12 Worst States for Lyme Disease

12 Worst States for Lyme Disease
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In the last 10 years, Lyme disease has been diagnosed in every state except for Hawaii. However, 96% of all confirmed cases of Lyme were isolated to only 14 states in 2014. Since then, the disease has been widely studied and diagnosed in nearly every state. Here are the top 12 worst states:

12. Maryland
Incidence of Lyme disease: 16.0 (per 100,000 residents)
Maryland is one of several Mid-Atlantic states where Lyme disease is more than twice as common as it is nationwide. There were 16.0 confirmed cases of the disease in 2014 for every 100,000 residents, far more than the national incidence of 7.9 cases per 100,000 people.

11. Minnesota
>Incidence of Lyme disease: 16.4 (per 100,000 residents)
There were 896 confirmed cases of Lyme disease and another 520 likely cases in Minnesota in 2014 alone. Counties at the highest risk of Lyme disease are located in the northern half of the state, and along the border with Wisconsin, a state with a similar Lyme incidence rate.

10. Wisconsin
>Incidence of Lyme disease: 17.2 (per 100,000 residents)
Wisconsin is the worst state in the Midwest for Lyme disease. There were 17.2 confirmed cases of the disease for every 100,000 state residents in 2014, well more than double the nationwide Lyme disease infection rate. Incidence of the disease peaks in summer months — and 2014 was no different in Wisconsin. More than half of all confirmed cases that year were reported in June and July

9. New Jersey
>Incidence of Lyme disease:
29.0 (per 100,000 residents)
There were 2,589 confirmed cases of Lyme disease and another 697 probable cases in New Jersey in 2014. Though only about 5% of New Jersey residents live in rural areas, nearly 95% of people in the Garden State have easy access to areas for physical activity, the largest share of any state in the country.

8. Delaware
>Incidence of Lyme disease: 36.4 (per 100,000 residents)
Lyme disease was more common in Delaware than in any other state during five of the last 10 years. However, the diagnosis rate has fallen recently in the state. There were 36.4 confirme

7. New Hampshire
Incidence of Lyme disease: 46.9 (per 100,000 residents)
There were 622 cases of Lyme disease in New Hampshire in 2014. The incidence of Lyme disease diagnosis can vary year to year depending on a number of conditions, including weather and awareness.

6. Connecticut
Incidence of Lyme disease: 47.8 (per 100,000 residents)
Lyme disease gets its name from Lyme, Connecticut, a small town along the eastern shore of Connecticut River, just north of Long Island Sound. The disease was discovered there in the mid-1970s, when children were being diagnosed with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis at the height of tick season. Today, Lyme disease is far more common in Connecticut than in much of the country, with 47.8 diagnoses for every 100,000 state residents in 2014.

5. Pennsylvania
>Incidence of Lyme disease:
50.6 (per 100,000 residents)
Pennsylvania had the highest number of confirmed cases of Lyme disease in 2014. There were 50.6 cases of the disease for every 100,000 state residents, more than in all but four other states. As was the case in many other states, 2014 marked a 10-year high for Lyme disease in Pennsylvania. In fact, the 2014 infection rate in the Keystone State is nearly double the rate from just five years ago.

4. Rhode Island
>Incidence of Lyme disease: 54.0 (per 100,000 residents)
There were only 3.6 Lyme disease diagnoses for every 100,000 Rhode Island residents in 2005. Since then, the incidence of Lyme disease in the state has shot up, and 2014’s rate was 15 times higher. This was by far the largest increase in the country. Some medical experts attribute the sharp increase to underreporting in years past.

3. Massachusetts
Incidence of Lyme disease: 54.1 (per 100,000 residents)
In the last 10 years, the incidence of Lyme in Massachusetts peaked in 2009, when there were 61 cases for every 100,000 residents. Still, the diagnosis rate of 54.1 incidents per 100,000 people in 2014 is 49% higher than it was 10 years prior.

2. Vermont
>Incidence of Lyme disease: 70.5 (per 100,000 residents)
Lyme disease is more common in Vermont than in any other state in the country other than Maine. While the high incidence of Lyme disease in Vermont is largely attributable to geography, the active, outdoor lifestyles of state residents also increases their risk of exposure. Nearly 81% of adults in the state are regularly physically active, one of the highest shares of any state in the country.

1. Maine
Incidence of Lyme disease: 87.9 (per 100,000 residents)
The Lyme disease incidence rate of 87.9 diagnoses per 100,000 Maine residents is the highest it has been in the state in the last decade. Lyme disease is more than twice as common as it was just five years ago. It is perhaps not surprising that Maine is also the most rural state in the


  1. I also live in Arkansas. i received a tick bite 2 years ago and my gen practitioner told me Lyme doesn’t exist in Arkansas. He wouldn’t test or treat me. I had classic symptoms (a bulls eye rash, fever, fatigue, joints pain). He told me that the AR health dept adamantly claims there have not been any cases of Lyme in recent years. I looked it up and he was right. They claim zero cases.
    At this point, I can’t walk and am in constant pain. I had to quit my job (high school math teacher of 19 years) and now depend on a disability check. This is not the quality of life I had planned. It’s deeply saddening and frustrating. I was diagnosed with MS but my health spiraled down after the tick bite and continues to do so. I have been unable to find a doctor who knows how to test for LD or even consider that it’s a possibility.
    I would like hope and consideration for a correct diagnosis. For some unknown reason, the state I live in refuses to stay up to date with the medical information, statistics and technology regarding Lyme.

  2. I am from Arkansas and am CDC positive for Lyme, as well as RMSF, Bartenella and Babesia. Ticks are everywhere in Arkansas and while many dogs are diagnosed with Lyme in Arkansas each year, humans are told that Lyme doesn’t exist in Arkansas. Doctors are not trained to diagnose or treat Lyme, either.

  3. Arkansas has one of the highest rates for tick borne disease (in general ) in the nation. Our health department does not report it to the CDC, because they refuse to admit it is here… And say its all STARI… Even though hundreds of people have CDC positive lab tests and they have received the reports.
    Doctors generally refuse to even test for it.
    Our vets report canine Lyme all the time.
    Research has been done here proving Lyme carrying ticks are abundant.
    We are dying….
    And they are ignoring us.
    Its criminal.

  4. I am another Arkansan with chronic Lyme. When are they going to recognize this problem here? We need HELP and are being denied that help! 🙁

  5. My 3 daughters all were infected with Lyme and Bartonella from tick bites they received in May in Arkansas. Blood tests showed they were CDC positive for Lyme within weeks of being bitten and they had all classic symptoms (joint pain, fever, E.M. rashes, tremors) yet the AR Dept of Health is still denying that we have it in Arkansas despite proof. Doctors refuse to diagnose Lyme due to the pressure in this state put on those physicians that do test or treat for it. There is not one Lyme Specialist in all of Arkansas! We have hundreds of unrecognized cases and even more Lyme Disease infected people in state that are misdiagnosed and unaware they even have Lyme. We are beingforced to seek treatment outside the state at this time which is costly and making people a lot sicker than they would be if they received immediate treatment. Arkansas has admitted to being a hotbed for RMSF and Tularemia this year, with more cases than any other state, but the ADH insists it’s impossible to have Lyme Disease here. Please consider looking further into this epidemic in our state. Arkansas most certainly needs to be top of your list for ignorance.

  6. Arkansas has abundant ticks and multiple species of Borellia documented, yet the medical community is in denial. This means that those of us with Borellia infections do no get diagnosed or treated in a timely way. Long term suffering, and the added stress and expense of seeking care outside of Arkansas compound our problems.

  7. I’m CDC POSITIVE in Arkansas!! I have tried to report myself to the State!!! DENIAL!!

  8. So…what about Arkansas, who has the highest tick population of any state and the dept of health claims that there have been zero cases since 2004. Patients are chronically sick, suffering, and dying. There is no help and no hope. This state definitely deserves to be #1 for the worst state for Lyme. Completely ignorant and in denial about the largest vector borne disease that is spreading like wildfire.

    • Lyme patient and a life long Arkansan right here.


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