|Photo by Daniel-Gasienica|
So Google thinks that cat scratch disease in San Francisco, from a scientific point of view, is the most important piece of information that people are searching for. I doubt that, to be honest, but it is fun to see what Google comes up with.
The study, which was conducted in 1994 came to the conclusion that four patients who were diagnosed with a bacterial infection due to cat scratch disease had prolonged contact with 7 pet cats.
The species of bacteria called Rochalimaea henselae (R henselae) caused cat scratch lesions in these patients. A “lesion" is a break the skin in effect. It is an abnormality in the skin.
The 7 cats concerned were found to have the bacteria, which causes cat scratch fever, in their blood. This is called "bacteremic with R henselae".
The bacteria was also detected in fleas taken from an infected cat. R henselae was found in 41% of pet and impounded cats in the Greater San Francisco Bay Region.
The study concluded that the domestic cat serves as a major persistent reservoir for the bacteria that causes cat scratch disease and these cats have the bacteria in their blood but have no symptoms themselves that might be caused by the bacteria. These cats are asymptomatic.
The scientists also concluded that immunocompromised individuals, meaning people with HIV, may become seriously infected with this disease if they are unfortunate enough to be scratched or bitten by a cat carrying this bacteria.
They suggested that treatment of infected cats with antibiotics together with a control of the cat flea are “potential strategies for decreasing human exposure to R henselae".
Well there you are, for what it is worth. The study is stating what we now already know that if you get scratched or bitten by a cat you may acquire cat scratch disease which is also called cat scratch fever. The answer is to avoid being bitten or scratched and that is in the hands of the person involved.
There is never a reason to be scratched or bitten if one is sufficiently careful and observant and knowledgeable about cat behaviour.
Abstract and study summary.