Arthritis of the large joints is considered a typical manifestation of
Lyme disease. With an estimated incidence in the population of about 2%,
Lyme disease arthritis would be expected to be a fairly common diagnosis in a rheumatology unit.
In 153 successive patients seen in a rheumatology clinic of the University Hospital Frankfurt am Main, who had historical or clinical evidence of arthritis, the IgG antibody titers against Borrelia burgdorferi in the serum were compared with the clinical presentation.
Twelve patients had positive or borderline positive antibodies titers. In three of the 153 patients, the diagnosis of
Lyme disease-associated arthritis appears possible, although not probable.
At least in the greater area of Frankfurt,
Lyme disease as a differential diagnosis of arthritis is apparently of no great significance.