Lyme disease not so rare in Texas, study says
Excerpted from MyFOX Houston ( Posted: 06/04/2012)
Lyme Disease in the Lone Star State is believed to be rare but a study by an area scientist seems to be proving otherwise. Dr. Maria Esteve-Gassent is a Research Professor at Texas A & M University. She’s been studying ticks and Lyme Disease for seven years. Now Dr. Esteve-Gassent and her students are collecting ticks from all over Texas. “We go personally out there and we hunt ticks,” says Dr. Esteve-Gassent. They’re testing the ticks for Lyme Disease. From Houston to Sugar Land to Austin and Dallas, to name a few, they have found ticks that have tested positive for Lyme Disease.
Dr. Esteve-Gassent says she tested about 300 of the itty bitty biting bugs so far. About a quarter of the ticks found here in Texas have Lyme. Although Lyme in the Lone Star State is said to be rare. “Most doctors will say there’s no Lyme Disease in Texas. Hopefully this will change at some point,” says Dr. Esteve-Gassent. She started the study months ago because she says there are so many questions about lyme in Texas and so few answers. One thing we do know, if you find a tick on your skin you’re advised to carefully remove it with tweezers making sure to remove the mouth of the embedded bug from your skin and then see a doctor immediately. “The good thing about Lyme Disease it’s curable if you catch it within the first week or so,” she says.
To view the MyFOX video: http://www.myfoxhouston.com/story/18699227/lyme-disease