Bacillary angiomatosis is a bacterial infection caused by a type of bacteria called Bartonella henselae or Bartonella quintana. It is most commonly seen in people with weakened immune systems, such as those living with HIV/AIDS, but can also occur in people with intact immune systems.
The infection can affect various parts of the body, but it most commonly presents as raised red or purple lesions on the skin or subcutaneous tissue, which can sometimes resemble a type of skin cancer called Kaposi’s sarcoma. The lesions may also appear on the mucous membranes of the mouth, eyes, or genital region.
Other symptoms of bacillary angiomatosis may include fever, fatigue, and swollen lymph nodes. If left untreated, the infection can spread to other organs, such as the liver, spleen, and bone marrow, and can be life-threatening.
Diagnosis of bacillary angiomatosis is typically made through a combination of clinical presentation and laboratory testing, such as a biopsy of the affected tissue or a blood test to detect the bacteria.
Treatment for bacillary angiomatosis usually involves a course of antibiotics, such as doxycycline or erythromycin, for several weeks to several months. In severe cases, hospitalization and intravenous antibiotics may be necessary. If the lesions are large or causing significant discomfort, they may also be removed surgically.
Prevention of bacillary angiomatosis involves avoiding contact with cats or fleas, as these are the primary carriers of the bacteria that causes the infection. Good hygiene practices, such as washing hands thoroughly after handling animals or animal products, can also help prevent the spread of the bacteria.
In summary, bacillary angiomatosis is a bacterial infection caused by Bartonella henselae or Bartonella quintana, and most commonly affects people with weakened immune systems. It presents as raised red or purple lesions on the skin or mucous membranes, and can be treated with antibiotics and sometimes surgery. Prevention involves avoiding contact with cats or fleas and good hygiene practices.