Southern Tick-Associated Rash Illness (STARI)
February 8, 2016
Southern tick-associated rash illness (STARI) is carried by the lone star tick and was not recognized as separate from Lyme disease until the 1990s. However, doctors have been recording patients with this ‘Lyme-like’ disease since the 1980s. STARI is predominately found in the South Central and Southeastern United States. It was discovered by a doctor in Missouri, Edwin Masters, and is sometimes referred to as Master’s disease.
The main sign of this illness is the presence of a Lyme-like bull’s eye rash around the site of the tick bite. However, little is known about STARI, so it should not be assumed that every case will present with an obvious rash. Other symptoms of STARI include: fatigue, muscle pain, headache, stiff neck and sometimes fever. Acute symptoms appear to respond to the antibiotic doxycycline.