Tularemia.  Photo from www.logicalimages.com

What is it?

Tularemia — natural focal an infectious disease affecting the lymph nodes, skin, and sometimes the eyes, throat and lungs, accompanied by severe intoxication.

This infection is widespread in Europe, Asia and North America. In the Russian Federation there are a large number of outbreaks.

The causative agent of tularemia — a bacterium fransisella (Francisella tularensis). It is quite stable in the environment, but is killed by boiling over 1-2 minutes. The main source of infection — rodents (muskrat, rats, mice, ground squirrels, rabbits). Quite often infected by hunters, farmers, clicker mechanics, butchers — by contact with infected animals, when butchering.

Sources of infection

Carriers of tularemia are blood-sucking insects, the agent can also penetrate through intact skin or through the lungs — inhalation of dust, perhaps the massive spread through poorly cooked food and contaminated water — which is why tularemia is considered as a possible biological weapon. Sick man of danger to others is not, although the susceptibility of people to this infection is very high.

What way?

The clinical form of the disease depends on the penetration. The incubation period — from 1 to 30 days (most 3-7 days).

The disease usually begins acutely with headache, nausea, vomiting, body temperature rises rapidly to39-40° C, there is a fever. Skin of the face and neck is red, engorged blood vessels of the conjunctiva. Rash, which by8 to 12 mu day of illness shelled, after it can remain pigmentation of the skin.

Later, there are more specific lesion, depending on the penetration of the agent:

  • Bubonic form occurs if the introduction of microbes occurred through the skin. Increases nearby lymph nodes (buboes in the form), later in the process may be involved and the remote sites.
  • Ulceroglandular form usually develops during infection from an insect bite. In addition to the bubo at the bite appears shallow ulcer with raised edges, covered with a dark crust on the bottom.
  • Eye-bubonic form — the penetration of the pathogen through the conjunctiva. Characterized by erosion and ulceration of the conjunctiva with the separation of yellow pus buboes nearby lymph nodes.
  • Anginal-bubonic form — in the use of contaminated water and food. Occurs in the form of severe tonsillitis with necrosis of the tonsils, bubonic in the submandibular, cervical and parotid areas.
  • Abdominal form develops as a result of the mesenteric lymph vessels. Manifested severe abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, and sometimes — diarrhea.
  • Pulmonary form occurs by inhalation of the pathogen. May be affected lymph nodes of the trachea, bronchus and mediastinum (the lighter version), or developing lobular pneumonia (runs pretty hard and has a tendency to develop complications).
  • Generalised shape resembles severe sepsis. Expressed intoxication symptoms: severe fever, fatigue, chills, and headache. You may experience confusion, delirium, hallucinations. Perhaps the emergence of resistant rash all over the body, bubonic different locations, pneumonia. This form can be complicated infektsonno-toxic shock.


Diagnosis of tularemia in the early days of the disease is quite difficult. Help your doctor may mention of contact with rodents, etc. Clarify the diagnosis by detecting serum antibodies to the pathogen andSkin and allergic samples with tulyarinom. Valuable method of diagnosis is PCR (polymerase chain reaction).

Tularemia is treated in a hospital infection. The main component of treatment — antibiotics, which are used long course. Also conduct detoxifying and anti-inflammatory therapy, if necessary support functions of internal organs.

Large abscesses arising from the festering lymph nodes, opened and drained.

Mortality in the absence of appropriate treatment is 6%, with death occurring as a result of the generalization of infection. I had been ill with tularemia is proof lifelong immunity.

Prevention of the disease in endemic areas reduced to rodent control. If the animal is detected tularemia, people carry out preventive vaccination.

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