Acute Communicable Disease Control
Tularemia (Rabbit Fever)

 Tularemia is a rare infectious disease that can attack the skin, eyes and lungs. Fewer than 200 cases of tularemia are reported annually in the United States mainly in western and south central states. Tularemia, often called rabbit fever or deerfly fever, is caused by the bacterium Francisella tularensis. The disease mainly affects animals, especially rodents, rabbits and hares, though it can also infect birds, reptiles and fish. Tularemia spreads to humans through several routes, including insect bites and direct exposure to an infected animal. Highly contagious and potentially fatal if not treated, tularemia has been identified as a possible bioweapon. If diagnosed early, doctors can usually treat tularemia effectively with antibiotics, but the goal is to eliminate tularemia.

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