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Tick bite....

Old 09-23-17, 10:52 AM
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ButchA
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Tick bite....

Wow, amazing, the first morning I woke up without a fever. Let me just say that I don't wish this crap on anyone! It is the most craziest thing when you look back...

(according to the Doc's and all sorts of lab reports, blood work, etc...)
Sun Sept 10th: Drove out to a nice sprawling business complex in the western suburbs of Richmond to go jogging. Not bad... 4 miles in a 9:03 min/mile pace at 56 yrs old!
Remember walking in the grass by the parking lot, looking at one of the big duck ponds. Must have gotten bit by a tick, and the tick jumped off me as it didn't like me (Joke: I must really be something else - the tick bit me and then died! ). No memory of a tick bite, no sign of a tick. No rash, no "ring" around a bite mark. ...Nothing! Go figure...

Mon Sept 11th: Fine. Everything is fine. I got up at 5:00am as usual and went to work driving my school bus. The morning bus run was fine. During my break in between runs (I -and most other drivers- just go back home and chill), I went back home and relaxed, watched TV, mowed my front lawn, etc... Everything was normal. Went back in the afternoon and drove my PM bus run, taking all the kids home, and again, there were no problems.
SOMETIME LATER AFTER DINNER: I started feeling weird... I don't understand it. Something was just wrong, and you can't put your finger on it. I teased my wife that she was trying to poison me at dinner! But, I just shrugged it off, took two Ibuprofen and called it a day.

Tue Sept 12th: Disaster... Woke up at 5:00am feeling like I got hit by a Mack truck. Feel really lethargic and sick as a dog. Temp: 100.3... As stupid as I can be at times, I braved it, toughed it out, and somehow crawled out of bed, got some coffee, and DROVE TO MY SCHOOL BUS! The ladies in the office took one look at me and were shocked, "What is wrong with you! Get out of here! Go back home and see a doctor!"
So, I went to Patient First (aka Doc in a Box), and at first they were like, "Oh yeah, you got the flu"... Uh, sorry, wrong Dude... I'm not throwing up, I don't have the runs, I'm not coughing, hacking, sneezing, I'm fine. All I got is a wicked fever! H-E-L-L-O!!!
Patient First stuck a giant cotton swab up my nose and freaked me out! I angrily pulled away, hollering, "Heeeeeyyyyy!! You almost punctured my brain!!!" The cotton swab came back negative for the flu (No sh** Sherlock!!) So, as bizarre as this sounds "Doc in a Box" just sent me home with two slips for work (out sick - today 9/12 and tomorrow 9/13), and they told me to get rest, drink plenty of fluids, and take Ibuprofen.

Wed Sept 13th: Same stuff, different day... Didn't get much sleep. Wife was seriously concerned because I tossed and turned all night, and sweated so badly throughout the night, I soaked the bed sheets! Went back to "Doc in a Box" again that morning and saying stuff like, "For Christ's sake... DO SOMETHING!" So, they *finally* got off their duffs and drew blood and things like that. My blood count was a little whacky, WBC was low, Platelets were low, and something else was odd (I can't remember). All of the results showed it was NOT flu, not flu like virus, but yet it could be Lyme disease, Babiesiosis, Anaplasmosis(?), or Lord knows what from a "tick borne virus". They recommended I go see my PCP and or the main hospital ER if the condition gets worse. Gee... Thanks, Patient First... Thanks a lot..

Thu Sept 14th: As odd as this sounds, and with no explanation at all... I woke up, fever way down to about 99.3 and I felt okay. Realizing that we are so short handed at work driving school buses (County wide - we are 36 bus drivers short!!!), and decided to tough it out and go to work and drive my bus. I didn't tell anyone about my temp or anything like that. I felt worn out, tired and weakened, but I toughed it out somehow. All the kids on my bus were all concerned, asking me, "Mr. Butch - where were you? Are you okay?" Parents at the elementary school bus stops were also concerned asking where I was. It was nice to be missed and made me feel a lot better. I went back home after the morning run and changed my shirt (I sweated right through my shirt while on the bus). Took more Ibuprofen and stretched out on the couch and watched TV. Fever broke and was like 98.2 or something, so I went back on my bus and was fine. Don't understand it at all. But, it is what it is...

Fri Sept 15th: Same as the 14th... Woke up with a slight fever, toughed it out, took Ibuprofen, and drove my school bus again. Started thinking that whatever this is, is causing some crazy type of Yo-Yo effect, where I'm sick, I'm fine, I'm sick, I'm fine... Fever, no fever, fever, no fever...

Sat Sept 16th: WHAM!! Fever came right back, knocking me on my a$$ the whole day. Just remember spending the day on the couch, shivering, with both a fever and chills. Stubbornly, I didn't go to the ER or anything, but just toughed it out and let the Ibuprofen bring the fever down.

Sun Sept 17th: As you would guess, I was okay, but with a slight 99.something fever. I felt okay and wanted to get out and do stuff. My wife argued with me and I argued back. I wanted to get out my road bike and go for a bicycle ride to get fresh air and exercise and she wigged out on me, making me stay put. I went stir crazy being cooped up in the house, and finally decided to get out and take my dog for a dog walk in the neighborhood. My wife, my sisters, friends, yelled at me (both in person and on Facebook) and said that I need to rest. But I took it easy the rest of the day and watched NFL football on TV on the couch.

Mon Sept 18th: Same as last week... Woke up with a slight fever, took Ibuprofen, toughed it out and went to work driving my school bus. Sweated profusely and drank water bottles that I brought with me.

Tue Sept 19th: Same as before. But yet fever was elevated a little. Felt like crap, looked like crap, but yet somehow, I toughed it out and lied to everyone that I was fine. Somehow by the Grace of God, I drove my school bus. The kids knew something was wrong, because I wasn't all cheerful and making jokes with them like I always do.
TUESDAY EVENING AFTER DINNER: Got frustrated, got seriously annoyed, fever still up there. As stupid as this sounds, I still didn't go to the ER, but went back to Patient First (hey, 3rd time's a charm!). I finally met with one of the senior doctors on the staff, who reviewed all my previous stuff. Again, they did more blood work, they checked me out from head to toe. As embarrassing as this sounds (completely humiliating!), they not only checked me out from head to toe, but they put on rubber gloves, made me get completely butt a$$ naked like the day I was born! and they used weird UV lights, and checked my entire body for ticks. ...Negative. No sign of a tick bite, but yet that doesn't mean anything. People can get bit by a tick and show no signs. It depends on the person and the species of tick. Long story short - the lab results came back again, and as determined, my blood count was all whacky. WBC low, Platelets low, liver enzymes elevated, etc... All of this points to a bad "tick borne virus", similar to Lyme Disease. But yet not as severe as Lyme or Babesiosis. More like "Anaplasmosis" or something else called "Ehrlichiosis". Doc immediately put me on Doxycycline, 100mg, take 1 every 12 hours, and wants me to contact my PCP for a follow-up.

Wed Sept 20th: Just like Mon Sept 18th. No problems, went back to driving my bus.

Thur Sept 21st: Just like a massive relapse of Sept 12th.... Fever came roaring back, felt like I got hit by a Mack truck. I had no choice but to "call out" at the office and not drive my school bus. Spent the day on the couch, doing anything and everything to break the fever.

Fri Sept 22nd: As odd as it sounds... Go figure... Fever went away and just like Wed the 20th, I went back and drove my school bus. I hate this, man! Sick, fine, sick, fine, sick... Aaaagh!!!

Today: I'm fine. No fever at all. Still feel not quite 100%, but at least there is no fever, no chills, no anything. Later today I want to crank up my electric guitar (Loud!) in my music room and blast some Ted Nugent "Stranglehold" or something and see if I get a massive headache, or can I rock out and headbang with the best of them! We'll see!!!
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Old 09-23-17, 04:19 PM
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Glad you're feeling better. I had Lyme, or something like it for years. This was like 20 years ago, they didn't do as much testing back then.

I got sick from something else, and they gave me something for it, and whatever the hell it was, it also went away.
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Old 09-23-17, 07:12 PM
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Be safe, they can be a bigger problem than they seem
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Old 09-24-17, 04:27 AM
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The little biters are thick here this year. I've been picking them off me from working in the yard.
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Old 09-24-17, 07:49 AM
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Thanks everyone...

I have an appt Tue 9/26 @ 10:45 with my wife's PCP. I decided to go to him, since he's been really good to her. My last PCP retired years ago and I haven't gone to a doc in years (well, I mean, just an annual DOT physical for my county school bus CDL requirements).

Technically, yes, as a retired veteran, I DO have a PCP, but I refuse to go. Say what you want, call me a wuss, call me anything you'd like... It's the main VA hospital/clinic here in town, and I have only been there once to register, get all the 9,813 forms filled out and processed, etc.. and meet the PCP at McGuire VA hospital here in Richmond, VA. Sorry... I saw way too many horrible things at the VA. I have heard way too many horrible stories too. I won't go... Ain't gonna go... I wouldn't bring MY DOG to the VA clinic!!!

Summary:
As crazy as all of this sounds, I got bit by a tick on 9/10 when I was out jogging. But yet no sign of a bite or rash or anything. Here we are 2 weeks later and I am just NOW starting to feel better. I woke up this morning with no fever, no nighttime sweats, no anything but minor aches that we all have in the morning.

BE CAREFUL WHEN YOU GO OUTSIDE NEAR THE WOODS AND GRASSY AREAS! TICKS ARE NASTY LITTLE BUGGERS!!
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Old 09-24-17, 08:28 AM
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My mother was bitten by a tick and has been infected with "either" lyme or rocky mountain spotted fever. Unfortunately the tests for these conditions aren't really good, so you get lots of false results.

Her situation is worsened by an underlying condition and the doctor basically told her to be prepared to take this to the grave with her.
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Old 09-24-17, 06:18 PM
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I made the mistake back in the late '80's of scouting for a new place to hunt on Maryland's lower Eastern Shore. In mid/late August.

Came out covered with ticks. Shortly after that I started having allergic reactions to certain foods. Anything with beef in it, usually within 3 hours I'd break out in hives.

This went on for the next 6 or 7 years.

Now they have found out there is a reaction some people have when bitten by Lone Star ticks. It's called an Alphagal reaction. I had thought deer ticks were what I was taking off of me, but it turned out they were larval stage Lone Star ticks.

Ticks are nasty little critters. Both my springers tested positive for Lyme's and we were always very diligent about routing Advantix treatments.

If you get a tick bite and aren't feeling well afterwards, don't wait. It's nothing to fool around with.
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Old 09-24-17, 06:51 PM
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Ticks are natures dirty needle.


There's a whole laundry list of really nasty diseases they carry.
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Old 09-25-17, 01:02 PM
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Wow, what a saga, I'm glad you're feeling better (at least for today!)

What's the prognosis, are the Docs going to be able to make this go away permanently, or will you be stuck with battling it all the time? Maybe if you can get to a Doc who is not in a Box.
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Old 09-25-17, 03:32 PM
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I'm not seeing where this is definitively a tick-borne condition at all, but I have not studied the OP's bloods and am unaware of the regional statistics of the OP's location.


Many auto-immune conditions mimic infectious diseases. Auto-immune responses can be triggered by all sorts of things, from black mold exposure to indoor air, and frequently linger for periods as long as 2-6 years or longer before the immune system (hopefully) effectively re-sets itself.
Auto-immune conditions are often age-related, as in the occurrence of specific variants is rare below a certain age. Such conditions may manifest as arthritic, may cause localized skin bleaching, may cause fever and as I said can mimic all sorts of infections such as liver diseases.
Many of these diseases are rare in and of themselves, but collectively they are fairly common. And each of these tend to somewhat manifest differently in different patients, adding to the complexity of diagnosis and appropriate treatment.


I'm hoping that the antibiotic does cure what is ailing the OP. Even after it arrests an infection there can be lingering symptoms for a while as the antibodies keep detecting residual foreign proteins.
I advise maintaining a detailed journal of all symptoms and treatment, which the OP seems to be doing.


I had a sudden and crippling episode of the auto-immune condition polymyalgia rheumatica a few years ago, and it took years for that to settle down.
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Old 09-25-17, 06:14 PM
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You started feeling the tick-bite effects in one-day? I'd think this is highly unusual.
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Old 09-25-17, 07:15 PM
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Well... Looking back....

Sunday Sep 10th somewhere in the afternoon, after lunchtime, is when I went out running that 4 mile run (and somehow suspect I got the tick bite).

Sunday night: Fine.
Monday: Fine.
Monday evening after dinner: Feeling odd, like something is slightly wrong, but didn't know what.
Monday night: Same feeling as above.
Tuesday morning: Monsterous fever struck with a vengeance, and totally knocked my on my a$$!!!

So, all in all, it was more than 24 hours that I started feeling weird. Here we are two weeks later and I am better, but still not quite 100%. The Doxycycline stuff seems to be working, but how long, I don't know.
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Old 09-27-17, 06:53 PM
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How did your appointment go?
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Old 09-29-17, 07:17 PM
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Originally Posted by 1989Pre View Post
How did your appointment go?
Sorry... I met with my wife's doctor. Nice enough older guy. Since I was a new patient to him, we went all over my med history, and he took notes as I explained this and that over the years.

He checked me over real quick and said that the Doxycycline is working fine and that I no longer have a fever. He set me up with an appt over at Lab Corp for some major blood work to really get down to business and determine what exactly bit me. I have to fast for 12 hours before I go there, which stinks, but oh well...

I made the stupid mistake of confessing to the doc that the last time I honestly had a complete, inside & out, up one side and down the other, full physical exam was well over 6 or 7 years ago. I also said that I am "one of those guys who only goes to the doctor if I am really sick or if I break something!" Oh man, did he ever sternly lecture me!! So, now I have a full physical exam scheduled for Oct 26th. Great, just great... Good ol' "Dr. Jellyfinger"...

Right now, I am okay and have been back driving my school bus. No more fever or chills. But yet, I still feel something, somewhere, deep down, where I am still just not quite right. I think they call it "Malaise" or something, where you feel run down from a virus. It will take time to rebound, that's for sure!
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Old 09-30-17, 05:58 AM
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Well, for what its worth, I think a lot of us avoid doctors when they can.., but I'm glad you eventually got to a private practitioner. Your body was obviously trying to "burn off" the offending agent by turning up the heat. How are you today? October 26 is a bit of a ways off.
If that fever comes back, get to the emergency room. If your immune system is sapping energy from the rest of your body, you could experience even more severe symptoms.
I understand your reticence regarding doctors: The only things I fear are great white sharks and hypodermic needles. Do it for your wife.
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Old 10-08-17, 08:22 AM
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Originally Posted by 1989Pre View Post
Well, for what its worth, I think a lot of us avoid doctors when they can.., but I'm glad you eventually got to a private practitioner. Your body was obviously trying to "burn off" the offending agent by turning up the heat. How are you today? October 26 is a bit of a ways off.
If that fever comes back, get to the emergency room. If your immune system is sapping energy from the rest of your body, you could experience even more severe symptoms.
I understand your reticence regarding doctors: The only things I fear are great white sharks and hypodermic needles. Do it for your wife.
I'm a lot better, thanks... I went back to the doctor for some more blood work and followups.

Google this: Ehrlichiosis

Bingo... They finally labeled it/found it/discovered it. Low WBC, low Platelets, elevated liver enzymes(?), and a few other things.

Doxycycline knocked it out, and put me back on my feet. However, a very very tiny strain of some type of infection was still leftover, and according to my doc, somehow traveled up through my sinuses, and continued to the Eustachian tubes in my ears! So, now, as bizarre as this sounds, I have a middle ear infection! I just can't win!

So, now that all the Doxycycline is gone and over with and the Ehrlichiosis is hopefully gone (waiting on yet more blood work to come back), the doc put me on Zithromax (or commonly called Z-pack) which is potent and will quickly get rid of the ear infection.

I'm fine, and feel okay. There still is a weird low hum in the background in my ears from time to time due to the ear infection, and I feel like my ears need to pop (you know, like your in your car and going up into the mountains and you go way up over a mountain top, and your ears pop).

Yesterday, I went jogging for the first time since Sep 10th (when I first got bit) and did 3 miles and was okay, but was slowed down a little from my normal pace. I want to get out on my old C&V '85 Fuji and ride, but it's 97% humidity and getting ready to rain. Oh well...

In a nutshell: Tick bites can be NASTY!! Seriously man, you won't even know you're bit. You might not even show a rash or a bite mark. You might not show anything at all. Like me, the tick may just bite you and then jump off. Then a few days later, you instantly feel like you got run over by a Mack truck!!!
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Old 10-13-17, 01:45 AM
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Some tick bites here made people allergic to meat.Mainly in the new forest area.
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