Disease with similar symptoms to coronavirus on the rise in New York

(Photo: Infectious Disease Advisor)

A tick-borne illness with similar symptoms to coronavirus is reportedly on the rise in New York state. It’s called anaplasmosis, and is caused by a bacteria that people contracts when bitten by a tick.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, symptoms can include fever, headache, chills and muscle aches. These are all symptom of coronavirus.

Symptoms usually begin showing one to two weeks after the bite of an infected tick. And while rare, anaplasmosis can be fatal if left untreated.

Byron Backenson, deputy director of the state Health Department’s Bureau of Communicable Disease Control told news magazine Adirondack Explorer that there has been difficulty informing the public of this new disease because of the coronavirus pandemic.

It is often treated with antibiotics, according to the CDC.

The best protection from ticks is to avoid contact with soil, leaf litter and vegetation. Health experts say to wear enclosed shoes, long pants and a long-sleeved shirt if hiking through tick-prone areas — and check clothes and any exposed skin frequently for ticks while outdoors.