Definition

What is babesiosis?

Babesiosis is an infectious disease that is transmitted by ticks. Ticks carry the microscopic organisms called Babesia.

How common is babesiosis?

Anyone can become infected with Babesiosis. However, people often have outdoor activities more likely to become infected by tick bites. You can limit your risk of having babesiosis by reducing the risk factors. Always consult your doctor for more information.

Signs & symptoms

What are some signs and symptoms of babesiosis?

If your body resistance is good, you may not have any symptoms when infected. But usually, you will suffer from symptoms including:

  • Fever;
  • Chills;
  • Heavy sweating;
  • Headache;
  • Muscle aches;
  • Joint pains;
  • Fatigue.

If the infection become worsen, the following symptoms may occur:

  • Dark urine;
  • Widespread rash;
  • Enlarged liver and spleen;
  • Jaundice (yellow skin).

There may be some signs ro symptoms not listed above. If you have any concerns about a symptoms, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.

When should you see your doctor?

Contact your doctor if you have signs and symptoms such as fever, chills, fatigue, muscle aches, headache, fever rash or any other symptoms mentioned above.

Causes

What causes babesiosis?

Tiny parasites named Babesia microti account for most infections. The deer tick named Ixodes scapularis is the main tick that carries these parasites. You may not remember the bites because ticks at that stage are about the size of a poppy seed. People can also get the infection by having a blood transfusion with infected blood.

Infections with both B. microtic and bacteria that cause Lyme disease, Borrelia burgdorferi, may occur since some ticks may carry both organisms.

Risk factors

What increases your risk for babesiosis?

You will have higher risk of having Babesiosis in the warm season, especially in the summer, because it is time ticks appear the most.

Treatment

The information provided is not a substitute for medical advice. ALWAYS consult your doctor or pharmacist.

What are your treatment options for babesiosis?

The main treatment is antibiotics (Paracetamol). While the infection is being treated with antibiotics, symptoms such as pain can be helped with acetaminophen or nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).

What are the most common test for babesiosis?

Your doctor will diagnose based on symptoms and physical examination. If you are suspected infected with babesiosis, the doctor will take a blood sample and examined under a microscope to find out babesiosis parasites in the red blood cells.

Lifestyle changes & Home remedies

What are some lifestyle changes or home remedies help manage babesiosis?

The following lifestyles and home remedies might help you cope with babesiosis:

  • Visit your doctor as soon as possible and do not take fever medicines without asking your doctor.
  • Listen to your doctor’s direction. Report to your doctor right away if abnormal or new symptoms appear.
  • If you are in areas where babesiosis is prevalent, you should:
  • Use insect repellents with DEET;
  • Wear long sleeves and pants, tuck pant legs into socks;
  • Wear closed shoes instead of sandals;
  • Brush off clothes, and check your body for ticks.
  • Remove a tick with a tweezers. Hold the tick close to the skin and gently pull it out. Do not squeeze or crushing the tick when it was sticking on the skin.

If you have any questions, please consult with your doctor to better understand the best solution for you.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

Review Date: January 4, 2017 | Last Modified: January 4, 2017

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