Malaria-Like Disease Follows Lyme’s Path In New England | WBUR & NPRPosted: November 13, 2012
“Lyme disease is the big boy on the block,” Dr. Peter Krause, an infectious disease specialist at the Yale School of Public Health, tells Shots. “But now babesiosis is spreading in a similar pattern.”
Babesoisis is still far rarer than Lyme, which sends nearly 10,000 New Englanders to their doctors each year. However, Krause’s colleague Maria Duik-Wassers predicts the gap is going to narrow, as the babesia parasite spreads and doctors learn to diagnose it.
Diuk-Wasser has been tracking babesiosis in Connecticut for over a decade. She says the number of cases have risen from a handful each year to about a hundred. Now the parasite is endemic in more than half of Connecticut’s communities. She’s seeing the same trend in New York’s Hudson River Valley.
Also known as Nantucket Fever, babesiosis is malaria’s first cousin.