Forensic Sci Med Pathol. 2011 Jan 30; [Epub ahead of print]
Fatal human monocytic ehrlichiosis: a case study.
Pavelites JJ, Prahlow JA.
Transitional Year Program, GME Office, Dwight D. Eisenhower Army Medical Center,
Building 300, Hospital Road, Ft. Gordon, GA, 30905, USA,
Human ehrlichiosis is the term for a collection of tick-borne diseases caused
primarily by obligate intracellular bacteria of the Ehrlichia species.
Ehrlichiosis is characterized by a mild to severe illness, with approximately
3-5% of cases proving fatal despite receiving appropriate care. This report
presents the case of a 60 year-old woman who was found collapsed and
unresponsive in her home after an indeterminate time; possibly for up to 48 h.
Despite rigorous resuscitative care and antibiotic treatment, the patient lapsed
into multi-organ failure and died. Subsequent analysis by microscopic
examination, PCR and immunohistochemistry revealed the patient died from an
infection of Ehrlichia chaffeensis. Clinicians and pathologists must be aware of
this emergent disease in order to make a timely and appropriate diagnosis.
Discussion of the patient's clinical, laboratory and autopsy findings as well as
treatment of Ehrlichia chaffeensis infections is presented.
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PMID: 21279705 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]