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Pahrump Mirror
Pahrump, Nevada
June 26, 1997     Pahrump Mirror
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June 26, 1997

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Outdoors / Operation Game Thief: 1-800-992-3030 Operation Cal- Tip: 1.800.952-5400 PahrumpValley Gazette, Thursday, June 26, 1997 27. iq ) I Lyme disease haunts Southern Nevada by Ed Tomchin This summer it is time to be a little bit more careful when hiking or camping at Mt. Charleston or anywhere in the Spring Mountain range. The Western Black-legged tick is natural to the area, and is a carrier of Lyme disease, a potentially fatal bacterial illness if untreated. This past April, a 25 year old Las Vegas mother made a day trip to Mt. Charleston for the first time and came home with an ailment that she'll remember for the rest of her life. About a month after her visit she began to experience numbness in her right arm, face and leg. Stumping doctors at Las Vegas hospitals, the woman was referred to Dr. John Witt, M.D., chief neurologist at Nellis Air Force base, who ran various tests and blood screenings. The woman was eventually diagnosed with Lyme disease. Fortunately, it was caught early enough that daily antibiotic therapy is slowly reversing the diseases progress. HISTORY: The bacterial disease was first discovered in 1975 near a small Northeastern town of Lyme, Connecticut, which reluctantly gave its name to the disease. Since then the disease has spread throughout New England, and began a march across the country. California and Oregon have had quite a few cases in recent years. Since 1992 there have been 17 cases in Nevada, 13 of which have appeared Nye and Clark County. Pahrump reported its first case of Lyme disease in 1996. Ordinarily this small number of cases would nbt be cause for alarm, except that the incidence of Lyme disease has increased 41 percent in 45 states in the last year. It appears to be spreading rapidly. Neither Clark County's Health Department nor the State of Nevada's Health Division have no program for public awareness of the disease. It therefore falls to the Gazette to bring awareness to the public. Clark County Health Department's environmental health super- visor, Lon Empey, said that Lyme disease is a nationwide ailment and residents should get their information from national sources. This does not appear to be a valid response to the recent increase in cases of Lyme disease in Nevada. The source or origin of Lyme disease is not known, but it is carried by the deer tick in the east and by the Western Black-legged tick in the west. Lyme disease is usually transmitted by the tick in summer and early fall. It is characterized by an early skin lesion which may be followed weeks to months later by neurologic, cardiac or joint abnormalities. SYMPTOMS & TREATMENT: The most common symptom of Lyme disease is the development of arthritis (85 percent of the cases.) Arthritis can occur from within a month up to two years following initial infection. Other early symptoms can include numbness, swelling and pain in the limbs and joints. Treatment is generally a regimen of antibiotics such as penicillin and almost always results in ncure. Untreated, Lyme disease can cause permanent injury and even death. Other symptoms include meningitis and other neurologic disabilities. PREVENTION: The tick is so tiny that its attack easily goes unnoticed until it is too late. If you are planning on going for an outing in the Spring Mountains this summer or fall, it is recom- mended you check frequently for ticks, especially around the scalp, arm and leg joints, underarms, neck, waist and groin areas. Tick bites are characterized by burying of the head of the tick in your skin, where it gorges itself on your blood until it falls off. You do not want to wait out this procedure, but rather remove the tick immediately Current recommended procedure to remove ticks according to a spokesperson at Summit Family Healthcare is to use pencil sharp tipped tweez: s. Place the tweezer tips around the tick as close as possible to th, head and pull gently but firmly straight out. Pulling too hard ma/break the head of the tick off. If the head is broken off and left in the skin, it should be removed like a splinter. Clean the area with antiseptic. If you are not sure you have removed the entire tick, see your physician. Once removed, capture the tick and place it in a container and seek medical attention within a reasonable time. The tick can be analyzed to see if it carries Lyme disease. DOGS: The Western Black-legged tick also attacks dogs and because of the animal's thick hair it is almost impossible to find. The tick, when gorged on the animal's blood, may be able to transfer to a human hose. Fortunately, Connaught Laboratories (Pennsylvania) has produced a canine vaccine which can immunize your dog from the disease. A human vaccine is expected to be on the market within the next year. In the meantime, be careful. With only thirteen cases in Southern Nevada, the odds 'are with you, but don't take chances. Fishing Report by Geoff Schneider Nevada Division of Wildlife LAKE MEAD -Anglers are generally having a fairly difficult time locating stripers once they are found the fish have been reluctant to bite. Stripers have been seen slurping threadfin shad on the surface of the lake. Shad are the primary forage fish for stripers in the lake. One of the few locations that has been fairly consistent for stripers has been the water intake tower outside of Lake Mead Marina. Fish are being caught ne--ar the tower at night with cut anchovies. Boaters looking for stripers may want to work the area from Pyramid Island to the Hemenway Wall, There have been reports of stripers being caught at Burro Point, S wallow Cove, Saddle Island and Black Island. Several anglersreportedly had good success forbluegilt in Kingman Wash. Flies and worms are both productive baits for the small fish. LAKE MOHAVE-- Striped bass fishing continues to be poor in the Willow Beach area but good for small fish around Cottonwood Cove. Some of the better action for stripers is taking place in the narrows above Cottonwood. Other areas that have  goodinclude Six Mile Cove, Nevada Bay and Owl's PoinL Stripers in the 18-inch range are being caught by trolling anchovies with lead line. Bo,[ters who are drifting anchovies are catching smaller fish. WAYNE E. KIRCH WILDLIFE MANAGEMENT AREA - - Anglers are having excellen success for largemouth bass at Adams- McGill Reservoir. Spinner baits, flies and lures worked near the surface are taking the fish. Trout fishing is still fair at Haymeadow Reservoir. The fishing at Cold Springs Reservoir is difficult because of a large amount of vegetation growing in the lake. EAGLE VALL/" RESERVOIR-- Anglers  having mixed results for rainbow trout at the lake. Several said they had good success by fly fishing  float tubes while other fishermen had very little action. Weed growth in the lake is snarling hooks and causing some frustrations for those fhing from shore. Boaters are generally able to avoid this problem. ECHO CANYON RFERVOIR,- Fishing has generally been poor for rainbow trou largemouth bas and crappie. SCHROEDER RESERVOIR .- Rainbow trout fishing is still slow, despite  occasional fish in the 10-inch range being taken.