In order to evaluate the presence of specific IgG antibodies to Borrelia burgdorferi in patients with clinical manifestations associated with Lyme borreliosis in Cali, Colombia, 20 serum samples from patients with dermatologic signs, one cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) sample from a patient with chronic neurologic and arthritic manifestations, and twelve serum samples from individuals without clinical signs associated with Lyme borreliosis were analyzed by IgG Western blot. The results were interpreted following the recommendations of the Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention (CDC) for IgG Western blots. Four samples fulfilled the CDC criteria: two serum specimens from patients with morphea (localized scleroderma), the CSF from the patient with neurologic and arthritic manifestations, and one of the controls. Interpretation of positive serology for Lyme disease in non-endemic countries must be cautious. However these results suggest that the putative "Lyme-like" disease may correlate with positivity on Western blots, thus raising the possibility that a spirochete genospecies distinct from B. burgdorferi sensu stricto, or a Borrelia species other than B. burgdorferi sensu lato is the causative agent. Future work will focus on a survey of the local tick and rodent population for evidence of spirochete species that could be incriminated as the etiologic agent.
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