Infectious Disease Docs Say- Diagnose Presumptively- Don’t Wait For Tests-Treat IMMEDIATELY

The University of Tennessee- Department of Infectious Diseases– basically says assume it it a TBD (especially RMSF, ehrlichiosis, anaplasmosis), don’t wait for tests, and treat immediately!

This follows recommendations in 2012 to specifically treat Lyme disease early on from the ID doctors at the Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh.
Side note- University of Tennessee also reported B. miyamotoi in its wild turkeys (58% infection rate) about six years ago, at a time when few were even looking for it.
Infect Dis Clin North Am. 2015 Jul 16. pii: S0891-5520(15)00049-5. doi: 10.1016/j.idc.2015.05.002. [Epub ahead of print]

Recognition of and Prompt Treatment for Tick-Borne Infections in Children.

Author information

  • 1Department of Pediatrics, Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital, University of Tennessee College of Medicine, 50 North Dunlap Street, Memphis, TN 38103, USA; Department of Infectious Diseases, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 262 Danny Thomas Place, Memphis, TN 38105, USA.
  • 2Department of Pediatrics, Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital, University of Tennessee College of Medicine, 50 North Dunlap Street, Memphis, TN 38103, USA. Electronic address:


Tick-borne infections create diagnostic challenges because they tend to present with nonspecific findings.
Because clinicians often fail to recognize tick-borne illnesses in early stages, therapy is frequently delayed or omitted.
This is especially problematic for rickettsial infections (Rocky Mountain spotted fever, ehrlichiosis, and anaplasmosis), because the risk of long-term morbidity and mortality increases with delayed treatment.
We emphasize the need for clinicians to maintain a high index of suspicion for tick-borne infections; to diagnose these illnesses presumptively, without waiting for confirmatory laboratory test results; and to promptly start therapy with doxycycline, even in young children, when rickettsial infections are suspected.
Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Anaplasmosis; Babesiosis; Doxycycline; Ehrlichiosis; Lyme disease; Rocky Mountain spotted fever; Tick-borne infections; Tularemia




[PubMed – as supplied by publisher]
As you can imagine they will be flogged for their efforts, so if you want to drop them a quick “thank you” before the beatings start, here is how you can do so.

Author Contact Information
Dr. Sheena Teres Mukkada
Dr. Steve Buckingham

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