While preventative measures, including applying insect repellent and checking for ticks, are recommended to help with personal protection, there’s limited evidence that they’re having an impact on reducing the annual number of cases of Lyme disease, according to Raphael Simon, PhD, Senior Director of Vaccine Research and Development at Pfizer.
Lyme disease is the most common vector-borne illness in the United States. And yet, the actual cases are vastly underreported. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that state health departments only report around 30,000 cases each year. However, the CDC, to account for underreporting, uses methods beyond self-reporting to estimate that approximately 476,000 people in the US get Lyme disease annually.
In other words, the estimated number of cases of Lyme disease in the U.S. seems to be much higher than what is being reported.