I was exposed to ticks about a month ago and later removed four which had attached. One (behind my knee) was engorged, and about 10 days later the bullseye rash appeared around that one. The doc immediately put me on the 21 day cycle of doxy, but the test came back negative (I'm pretty sure it was a false negative because of the rash). I'll finish the doxy in two more days, but the sites of the four bites are still itching! It comes and goes, and they are still raised and purplish-red. I could go on about other symptoms (fatigue and a brief spell of sore lymph nodes in my neck, among others), but I could also attribute that to possible cold/allergy, or side-effects of the doxy...(?). I don't have health insurance, so I can't just run to the doctor with each concern. I guess my main concern at this moment is the continued itching, especially after an almost complete course of doxycycline. But then, I also wonder if the treatment is effective, can symptoms still be occurring as the residuals of the infection continue to clear out after the med is finished?
Welcome. It takes several weeks for the body to form antibodies to lyme so the test would be negative regardless of whether you have it or not. It sounds like you do based on the bullseye rash. Thye bullseye rash is diagnostic of lyme in itself. With early treatment antibodies may never form so I would not put too much (or any) weight on that test result. The early treatment you have gotten "should" be effective but it may not be.
Regarding the itching, I can't really give you an answer but it could be a localized reaction to the tick bites themselves.
ddrickson... the one thing about NOT having insurance leaves you in a position to get some help through the ER. Yes, take photos of the rash(es). Go to the ER during a time when they are not too busy, tell them about you and the ticks.
When you get the bill, call the hospital billing dept. There is a gov't program for uninsured called 'indigent' program. It doesn't mean you are homeless, just means you don't have insurance and are financially not capable of paying the bill. They will help you fill out the forms. You have to get them filled out and sent in ASAP, if you are 1 day late in getting them filed, your case will go to collections.
Thanks you all...I did call my doc about the continued itching, and she'll be seeing me tomorrow -- I suspect she is an LLMD. As to the financial part, I do get an uninsured discount, so it's not too bad.
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