Researchers with the Centre for Infectious Disease Control Netherlands, National Institute for Public Health and the Environment, Bilthoven, the Netherlands say the overall risk of developing Lyme borreliosis after a tick bite was 2.6 percent, according to a study published PloS One Monday.
In the study, they used 3,525 single tick bite reports from three large prospective studies on the transmission risk of tick-borne pathogens to humans, with 50 reports of Lyme borreliosis during the follow-up period, among 1,973 reports with known outcome. A structural equation model was applied to estimate the risk of Lyme borreliosis after a tick bite, and quantify the influence of: developmental stage of the tick, detection of Borrelia burgdorferi s.l. DNA in the tick by PCR, tick engorgement, patient-estimated duration of tick attachment, and patient age.
They found that increased risk of transmission was associated with Tick engorgement: 1.4% (95%CI 0.7%-2.3%) for low engorgement to 5.5% (95%CI 2.8%-9.2%) for substantially engorged ticks, rising patient-estimated tick attachment duration: 2.0% (95%CI 1.3%-2.8%) after <12 hours, to 5.2% (95%CI 3.0%-8.9%) after ≥4 days and detection of Borrelia burgdorferi s.l. DNA in ticks: 6.7% (95%CI 3.6%-13.5%), versus 1.4% (95%CI 0.7%-2.9%) when ticks tested negative.
In addition, the highest observed risk of Lyme borreliosis was 14.4% (95%CI 6.8%-24.6%) after one tick bite of a substantially engorged tick that tested positive for Borrelia burgdorferi s.l. DNA, which corresponds to one new case of Lyme borreliosis per 7 (95%CI 4–15) of such tick bites.
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5 thoughts on “Risk of developing Lyme disease after a tick bite is about 3 percent: Dutch researchers”
Different places with higher or lower tick infection prevalence rates would change the resulting risk, so this actually only applies to the region where the study was done. Also, the time period studies was only 2 or 3 months. A longer study period might have higher results. And this depends upon the tick bite being noticed in the first place- which doesn’t happen all too often when it is a nymphal tick.
Questions: do all species of Borrelia transmit at the same rate? Do all species of Ixodes transmit at the same rate? Do certain pathogens in the tick modify the transmission rate? (Yes, according to Willi Burgdorfer). This study might be a good start but has limited application.
Yeah right… i cant believe this… how long was the follow- up period? People can become after many, many years. You have to follow people for at least 10 or 20 years before a conclusion is valid in case of lyme.
And how did they know witch people had lyme disease…? Bloodtest could be false-negative.
Are people asked about symptoms? Then I wonder what kind of symptoms. The symptoms could also be neurological or like a burnout, depression or whatever. Not every lymepatient gets typical symptoms.
Researchers?????? Whahahahaha. 3% Getting a diagnose and not one of it, gets a good treating in Holland! Sorry for my terrible Englisch, but I’m sure, that many Lyme patiënts know more about Lyme, then the ‘researchers’ in my own country. One word, shame on them!