UTICA, N.Y. - May is Lyme disease awareness month and Mohawk Valley Community College held a discussion panel, "Updates and Breakthroughs" to bring awareness and inform the community on the tick-borne disease.
Tick season is here, and experts at the event say Lyme disease is one of the fastest growing dieases in the country.
The Center for Disease Control reports that over 400,000 people are infected with the Lyme disease each year.
Lyme disease is a tick-borne illness that manifests itself as a multisystem inflammatory disease that affects the skin in its early stages, spreads to the joints, nervous system, and can move to another organ system in later stages.
Dr. Ronald Stram, from Stram Center for Integrative Medicine, was one of the speakers at the event and says the number of people infected is most likely higher because many people are misdiagnosed.
The moderator of the panel, Bill Dustin who is the director or events and guest services at MVCC was misdiagnosed for over three years before finding out he was suffering from Lyme disease.
Dr. Stram says Lyme disease is a complicated disease with complicated symptoms.
"The tick is like a dirty hypodermic needle, it really likes having more bugs in its body that just Lyme disease, so co-infections are significant and the problem is co-infections can give you different types of symptoms," Stram said.
Some of the most common symptoms of Lyme disease are fatigue, pain, and gut or abdominal dysfunction.
For more information on Lyme disease, you can visit https://www.cdc.gov/lyme/index.html.
MVCC will host a Walk for Lyme Disease at noon Sunday, May 19, on the green in the Quad at MVCC's Utica Campus.
You can register for the walk here.