It is possible to catchBabesiosis from the bite of a little tick called Babesia microti. Babesiosis infects red blood cells. Elderly and sick individuals may suffer severe health damage from this infection. Yet this tick normally bites animals rather than people, so the chance of infection is slim, but it still could happen to people of all ages. The Northeastern states of the USA are one of the locations where this health risk is more common, but even here infections are rare. The ticks also occur in certain European countries.
One of the distinctive features of babesiosis is that many healthy infected individuals experience no symptoms. Their immune system neutralizes the threat. Without any signs of infection, he or she has no reason to consult a doctor. There is no automatic rule that someone bit needs medical treatment. Most healthy people may continue to live as normal. However, someone with a weak immune system due to a serious illness or a transplant has reason to fear the effects of a tick bite. If they suspect this has occurred, they must get medical help.
Fever has so many possible sources that the diagnosis sometimes poses problems for medics. Babesiosis is one of the more uncommon of these causes, but it might happen. The fact that this symptom does not immediately appear also makes it harder to find the connection immediately. Medical records show that someone who gets this infection might develop a fever after a week or so passes, yet in other cases, the fever only starts a month later. It might even develop several months later, or even longer than this is a few cases.
Nausea is another of those very common symptoms of an illness that it might be hard to trace to a specific cause. The chances that someone becomes sick due to a bite of a tic are also low. However, the possibility exists so doctors might investigate further if the patient suspects they got a tick bite, or if they cannot find any other feasible causes of their nausea. The delay between the bite and this symptom's appearance means that the link might not be immediately recognized.
Sometimes patients infected with babesiosis complain that they feel drained of energy. Even after a good night's sleep, this fatigue still affects them. The rarity of this disease and the existence of a delayed effect between the bite and symptom's appearance make an instant diagnosis infrequent. The chances that the fatigue comes from a much more common cause are so much higher. Normally the babesiosis diagnosis only emerges through an analysis of the patient's blood test results that finds parasites in the red blood cells.
This is one of the most serious babesiosis symptoms, but thankfully the chances of someone developing it are very low. Hemolytic anemia develops when the infection destroys red blood cells. The condition may continue for a few days, or it may last over a number of months. In its most severe form, the patient might suffer from blood clots and variations in blood pressure levels. On occasion, organ failure occurs. In a few cases, the infected patient dies. The threat to life is greatest for those with weak immune systems.
While the standard babesiosis infection comes from a tick bite, flu-like symptoms of the disease may appear in those who have never encountered the tick. One of the ways this happens is when a person receives a blood infusion from someone who with this infection, Symptoms often do not appear right away after the tick bite. This is why it is easy to see how the hospital might get blood from a donor with this infection. Newborn babies also now and again catch babesiosis from a mother who is infected.
As mentioned earlier, most babesiosis cases do not need treatment, and the infected person might not even be aware of the infection. If their doctor decides the condition is so severe that they need medical attention, he or she most probably prescribe the patient a course of drugs. The standard medication prescription includes either atovaquone PLUS azithromycin or clindamycin PLUS quinine. The patient must take these medicines for one week or a week and a half.
In the most serious situations, damage to red blood cells reaches a point where the doctor asks the patient to undergo a blood transfusion. Sometimes they call for a complete blood transfusion, or it might be sufficient to perform what doctor's call an "exchange transfusion." This latter type of blood infusion replaces only part of the patient's blood. In the most critical cases of organ damage, the patient could require dialysis. It is very unusual for the disease to reach a point where this level of medical intervention becomes a necessity.
Since a weak immune system increases the risk of serious health damage from babesiosis, it follows that actions to strengthen the immune system reduce risks. Making sure you get a good night's sleep is one of the easiest of the helpful steps to take. Correction of hormone imbalances also helps improve the body's natural resistance capabilities. Changes to a more natural and health-orientated diet, for example, the elimination of junk foods, are also guaranteed to help.
Natural health experts suggest a range of herbal-based treatments. One of the popular choices uses the herbal cure called Artemisinin. The patient takes a few pills a couple of times a day for three days and after this takes a break for eleven days and then restarts the fortnightly cycle. As often occurs with herbal medications, symptoms could appear at first flare up before the patient starts to see benefits from this treatment.
This site offers information designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on any information on this site as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or as a substitute for, professional counseling care, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other healthcare professional.