Background: We compared epidemiological and clinical characteristics of patients with erythema migrans (EM) caused by Borrelia afzelii and Borrelia garinii.
Patients and methods: 200 consecutive adult patients with B. afzelii isolated from the skin lesion and 53 consecutive adult patients with EM caused by B. garinii qualified for the present study.
Results: Comparison of the two groups revealed several distinctions. Patients with EM caused by B. garinii were older, had their skin lesions more often located on the trunk but less often on extremities, had shorter incubation and faster evolution of EM, more often reported associated local and certain systemic symptoms, had abnormal liver function test results more often and were more frequently seropositive.
Conclusion: Early localized Lyme borreliosis caused by B. afzelii and B. garinii has distinct epidemiological and clinical characteristics. Clinical features of EM depend upon the genospecies of Borrelia burgdorferi sensu lato causing the illness.