Lyme disease uptick in Virginia hasn’t reached N.C. so far

Excerpted from ( Posted: 12/29/2010 ) 

Lyme disease has been on the upsurge in Virginia in recent years, but authorities aren’t sure whether its southward march means future trouble for North Carolina.

North Carolina saw Lyme disease rise from 2002 to 2004, although nothing close to what people in such Northern states as Connecticut and New Hampshire routinely experience. In most years, North Carolina has fewer than 50 confirmed cases per year.

But in Virginia, the number of cases jumped from 149 in 2000 to 959 in 2007 — far short of the 4,000 cases Pennsylvania had that year but an alarming increase nonetheless. What’s more, in Virginia, the tick-borne disease appeared to be moving south and west — toward North Carolina, if the trend were to continue.

“We have always had Lyme disease, never in the numbers that you see in New England and the Northern states,” said Dr. Carl Williams, the state’s public health veterinarian. “But over the last 10 years or so, we have seen this kind of creep through Delaware, Maryland and the northeastern part of Virginia. We haven’t seen the dramatic spike that Virginia has seen. Whether that will happen, we don’t know. We will have to watch.”

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~ by Rob on December 29, 2010.

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