Indian Journal of Microbiology Research

Innovative Education and Scientific Research Foundation

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Registered Under Government of India NGO – Indian Trust Act 1882

Prevalence of rickettsial infections in a tertiary care centre

Article : Open access

Article type : Research Article

Volume : 7

Issue : 1

Year : 2020

Author : Akshatha P, J Vijayalakshmi

Page no : 6-9

Abstract : Introduction: Rickettsial infections are the most covert re-emerging infections of the present times. They are considered one of the important causes of Pyrexia of Unknown origin (PUO). They are often under diagnosed due to low index of suspicion, nonspecific signs and symptoms and absence of widely available sensitive and specific diagnostic tests. These diseases have a high mortality, which can be averted if diagnosed and treated early. Weil- Felix test is the cheapest and widely used test for diagnosis in India. Aim: The present study was undertaken with the objective of evaluating the patients with Febrile illness, for rickettsial infection using Weil- Felix test and study their demographic and clinical profile. Materials and Methods: Weil-Felix test was done on serum samples of 120 patients with fever since 7-10 days, from October 2017 to October 2019 and evaluated for Rickettsial infection. Detailed history, signs, symptoms were recorded. Results: Out the 120 patients, 25 showed a titre of >1:80 in OX2, OX19 and 5 cases showed titre of >1:160 in OX K. The disease was more common in children and in the cooler months. Fever, rash, headache, vomiting and pain abdomen were common symptoms. Most common signs were rash (27 cases) and conjunctival congestion (19 cases). Conclusion: Though the sensitivity and specificity of Weil-Felix test is low, it is done even today as it is the most convenient and economical test available for the diagnosis of Rickettsial infections. Prevalence of Rickettsial diseases is significant in this region and greater clinical awareness in the differential diagnosis of fevers is required for early diagnosis and treatment. Keywords: Rickettsial infection, PUO, Weil Felix test, Doxycycline.