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CDC report highlights Lyme disease misdiagnoses

Pennsylvania residents may be interested in the findings of a report released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC report points out that Lyme disease is being erroneously diagnosed in a large number of cases and highlights the dangers associated with these misdiagnoses. In some cases, patients who have been misdiagnosed with Lyme disease have undergone long-term intensive courses of treatment that ultimately proved injurious or even fatal.

The symptoms of Lyme disease typically include headaches, bullseye-shaped skin rashes, fever and fatigue. If it goes untreated, the disease can spread to the joints, the nervous system and the heart. Generally, the treatment for Lyme disease is a course of antibiotics for between two and four weeks. According to the CDC, approximately 300,000 patients are diagnosed with Lyme disease annually.

Those who are misdiagnosed with Lyme disease often display some of its symptoms, such as fatigue or generalized pain. It might happen that the medical professional making the diagnosis simply does not understand the situation, and so prescribes treatment for Lyme disease, which would explain many of the symptoms. The problem is that unnecessary antibiotic treatments do not provide benefit, and they may actually cause serious harm.

Individuals who have suffered harm as a result of a misdiagnosis may be entitled to recover compensation through a medical malpractice lawsuit. An attorney with experience in this area will need to demonstrate that the error constituted a failure to exhibit the requisite reasonable standard of care, and could do so through the use of opinion testimony given by medical experts.

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