Babesiosis on the Rise in Northeastern States: Avoid Tick Bites to Reduce Risk

According to a research published in the March 17 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, the occurrence of babesiosis is on the rise in certain states, such as Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont, and these states should be regarded as having endemic transmission.[0] The best way to prevent the illness is to avoid tick bites, as the parasite responsible for babesiosis is transmitted to humans through them.[1] People should cover exposed skin, use repellants, and avoid wooded areas with overgrown grass and plants to minimize the risk of tick contact.[2]

Symptoms of babesiosis include fever, chills, sweats, headaches, body aches, nausea, fatigue or muscle and joint pain.[3] The disease has an overall fatality rate of around 1% to 2%, according to Dr. Peter Krause, a senior research scientist at the Yale School of Public Health.[3]

It is believed that the surge may be due to higher temperatures and the expanding deer population.[4] Warm, damp environments are ideal for ticks.[4] Human behavior and a warmer climate are likely contributing factors as well.[4] People are moving to areas with ticks and interacting with animals that the ticks feed on, and a warmer climate may increase tick survival, shorten their life cycle, and increase the duration of tick season.[5]

Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, and Vermont all saw significant increases in incidence, with the greatest increases being in Vermont (1,602%), Maine (1,422%), New Hampshire (372%), and Connecticut (338%).[6]

It is important for people to be aware of their risk of contracting babesiosis, especially when traveling or living in areas where the illness is more common.[7] People should seek medical attention if they happen to fall ill after a tick bite, as this may open up a clearer picture for researchers to get a better handle on the disease.[5] The best way to protect oneself is to avoid ticks and use repellants and other preventative measures.

0. “Trends in Reported Babesiosis Cases — United States ..” CDC, 16 Mar. 2023,

1. “CDC notes rise in tick-borne disease babesiosis in New Hampshire” WMUR Manchester, 16 Mar. 2023,

2. “Cases of tickborne disease babesiosis are surging in the U.S. Northeast, the CDC warns. Here’s what you need to know” Fortune, 16 Mar. 2023,

3. “Cases of tick-borne babesiosis disease are rising, CDC says” NBC News, 16 Mar. 2023,

4. “Northeastern States See Rise In Tick-Borne Illness Babesiosis: CDC” Medical Daily, 17 Mar. 2023,

5. “Heartland Virus: US Tickborne Disease May Be Expanding”, 14 Mar. 2023,

6. “CDC Report Describes Recent Trends in Prevalence of Babesiosis” HealthDay News, 16 Mar. 2023,

7. “Tick-borne illness babesiosis is spreading in the US, CDC report shows”, 16 Mar. 2023,

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