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Why does CDC only link to one set of treatment guidelines?

Prompt diagnosis and proper treatment are critical to preventing medical complications of Lyme disease. CDC is committed to providing patients and health care providers with accurate, evidence-based information on the diagnosis and treatment of this condition.

What do the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA) recommendations cover?

The Infectious Diseases Society of America develops clinical practice guidelines on various topics. IDSA guidelines encompass the full scope of Lyme disease clinical care and management, providing not only descriptions of treatment, but also essential information about the diagnosis and prevention of Lyme disease as well as anaplasmosis and babesiosis (other tickborne diseases). The authors are internationally recognized experts associated with some of the Nation’s leading medical institutions. IDSA guidelines address the full spectrum of disease manifestations including:

  • Early Lyme disease in the absence of erythema migrans (early skin manifestations)
  • Lyme arthritis
  • Early neurologic Lyme disease
  • Late neurologic Lyme disease
  • Lyme carditis
  • Borrelial lymphocytosis (a bluish-red skin condition)
  • Acrodermatitis chronica atrophicans (a skin condition indicative of late Lyme disease)
  • Post-treatment Lyme disease syndrome (PTLDS)

Are the IDSA guidelines up to date?

Published in 2006, the IDSA guidelines were reevaluated and upheld by an independent scientific Review Panel whose members were certified to be free from any conflicts of interest by an independent ombudsman. In addition, CDC doctors monitor and evaluate the medical literature, including treatment guidelines, regularly. If new scientific information emerges that conflicts with treatment or management recommendations of the guidelines, CDC will act accordingly to make sure that patients and health care providers are aware.  CDC believes that the current IDSA Lyme disease guidelines, “The Clinical Assessment, Treatment, and Prevention of Lyme Disease, Human Granulocytic Anaplasmosis and Babesiosis: Clinical Practice Guidelines by the Infectious Diseases Society of America,” continue to provide comprehensive, accurate information that patients can use in their health care decisions.