KHQ MD ALERT: Rat Bite Fever Identified Locally
KHQ.COM - Rat Bite Fever has been confirmed in a few Chelan and Douglas County residents and possibly in a Grant County resident who may have been exposed. Rat bite fever is a bacterial disease carried by rats and is part of the normal flora of their mouth and nose. Other animals such as mice, gerbils, ferrets, squirrels, cats, especially feral cats and dogs can get infected, and may or may not get sick with rat bite fever, but they may also spread it.
Prevention activities include eliminating contact with rodents. There is no known person to person transmission, and it is more commonly seen in children. A bite, scratch, droppings or urine from an infected rodent can transmit the disease.
Any food items potentially contaminated by rodents or their droppings should be thrown away. Contaminated water sources and unpasteurized milk have also been considered possible health risks for rat bite fever.
Illness develops within 3 weeks of the exposure. Initial symptoms include fever, muscle aches, joint pain, headache, nausea, and vomiting and many patients develop a rash on their hands and feet 1 to 5 days after having a fever. Unlike influenza there is no cough associated with the illness and it is easily treated with antibiotics.
If you have had contact with rodents or other animals that have contact with rodents, and you have symptoms of the illness, see your medical provider. Health Districts in Chelan, Douglas and Grant Counties have made the health care community aware of this illness and asked them to monitor clients for more suspect cases of rat bite fever, a relatively rare disease.
Protecting your food by placing items in sealed plastic containers and trapping rodents inside and out will help eliminate the threat of this disease.
Wear protective gloves when trapping or handling rodents or cleaning rodent cages. Avoid touching your mouth with your hands and wash your hands often. Steel wool is an excellent plug for those small places that allow rodents to enter your home.
Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>
New York State illegally moving convicted sex offenders from prisons into group homes with the developmentally disabledThree State agencies are involved in placing convicted sex offenders in group homes or hiding this information from the families and the general public>>
STEVENS COUNTY, Wash. - It's been nearly two years since anyone has seen or heard from Paul Brazeau. He was last seen at his son's wedding. His brokenhearted family reached out to KHQ's Hayley Guenthner with a letter asking for his case to be featured in our Q6 Cold Case series. The day Paul vanished started out so wonderful. "It was a happy day," said Paul's aunt Georgine Glatt.>>
LAKEWOOD, N.J. - Authorities say a baby girl found crawling across a busy New Jersey street was unharmed after a neighbor and passing motorist came to her aid. The child was spotted around 5 p.m. Saturday in Lakewood, in southern New Jersey. The motorist, 41-year-old Cory Cannon of Eatontown, told the Asbury Park Press he saw the girl on Joe Parker Road and initially thought she was a toy.>>
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - The Alaska Department of Law stood by a judge’s sentence that calls for no jail time for an Anchorage man who authorities say offered a woman a ride and choked her until she was unconscious. Justin Schneider, 34, pleaded guilty to one count of felony assault in the case. A kidnapping charge was dropped as part of the plea deal.>>
BLADENBORO, N.C. (AP) - A woman who took in more than two dozen dogs and cats during Hurricane Florence has been charged with practicing veterinary medicine without a license. Tammie Hedges, founder of Crazy's Claws N Paws animal rescue, was arrested Friday after 27 dogs and cats were confiscated from a temporary shelter.>>
A massive freight train derailment near Alton, Iowa leaves dozens of rail-cars mangled across a collapsed railroad bridge. About 37 cars of a Union Pacific train derailed Sunday, sending about 20 of them into the Floyd River below and destroying the bridge. The train was carrying industrial sand and soybean oil to the North Platte, Nebraska when the accident occurred. No one was injured in the derailment.>>