Actress Parker Posey, 40, has withdrawn from a lead role in the upcoming off-Broadway production of “This” after developing Lyme disease. Posey is known for her many indie movie roles in films such as Best in Show, A Mighty Wind, Clockwatchers, as well as for playing Lex Luthor’s assistant Kitty Kowalski in Superman Returns.
Lyme Disease is an infection caused by a spiral shaped bacterium called Borrelia burgdorferi. It is a germ picked up by ticks that feed on the blood of infected mice or deer. A person bitten by an infected tick can become infected themselves. Not everyone who gets bitten will go on to have Lyme Disease, and many people who develop Lyme Disease never realize they’ve been bitten by a tick. Early signs of infection are similar to flu symptoms- fever with chills, aches, headache, and listlessness. There may also be a target-like rash, known as erythema migrans. If left untreated, additional symptoms such as joint inflammation, neck stiffness, whole body itchiness, or unusual behavior can occur. Later symptoms also include nervous system involvement such as confusion, numbness and tingling, hallucinations, or Bell’s Palsy (one sided facial weakness with drooping of the eyelid). Heart palpitations and chronic arthritis (joint pain and inflammation) can also occur. Treatment consists of antibiotics, usually for a one month period. Pain medications, and anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen or naproxen may be added to treat joint symptoms.
Ways to decrease the risk of Lyme Disease:
If you find a tick: