New York to spend $1 million to study Lyme disease

Posted: Updated:
ARMONK -

An effort is underway to fight tick-borne illnesses, especially Lyme disease in New York state.

The Hudson Valley is considered the epicenter of the statewide epidemic with more than a thousand cases of Lyme disease reported each year in the Lower Hudson Valley

Last week, the state Senate approved $1 million in funding to conduct research, education and prevention.

Dr. Tania Dempsey is a Lyme disease specialist and sees firsthand how the tick-borne illness is impacting the Hudson Valley.

"Over time the longer it stays in the body untreated, the more it can cause long term neurological effects and other debilitating symptoms," says Dr. Dempsey.

The research conducted with the help of the state’s $1 million will potentially prevent more people from contracting the disease, an illness Dr. Dempsey's own son Jason contracted as a toddler.

Jason says he is still living with long-term symptoms.

"Headaches, feeling sick, can't concentrate, it’s just very hard in school and playing sports, it’s very hard,” says Jason.

Lyme disease is usually detectable by a bulls-eye rash.

Doctors say early diagnosis and treatment are crucial for recovery.

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