Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever

rocky mountain spotted fever

Tick borne disease: Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever

Also known as: Blue disease, Tobia fever, Brazilian spotted fever, Sao Paulo fever, new world spotted fever, tick- borne typhus fever

Disease Agent: Rickettsia rickettsii

Infectious Bite Time: A tick infected with Rocky Mountain spotted fever usually needs to remain attached to you and feeding for 20 or more hours for disease transmission to occur.  

Incubation Period: the onset of impacts from Rocky Mountain spotted fever will begin 2 to 14 days after infection

Common Signs and Symptoms: Rocky Mountain spotted fever symptoms include a signature high fever (102 degrees or more), headache, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, muscle pain, joint pain, eye redness, and confusion. Rocky Mountain spotted fever also often presents a rash, one of the signature symptoms, the rash will begin 3 to 5 days after you have been infected. The rash is very distinctive and does not itch, it often begins near your ankles or wrists, then spreading outward. 80 percent or more of people infected with Rocky Mountain spotted fever will develop a rash. The visual appearance of the rash is that of a swath of small red dots.

Serious Complications: inflammation of the brain, kidney failure, inflammation of the heart, inflammation of the lungs, gangrene, amputation, enlargement of the heart, enlargement of the liver, death. Roughly 5 % of individuals infected with Rocky Mountain spotted fever will develop gangrene or skin necrosis, prompting amputation.

Treatment Options: Health care options may be available, antibiotics can help. Doxycycline is one antibiotic that has been used to treat Rocky Mountain spotted fever. If you believe you have contracted Rocky Mountain spotted fever consult a medical professional, early diagnosis is essential to preventing serious complications, delaying treatment can make a bad situation worse, resulting in escalated symptom severity or even death.

Notes: Rocky Mountain spotted fever is a serious and potentially life-threatening condition; it is widely recognized as one of the worst tick-borne diseases in the United States. The elderly and those with weakened immune systems may be at a higher risk for serious complications from this disease. Rocky Mountain spotted fever is a national problem and cases have been reported coast to coast, states with above average instances of Rocky Mountain spotted fever include North Carolina, Oklahoma, Missouri, Tennessee, and Arkansas. Rocky Mountain spotted fever also occurs in Canada, Mexico, Central America, and South America. You cannot simply look at a tick and determine if it is infected with Rocky Mountain spotted fever, if a tick is attached to you learn how to remove a tick and keep the tick, it can be tested for Rocky Mountain spotted fever. Use Tick Proof to prevent future attacks.

What ticks transmit Rocky Mountain spotted fever? American dog tick, Brown dog tick, Rocky Mountain wood tick, Cayenne tick

Primary Vector: With this tick-borne disease, the primary vector depends on geography. The American dog tick is the primary vector in the Eastern, Central, and Western United States. The Rocky Mountain wood tick is the primary vector in the Rocky Mountain states, and the Brown dog tick is the primary vector in the Southwestern United States and along the Mexican border.

Number of infections per year, United States: 3000+

The Rocky Mountain wood tick (below) transmits Rocky Mountain spotted fever.