Neuroborreliosis is generally known to be a disease confined to the Western part of the globe. It is not commonly encountered in this part of the world. Interestingly, we recently came across a series of cases of Lyme’s disease with a plethora of neurological presentations. Most of the cases were a diagnostic dilemma, with poor response to immunotherapy and on subsequent evaluation all were found to have positive Borrelia antibodies.
Eight cases were selected from the tertiary care hospital in North western India. Patients were suspected to have Neuroborreliosis whose neurological presentations were atypical for other classical neurological disorders, who had a progressive or relapsing clinical course and had responded poorly to the initial treatment given for the previous neurological diagnosis. Skin lesions were present in some cases. The patients underwent a detailed clinical assessment which comprised of an elaborate history including history of travel, any insect bite or skin rashes along with a complete systemic and neurological examination. All the required blood investigations, Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) Brain, Computer Tomography Angiography (CT), Nerve conduction study (NCS) and Electromyographic (EMG) studies and Cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) studies were done as indicated in each case. Borrelia antibody titre was done in all the patients using immunoblot technique.
Among the 8 patients, 6 were male and 2 were females. The age group was between 25-70 years. The clinical presentation was acute, subacute or chronic. One patient gave a clear history of tick bite. Two patients had skin lesions and one had the pathognomic “eschar”. All the suspected 8 patients had either IgG or IgM or both IgG and IgM Borrelia antibodies positive. Almost all the patients had previously received either steroids or intravenous immunoglobulins, but had not adequately responded to immunotherapy. These patients were given a trial of injectable Ceftriaxone and oral Doxycycline. Most of them either showed partial or complete clinical improvement.
Lyme’s disease, a common disease of the west does exist in the Indian subcontinent as well. Because of increasing global travel and migration and change in vector habitat the disease seems to have percolated in the non endemic areas too. Proper history of travel or exposure to tick bite is important. We want to emphasize, Neuroborreliosis, a great mimicker may have diverse and varied neurological presentations and has a potential for reversibility with appropriate treatment even after a significant delay in diagnosis.

© Journal of the Association of Physicians of India 2011.