When Lyme Disease Is Mistaken for Child Abuse Pennsylvania doctor calls Child Protective Services for a 4-year old with a swollen knee and a skin lesion with central clearing in a highly endemic area.

By Dorothy Kupcha Leland

M isdiagnosis of Lyme disease is a huge problem. Doctors too often rely on misunderstood and/or faulty information to rule out the illness.

Lyme disease can be mistaken for child abuse(Examples: There’s no Lyme in our county. You have no rash. You have a rash, but it doesn’t look like a Target logo, etc.)

As a result, multitudes of patients miss that critical early window for Lyme treatment, allowing the microbes to burrow deep in their bodies and wreak all kinds of havoc.

Sometimes, however, such medical ignorance takes an especially alarming turn. One such account was recently published in Case Reports in Orthopedics, a peer-reviewed, open-access journal. (This means that anybody can read the article online for free.)

What’s That Big Mark?

According to the journal article, here’s what happened:

In late August, a four-year-old Pennsylvania boy was playing in his yard. While no one was looking, he fell and got hurt. The family rushed him to the doctor, who examined the child and found the following: a swollen right knee, a tender left wrist, and what the pediatrician interpreted as a large bruise on the buttocks. X-rays also showed a wrist fracture.

Based on these findings, the doctor immediately reported the family for possible CHILD ABUSE. Authorities took the little boy from his family and placed him in foster care……Join or login below to continue reading.

You must be a LymeDisease.org member to access this content.

If you are already a member, log in below. Otherwise, become a member today to access the full content of this article and the full library of Lyme Times articles.
* Physician Directory Memberships do not have access to the Lyme Times.