About two months ago, I noticed, for the first time ever, the dreaded red circle around one of my first tick marks of this season. The mark was in the vicinity of the hollow of my left knee, and it was left by a tick that I had discovered about two days after it must have lodged there, plenty of time for it to dump its bacterial payload in my bload. This late discovery is fairly typical for me. I’ve never been very careful with registering tick bites, and over the year, I’ve discovered many ticks only after accidentally beheading them while thoughtlessly scratching their abdomen away.

I soon forgot about the red circle and didn’t even jot down the date of tick bite, until prolonged cold symptoms, combined with some unusual muscle aches in this region made me worried enough to ask my general practitioner to arrange a lyme test. The blood test results came back 16th of April:

Test Result Remarks
IgM (EIA) 0.87 (ratio); Negative Threshold values: <1.00: neg; 1.00–1.30: dub; >1.30: pos
IgG (EIA) > 200 U/ml; Positive Threshold values: <5.2: neg; 5.2–9.0 dub; >9: pos
ELISA results have to be confirmed, and have been so by Borrelia immunoblot (below).
IgM blot Negative No bands
IgG blot Positive Bands: p100, VlsE, p58, p41, p39, p18 (B. afzelii)

Their interpretation was based on my guesstimate of the bite as having been on the 16th of March:

Borrelia serologie: IgG tegen Borrelia aangetoond, passend bij een infectie in het verleden. De infectie kan nog actief zijn. Eigenlijk past deze serologie niet goed bij een ziekteduur van 1 maand: het is waarschijnlijk dat de infectie al langer bestaat, en dat er dus sprake is van late Lyme-borreliose.”

For now, I’ve decided not to undergo antibiotics treatment. Although the IgG results indicate that some long-term health-issues might be Borrelia-induced, all the matching symptoms are general enough that they could be due to anything, especially due to stress, which I’ve been defnitely experiencing a lot of for almost as long as I can remember. At least, I’ll postpone a possible (intraveneous) antibiotics treatment until after the summer. With the anti-fungal treatment spoiling some of the sun fun last summer, I don’t want to do this again. Also, I know I can’t keep out of the sun completely and I don’t need any more bad burns and discolorations.

What I can do and have started to do is to finally start keeping track of tick bites, which is the reason for this post: to have an easily-updatable list.

Discovered Bitten Origin Location Remarks
17 April ’15 Norg left thigh, top left
17 April ’15 Norg right thigh, top right missing abdomen
19 April ’15 Paterswolde right thigh, top right missing abdomen
3 May ’15 Norg left thigh, top right
4 May ’15 3 May ’15 Norg left thigh, outside
13 May ’15 Norg Left thigh, inside
13 May ’15 Norg Right thigh, front
13 May ’15 Norg Scrotum, bottom/center
14 May ’15 13 May ’15 Norg Side of left delt.
15 May ’15 13 May ’15 Norg Right bottom
23 Jun ’15
22 Jun ’15
Norg Many places
Many non-noted
08 Apr ’18 08 Apr ’18 Norg Top abs
08 Apr ’18 08 Apr ’18 Norg Left thigh
11 Apr ’18 08 Apr ’18 Norg Left shoulder blade
26 Apr ’18 26 Apr’ 18 Norg Shaft of penis Dislodged itself and became mobile, so no tweezers necessary
28 Apr ’18 26 Apr’ 18 Norg Inside right ankle Puss emissions the next morning
08 May ’18 08 May’ 18 Norg Right part of scrotum
10 May ’18 08 May ’18 Norg Inside of right ass cheek
24 May ’18 24 May ’18 Norg Inside left thigh
24 May ’18 24 May ’18 Norg underside ball sac
24 May ’18 24 May ’18 Norg left arm pit