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Laryngorhinootologie. 1996 Jul;75(7):403-7.

[Cat scratch disease. An overview for the ENT physician].

[Article in German]

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  • 1Klinik und Poliklinik für Hals-, Nasen- und Ohrenkranke der Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München.



Cat scratch disease (CSD) is a relatively common cause of chronic lymphadenopathy in the USA. In the present paper the authors describe recent advances in the understanding of this disorder focusing on etiology, clinical aspects, diagnostic management, and therapy.


Rochalimaea henselae and Afipia felis, two gram-negative bacteria, have recently been isolated from lymph node tissue of patients suffering from CSD. The current literature reveals that Rochalimaea henselae seems to be the most probable agent responsible for CSD. Serum samples from CSD patients' cats have shown titers of 1:64 or higher for antibodies to Rochallmaea henselae.


The incidence of CSD in the USA is between 0.77 and 9.3 per 100,000 per year. The incidence of CSD in Europe is unknown, but the prevalence of antibodies to Rochalimaea henselae among cats is comparable.


Most common symptoms of CSD are regional lymphadenopathy, fever, and malaise. Other manifestations occur in about 5% of patients and include encephalitis, granulomatous hepatitis, and Parinaud's oculoglandular syndrome. Fatal complications and irreversible sequelae have not been reported.


To establish the diagnosis of CSD, the presence of regional lymphadenopathy, cat contact, and papula are required. Additional procedures include indirect fluorescent antibody assays and PCR.


Up to now there is no standard therapy for CSD. Antibiotic treatment, however, might be considered for CSD patients with severe symptoms. Rifampicin, ciprofloxacin, trimethoprim sulfamethoxazole, and gentamicin are known to be effective antibiotic agents.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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