Three dead, two hospitalized after outbreak of Rocky Mountain spotted fever as CDC warns anyone with symptoms of the tickborne disease to start treatment without waiting for rest results
- All five cases of Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever occurred since July after those affected visited Tecate, Baja California
- RMSF is a potentially fatal disease transmitted through the bite of an infected tick
- Symptoms include fever, headache, and mottled pink rash
Three people have died and two have been hospitalized after an outbreak of Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever.
All five cases of the tick-borne illness were identified in Southern California and involved people who had been in Tecate, Baja California, within the past two weeks.
Four cases involved minors and three involved U.S. citizens, with all five occurring since July.
The CDC is now warning anyone with symptoms to begin treatment immediately, without waiting for test results.
“If someone develops a rash or fever after being bitten, he or she should see a doctor and tell them about the tick bite, when he or she was bitten and where he or she thinks it happened,” the agency said.
Three people have died and five have been hospitalized after contracting Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, a tick-borne illness
All five cases of the tick-borne disease were identified in Southern California and involved people who had been in Tecate, Baja California, in the past two weeks
RMSF is one of the deadliest tick-borne diseases in America.
The bacterial disease spreads through the bite of an infected tick, including the American dog and the Rocky Mountain tick, and cannot be transmitted from person to person.
Most people who become ill with RMSF will have fever, headache, and rash. RMSF can be fatal if not treated in a timely manner with the appropriate antibiotic.
There is no vaccine against RMSF; it can only be prevented by taking precautions against contracting tick bites.
The CDC recommends the use of insect repellent and protective clothing.
About one in 20,000 people is bitten by a tick infected with RSMF a bacterium called Rikettsia ricketsii.
Jackson Oblisk contracted Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, which left him with a full-body rash, high fever, and full-body swelling in 2019
Jackson became so sensitive that his mother, Kayla (right), said he could be touched without screaming in pain. The CDC urges anyone with symptoms to begin treatment immediately, without waiting for test results
When they bite and burrow their heads under a human's skin, the ticks can transmit the malicious bacteria to that person.
The bacteria spread quickly through the bloodstream and to the lymph nodes and the system that transports immune cells and fluids.
Ricketsia ricketsii attacks the blood vessels and the damage they do can cause leakage, which in turn causes swelling.
The infection is most common in five to nine year olds.
Between 3,000 and 7,000 cases of RMSF and other spotted fever rickettsioses are reported annually in the United States.
It comes after a two-year-old Kentucky boy was left in a coma for a week after contracting Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever (RMSF) in 2019.
Jackson Oblisk was hospitalized with a fever of 105 and a pink rash all over his body before the infection attacked his brain and he fell into a coma.
His mother Kayla Oblisk said the boy was in so much pain he couldn't be touched without screaming.