Our Health Library information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Please be advised that this information is made available to assist our patients to learn more about their health. Our providers may not see and/or treat all topics found herein.

Chronic Lyme arthritis

Chronic Lyme arthritis is a recurring form of joint inflammation caused by Lyme disease, a bacterial infection that is spread through tick bites. Symptoms of chronic Lyme arthritis include episodes of swelling, redness, and fluid buildup in one or more joints that lasts for months at a time.

When a person is not treated for Lyme disease, chronic Lyme arthritis can develop.

Chronic Lyme arthritis usually responds to antibiotic treatment. But joints that have been badly damaged by Lyme arthritis may take a long time to get better after the bacteria have been killed. Sometimes antibiotic treatment does not help the joints.