Ankylosing spondylitis is a form of arthritis that mainly targets the spine. Over time, ankylosing spondylitis can cause your spine to become stiffer, and eventually the vertebrae (bones in your spine) may fuse together. People have a tendency to develop a stooped posture as the disease progresses. It affects 129 out of every 100,000 people in the U.S.
Other joints areas that can be affected include shoulders, hips, and often tendons connected to bones, such as the heel. Severe disease may lead...
Some people with untreated Lyme disease get achy
joints. Sometimes, repeated episodes of swelling, redness, and fluid buildup in
one or more joints can last up to 6 months at a time. This is a condition
chronic Lyme arthritis. Treatment for this problem
antibiotics, such as amoxicillin or doxycycline. But
joints that have been badly damaged by Lyme arthritis may take a long time to
get better, or antibiotics may not improve symptoms. If chronic Lyme arthritis
continues despite antibiotic treatment, surgery to remove the lining of the
affected joint (synovectomy) may be considered.
antibiotics are also commonly used to treat
nervous system problems (such as tingling and numbness
or conditions such as
meningitis). But a number of examinations and tests
may be done to rule out other causes of symptoms before more aggressive or
long-term antibiotic treatment is started.
People with partial
facial paralysis as a result of Lyme disease may improve on their own without
Antibiotics and other treatments are used to
help people who develop serious heart problems, such as severe
irregular heartbeat or
pericarditis, from Lyme disease that was left
untreated or was not treated effectively. But these problems are extremely
rare, especially in people who did not have heart problems before getting Lyme
disease. Heart problems may start getting better on their own, even before
antibiotic treatment has started.
In the past, a Lyme disease
vaccination was available for people who lived in high-risk areas, but the
vaccine is no longer made. It was removed from the market due to uncertainty
over its effectiveness and lack of demand.
What To Think About
Most people who have had a tick
bite do not get Lyme disease. But it is still important to talk to your doctor
if you have had a tick attached to you.
Even after successful
treatment for Lyme disease, you can get it again. So it is important to
continue to protect yourself against tick bites.
The type of antibiotic your doctor gives you and the number
of days you take it depends on your symptoms and the stage of the disease. Talk
to your doctor if you have any questions about your antibiotic
Misdiagnosis of Lyme disease is common,
especially if you do not have the characteristic circular red rash. In
addition, anxiety and awareness of Lyme disease has resulted in frequent use of
antibiotic treatment for people who really do not need
it. In general, antibiotics are not usually needed unless it is clear you have
In some rare cases, severe joint and nervous system
damage cannot be reversed.