Observations on African Tick Typhus (Tick-Bite Fever) in Zimbabwe
African tick typhus, caused by Rickettsia conori, affects humans throughout most of sub-Saharan Africa. Widely distributed in Zimbabwe, it is particularly prevalent in the southern lowveld, where numerous cases were seen in troops during the civil unrest of the late 1970s. Recent experiences of visitors to our Heartwater Research Station in this area have confirmed its continuing prevalence. In view of recent reports of severely debilitating and sometimes fatal infections with R. conori throughout its range, as well as a tendancy by local physicians to treat the infection inadequately, we briefly review the diagnosis, treatment and vectors of the disease in Zimbabwe.
KeywordsEurope Penicillin Tetracycline Erythromycin Kelly
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.
- Brezina R, Kazan J (1989) Ch. 5, Rickettsial diseases. In: Goldsmith R, Heyneman D (eds) Tropical medicine and medical parasitology. Appleton and Lange, E Norwalk, CT, USAGoogle Scholar
- Camicas J-L (1975) Conceptions actuelles sur l’épidémiologie de la Fièvre Boutonneuse dan la Région Ethiopienne et la Sous-Region Europeenne Méditerraneenne. Cah ORSTOM Ser Entomol Med Parasitol 13:229–232Google Scholar
- Gear JHS (1978) Tick-bite fever. S Afr J Hosp Med 4:45–49Google Scholar
- Hoogstraal H (1956) African Ixodoidea I. Ticks of the Sudan (with special reference to Equatoria Province and with preliminary reviews of the genera Boophilus, Margaropus and Hyalomma). Res Rep NM 005 050.29.07 U.S. Govt, Dept of the Navy, Bur Med Surg, Washington, DC, pp 1101Google Scholar
- Kucers A, Bennett NMcK (1981) The use of antibiotics. 3rd edn Wm. Heinemann Medical Books, London, pp 441, 624-625Google Scholar
- McDade JE, Wells DE, Brooks JB, Alley CC (1981) Gas-liquid chromatography of acute-phase serum as a technique for early diagnosis of rickettsial diseases. In: Burgdorfer W, Anacker RL (eds) Rickettsiae and Rickettsial Diseases. Academic Press, New York, pp 631–639Google Scholar
- Norval RAI (1983) The ticks of Zimbabwe. VII. The genus mblyomma. Zimbabwe Vet J 14:6–18Google Scholar