untreated Lyme disease will go on to develop intermittent bouts of arthritis, with the larger joints (such as the knees) more susceptible to pain and swelling.
Neurological Lyme Disease – Neuroborreliosis
Neurological Lyme disease symptoms are less common with infection by B. burgdorferi (s.s.), which is the only confirmed cause of Lyme disease in North America, occurring in less than 5% of untreated patients. Changes in vision also occur in some patients, along with light-sensitivity, a persistent headache, and severe neck stiffness, all of which may indicate meningitis with or without the associated skin rash. Such symptoms require urgent medical attention. Radiculoneuritis (abnormal skin sensations) sometimes occur, which can severely disrupt a patient’s sleep. In a small number of cases, the development of mild encephalitis with subsequent sleep disruption, memory loss, and irritability or mood irregularities are the only indicators of neuroborreliosis and early disseminated Lyme disease.
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