LSTM Home > LSTM Research > LSTM Online Archive

A Multinational Outbreak of Histoplasmosis Following a Biology Field Trip in the Ugandan Rainforest

Cottle, Lucy E., Gkrania-Klotsas, Effrossyni, Williams, Hannah J., Brindle, Hannah E., Carmichael, Andrew J., Fry, Graham and Beeching, Nicholas (2013) 'A Multinational Outbreak of Histoplasmosis Following a Biology Field Trip in the Ugandan Rainforest'. Journal of Travel Medicine, Vol 20, Issue 2, pp. 83-87.

Full text not available from this repository.

Abstract

Background

Outbreaks of histoplasmosis have been increasingly reported in association with travel to endemic areas. Multiple outbreaks have been reported following travel to the Americas, but reports of pulmonary histoplasmosis in short-term immunocompetent travelers to Africa are rare.

Methods

A biology student was referred to our unit with suspected pulmonary histoplasmosis following her return from a field trip in the Ugandan rainforest. The patient informed us that several of her multinational student colleagues on the same expedition had developed a similar illness. Using an alert in ProMED-mail and a questionnaire forwarded to each of the symptomatic students, we accumulated data on the other cases involved in this apparent outbreak of pulmonary histoplasmosis.

Results

Thirteen of 24 students developed respiratory symptoms following the expedition. Chest X-ray appearances were often suggestive of miliary tuberculosis but in most cases a final diagnosis of histoplasmosis was made (confirmed with serology in five cases, clinically diagnosed in six, and retrospectively suspected in two). Detailed questioning indicated that the likely source was a large hollow bat-infested tree within the rainforest.

Conclusions

This is an unusual outbreak of histoplasmosis following short-term travel to Africa. Pulmonary histoplasmosis should always be considered in the differential diagnosis of an acute febrile respiratory illness in travelers returning from endemic areas or reporting activities suggesting exposure.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: WC Communicable Diseases > Mycoses > WC 465 Histoplasmosis
WD Disorders of Systemic, Metabolic or Environmental Origin, etc > Disorders and Injuries of Environmental Origin > WD 600 General works
WF Respiratory System > WF 140 Diseases of the respiratory system (General)
Faculty: Department: Clinical Sciences & International Health > Clinical Sciences Department
Digital Object Identifer (DOI): https://doi.org/10.1111/jtm.12012
Depositing User: Lynn Roberts-Maloney
Date Deposited: 18 Feb 2015 10:57
Last Modified: 06 Feb 2018 13:09
URI: http://archive.lstmed.ac.uk/id/eprint/4918

Statistics

View details

Actions (login required)

Edit Item Edit Item