Chronic Lyme Disease Treatment Options

Lyme disease can wreak havoc on patients lives, but Lyme disease treatment isn’t always as effective as people would like. This is especially true when it comes to chronic Lyme disease treatment options. To treat Lyme disease more effectively, the condition needs to be caught early. However, even that isn’t a guarantee that you will completely recover once you have this condition. This article will take a closer look at chronic Lyme disease and the best options for treating this health problem.

Understanding Chronic Lyme Disease

Chronic Lyme disease, which is also referred to as either post-treatment Lyme disease or post Lyme disease syndrome, occurs once a person has already received antibiotic treatments for their disease but still exhibits symptoms of the disease. Between 10% and 20% of all patients who were treated with antibiotics will have symptoms that persist after completing their course of treatment. Symptoms include:

  • Fatigue
  • Joint and/or muscle aches
  • Cognitive dysfunction

These are symptoms that can potentially last 6 months or longer, causing physical and emotional distress for those who suffer from chronic Lyme disease. The good news is that for most people, these symptoms do improve after 6 months or a year. There’s no real understanding what causes chronic Lyme disease or why some people have it while others don’t.

Treatments for Chronic Lyme Disease

If you suffer from chronic Lyme disease, you can end up with complications that will negatively impact your life. You may end up with limited mobility and cognitive skills, as well as extreme fatigue that interferes with your everyday life. The extreme changes in lifestyle can lead to emotional distress.

It’s easier to treat Lyme disease if you catch it in an early stage. Usually, a course of 2 or 3 weeks of oral antibiotics can work to clear the disease. For chronic Lyme disease, the treatment can depend on each individual case. While some just need a longer course of treatment with different antibiotics or IV antibiotics, in some cases the best approach is to treat the symptoms because long-term antibiotic use can cause complications and may not be that effective. For instance, they may prescribe over-the-counter pain relievers to treat issues like joint pain. The joint swelling that often accompanies chronic Lyme disease can be treated with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDS) or intra-articular steroids.

Unfortunately, while a majority of people find that they can recover from their symptoms, some people may continue to experience these symptoms for a long time. There’s no known reason for why some patients never fully recover from Lyme disease.


Chronic Lyme disease is something that can significantly impact the rest of your life, in some cases. It’s for this reason why it’s important to monitor your symptoms and work with your doctor. It’s also important for you to make sure that as soon as you know you’ve been bit by a tick or start experiencing Lyme disease symptoms to seek out treatment as soon as possible. The earlier that you start treatment, the less likely you will end up with long-term symptoms.

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