UPDATE: In an amazing coincidence, I was recently bitten by a tick and treated prophylactically with Doxycycline for Lyme Disease. I started this page a few years ago to help people quantify and understand the risks of Lyme Disease, and to identify ticks that had bitten their families. I had never had a tick really well attached to me or find one engorged. My wife has had ticks fairly well attached, but also never engorged, and always came out "cleanly" on removal.
On the morning of November 7th, 2005 I noticed a little "sticking" sensation as I was tying my robe, like someone had left a price tag on the inside, though this wasn't a new robe. I readjusted the belt and tightened and I felt it again. So I opened my robe, and what did I see, but a damn tick embedded in my stomach, with a red circle around it. I thought: "You've GOT to be kidding me!"
So I ask my wife for some assistance, and she came to help. I pulled the tick and placed it on the square of toilet paper she presented to me for that purpose. I continue to look at my wound, when I hear the toilet flush. She flushed it down the toilet. So I couldn't identify the tick! Guess what I thought again. I thought: "You've GOT to be kidding me!" Here I have a detailed page on identifying
ticks and now I can't do that, and I've got a red rash with a clear center! (Click the image for a larger view.)
Now I know it takes some time for the "classic" bull's eye (Erythema migrans) rash to appear, but this just looked so inflamed and nasty (the picture really makes it look kind of washed out), and the tick was very small and engorged, so I call my doctor and she says "Come on over". I pay my $15 co-pay, and she writes a prescription for 2 tablets of Doxycycline, which go for about 8 cents each retail. except that there is a minimum charge at all pharmacies nowadys. At mine it's $7.99. So for $23 I get what I want, a couple of Doxycycline tablets. I take them. I develop a very bad headache. Later that day reading a little more about Doxycycline, that's a common side effect that should cause me to call my doctor. Well, I didn't and I was fine, and the bite healed, and now it's 6 months later and no Lyme Disease.
Looking around on the web, I found a picture of a man with a similar looking case to mine:
His had progressed a little farther than mine had. He had Lyme disease.
Image: Patient with a classic erythema migrans; 1) site of tick bite, 2) red, radial, expanding edge of rash. 3) central clearing. Source:http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dvbid/stari/