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Lyme disease symptoms in families

RN and Lyme expert Ginger Savely says similar Lyme disease symptoms frequently show up in members of the same family. In her experience treating patients with Tick Borne diseases at health care clinics in Texas and San Francisco, CA, some families seem to be more keenly susceptible to falling ill from a tick bite. Genetic disposition may play an important part.

The Borrelia bacteria does not affect all people to the same degree. Lyme disease symptoms vary from person to person, but family members may present similar symptoms. And some may not get sick at all, exhibiting a stronger genetic resistance to succumbing to the infection.

"It is always impressive to me how many people do have this infection that are totally fine. Many times, I will check family members that are still healthy, and they actually test very positive for the disease, although they have no symptoms," says Ginger. The bulls eye rash is not always present.

Ginger, a member of ILADS, follows their guidelines when treating Lyme patients. That means sticking with antibiotic therapy for as long as it takes. For certain patients, such as those who have suffered with Lyme disease symptoms for decades, treatment has taken up to four or five years. Neither Ginger nor her patients mind that treatment must be prolonged. As she says, "it does pay to just keep plugging along, and keep treating. Because eventually people do get better."

Read about the Expert Interview Audio Series and listen to the interview with Ginger Savely.
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