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Lyme Disease Has Surged 320% in America

July 15, 2015. Lyme disease is not only becoming more rampant in its normal hotspot of the northeast United States, it's spreading across the country, a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warns.

"Over time, the number of counties identified as having high incidence of Lyme disease in the northeastern states increased more than 320 percent," researchers write in the report. They also note that the disease is appearing in states where its never been recorded before.

Biofilms: the Culprit in Chronic Lyme

Could pond scum be causing your chronic Lyme symptoms?

You may be surprised at the answer.

Pond scum--that thin layer of scum that grows on rocks and surface waters--is actually caused by bacteria that form "biofilms". Biofilms are the topic of a great deal of recent unpublicized scientific research. Even more recent research suggests that biofilms might help explain why Lyme disease and other cryptic diseases are so difficult to cure.

Canadian Senate Unanimously Passes Elizabeth May's Federal Framework on Lyme Disease Act

OTTOWA, December 12, 2014. Elizabeth May's Private Member's Bill, C-442, the Federal Framework on Lyme Disease Act was passed unanimously at third reading by the Senate the morning of Friday, December 12. The bill now awaits Royal Assent by the Governor General for it to become law.

First introduced in June 2012, Bill C-442 was passed unanimously with multi-partisan support in the House of Commons in June 2014. It will establish a framework for collaboration between the federal, provincial and territorial Health Ministers, representatives of the medical community, and patients. groups to promote greater awareness and prevention of Lyme disease, to address the challenges of timely diagnosis and treatment, and to push for further research.

CanLyme submits letter in support of private members Bill C-442, An Act respecting a National Lyme Disease Strategy.

February 18, 2014. This enactment requires the Minister of Health to convene a conference with the provincial and territorial ministers responsible for health and with representatives of the medical community and patients. groups for the purpose of developing a national strategy to address the challenges of the recognition and timely diagnosis and treatment of Lyme disease. It also authorizes the Minister of Finance to establish guidelines in respect of the allocation of funding to provincial and territorial governments that have enacted legislation to implement that strategy.

New Lebanon mother and daughter seek support for Lyme disease bill on Capitol Hill

Chatham Courier

WASHINGTON, DC, January 1, 2014. It may be cold outside, but that doesn't mean ticks disappear. In fact, deer ticks are continually searching for hosts through the winter. Meanwhile, Karla and Victoria Lehtonen of New Lebanon continue to seek support for Lyme disease detection, treatment and prevention. On Dec. 4 at a congressional hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. they got to tell their story (which they shared with the Courier two years ago).

The forum was held by the Tick-Borne Disease Alliance (TBDA) "in support of legislation designed to combat the alarming growth of the tick-borne illness across the United States," according to a press release.

In April, Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn. sponsored the Lyme and Tick-Borne Disease Prevention, Education, and Research Act of 2013, co-sponsored by 10 other senators, including New York Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand and Charles Schumer (see related link). Congressman Chris Gibson has also thrown his support behind efforts to combat Lyme disease, calling it a "major public health scourge" shortly after this legislation was introduced.

Karla said that the TBDA worked with Gillibrand's office to organize the Dec. 4 forum and Karla and Victoria were "invited jointly by both offices".

Other speakers included Heather Thomson of Bravo's "The Real Housewives of New York City," who has a home in the Berkshires; Dr. Patricia DeLaMora, assistant professor of pediatrics in the Division of Infectious Diseases at Weill Cornell Medical Center; John Aucott, MD, principal investigator of SLICE study, Lyme Disease Clinical Research Center at Johns Hopkins; Kelly Downing, teacher and chronic Lyme patient; Dr. Richard Ostfeld, disease ecologist at the Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies in Millbrook; and David Roth, co-chairman of the TBDA.

Karla summarized their experience at the forum. She said that most of the patient advocates met for dinner the night before, where they all realized it was the Berkshires that brought them together "because almost everyone of us got sick" there or near there.

She said it was especially heartwarming to see her daughter enjoying the dinner, since she was exhausted from visiting with family over Thanksgiving and from the long trip to DC. The dinner restored her

enthusiasm and helped to give her the energy she needed to give her speech the next day, Karla said of her daughter.

The briefing, she noted, was not open to the public, but there were about 70 Senate aids and staff members there, "which was a good showing and most of the attendees stayed for the full two hours," adding that "several of the attendees remarked that they thought the presentations were very compelling and many people stopped to pick up the tick-test kits that were available."

Tick. Tick. Tick. Lyme Disease Explosion Starts in Spring

American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, March 16, 2001. Spring is here, and so is tick season across America and in many foreign countries. Being bitten by an infected tick can result in debilitating, sometimes deadly, Lyme disease, military and civilian experts warn.

Left untreated, Lyme disease can advance from early flu-like symptoms to painful and permanent damage to the joints, according to the National Centers for Disease Control. The disease can also affect the nervous system, causing numbness, pain, stiff neck and severe headache or muscle weakness in the face or limbs. Occasionally, heart irregularities occur.

The first stage of the disease begins three to 31 days after the tick bites. Symptoms can include fatigue, chills and fever, headache, muscle and joint pain or swollen lymph nodes.

Another mark of Lyme disease, researchers said, is a peculiar expanding circular skin rash in the areas where the tick bite occurred. Patch shapes vary depending on location. The rash appears mostly on the thighs, groin, trunk and armpits, and on the faces of children.

As the patch enlarges, the center may clear, giving a ring-like appearance. It may be warm, but isn't usually painful. However, researchers said, some people never develop a rash.

People can pick up ticks during walks in parks or the woods, or while hiking and camping. Children are especially susceptible because they run around in tall grass, play in wooded areas and roll on the ground, researchers noted. The individual risk of getting Lyme disease is reasonably small. Only about 12 percent to 15 percent of ticks actually carry the bug. Experts said removing ticks from the body quickly may prevent a person from contracting Lyme disease. Ticks generally must feed on a person for 24 to 48 hours before the person becomes infected.

Wednesday, May 7th from 11am to 2pm, Lyme Rights will amass a patient presence in front of the office of Congressman Frank Pallone (NJ), House Health Subcommittee Chair, to let him know HR 741, the Lyme bill, needs to be put on that committee agenda now. Go to for more information. [06-May-2008]

Announcement from the Lyme Rights group

Wednesday, May 7th from 11am to 2pm, Lyme Rights will amass a patient presence in front of the office of Congressman Frank Pallone (NJ), House Health Subcommittee Chair, to let him know HR 741, the Lyme bill, needs to be put on that committee agenda now. Go to for more information. [06-May-2008]

LDA has been accepted as partner in the Environmental Protection Agency's Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program (PESP)

The Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program (PESP) is a voluntary program that forms partnerships to reduce the potential health and environmental risks associated with pests and pesticide use and to implement pollution prevention strategies. Although LDA does not recommend or endorse products, many individuals choose to use repellents against ticks. The informed actions of pesticide users help reduce risk to people and the environment. LDA will work with PESP to develop a strategy which will be forthcoming on this site. [27-Oct-2007]

New LDA Partner: On the ice, his focus is stopping hockey pucks; off the ice, his focus is stopping Lyme disease

Nolan Schaefer, a goal tender recently acquired by the Minnesota Wild hockey franchise is partnering with the Lyme Disease Association and also the Canadian Lyme Disease Foundation to raise awareness about Lyme and funds for Lyme disease research. [27-Oct-2007]

Federal Lyme Bill HR 741: Congressman Smith helped us by introducing the Lyme bill. Let's help him to get this bill passed!

Lyme & Tick-Borne Disease Prevention, Education & Research Act of 2007

This bill was introduced into the US House of Representatives on January 31, 2007 by Congressman Christopher H. Smith (NJ). The bill is identical to last year's House bill (HR 3427) except for updated dates in the bill. We need your help now. Click on the link to get information on the Smith/Stupak bill, (history, co-sponsors, who to contact). Lyme disease desperately needs the $100 million over 5 years that this bill provides for research, physician education, prevention, and task force formation. [18-Feb-2007]

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