(Undulant Fever; Malta Fever; Mediterranean Fever; Gibraltar fever)
by Krisha McCoy, MS
Brucellosis is an infection caused by a bacteria.
The bacteria infects livestock such as sheep, goats, cattle, deer, elk, and pigs. The infection can pass to humans through:
Rarely, it can pass between people by:
Your risk may be higher if you:
Symptoms often appear within 2 to 4 weeks after infection. Some may appear earlier or several months later. Early symptoms may involve:
Some symptoms may last longer or happen later such as:
Women who have the infection early in their pregnancy may have a higher risk of miscarriage.
Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and health history. Questions about travel history may also be asked. A physical exam will be done. There are a number of issues that may cause your symptoms. Tests will help your doctor find a cause. Tests may include:
Brucellosis goes away on its own in most people. Some health problems can linger. Early care may help to lower the chance of long-term health problems.
Steps to lower the chances of brucellosis include:
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
US Department of Agriculture
Public Health Agency of Canada
Brucellosis. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website. Available at: https://www.cdc.gov/brucellosis. Updated September 13, 2017. Accessed September 27, 2019.
Brucellosis. EBSCO DynaMed Plus website. Available at: http://www.dynamed.com/topics/dmp~AN~T115233/Brucellosis . Updated August 4, 2017. Accessed September 27, 2019.
Patel PJ, Kolawole TM, Sharma N, a-Faqih S. Sonographic findings in scrotal brucellosis. J Clin Ultrasound. 1988;16(7):483-486.
Last reviewed September 2019 by David L. Horn, MD, FACP
Last Updated: 9/27/2019
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