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J Commun Dis. 2002 Dec;34(4):287-301.

Human brucellosis: review of an under-diagnosed animal transmitted disease.

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College of Veterinary Sciences, G.B.P.U.A. and T., Pantnagar, Uttaranchal.


Human brucellosis is an important animal transmitted disease of man. Although, the cases have been recorded all over the world, the prevalence is higher in developing countries. Lack of sufficient knowledge about the disease among the physicians, its under-diagnosis or misdiagnosis and absence of effective prevention and management strategies are attributed to the widespread of the disease. Increase in the occurrence of animal brucellosis has also resulted indirectly in an increase in the prevalence of human infection. Absence of characteristic clinical symptoms, chronic nature of the infection and difficulty in isolation of the causal agent from the patients make the diagnosis of the disease more difficult. The serological tests employed for diagnosing human brucellosis vary in terms of their sensitivity and specificity. Therefore, a combination of serological tests is desirable. Currently no vaccine is available against human brucellosis, which could check the spread of the disease effectively. It is suggested that clinicians investigate the cases of pyrexia of unknown origin (PUO) for brucellosis. It is desirable that specimens from cases of tuberculosis, typhoid, rheumatoid arthritis, urogenital infections, kala-azar, cirrhosis, bacterial endocarditis, leukemia and filariasis should also be screened for brucellosis in man. The cases of meningitis of unestablished etiology as the cases of human brucellosis are often misdiagnosed as cases of typhoid or tuberculosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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