Case Study: Challenges Caused by Borrelia mayonii

The Oxford University Press (McGowan, M. S., et al.) 10.24.2023, published “Acute Lyme Disease With Atypical Features due to Borrelia mayonii.” This article discusses the emergence of a new strain of Lyme disease called Borrelia mayonii and its limited impact since its identification in the US in 2016. Only a few cases have been reported, emphasizing the need for increased awareness.

This case study details a 51-year-old man from rural Minnesota who displayed symptoms such as fever, headache, confusion, joint pain, and respiratory issues after working outdoors. His initial tests didn’t show typical Lyme disease markers, but a specific positive PCR test for B mayonii in his cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) confirmed the infection. Traditional Lyme disease tests were negative.

The article highlights diagnostic challenges of this variant due to unusual symptoms and the limitations of traditional Lyme disease testing methods.  Acutely ill patients with specific clinical features and a history of tick exposure in the Midwest should include  testing for B mayonii to enhance diagnosis, especially where typical symptoms like erythema migrans are absent. Prompt antibiotic treatment led to this patient’s full recovery. 

For more information:

Read the full article on the Oxford University Press website here.

Read additional articles on Borrelia mayonii and Lyme on LDA’s website here.