Colorado Tick Fever

Colorado tick fever is an acute viral infection transmitted by the bite of the Dermacentor andersoni tick (Figure 16-10). The disease is limited to the western United States and is most prevalent from March to September. Symptoms start about 3 to 6 days after the tick bite. Fever continues for 3 days, stops, and then recurs 1 to 3 days later for another few days. Other symptoms include excessive sweating, muscle aches, joint stiffness, headache, photophobia, nausea, vomiting, weakness, and an occasional faint rash. Routine blood tests might show a low WBC count, mildly elevated liver function, and mildly elevated creatine phosphokinase (CPK). Diagnosis is confirmed by testing blood for complement fixation immu-nofluorescent antibody staining to Colorado tick virus. Treatment is removal of the tick and treatment of symptoms.

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