Bite Back the Ticks

Ticks beware. Bite Back for a Cure, the national campaign to fight against the impact of tick-borne disease, is coming to the Vineyard for a fundraising event on August 18.

The day begins with a five-mile bike ride starting from the Lyme Center of Martha’s Vineyard to the Chilmark town hall. Check-in for the ride is at 9:30 a.m. and the bicycling begins at 11 a.m.

Katina I. Makris will speak at the Chilmark Community Church beginning at 1 p.m. Ms. Makris is the author of Out of the Woods.

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Beware the Bunny
Suzan Bellincampi

Even if he wasn’t thinking specifically about tularemia, Hans Zinsser knew well the danger that surrounds us. He cynically observed that “however secure and well-regulated civilized life may become, bacteria, Protozoa, viruses, infected fleas, lice, ticks, mosquitoes and bedbugs will always lurk in the shadows ready to pounce when neglect, poverty, famine or war lets down the defenses.”

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New Tick-Borne Initiative Targets Students via Video
Ivy Ashe
As summer heats up and tick season reaches its peak months on the Island, the Martha’s Vineyard Tick-Borne Initiative has launched its latest public health effort, reaching out to Vineyard schools via video. Last week more than 1,500 DVDs, each containing a short tick safety and awareness video, were delivered to Island schools, with each elementary-age child receiving a copy to take home.
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One More Tick Bite
Regarding the Gazette story of March 22 headlined: “Have Host Will Travel, Ticks And Deer Thrive On Vineyard.”The Vineyard is famous for many things, one being ticks.
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Lyme Detox Retreat

The Harbor View Hotel is hosting a five-day detox retreat from April 8 to 12. The retreat is part of a program offered by Dr. Roni DeLuz, a registered nurse and naturopathic doctor who holds a PhD in Natural Health. The program features special content on Lyme and other chronic diseases. The Lyme Center of Martha’s Vineyard is offering one scholarship for the retreat.

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Have Host Will Travel, Ticks And Deer Thrive on Vineyard
Ivy Ashe
Although frost still covers the ground some mornings, Island boards of health already have their focus turned towards summer and tick season.

At last week’s All-Island Selectmen’s meeting, Tisbury health commissioner Michael Loberg and Edgartown health agent Matthew Poole presented their annual year-end report for the Tick-Borne Illness Reduction Initiative, a five-year study funded by a grant from the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital. The study has just completed its second year.

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Tick Talk
So new tick-borne virus, no tests available. So 50 deer per square mile, 100 square miles, that’s 5,000 deer on the Vineyard. The way I hear it, no deer equals no ticks. As I have said before, 5,000 — given certain changes in regulations — 75 per cent of that sounds like a doable number, very doable, over the course of several years.

Bloodthirsty? Not as thirsty as the ticks.

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Lyme Disease Forums
The Vineyard Haven Library is holding two events that focus on Lyme disease. On Tuesday, Feb. 12, at 7 p.m. the library will screen the documentary Under Our Skin. This movie follows the journey of several patients and their difficulties with both the disease and the health care industry. For more information, visit underourskin.com.
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Tick Disease Similar to Lyme But Tests Don't Detect It
Katie Ruppel

A tick-borne disease so new it only has a scientific name has been identified in United States patients for the first time, including at least one person from Nantucket. Borrelia miyamotoi is a relative of Lyme disease with similar symptoms including fever, headache, muscle ache, and fatigue.

Unlike Lyme disease, B. miyamotoi presents recurring fevers in patients and does not trigger a bulls-eye rash. Nor does it cause a positive test with traditional Lyme disease testing, said Dr. Sam R. Telford 3rd, a professor of infectious diseases at Tufts University.

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Scientists Use Thermal Imaging to Map Tick-Carrying Deer
Katie Ruppel

In an attempt to quantify the Vineyard deer population, a Mount Holyoke College professor flew across the Island last Friday afternoon taking thousands of aerial infrared photographs for a tick-borne illness study. While a snowy, 20 degree day on Martha’s Vineyard may not be most visitors’ optimal conditions for a flight around the Island, professor of geography Thomas Millette deemed Friday’s weather ideal. A frozen ground, calm winds and an overcast sky all optimize the efficiency of the thermal imaging system developed by Mr. Millette.

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