Pediatric Lyme arthritis: clinical spectrum and outcome

J Pediatr Orthop. Mar-Apr 1994;14(2):238-41. doi: 10.1097/01241398-199403000-00020.


A cohort of children with Lyme arthritis was used to evaluate the clinical and serologic profile of the disease. During a 42-month period (June 1989 to December 1991), 44 patients (13 girls and 31 boys, ages 4-18 years) were included and followed for 6-36 months. Inclusion required the presence of arthritis, as well as positive serology. Thirty-four children with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis or spondyloarthropathy were used as a serologic comparison group. Five different patterns of arthritis were found. Preceding erythema migrans was seen in seven children. Antinuclear antibodies were positive in 30% of the patients. Three treatments were used and selected according to physician preference, patient age, and presence of extraarticular disease: amoxicillin, doxycycline, and ceftriaxone. Articular disease reached complete resolution in all patients within 2-12 weeks. Lyme arthritis in children may mimic other pediatric arthritides. Prognosis for children with clearly defined Lyme arthritis was excellent.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use
  • Arthritis, Infectious / drug therapy
  • Arthritis, Infectious / immunology*
  • Arthritis, Infectious / physiopathology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Lyme Disease / drug therapy
  • Lyme Disease / immunology*
  • Lyme Disease / physiopathology
  • Male
  • Serologic Tests


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents