Tularemia – causes, side effects and treatments at NaturalPedia.com

Thursday, July 12, 2018 by

Tularemia refers to an infectious disease caused by the bacterium Francisella tularensis.

Both animals and humans can develop tularemia. Animals like hares, rabbits, and rodents are vulnerable to the disease, and they often die in droves during outbreaks. Meanwhile, humans may get infected via several routes, like:

  • Bioterrorism
  • Ingestion of contaminated water
  • Inhalation of contaminated aerosols or agricultural dust
  • Laboratory exposure
  • Skin contact with infected animals
  • Tick and deer fly bites

Except for Hawaii, naturally occurring infections have been reported from all states in the U.S.

Tularemia is also called rabbit fever.

Known side effects of tularemia

The side effects of tularemia often vary depending on the route of infection.

Side effects of ulceroglandular tularemia (infection through the skin) may include:

  • Chills
  • Fatigue
  • A fever
  • Severe headaches
  • A skin ulcer at the point of contact with an infected animal or at the site of a bite
  • Swollen lymph nodes near the skin ulcer (usually in the armpit or groin)

Side effects of glandular tularemia (an infection that also spreads through the skin) are the same for ulceroglandular tularemia; however, patients don’t develop a skin ulcer.

Side effects of oculoglandular tularemia (the eye is exposed to the bacteria) may include:

  • Discharge or redness of the eye
  • Eye irritation
  • Eye pain
  • Eye swelling
  • A sore on the inside of the eyelid
  • Swollen lymph glands behind the ear

Side effects of oropharyngeal tularemia (infection through ingestion of the bacteria) may include:

  • Diarrhea
  • A sore throat
  • Swollen lymph nodes in the neck
  • Tonsillitis/swollen tonsils
  • Ulcers in the mouth
  • Vomiting

Side effects of pneumonic tularemia (spreads through inhalation of the bacteria), the deadliest form of the disease, may include:

  • Chest pain
  • Difficulty breathing
  • A dry cough
  • A high fever

The side effects of typhoidal tularemia, the rarest form of the disease, may include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Extreme fatigue
  • A very high fever
  • Vomiting

Risk factors for tularemia may include:

  • Having frequent contact with animals that carry the bacteria that cause the disease.
  • Living in heavily forested areas.
  • Working closely with animals (e.g., park rangers, veterinarians, and zookeepers).
  • Working in gardening and landscaping.
  • Working with animal carcasses (e.g., butchers, hunters, and taxidermists).

Body systems harmed by tularemia

Tularemia may cause the following complications:

  • Bone infection
  • Chronic heart failure
  • Death
  • Meningitis/swelling of the membranes surrounding the brain and spinal cord
  • Pneumonia and an enlarged liver and spleen (caused by typhoidal tularemia)

Food items or nutrients that may prevent tularemia

The following foods or nutrients can help prevent tularemia or address its side effects:

  • Cardamom – Cardamom can help detoxify the body. It can also treat respiratory problems.
  • Commiphora mukulPatients with the disease can use Commiphora mukul for detoxification.
  • Triphala – Triphala can expel toxins and strengthen the immune system.

Treatments, management plans for tularemia

The types of tularemia may require different kinds of treatment that may vary depending on its form and severity.

Treatment options for the disease may include:

  • Antibiotics – Drugs used to treat tularemia include ciprofloxacin, doxycycline (Vibramycin), gentamicin (often used to treat oculoglandular tularemia), and streptomycin.
  • Medications – Medications may be prescribed for patients with a fever or headaches.
  • Surgery – Surgery may be required to drain swollen lymph nodes or to remove infected tissue from a skin ulcer.

To prevent tularemia:

  • Don’t mow over dead animals.
  • Wear gloves when handling sick or dead animals.

Where to learn more

Summary

Tularemia refers to an infectious disease caused by the bacterium Francisella tularensis.

The side effects of tularemia often vary depending on the route of infection.

Side effects of ulceroglandular tularemia (infection through the skin) may include chills, fatigue, a fever, and severe headaches.

Tularemia may cause complications like bone infection, chronic heart failure, or death.

Cardamom, Commiphora mukul, and triphala can help prevent tularemia or address its side effects.

The types of tularemia may require different kinds of treatment that may vary depending on its form and severity. Treatment options for the disease may include antibiotics, medications, and surgery.

Sources include:

CDC.gov

Healthline.com

MedicineNet.com

Herbpathy.com



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