Oklahoma outdoorsman bitten by ticks last year, still dealing with extreme symptoms

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OKLAHOMA CITY – Wet weather is leading to tick trouble throughout Oklahoma.

One outdoorsman knows that too well. He suffered extreme symptoms after getting bit by the creatures.

Branden Thelander took two tick bites to his leg when he was out in tall grass. Now, a year later, he’s still suffering from it.

“It was very itchy,” Thelander said. “Just to have it explode like that, it just blew my mind.”

Two small but irritating tick bites slowly turned into something much worse.

“About two months later, I was getting kind of a clear, yellow liquid coming out, and then it just spread all through my legs and it got up on my arms,” Thelander said.

After multiple doctors appointments and a biopsy, doctors confirmed Thelander did not have Lyme disease.

But, the scabs still aren’t going away.

“It has been a stresser because they still don’t know yet what’s going on with it,” Thelander said.

Doctors put Thelander on intense steroid cream along with doing UV treatments three times a week, meaning he’s now extra sensitive to the sun.

“I have to wear long sleeves,” he said. “I’ve got a couple long sleeves, these pants that are UV protective and that gets expensive. They’re like $40-$50 a pop just for a pair of pants or shirt.”

As the weather starts to warm up, Thelander has a reminder for those who spend time outdoors: always check your body for the tiny critters so you don’t end up in his shoes.

“You’ve just got to be vigilant,” he said. “If you see something starting, go get it checked out. It can end up exploding into something that’s even worse than it originally would have been.”

And, the treatment doesn’t stop there.

Thelander said his next step is to try allergy patches. If that doesn’t work, he’ll see another doctor to undergo more tests.

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