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Rat-bite fever



Rat-bite fever
Classification & external resources
ICD-10 A25.
ICD-9 026
DiseasesDB 32803 30717
MeSH D011906

Rat-bite fever is an acute, febrile human illness caused by bacteria transmitted by rodents, rats in most cases, which is passed from rodent to human via the rodent's urine or mucous secretions.

Additional recommended knowledge

Contents

Causes

Two types of gram-negative facultatively anaerobic bacteria can cause the infection

Spirillosis

Rat-bite fever transmitted by the gram-negative spirochaete Spirillum minus is more rare, and is found most often in Asia. In Japan the disease is called Sodoku. Symptoms do not manifest for two to four weeks after exposure to the organism, and the wound through which it entered exhibits slow healing and marked inflammation. The fever lasts longer and is recurring, for months in some cases. Joint pain and gastrointestinal symptoms are less severe or are absent. Penicillin is the most common treatment.

Streptobacillosis

The Streptobacillosis form of rat-bite fever is known by the alternate names Haverhill Fever and epidemic arthritic erythema.

Treatment

Responds to penicillin antibiotics or where allergic to this erythromycin or tetracyclines for repectively streptobacillary or spirillary infections.

Prevention

Whilst obviously preventable by staying away from rodents, otherwise hands and face should be washed after contact and any scratches both cleaned and antiseptics applied.

 
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Rat-bite_fever". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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