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Psittacosis

 


BASICS

DESCRIPTION

  • A classic zoonotic disease caused by Chlamydophila psittaci, psittacosis is almost always contracted by contact with infected birds (e.g., parrots, cockatiels, parakeets, pigeons, do...

DIAGNOSIS

HISTORY

  • Identify potential bird exposures.

  • A history of direct exposure to birds is not necessary.

  • Incubation period: 5 to 14 days (up to 4 weeks)

  • Abrupt onset of symptoms (mimics typhoid fever)

  • ...

TREATMENT

Rapid clinical response to doxycycline usually afebrile within 48 hours 

GENERAL MEASURES

  • History of avian exposure (particularly to a sick bird) helps make early diagnosis.

  • Severity of respira...

ONGOING CARE

FOLLOW-UP RECOMMENDATIONS

  • In most states, psittacosis is a reportable disease.

  • Contact state or local health authority.

  • No persistent immunity to prevent reinfection

Patient Monitoring

Determi...

ADDITIONAL READING

Honigsbaum M. In search of sick parrots: Karl Friedrich Meyer, disease detective. Lancet.  2014;383(9932):1880–1881. 

CODES

ICD10

A70 Chlamydia psittaci infections 

ICD9

  • 073.9 Ornithosis, unspecified

  • 073.0 Ornithosis with pneumonia

  • 073.8 Ornithosis with unspecified complication

  • 073.7 Ornithosis with other specified complic...

CLINICAL PEARLS

  • The most important historical clues are contact with birds and the acute onset of a pronounced headache.

  • Culturing C. psittaci is dangerous. Serologies and PCR are preferred for diagnos...

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