More than 14 percent of the world’s population is infected with Lyme disease, the most common bacterial infection, according to a survey conducted on Tuesday. Central Europe had the highest infection rate, at 20%, while more than 50 men living in rural areas were more at risk, according to a study published in the journal BMJ Global Health.
This disease is rarely fatal, but people infected with the virus often have a rash and experience flu-like symptoms, including muscle and joint pain, headaches, nausea. nausea and vomiting. To determine the global prevalence of Lyme disease, the researchers collected data from 89 previous studies. The bacterium Borrelia burgdorferi (Bb), which causes the disease, was found in the blood of 14.5% of a total of nearly 160,000 participants..
“This is the most comprehensive and standardized systematic review of the global epidemic,” the researchers said. After Central Europe, the regions with the highest antibody rates were East Asia with 15.9%, Western Europe with 13.5%and Eastern Europe with 10.4%. The Caribbean, on the other hand, had the lowest rate, only 2%.
Previous research has shown that the incidence of infectious diseases has doubled in the last 12 years. The reasons for the increase are longer, drier summers due to climate change, animal migration, habitat loss and “frequent contact with livestock,” the study said.
Farmers and workers who are in regular contact with host animals, such as dogs and sheep, are at risk of being bitten by the virus, the study said. They warn that data may be circulating in areas with Lyme disease, as health care providers may perform more regular antibody tests than in less common areas.
The study also concluded that the research is more reliable using an analytical technique called western blotting and that its use “may improve its accuracy” in future studies.