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Rare disease
‘Biting the hand that feeds’: fever and altered sensorium following a dog bite
  1. Joseph Hawkins1,
  2. Ann Wilson2,
  3. Eric McWilliams3
  1. 1Department of Internal Medicine, Conquest Hospital, St Leonards-on-Sea, East Sussex, UK
  2. 2Department of Microbiology, Conquest Hospital, St Leonards-on-Sea, East Sussex, UK
  3. 3Department of Cardiology, Conquest Hospital, St Leonards-on-Sea, East Sussex, UK
  1. Correspondence to Eric McWilliams, eric.mcwilliams{at}esht.nhs.uk

Abstract

Capnocytophaga canimorsus infection is the most severe and rapidly progressive bacterial infection transmitted by dog bite and fortunately is very rare. The authors describe a 68-year-old gentleman who presented in an acute confusional state 2 days after having been bitten on the left hand by a dog. Despite immediate broad-spectrum intravenous antibiotics, he developed significant sequelae including disseminated intravascular coagulopathy, microvascular emboli leading to peripheral necrosis, widespread local tissue destruction and septic arthritis.

Our case illustrates a life-threatening presentation of infection with C canimorsus, which is known as ‘the dog bite organism’. Early diagnosis and aggressive treatment is key to survival.

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Footnotes

  • This is a reprint of a paper that first appeared in BMJ Case Reports, BMJ Case Reports 2011; doi:10.1136/bcr.08.2010.3265.

  • Competing interests None.

  • Patient consent Obtained.

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