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The Differences Between STARI and Lyme Disease
over 3 years ago

One of the biggest concerns with ticks is the number of illnesses that they can carry. Many of these can make people quite sick and the majority need to be treated by the doctor. There are several commonly asked questions about ticks and many of them revolve around determining if you have a tick-borne illness. Many people will confuse the symptoms of STARI with Lyme disease.


What Is STARI?

STARI is southern tick-associated rash illness. This illness appears after a lone star tick bite, which you can identify by the white dot on the back of the female tick. STARI will present as a bull’s eye rash that is around the bite. It can cause people to have a headache, a mild fever, fatigue and muscle pains. The symptoms usually present within a week of being bitten. The symptoms are milder than Lyme disease. It can be treated with a round of antibiotics.


What Is Lyme Disease?

Lyme disease is spread by the blacklegged tick. It can cause the bull’s eye rash, but it does not appear in all cases. Symptoms includes chills, fever, fatigue, muscles and joint aches. You may also have swollen lymph nodes. The symptoms can develop between three to thirty days a month after the initial bite. The symptoms tend to be worse than with Lyme disease, and if not treated, they will continue to get worse. Lyme disease can be treated with antibiotics.


How Do I Tell the Difference Between STARI and Lyme Disease?

The initial symptoms are very similar to each other. If you are not able to identify the type of tick that bit you, it can be difficult to determine which illness that you have. There are tests the doctors can run to determine if you have Lyme disease. There is not a test to determine if you have STARI, but if you test negative for Lyme disease and have the symptoms for STARI, then chances are that you have STARI and you can begin treatment. Lyme disease needs to be treated or the symptoms will continue to worsen. They can become permanent if not treated in time.


When Should I Seek Medical Care?

Both STARI and Lyme disease need to be treated by antibiotics in order to clear up the disease. As soon as you have the bull’s eye rash, you should visit the doctor. If you experience the other symptoms and they persist beyond a few days, you should go to your doctor and explain that you were bitten by a tick and request to be tested. Lyme’s disease only presents with a rash about eighty percent of the time, and it can continue to get worse if not treated.


The easiest way to prevent the possibility of contracting any tick related disease is to be proactive by eliminating ticks near your home through a treatment that will kill them and also prevent their return. You can accomplish this with DIY methods by obtaining the correct insecticide at your local hardware store, or you can contact professional exterminators who are trained in where to apply their spray, which more often than not is much stronger than what you can buy in a store.

Posted in:tick control
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