Journal Article

Spotless Rickettsiosis Caused by <i>Rickettsia slovaca</i> and Associated with <i>Dermacentor</i> Ticks

Didier Raoult, Andras Lakos, Florence Fenollar, Jean Beytout, Philippe Brouqui and Pierre-Edouard Fournier

in Clinical Infectious Diseases

Published on behalf of Infectious Diseases Society of America

Volume 34, issue 10, pages 1331-1336
Published in print May 2002 | ISSN: 1058-4838
Published online May 2002 | e-ISSN: 1537-6591 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/340100
Spotless Rickettsiosis Caused by Rickettsia slovaca and Associated with Dermacentor Ticks

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The pathogenic role of Rickettsia slovaca was first demonstrated in 1997 in a patient who presented with a single inoculation lesion of the scalp and enlarged cervical lymph nodes after receiving a bite from a Dermacentor tick. Subsequently, we evaluated the occurrence of R. slovaca infections among patients living in France and Hungary who presented with these symptoms. R. slovaca infections were confirmed by polymerase chain reaction (PCR) in 17 of 67 enrolled patients. Infections were most likely to occur in patients aged <10 years and in patients who were bitten during the colder months of the year. The median duration of incubation for the disease was 7 days. Fever was present in only 2 patients, and only 1 patient developed a rash. Sequelae included persistent asthenia (3 cases) and localized alopecia (4 cases). Immunofluorescence and/or Western blot analysis detected antibodies in 50% of tested patients. Three Dermacentor ticks obtained from patients revealed R. slovaca by PCR.

Journal Article.  3497 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Infectious Diseases ; Immunology ; Public Health and Epidemiology ; Microbiology

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