Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Cat-Scratch Disease

What is cat-scratch disease, and how do people get it?
Cat-scratch disease is an infection caused by bacteria (germs) carried in cat saliva. The bacteria can be passed from a cat to a human. Doctors and researchers think cats may get the bacteria from fleas, although this hasn't been proved.
You can get cat-scratch disease from a cat bite or cat scratch. You can get the infection after a cat scratches you if the cat's paws have the bacteria on them. (A cat can get the bacteria on its paws when it licks itself.) With a cat bite, the cat can pass the bacteria to you in its saliva. You can also get the bacteria in your eyes if you pet a cat that has the bacteria on its fur and then rub your eyes. Many people who get cat-scratch disease do not remember being scratched or bitten by a cat.
Cat-scratch disease is not a severe illness in people who are healthy. But it can be a problem in people with weak immune systems. People with weak immune systems include those who are receiving chemotherapy for cancer, those who have diabetes or those who have acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS).
LINK

2 comments:

Veery said...

Is ringworm also spread by cats? I think that is a virus...or is it the same thing? Or am I totally off base?

Bird Advocate said...

Yes Ma'am, Ringworm can be transmitted by cats along with several other diseases.
http://www.cdc.gov/nasd/docs/d000701-d000800/d000752/d000752.html