Flinders Island Spotted Fever

Flinders Island Spotted Fever combines a spotty rash with a fever-like illness whose infectious agent, Rickettsiae honei, represents a unique species. The host for this agent appears to be a tick, but it is uncertain which ticks and animals carry the Rickettsiae that cause Flinders Island Spotted Fever. One hundred cases have been identified on Flinders Island over a 31-year period (to March 2003).

Patients' ages range from 9 months to 80 years, and men and women are equally affected. No one has had this illness twice and there is no evidence of interpersonal spread. With treatment (doxycycline), the illness lasts about ten days; without treatment, about nineteen days.

Kayleen Mort and Dr Robert S Stewart