Trench fever

A disease borne by body lice that was first recognized in the trenches of World War I, when it is estimated to have affected more than a million people in Russia and on the fronts in Europe. Trench fever was again a major problem in the military in World War II and is seen endemically in Mexico, Africa, E. Europe, and elsewhere. Urban trench fever occurs among the homeless people and people with alcoholism today. Outbreaks have been documented, for example, in Seattle, Baltimore (among injection-drug users), Marseilles (France) and Burundi. The cause of trench fever is Bartonella quintana (also called Rochalimaea quintana), an unusual rickettsial organism that multiplies in the gut of the body louse. Transmission of the rickettsia to people can occur by rubbing infected louse feces into abraded (scuffed) skin or into the conjunctivae (whites of the eyes). The disease is classically a 5-day fever. The onset of symptoms is sudden with high fever, severe headache, back pain and leg pain and a fleeting rash. Recovery takes a month or more. Relapses are common. It is now clear, that at least in its urban form among the homeless, trench fever can be associated with nonspecific symptoms or no symptoms (New England Journal of Medicine 340: 184-189, 1999). The organism (B. quintana) that causes trench fever also has been found responsible for a disease called bacillary angiomatosis in people infected with HIV and for infection of the heart and great vessels (endocarditis) with bloodstream infection. Trench fever is also called Wolhynia fever, shin bone fever, quintan fever, five-day fever, Meuse fever, His’ disease, His-Werner disease, Werner-His disease.

* * *

trench fever 'trench- n a disease that is usu. marked by fever and pain in muscles, bones, and joints and that is caused by a bacterium (Bartonella quintana syn. Rochalimaea quintana) transmitted by the human body louse (Pediculus humanus humanus)

* * *

a self-limited rickettsial disease due to Bartonella quintana, transmitted by the body louse, Pediculus humanus humanus, characterized by intermittent fever, pain at various sites, especially the shins, chills, sweating, vertigo, malaise, typhuslike rash, and multiple relapses. It was first recognized during trench warfare in World War I, and was found to be endemic in Mexico, North Africa, Eastern Europe, and parts of Asia. Called also quintan, or shin bone f.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • trench fever — n. [from its prevalence among soldiers in the trenches in WWI] an infectious disease caused by a rickettsia (Rochalimaea quintana) transmitted by body lice, characterized by a remittent fever, muscular pains, etc …   English World dictionary

  • Trench fever — Infobox Disease Name = PAGENAME Caption = DiseasesDB = 29814 ICD10 = ICD10|A|79|0|a|75 ICD9 = ICD9|083.1 ICDO = OMIM = MedlinePlus = eMedicineSubj = med eMedicineTopic = 2303 MeshID = D014205 Trench fever is a moderately serious disease… …   Wikipedia

  • trench fever — Pathol. a recurrent fever, often suffered by soldiers in trenches in World War I, caused by a rickettsia transmitted by the body louse. [1910 15] * * * ▪ disease       infectious disease characterized by sudden onset with fever; headache; sore… …   Universalium

  • trench fever — noun marked by pain in muscles and joints and transmitted by lice • Hypernyms: ↑rickettsial disease, ↑rickettsiosis * * * ˈtrench fever 7 [trench fever] noun …   Useful english dictionary

  • trench fever — trench′ fe ver n. pat a recurrent fever and pain in the muscles and joints caused by a rickettsia transmitted by the body louse • Etymology: 1915–20 …   From formal English to slang

  • trench fever — fever spread by body lice that was common in World War I soldier who fought in trenches …   English contemporary dictionary

  • trench fever — /trɛntʃ ˈfivə/ (say trench feevuh) noun a recurrent fever, often suffered by soldiers in trenches in World War I, caused by a rickettsia transmitted by lice …   Australian English dictionary

  • trench fever — noun Date: 1915 a disease that is usually marked by fever and pain in muscles, bones, and joints and that is caused by a bacterium (Bartonella quintana syn. Rochalimaea quintana) transmitted by the human body louse (Pediculus humanus humanus) …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • trench fever — noun an acute infectious disease, caused by the microorganism Rickettsia quintana and transmitted by the louse Pediculus humanus that affected very many soldiers during World War I …   Wiktionary

  • trench fever — noun a highly contagious rickettsial disease, transmitted by lice, that infested soldiers in the trenches in the First World War …   English new terms dictionary

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.