MadSci Network: Medicine

Re: Missing Spleen & relation to pet ownership

Date: Thu Jan 28 16:43:08 1999
Posted By: kathi clement, faculty md, family practice, Univ. of Wyoming
Area of science: Medicine
ID: 917295020.Me

  Your physician is staying current, a recent case study in the New England 
Journal of Medicine described a patient who almost died from a bacteria 
found in dogs-Capnocytophagia canimorsus.  And the vetinary literature has 
  In general people who have lost their spleen for whatever reason are more 
at risk for infections.  Recommendations for the "asplenic patient"  
include pneumococcal vaccine (the so-called pneumonia shot), hemophilus 
influenza and some even recommend meningococcal vaccine.  
  Back to the original question, the bacteria C. canimorsus can be injected 
into the skin with dog biting, and if you are minus a spleen, then you are 
immunocompromised and more at risk for getting infected from this.  I did 
not find any mention of this dog bacteria as a risk to the general 
  Thanks for your question, but also talk to your physician. When a 
physician makes a statement that doesn't make sense, ask him/her why as 
they  should be able to explain the reason.( I'm a physician and would not 
be offended at something like that)

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