The National Academies

The National Academies: What You Need To Know About Infectious Disease

What You Need To Know About Infectious Disease

Critical Needs and Gaps in Understanding Prevention, Amelioration, and Resolution of Lyme and Other Tick-Borne Diseases: The Short-Term and Long-Term Outcomes— Workshop Report (2011)

A single tick bite can have debilitating consequences. Lyme disease is the most common disease carried by ticks in the United States, and the number of those afflicted is growing steadily. If left untreated, the diseases carried by ticks—known as tick-borne diseases—can cause severe pain, fatigue, neurological problems, and other serious health problems. This publication summarizes the discussion at a workshop convened by the Institute of Medicine on October 11-12, 2010, to examine the state of the science in Lyme disease and other tick-borne diseases.

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What do you know about infectious disease?

True or False: Thimerosal, a mercury-containing preservative that was used in some vaccines and other products, has been shown to present a risk to human health.

  • Sorry, that’s incorrect.

    The use of thimerosal has been an object of controversy, with some arguing that the substance caused autism in children. However, extensive independent research has presented no convincing evidence of harm associated with the low levels of thimerosal previously present in vaccines.

  • Correct!

    The use of thimerosal has been an object of controversy, with some arguing that the substance caused autism in children. However, extensive independent research has presented no convincing evidence of harm associated with the low levels of thimerosal previously present in vaccines.