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  • Shreveport Educational Article of the Month - Shreveport Rat Pain

Shreveport Rat Pain

Rats do not set out to hurt people. But they will fight back if they are cornered and feel threatened. Get medical treatment right away if you are bitten by a Shreveport rat. The site of the rat bite needs to be immediately cleaned and disinfected. One common treatment for a rat bite is a tetanus shot. Rat bites will often cause bleeding. There are many serious symptoms of a rat bite. These possible symptoms are as follows;
• Fever
• Headache
• Ulcerated, red streaks on the bite spot
• Swollen lymph nodes
• Skin rash with reddish-brown or purple plaques
• Muscle pain and arthritis, on rare occasions
• Haverhill fever, which causes vomiting and a sore throat
• Heart infection
• Pneumonia
• Meningitis
• Hepatitis

Rat bite symptoms usually begin 3 to 10 days after the bite. Rat borne diseases are usually carried in the rat's urine, saliva and feces. Here is an overview of the diseases Louisiana rats carry and can pass on to humans;

Bite Fever
Rat bite fever is the result of a Shreveport rat bite, rat scratch or contact with a dead rat. There are 2 types of rat bite fever; streptbacilary and spirillary. In cases of streptobacillary rat bite fever the feet and hands are covered in a bumpy rash 2 to 4 days after the fever starts. This rash can lead to joint pain, swelling and redness

This condition can have no symptoms or very severe ones such as bleeding of the lungs or meningitis. Penicillin can be used to treat it. In more serious cases, dialysis is used.

Lymphocytic Choreomeningitis
People with lymphocytic choreomeningitis must be hospitalized because this is a form of either meningitis or encephalitis. Sometimes a patient improves after a few days and then relapses. Common symptoms include fever, no appetite, headache, muscle pains, malaise, nausea or vomiting. The best treatment for this disease is intravenous ribavirin treatment. But the treatment side effects are very severe. Ribavirin is an antiviral medication that can cause the breakdown of red blood cells, liver problems and allergic reactions to the medicine.

Hantavirus symptoms begin 1 to 5 week after exposure to carrier rats. Initial symptoms include fever, severe muscle pain and fatigue. Patients will also struggle to breathe after a few days as the lungs fill with fluid. Other possible symptoms include diarrhea, nausea, vomiting and stomach aches. The Hantavirus can be fatal. But if the Hantavirus is detected early, patients can get oxygen therapy in an intensive care unit.

Murine typhus is transmitted by fleas on Shreveport rats to people, much like the bubonic plague. Symptoms include headache, fever, muscle and joint pains, nausea and vomiting. About 45% of typhus patients will develop neurological symptoms such as confusion, stupor, seizures or imbalance. Typhus is highly treatable with antibiotics. According to the Centers for Disease Control, doxycycline is the best antibiotic to treat typhus.

Bubonic Plague
Rats have been carrying the bubonic plague, or ‘black death', since the Middle Ages. The bubonic plague spreads when fleas carried by Louisiana rats bite people.

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