Lyme Disease: A Global Epidemic

For decades, Lyme disease was considered a regional problem affecting the US Northeast and midwest. Lyme disease diagnoses tripled over the past twenty years, has been diagnosed in all fifty states, and is six times more prevalent in the United States than AIDS.

Approximately 300,000 Americans are infected each year, making Lyme disease the most common vector-borne illness in the United States. Yet, some scientists believe the figures are underestimated because Lyme disease imitates over 250 other conditions, leading to misdiagnoses. Silently spreading across the globe, some scientists estimate that the number of infected people could eclipse breast cancer, HIV, and hepatitis C diagnoses combined. 

Time is the most precious commodity in the world.
Time is the most precious commodity in the world.

Lyme disease is a highly controversial disease in the medical community despite its rapid epidemic of global growth. The disease has reached epidemic levels on nearly every continent in more than 80 countries.

  1. Algeria
  2. Andorra
  3. Argentina
  4. Australia
  5. Austria
  6. Belarus
  7. Belgium
  8. Belize
  9. Bolivia
  10. Brazil
  11. Bulgaria
  12. Canada
  13. Chile
  14. China
  15. Colombia
  16. Croatia
  17. Cuba
  18. Cyprus
  19. Czech Rp.
  20. Denmark
  21. Egypt
  22. England
  23. Estonia
  24. Finland
  25. France
  26. Georgia
  27. Greece
  28. Germany
  29. Herzegovina
  30. Honduras
  31. Hungary
  32. Iceland
  33. India
  34. Iran
  35. Iraq
  36. Ireland
  37. Israel
  38. Italy
  39. Japan
  40. Kazakhstan
  41. Kenya
  42. Korea Dem.
  43. Korea Rep.
  44. Latvia
  45. Liechtenstein
  46. Lithuania
  47. Luxembourg
  48. Macedonia
  49. Mali
  50. Malta
  51. Mauritania
  52. Mexico
  53. Moldova
  54. Mongolia
  55. Montenegro
  56. Morocco
  57. Mozambique
  58. Netherlands
  59. Norway
  60. Peru
  61. Poland
  62. Portugal
  63. Romania
  64. Russia
  65. Scotland
  66. Senegal
  67. Serbia
  68. Siberia
  69. Slovakia
  70. Slovenia
  71. Spain
  72. Sweden
  73. Switzerland
  74. Taiwan
  75. Tajikistan
  76. Tunisia
  77. Turkey
  78. Ukraine
  79. Uruguay
  80. Uzbekistan
  81. Venezuela
  82. Wales

United States TickNET

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) established a collaborative public health effort called TickNET in 2007. It’s goal is to coordinate surveillance, research, education, and prevention of tick-borne diseases.

France Fighting Lyme Disease

In 2016, France released a national plan to address the Lyme epidemic. About 27,000 people were believed to be affected by Lyme disease each year, but French doctors say this number is vastly under-estimated due to the inaccuracy of available tests. Marisol Touraine, Minister of Social Affairs and Health, announced a plan to raise awareness, reinforce prevention, and improve diagnosis and patient care. 

Canada Ten Years of Surveillance

Canada began tracking Lyme disease nationally in 2009. Ticks can attach themselves to birds, spreading Lyme disease across Canada from Nova Scotia to British Columbia. While Canada’s Interim Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, BMBS (UK), FRCPC released a federal framework to address the emerging disease in early 2017. The framework covers three pillars: surveillance, education, and awareness, as well as guidelines and best practices for medical professionals.

India & Nepal

2017 study in India set out to discover the prevalence of Lyme disease in southern India. It found that there was a high seroprevalence of infection with B. burgdorferi in the forest areas of Nagarahole and Bandipur ranges in south India. In 2018, the first case of multi-system Lyme disease was reported in northern India, and the first Lyme case was reported in Nepal. Scientists believe that Lyme disease is underdiagnosed because it is not commonly considered as a differential diagnosis and the two-step testing is not accurate enough.

Worldwide 346 infectious diseases affect humankind. Ticks transmit Twenty-eight of them. Lyme is the most common infection, and the rates of infection are rising. The countries list is not meant to be a scientific declaration of the presence or absence of Lyme. We did not check all countries, nor did it contact country officials for verification. Country names may vary with different sources, and disease standards may vary in countries.