Which clinical history findings are characteristic of bartonellosis (Bartonella infection)-related trench fever?

Updated: Jun 19, 2019
  • Author: Kassem A Hammoud, MD; Chief Editor: Pranatharthi Haran Chandrasekar, MBBS, MD  more...
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Trench fever was described in military personnel during World War I. Urban trench fever is now observed in homeless persons in the United States and Europe.

Symptoms of trench fever begin with chills and fever after an incubation period of a few days to a month. Occasionally, the patient experiences only a single febrile episode that lasts 4 or 5 days. More commonly, several episodes of fever occur. Each episode lasts about 5 days, which is the origin of the designation quintana. The patient cycles between severe chills and profuse sweating. In other patients, continuous fever lasts 2-6 weeks.

Associated symptoms include joint and muscle aches, injected conjunctivae, headache, dizziness, and pain behind the eyes. Some patients have diffuse symptoms without fever.

Some cases of trench fever become chronic with debility, with or without fever or aching, and occasionally with hyperexcitability.

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