Lyme disease develops once the individual is bitten by a tick that is infected with the Borrelia burgdorferi parasite. In most cases, the disease can be managed with treatment involving antibiotics. If the condition is treated quickly, all the symptoms usually vanish and can be completely treated. Nevertheless, if Lyme disease is not treated early, it can lead to serious life-threatening complications that affect the nervous system, lungs, heart and cause arthritis and fatigue. In some cases, individuals can develop heart complications. If you want to learn how to properly manage the symptoms of Lyme disease, you can enroll in a first aid course so that you are prepared.
Swelling of the heart
Individuals who have Lyme disease can experience swelling of the heart which is known as myopericarditis. Once the parasite responsible for Lyme disease goes into the heart tissue, the immune system attempts to attack it by sending specialized immune cells into the heart. The inflow of these immune cells causes the heart, especially the small blood vessels to swell. The swelling of the heart can disrupt the ability of the heart to beat properly. In some cases, even after the parasite has been eliminated, the immune system continues to overreact, resulting to the swollen state of the heart.
One of the usual heart complications triggered by Lyme disease is the interference with the electrical signals that coordinate with the proper beating of the heart. The heart utilizes electrical signals in order to ensure that all the cells of the heart beats correctly in order to thrust out blood and pull in more blood.
If the electrical signals are disrupted, this is a condition called as heart block. Depending on the location of the block inside the heart, there are various types of electrical blocks that can occur. Take note that Lyme disease often leads to the development of atrioventricular block which triggers the manifestation of symptoms such as shortness of breath, dizziness, chest pain, heart palpitations and loss of consciousness.
Congestive heart failure
Once Lyme disease is left untreated for a prolonged period, it can eventually cause heart failure which is called as cardiomyopathy. Based on the studies conducted, it is not yet clearly established if there is a connected between the condition and heart failure. Nevertheless, some studies have discovered that individuals who have Lyme disease are at higher risk for cardiomyopathy than those who are not affected. It is suspected that the continuous damage to the heart due to the parasite steadily weakens the capacity of the heart to pump blood properly.
If you suspect that an individual develops the symptoms of Lyme disease, it is important that the condition must be treated as soon as possible. Once the condition is left untreated, these complications are likely to occur.