WXXI AM News

lyme disease

Scott Bauer / USDA

The number of Lyme disease cases diagnosed in the Finger Lakes region jumped sharply last year, according to the most recent data from the state health department.

The data, while still preliminary, is not expected to change before it’s finalized next month. It shows Lyme disease cases increased almost 600 percent in the health department’s Finger Lakes region, from 62 in 2012 to 365 in 2017.

Experts say Lyme disease is spreading, and as we’ve learned, so has to the controversy surrounding it. Mainstream medicine rejects the idea of chronic Lyme disease, and some doctors who speak out against it are harassed or even threatened. But patients who say they have chronic Lyme disease emphasize the treatment they’ve received from “Lyme literate” doctors helps.

So what does the science say? And how can humans protect themselves and their pets from Lyme disease? Our panel discusses it. Our guests:

  • Dr. Geoffrey Weinberg, M.D., professor of pediatrics and infectious diseases at URMC
  • Dr. Jackie Walker, DVM, veterinarian and Churchville Veterinary Hospital
  • Marcie Kreydt, Lyme disease patient, and Southern Tier regional director for Camp Good Days in Special Times

Scott Bauer / USDA

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) _ New York senators are proposing several measures to deal with tick-borne Lyme disease that appears to be spreading across the state. 

The task force report cites 462 cases reported through the first week of June in New York and a recent federal estimate of 300,000 new cases annually with only a fraction actually reported. 

The bacterial infection, usually treated with antibiotics, is spread through the bite of infected ticks that are often carried by mice or deer.