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Officials: Maine sees decrease in Lyme disease cases

December 31, 2018

PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — Maine health officials say Lyme disease cases in the state dropped in 2018.

The Portland Press Herald reports the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention recorded 1,310 Lyme disease cases through Dec. 27. That’s a 29 percent from 1,852 reported cases in 2017.

Lyme disease is spread by ticks. Maine Medical Center Research Institute research associate Susan Elias says ticks are easily affected by changes in weather. Experts say hot, dry weather during the summer may have stressed tick populations. Researchers add that snow and colder weather in November probably deterred tick activity.

According to biologist Chuck Lubelczyk, researchers are finding “much lower” numbers of ticks in field surveys.

Lyme can cause flu-like conditions, neurological problems, joint paint and other symptoms.

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Information from: Portland Press Herald, http://www.pressherald.com

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