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2022 Mar 24

Am J Emerg Med

Capnocytophaga canimorsus meningitis in a 38-year-old immunocompetent woman from household pet exposure.


Fennell AG, Wilson KS, Caja KR, Parikh PM
Am J Emerg Med. 2022 Mar 24.
PMID: 35365375.


A 38-year-old otherwise healthy woman with no history of immunocompromise, recent travel, or concerning exposures presented to the ED with several days of nonspecific cold-like symptoms with associated generalized headache. After the patient was symptomatically treated and discharged, she returned several hours later with worsening of symptoms and new vomiting, confusion, and sensorineural hearing loss. Blood and cerebrospinal fluid cultures eventually returned positive for a Capnocytophaga canimorsus infection, a bacterial pathogen found in the saliva of dogs and cats. Only after that, the patient recalled being scratched and licked by her pets, two dogs and a cat. She was treated with a course of systemic steroids, antibiotics and discharged home.