Spain warns UK tourists 'two' new diseases are tearing through country

Spain is monitoring two new diseases spreading through the country after a rise in cases. Two dangerous diseases spread by blood-sucking ticks are on the rise in Spain, where the country's health authorities have now launched a new project to monitor the insects.

The Spanish health authorities have incorporated monitoring of the bugs into their National Plan for Surveillance and Control of Vector-borne Diseases. It comes after a rise in Lyme disease and Crimean-Congo haemorrhagic fever (CCHF) across the European Union holiday hotspot.

Lucia Garcia San Miguel, head of the Coordination Center for Health Alerts and Emergencies (CCAES), warned: "It is not an infection that is cured and that's it, but over the months, manifestations can continue to appear and it can cause serious and disabling sequelae for life, but it is extremely difficult to diagnose because there are no adequate methods."

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Discussing the 15 cases of CCHF, she warned: "We believe it will increase." On the NHS website, it warns of Lyme disease: "A circular or oval shape rash around a tick bite can be an early symptom of Lyme disease in some people.

"The rash can appear up to 3 months after being bitten by an infected tick, but usually appears within 1 to 4 weeks. It can last for several weeks." It adds: "The rash can have a darker or lighter area in the centre and might gradually spread. It's not usually hot or itchy.

"The rash may be flat, or slightly raised, and look pink, red, or purple when it appears on white skin. It can be harder to see the rash on brown and black skin and it may look like a bruise." Symptoms include a high temperature, or feeling hot and shivery and headache.

Other signs are muscle and joint pain and also tiredness and loss of energy.