Relapsing fever caused by Borrelia recurrentis

Relapsing Fever caused by Borrelia Recurrentis

Relapsing fever caused by Borrelia recurrentis is a form of tick-borne illness caused by a spirochete bacteria, Borrelia recurrentis. Infection from this virus is characterized by recurrent fever attacks that happen every few days, hence its name. Symptoms usually include fever, headache, chills, nausea, and muscle aches. There is a risk of complications such as meningitis and kidney failure.

Because Borrelia recurrentis is transmitted from species of ticks, the best way to prevent this type of relapsing fever is to minimize exposure to tick habitats. This includes wearing long pants and sleeves, the use of insect repellent containing DEET, and frequent checking of skin for ticks. People spending time outdoors should closely inspect their bodies for ticks, particularly in areas where there have been recent reports of this disease.

If symptoms appear within two weeks of a tick bite, a medical evaluation should be done. Infections caused by Borrelia recurrentis should be suspected if the patient has a high fever lasting more than five days, particularly if the fever returns in a few days after going away. Diagnosis of the infection is done through blood tests, such as an enzyme immunoassay.

Treatment of relapsing fever caused by Borrelia recurrentis is usually done with antibiotics, such as doxycycline or tetracycline. Hospitalization may be recommended in cases of more serious infections to help reduce the risk of complications. For cases treated with antibiotics, there is a high success rate with recovery of full health.

Living with Relapsing Fever caused by Borrelia Recurrentis

People living with relapsing fever caused by Borrelia recurrentis should take certain precautions to prevent ticks from being a problem. These include:

  • Using insect repellent containing DEET
  • Wearing long-sleeved shirts and long pants when spending time outdoors
  • Avoiding areas with a lot of brush or tall grass
  • Conducting regular body checks for ticks

Patients should also be aware of the signs and symptoms of recurrence of the fever and seek medical care immediately if it occurs. It is important to finish the prescribed course of antibiotics, even if symptoms have disappeared, to prevent a relapse.