Post-treatment Lyme disease (PTLD) or chronic Lyme disease is the name for a group of chronic symptoms that may occur after taking the antibiotic treatment for an acute episode of Lyme disease.  Ticks carry multiple bacterial pathogens in their saliva including Borrelia, the pathogen which causes Lyme disease.   They transmit these infections to humans by attaching themselves to the skin and mixing their saliva with human blood.  Doctors recommend a two-to-three-week course of antibiotics, which in most cases is enough to stop the symptoms of Lyme disease from causing chronic infections in various organs.  However, many individuals continue to suffer from muscle and joint pain, disordered sleep, cognitive impairment, and mood disorders for months to years after the acute stage.   FDA-approved blood tests for acute Lyme infections are most often negative at this stage of disease, making it difficult to determine if the spirochetes are the cause of these chronic symptoms.  A recent publication by Johns Hopkins University researchers concluded that PTLD exists and may be due to an autoimmune process rather than active Borrelia.