LCHD to host community presentation on tick-borne diseases, blastomycosis

For the Tomahawk Leader

LINCOLN COUNTY – A community presentation hosted by the Lincoln County Health Department (LCHD) next month will provide an opportunity to learn about tick-borne diseases and blastomycosis and have questions answered from experts in the field.

The presentation will be held in the upper level of the Lincoln County Service Center, 801 N. Sales St., Merrill, on Tuesday, Oct. 10 from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS), Aspirus Tick-borne Clinic of Woodruff and LCHD will share information on the signs and symptoms, treatment options and the latest local data trends on tick-borne diseases and blastomycosis.

LCHD said Lincoln County has historically had a higher rate of tick-borne diseases and blastomycosis than other areas in Wisconsin.

“It is important that all residents are educated on the signs and symptoms of both of these diseases and seek medical attention in a timely manner,” LCHD stated.

There are several different types of tick-borne diseases seen in Lincoln County, LCHD said, including Lyme disease, anaplasmosis, ehrlichiosis, and babesiosis.

In 2022, there were 91 reported tick-borne disease cases, leaving many residents ill, according to LCHD.

“Thousands of Wisconsinites each year will be diagnosed with a tick-borne disease,” said Rebecca Osborn, DHS Vectorborne Disease Epidemiologist. “Knowing more about how to prevent these diseases and when to seek treatment can help keep you and your family stay healthy and active.”

From 2013 to 2022, there were 40 cases of blastomycosis reported in Lincoln County. Of those, 52.5% (21 of 40) resulted in hospitalizations, some of which resulted in death, LCHD said.

Symptoms of blastomycosis can mimic influenza, acute bacterial pneumonia or other lung infections, which can make diagnosis difficult.

“LCHD is committed to providing access to all of our events,” LCHD stated. “Advance notice is necessary to arrange accessibility needs.”

To request accommodations for the presentation, contact Lexi Buntrock at 715-539-1374 or [email protected].

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