Why do I have pain & swelling in my joints after bug bites?

Patient

Q: I'm having pain and a feeling of swelling in all my joints. It is worse in my feet, fingers and hands, but I do feel it everywhere. It started several months ago. I had an infestation of noseeums in my apartment and they were eating me alive. I had a severe allergic reaction that happened over a weeks time. My lips swelled, my eye lids, it was hard to breathe and I started having severe pain in my hands and fingers so bad I couldn't hold a glass. This pain and swelling never went away. It has lessened some over time. It's been 4 or 5 months and I am wondering when it will go away if ever and what is wrong with me. I also have endometriosis, an auto immune disease, so I have increased risk of getting Lupus, Fibromyalgia, arthritis etc. All the women in my family have at least one, if not more, forms of arthritis... I'm currently unemployed as I'm recovering from surgery for the endo that I had in July. My state didn't expand Medicare or Medicaid, so all I get is food stamps. I've applied for disability several times but they deny me... I'm negative money. I can't afford a doctor. Please help!!!

Symptoms:  Pain and swelling in joints, fever, tiredness & fatigue
Doctor

A:   Thank you for your question. We are not certain as to what insects you were bitten by, however the symptoms you are describing could be consistent with lyme disease. Lyme disease is a chronic bacterial infection caused by a bacteria transmitted by a deer tick when it bites its host and feeds on their blood. If left untreated the symptoms can worsen into severe central nervous system dysfunction which can be very difficult to treat. We strongly recommend that you return to your doctor and have an evaluation for lime disease performed. If diagnosed with lyme disease, you will be prescribed a course of antibiotics to clear this infection. It is also important that you are closely monitored by your doctor to determine if your symptoms are improving with treatment. Please seek medical attention as soon as you can.

Thank you for consulting AskTheDoctor.com

Related Q&A

Q: I really want a cat but suffer with allergies. Is there any way I can live with one and control the allergy

Q: Hi I wanted to see if my symptoms might be caused by a food sensitivity. I have a dry itchy flaky scrap, itchy skin ...

Q: Hello doctor I'm living in a very seasonal allergic pollotion city. Last month, I started getting there infections...

Q: I have been scheduled for a drug allergy challenge involving acetaminophen. The center will not have a physician in ...

Q: Hi There, I am an alcoholic. I have been drinking for years heavily (vodka) and then switched to wine to try to tamp...

 
DOCTOR ADVISORY BOARD
218

Dr. James Obaji M.D.

  • 247 Reviews
  • Family Physician
173

Dr. Suneel Sharman M.D.

  • 190 Reviews
  • Family Physician
138

Dr. Pat Golden M.D.

  • 169 Reviews
  • Cardiologist
98

Dr. Kunaal Jindal M.D.

  • 112 Reviews
  • Plastic Surgeon
CNN
BBC
MSNBC
CBS
abcNews
FoxNews