Lyme Disease: The Perfect Storm Is Headed Our Way Leo Galland, M.D. | Apr 18, 2012 08:06 AM EDT

Blood-sucking ticks coming to a field and forest near you.

That may sound like the latest horror film, but unfortunately it is a reality due to a surge in ticks that spread Lyme disease this spring.

Fortunately, the media interest in Lyme disease appears to be growing with the threat. At the start of the month I was interviewed on Martha Stewart Living Radio about Lyme disease.

The Perfect Storm for Lyme Disease

A perfect storm happens when two conditions converge to amplify each other’s effects. Two conditions are creating what may become the perfect storm for transmission of Lyme disease this spring:

An unusually warm winter, which left deer ticks alive,hungry and looking for a meal.

A dramatic flip-flop in the acorn cycle: A large crop of acorns in the fall of 2010 and a very small crop in 2011 in the East. This means fewer mice for the ticks to feed upon, as I explain below.

These two conditions mean tons of deer ticks that are hungry and lacking their typical food supply. You could be their next meal.

Ticks Transmit Lyme and Other Diseases

The bacteria that cause Lyme disease, Borrelia burgdorferi, are transmitted to humans by the bite of a deer tick (Ixodes dammini).

Deer ticks live for two years and in their lifetimes take only three blood meals: the first as newborn larvae, the second a year later as immature nymphs and the third a season later as adults.

Mice and Other Rodents Carry Ticks Too

If you don’t see any deer and think the coast is clear, think again.

FULL STORY:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mobileweb/leo-galland-md/lyme-disease_b_1429984.html