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The population of Block Island is only about 800-1000 people. If there are 177 cases for a given year, even if 25% of them are on Block Island, that would be high. Consider the large urban population in RI as well; Providence, Central Falls, Pawtucket, Woonsocket, Cranston, don't have much wilderness, and that is where the majority of the population lives. The statistic that Block Island is a hot spot for Lyme Disease is nothing new, and the island does have a large deer population as well.
I don't know how you arrived at your statistics but the RI Dept of Health has only 177 reported cases of Lyme disease for 2007- the last stats I can find.
What's the math on one million people in the state and 177 more or less cases? I get 1 chance in 5600 more or less if that's right. The DH doesn't indicate how many were contracted on Block Island specifically.
But don't get me wrong. I'm not minimizing the threat of Lyme and believe everyone should be very careful not to get it- I certainly try not to- generally avoiding going into woods or high grass w/o adequate bug protection.
I do believe the docs are required to report it- is it underreported? Don't know but maybe someone else knows the exact rule on that.
Reported Cases of Selected Diseases, 2002-2006 (http://www.health.state.ri.us/disease/communicable/diseasedata.php - broken link)
Holly, I'm not sure what's going on here but your link seems to show grossly erroneous statistics. Of course, I sure can't blame you for posting them up or taking them at face value.
Here is another source: http://rimed.org/pdf/mhri/m08julmhri.pdf (broken link)
Look for the article about counting new cases of LD in RI in the "columns" section ('round about pg 225 or so if memory serves).
Seems to be about 1,000 new cases per year in RI.
I do know that LD is believed to have been widely underreported in RI (and elsewhere) for years, and RI actually passed legislation (in the past 5 yrs+-)(and so did Connecticut) to remedy this defect in the LD reporting or counting by med authorities.
As you may have guessed, I contracted LD this summer. I cleared up totally after just 3 days on the doxycycline (100mg 2x per day for 2 wks)(after being horribly, horribly sick with a laundry list of symptoms). I was sick for just 5 days and then I found the classic "Bullseye Rash" on the underside of my upper arm and immediately headed to the ER. I am completely 100% recovered and cured. (Thank goodness!!)
I asked my LD doctor (in Middletown) and he said he treats "tons of cases"!
My Mom had it. My friend on Block Island had it (and his friend there had it really bad). A family friend down the street had it. Etc etc.
I'm not so freaked out about cuddling pets as I was when I wrote the posts above.
GUYS, REMEMBER, 75% OF LYME CASES ARE LATE MAY, JUNE AND JULY ONLY! (Ticks need massive humidity to thrive.) (Well, they came to the right place for that!)
Correct. Pretty safe to say that Lyme Disease in humans wasn't the result of secret experiments at Plum Island.
The Plum Island story is true, however, and you have to wonder what went on there as far as tick experiments with Lyme Disease.
Very interesting how the Lone Star Tick (formerly endemic strictly to Texas and identiable by a bright yellow star on it's back) now can be found in New England thanks to Plum Island experiments with hard tick species.
I've heard that Lyme Disease is an epidemic in Block Island.
You can get Lyme disease and other tick borne illnesses just about anywhere. I've had for about 12 years and I got it from southern Missouri. At the time, doctors told me it was impossible to get Lyme disease in the state of Missouri. If you ever find one on you, make sure to remove the head of the tick and save it for your doctor to test. This is an epidemic that is only getting worse by the day.
There is a documentary called "Under Our Skin" which is about Lyme disease and what it does to the patients and doctors who treat it. More people need to be aware of this silent killer. I can't tell you how much this has affected every aspect of my life.
Interesting article today in the Newport Daily News about the "Beth Bowley Coen Lyme Disease Educational Act of 2010" which will be deliberated on by the RI General Assembly.
The act seeks to require that RI schoolchildren are taught about the risk and dangers of Lyme Disease and its prevalence in New England.
Beth Bowley Coen was an RI high school history teacher who suffered from Lyme Disease for 12 years before taking a fatal overdose of her prescribed Vicodin pills to end the 24/7 agony of this beastly disease. Apparently Beth was one of those unlucky folks whose Lyme Disease was not properly diagnosed and treated in the early stages of infection.
The major Lyme Disease outbreak months of May, June and July will soon be upon us once again. Please educate yourself and keep Lyme Disease in your "top of mind awareness". Believe me, you don't want to come down with this crap.
Remember if you come down with symptoms of the flu and fever to check yourself thoroughly for the characteristic "bulleye's target" rash of Lyme Disease somewhere on your skin where the tick bit you. If a physician sees this rash, you will treated as a Lyme Disease case. If the rash is missed or has faded away by the time you see a physician, the doctor may consider any number of alternative and incorrect diagnoses which means you might not receive the correct medicine (antibiotic) to cure the Lyme Disease. It is critically important that the Lyme Disease is diagnosed and treated early on and without delay.
Man. We have German Shepherd and are moving to RI. Bummer. Now, ticks are an issue here in GA, but you hear very little about Lyme. We are big fans of the outdoors. Looks like due diligence will become the norm...
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