Beatrice M. Szantyr, MD, FAAP
Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine
Lyme Disease – An Ounce of Prevention: Survey of the Evidence for Prevention Strategies in Lyme Disease
Dr. Beatrice Szantyr, a fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics and member of the American College of Physicians, has been board certified in both internal medicine and pediatrics. She received her undergraduate degree from Fordham University, her doctorate in medicine from the University of Connecticut School of Medicine, and completed her internship and residency in Internal Medicine, Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine at St. Louis University Hospitals and Cardinal Glennon Memorial Hospital for Children. She made her way to Maine over 30 years ago in fulfillment of a National Health Service Corps commitment. Through her private Medicine and Pediatrics practice in rural Maine she has provided a broad range of clinical services in a variety of settings for people of all ages. Her current professional activities are focused in education.
Dr. Szantyr has lectured on Lyme disease and related tick-borne disorders throughout Maine and New England to both professional and community groups. She is an active member of Maine CDC’s Vector Borne Disease Work Group as well as the International Lyme and Associated Diseases Society, serving on the provider education working group to develop and present the full day evidence-based course: The Fundamentals of Lyme Disease. She is the medical advisor for MaineLyme, a Maine-based non-profit formed in 2010 and dedicated to decreasing the occurrence of Lyme and related tick-borne diseases in Maine through awareness, prevention, education and advocacy.
Conference Lecture Summary
The increasing number of cases of Lyme disease as well as the spread of Lyme disease into previously non-endemic areas have been well documented. Environmental and other factors that contribute to this expansion continue to be evaluated. Early diagnosis and treatment have been shown to be effective in many cases. But not every case is recognized early. Of the cases confirmed by CDC over a 15 year period, 30% did not have a history of the most recognizable early sign/symptom of the illness: the EM rash. The consequences of missed and delayed diagnosis and treatment of Lyme disease are significant. All of these elements make prevention an important consideration.
Many common-sense measures have been proposed over the years for the prevention of Lyme disease, though often without much evidence of efficacy. Several levels of prevention have evolved to have a larger body of evidence supporting their use. These measures range from the immediate failsafe of Ixodes tick bite management strategies to personal protection measures and host and property management, vaccine development for humans and host animals, and wider integrated pest management strategies that combine many of these individual measures in a more comprehensive approach to this important public health issue.
This presentation will present a survey of prevention approaches and the evidence supporting their implementation.