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NEW Lyme Disease Treatment Guidelines- 2014

(Very Limited Excerpts Only- To Provide A Basic Overview)

Introduction- The IDSA Lyme disease treatment guidelines have not been updated since they were written in 2005. There have been many scientific publications, clinical trials and another decade of observing and data collecting that is available now to potentially improve the outcome of those contracting Lyme disease. Some of the conclusions, based on the most recent science and clinical observations, are:

“Clinicians should not use a single 200 mg dose of doxycycline for Lyme disease prophylaxis. Clinicians should promptly offer antibiotic prophylaxis for known Ixodes tick bites in which there is evidence of tick feeding, regardless of the degree of tick engorgement or the infection rate in the local tick population. The preferred regimen is 100–200 mg of doxycycline, twice daily for 20 days. Other treatment options may be appropriate on an individualized basis. Most patients will place a high value on preventing chronic illness.

Treatment regimens of 20 or fewer days of phenoxymethyl-penicillin, amoxicillin, cefuroxime or doxycycline and 10 or fewer days of azithromycin are not recommended for patients with EM [Lyme] rashes because failure rates in the clinical trials were unacceptably high. Failure to fully eradicate the infection may result in the development of a chronic form of Lyme disease, exposing patients to its attendant morbidity and costs, which can be quite significant.

Clinicians should prescribe amoxicillin, cefuroxime or doxycycline as first-line agents for the treatment of EM. Azithromycin is also an acceptable agent, particularly in Europe, where trials demonstrated it either outperformed or was as effective as the other first-line agents [46–49].

Initial antibiotic therapy should employ 4–6 weeks of amoxicillin 1500–2000 mg daily in divided doses, cefuroxime 500 mg twice daily or doxycycline 100 mg twice daily or a minimum of 21 days of azithromycin 250–500 mg daily.

Pediatric dosing for the individual agents is as follows: amoxicillin 50 mg/kg/day in three divided doses, with a maximal daily dose of 1500 mg; cefuroxime 20–30 mg/kg/day in two divided doses, with a maximal daily dose of 1000 mg and azithromycin 10 mg/kg on day 1 then 5–10 mg/kg daily, with a maximal daily dose of 500 mg.

For children 8 years and older, doxycycline is an additional option. Doxycycline is dosed at 4 mg/kg/day in two divided doses, with a maximal daily dose of 200 mg. Higher daily doses of the individual agents may be appropriate in adolescents.

Selection of the antibiotic agent and dose for an individual patient should take several factors into account. In the absence of contraindications, doxycycline is preferred when concomitant Anaplasma or Ehrlichia infections are possibilities. Other considerations include the duration [27,32,50] and severity [50–53] of symptoms, medication tolerability, patient age, pregnancy status, co-morbidities, recent or current corticosteroid use [54,55] cost, the need for lifestyle adjustments to accommodate certain antibiotics and patient preferences.

Variations in patient-specific details and the limitations of the evidence imply that clinicians may, in a variety of circumstances, need to select therapeutic regimens utilizing higher doses, longer durations or combinations of first-line agents.

Clinicians should continue antibiotic therapy for patients who have not fully recovered by the completion of active therapy. Ongoing symptoms at the completion of active therapy were associated with an increased risk of long-term failure in some trials and therefore clinicians should not assume that time alone will resolve symptoms. There is a wide range of options and choices must be individualized, based on the strength of the patient’s initial response.

Disease progression or recurrence suggests that the iv. antibiotics or injectable penicillin G benzathine, as discussed previously, may be required. For patients requiring antibiotic therapy beyond the initial treatment period, subsequent decisions regarding the modification or discontinuation of treatment should be based on the therapeutic response and treatment goals.

Clinicians should retreat patients who were successfully treated initially but subsequently relapse or have evidence of disease progression. Therapeutic options include repeating the initial agent, changing to another oral agent or instituting injectable penicillin G benzathine or iv. ceftriaxone therapy. Choices must be individualized and based on several factors, including: the initial response to treatment; the time to relapse or progression; the current disease severity and the level of QoL impairments.

Disease relapse or progression with mild manifestations or QoL impairments occurring within a few months of treatment suggests a need for longer regimens using either tetracycline, a combination of oral first-line agents, injectable penicillin G benzathine or iv. ceftriaxone.

Regardless of the duration of disease latency, when disease manifestations or QoL impairments are significant or rapidly progressive, injectable penicillin G benzathine or iv. ceftriaxone may be required.”

Evidence assessments and guideline recommendations in Lyme disease: the

clinical management of known tick bites, erythema migrans rashes and

persistent disease. September 2014, Vol. 12, No. 9 , Pages 1103-1135 (doi:10.1586/ 14787210.2014.940900) Daniel J Cameron, Lorraine B Johnson, and Elizabeth L Maloney PDF (633 KB) PDF Plus (639 KB) 1 International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society, PO Box 341461, Bethesda MD, 20827-1461, USA 2, PO Box 1352, Chico, CA 95927, USA 3 Partnership for Healing and Health Ltd, PO Box 84, Wyoming, MN 55092, USA *Author forcorrespondence: +1 914 666 4665


A printable version of NEW Lyme Disease Treatment Guidelines is on a PDF below.

A printable version of Dr. Burrascano's Treatment Guidelines

(Treating Tick Bites & Rashes) also can be found there.



NEW Lyme Disease Treatment Guidelines- Print & Distribute.docx


After The Bite After The Bite,

Mar 9, 2015, 3:38 PM

Treating Tick Bites & Rashes- June 2014.pdf


After The Bite After The Bite,

Mar 9, 2015, 3:40 PM