Identifying the difference between Lyme arthritis or another inflammatory arthritis can be tricky. Here are key signs that your patient may have a systemic inflammatory arthritis rather than Lyme arthritis.
A new study(1) highlights the problem of patients with systemic autoimmune diseases who are assumed to have Lyme arthritis due to a past history of Borrelia burgdorferi infection. There are three possibilities for patients with joint involvement after Lyme, says lead author Sheila Arvikar, M.D.: Active joint infection, post-infectious Lyme arthritis or another inflammatory arthritis. Telling the difference between the last two, in particular, can be tricky. Here are key signs that your patient may have a systemic inflammatory arthritis rather than Lyme arthritis.
1. Arvikar SL, Crowley JT, Sulka KB, Steere AC. Autoimmune Arthritides, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Psoriatic Arthritis, or Peripheral Spondyloarthropathy, Following Lyme Disease. Arthritis & Rheumatology. 2016. doi:10.1002/art.39866.