The bacteria are transmitted through tick bites(Lone Star ticks). In rare cases, the infection spreads through blood transfusions and organ transplants.
Infectolab Americas Ehrlichia Spot helps in the monitoring of antigen specific T-cells. These cells are part of the adaptive immune system; tracking their immune response clearly indicates the stage of the disease and provides a necessary tool with which to assess the success of any treatment. PCR can also be used in diagnosing the disease. Common findings from normal blood tests include leukopenia, thrombocytopenia and elevated serum transaminases, which should prompt the HCP to begin antibiotic treatment.
Ehrlichia are small gram-negative bacteria that are round or ellipsoidal in shape and prefer to invade the mononuclear phagocytes such as monocytes, macrophages and neutrophils. They invade the cytoplasmic vacuoles and are usually found in microcolonies known as morulae. Patients are most likely to be infected by Ehrlichia in spring and summer months.
Patients usually develop symptoms one or two weeks after the tick bite. Common symptoms include:
Myalgias (muscle pain)
As with most tick-borne diseases, the symptoms are largely non-specific, which is why diagnosis is difficult when only focusing on the symptoms. Severe or late symptoms include brain damage, respiratory failure, uncontrolled bleeding, organ failure and death.
Signs and Symptoms
Early treatment with doxycycline can prevent death and severe illness.