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Med Pregl. 2001 Sep-Oct;54(9-10):470-5.

[Clinico-epidemiologic characteristics of Lyme disease treated at the Infectious Disease in Novy Sad 1993-1998].

[Article in Croatian]

Author information

1
Klinicki centar, Novi Sad Klinika za infektivne bolesti.

Abstract

INTRODUCTION:

Borrelia burgdorferi, the etiological agent of Lyme disease, is transmitted by the bite of Ixodes ricinus, registered in all parts of Yugoslavia. Vectors are very active in spring and early summer and the disease has a seasonal distribution. Generally speaking, there are three defined stages of the disease, but some of them can be misdiagnosed or really absent. Serological analysis of Lyme disease is very difficult to interpret, especially in later stages, so confirmation by immunoblot assays is recommended. The aim of this study was to present some epidemiologic and clinical characteristics of Lyme disease in Vojvodina in the period from 1993-1998. Throughout this period, 1.659 persons with tick bite were registered, whereas 560 with diagnosed Lyme disease have been treated at the Clinic for Infectious Diseases in Novi Sad.

RESULTS:

In 511 patients (91.25%) we registered the first stage of the disease, in 42 (7.50%) the second stage and in 7 (1.25%) the third stage of the disease. The mean age of patients with erythema migranes was 38.67 years, mean incubation period was 9.37 days, and tick was removed from the skin after 2.29 days on average. Most of the identified tick bites originated from suburban areas (50.29%), they predominantly occurred in May and June (63.01%), and most of the ticks were removed improperly (57.67%). Dominant clinical manifestations of the second stage were acute meningitis (9.52%), Bannwarth's syndrome (9.52%), arthralgia and arthritis (50%), skin lesions (14.28%), cardiac disorders (11.90%) and mild liver lesions (2.38%) and generalized lymphadenopathy (2.38%). Chronic neuroborreliosis (42.85%), acrodermatitis chronica atrophicans (28.57%) and chronic arthritis were dominant clinical manifestations of the third stage. Up to 81.63% of patients with late stage of disease had a history of previous tick bite. One third of patients were asymptomatic in the first stage of the disease. Improper treatment of the first stage resulted in development of late stage disease in 57.14% of patients.

CONCLUSIONS:

Morbidity of Lyme disease in Vojvodina is about 1.98-9.8 cases on 100.000 inhabitants, and it belongs to regions with low incidence. Majority of bites are registered during summer months arround cities. Longer persistence of vector on the skin is a risk factor for manifested diseases. Inappropriately treated or completely untreated persons have higher risk for disseminated infection. In our country, most common manifestations of the second stage are neurological and articular manifestations as in the third stage. Leading symptoms and epidemiology aren't enough for diagnosis of Lyme disease, and more specific and sensitive serologic assays are necessary.

PMID:
11876010
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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