Tick Bites: Flu-Like Symptoms
Many of the diseases ticks pass to humans can cause flu-like symptoms, including:
- Muscle aches (myalgia).
- A general feeling of illness (malaise).
- Nausea and vomiting.
Diseases ticks may pass to humans include:
- Lyme disease. Symptoms usually start 1 to 4 weeks after the tick bite, with up to 90% of people developing an expanding, circular red skin rash.
- Rocky Mountain spotted fever. Symptoms usually start 3 to 12 days (average of 7 days) after the tick bite.
- Tularemia. Symptoms usually start within 21 days (but average 1 to 10 days) after the tick bite or other exposure.
- Ehrlichiosis. Symptoms usually start from 1 to 21 days (average of 7 days) after the tick bite.
- Relapsing fever. Symptoms usually start 3 to 11 days (average of 6 days) after the tick bite.
- Colorado tick fever. Symptoms usually start within 14 days (average of 3 to 6 days) of the tick bite.
- Babesiosis. Symptoms usually start 1 to 6 weeks after the tick bite.
In some parts of the world, tick bites may cause other tick-borne diseases, such as South African tick-bite fever.
A doctor can evaluate the cause of your flu-like symptoms and recommend treatment.