Persistent Symptoms after Lyme Disease

A new study has shown that long-term antibiotic therapy for Lyme disease is not helpful.

Here’s a link to a quick summary (1:37 min): Randomized Trial of Longer-Term Therapy for Symptoms Attributed to Lyme Disease

In the associated editorial (MT Melia, PG Auwaeter, NEJM 2016; 374: 1277-8), it is noted that 10-20% of treated patients (after initial antibiotics) “may have lingering symptoms of fatigue, musculoskeletal pains…The plausible idea that additional antimicrobial therapy for potentially persistent bacterial infection would foster improvement has been a touchstone of hope in the 40 years since discovery of the disease in the mid-1970s.”

My take (from editorial): “Prolonged antibiotic therapy is not the answer” for lingering symptoms after Lyme disease. “We do not know what is truly helpful”

Related blog post: Facts and fiction with Lyme disease gutsandgrowth


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