AFRICAN TICK BITE FEVER WHO'S GOT IT!

Discussion in 'Hunting Africa' started by Cliffy, Apr 24, 2011.

  1. otsego44

    otsego44 AH Member

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    Welcome to the group Dave, looking forward to your future posts. I'll be returning to Namibia next year in the northern portion of the country, my previous trips were two hours north of Windhoek. Now that I'll be in the higher risk area, I can't get enough information on this subject. Cheers.
     
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  2. Dave Lowe

    Dave Lowe AH Member

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    Happy to help, my friend. I personally have zero knowledge of microbes or how they infect us but I'm fortunate to be right next to a lady who does. Ask away!
     

  3. gebo824

    gebo824 AH Senior Member

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    I found this old link when web searching African Tick Bite Fever (ATBF). There sure is a lot of good info on this site, if only I had known to look for this or saw it when it was active! Add me to the list of unlucky ones who got it. After a few sick clueless days of what's going on, & thinking the bite on my arm was a spider bite, I sent a pic to Phillip at Intrepid with symptoms, who said tick bite fever. I got the doxy, & think I'm about over it. Symptoms didn't hit until the flight back.

    I hunted late May/early June with Intrepid Safaris near Alldays, Limpopo. Never had a tick bite that I know of, chiggers several times in S TX. So, was sadly not prepared or conscious of prevention. I'm going back to the Eastern Cape in September. I guess they could be out then? I'll be using all the advice read here whether they are or not, after learning a lesson the hard way.
     

  4. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Keep your clothes sprayed with permethrin, it works.
     
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  5. Eric Anderson

    Eric Anderson AH Enthusiast

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    This, I caught RMSF 2 years ago in the states. First time in my life I had to take narcotics (headaches were that bad).
    Doxycycline is a wonder drug, but it does have side effects, I can’t be out in the sun for any amount of time on it.
    Use permethrin, it works like a charm.
     
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  6. Mark Biggerstaff

    Mark Biggerstaff SILVER SUPPORTER BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    Best advice I had from AH for my first trip this past June. Used the Sawyer brand and never had a tick on me. Even the little PEPPER Ticks that where on everyone else never got on me.
     
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  7. Bwana Bob

    Bwana Bob AH Senior Member

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    I always get a doxy scrip when I head to Namibia. Just make sure you use lots of sunscreen when taking it
     
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  8. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    I take it with me but unless its very warm or skeeters are flying around I don't take it. Depends on time of year, weather etc. First time I went to Namibia we all had expensive Malarone along, what a waste. Freezing cold every morning, didn't see one skeeter in 10 days! Took the pills before we left, one or two when we got there, brought the rest home and dumped them.
     

  9. MerlinMc

    MerlinMc AH Member

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    After I finished up an excellent RSA hunt last summer, I noticed a small, pin-head sized red spot on my leg as we drove back to JNB. By the time I got back to the Pacific Northwest where I live, it felt like I had the flu. The small red spot had grown significantly in the 30 hours it took me to get home. I felt even worse over the next couple of days.

    At first, I thought it was a scorpion sting but it turned out to be tick bite and tick fever. I tried to weather the storm for a few days but my doctor warned me about potential liver and neurological damage. Within a day of starting Doxycycline, I was feeling much better. Almost a year later I still have what looks like a bruise on my leg.

    For future trips, I will get on Doxycycline ahead of leaving, throughout the trip and for 30 days upon return. It will prevent the tick fever plus malaria. Much cheaper than the other malaria meds.

    Scorp Bite.jpg
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 10, 2018
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  10. REB1136

    REB1136 AH Senior Member

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    I leave for South Africa in few weeks. After reading this post I went to the doctor today and ask her for a script of Doxycycline, which she gladly gave me. So I will have it on standby if needed. I also have permethrin to spray on all my stuff.
     

  11. MerlinMc

    MerlinMc AH Member

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    Reb, where in RSA are you headed? For tick fever, you can wait until you have a tick bite or take ahead of time to prevent. I don't think any area of RSA has malaria, so not so important to be on the Doxy as a preventative for that.

    Typhoid and Hep A vaccines are not a bad idea if you've not already had them.
     

  12. REB1136

    REB1136 AH Senior Member

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    I don’t plan on taking it ahead of time. I just went and got it as a precautionary measure, that’s why I stated “I would have it on standby if needed.
    I will fly into Port Elizabeth and hunt a hour or two North of there.
     

  13. MerlinMc

    MerlinMc AH Member

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    That sounds like an excellent plan. You will be pretty far south and no need to screw up your digestive track unnecessarily.

    The only time I had tick fever was in far northern RSA near the border of Botswana and Zimbabwe.
     

  14. Mark Biggerstaff

    Mark Biggerstaff SILVER SUPPORTER BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    I know this is an old thread but bringing it back up. I got back from South Africa June 8th. On morning of June 6th I had to have PH remove one of the bad ticks out of my calf. I had some antibiotics with me and started them till I got back to see doctor and stayed on for 10 days. Well 2 days ago I started feeling fatigued no matter how much sleep I got. The tick bite site started to hurt and turn red. Fast forward to last night and sweats and fever set in and bite spot burst like an abscess. Muscle and joint aches also set in. To Doctors today and back on Doxy and blood work sent off to labs in Austin and one vial to CDC! He said.
    Just wanted to let everyone know just because it doesn’t hit you soon it still can 3 1/2 weeks after I been home even with 10 days of antibiotics after initial bite
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2019

  15. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    OUCH! Hope you have a full recovery. Just out of curiosity were you wearing long pants or shorts? Did you use DEETS on the skin and treat your clothing with Permethrin?
     
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  16. BWH

    BWH AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    Man!!! I hope you get better really soon. That sounds brutal. When the Ph "pulled" the tick off/out. Did he just yank it out, potentially leaving the head in your leg. We always hit them with a lit match.... they back themselves out, then kill them.
     
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  17. Mark Biggerstaff

    Mark Biggerstaff SILVER SUPPORTER BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    I wore long pants. Pretreatment with Sawyer permethrin. Sprayed bottom of pants and shoes twice a day with 40% deet.
     

  18. Mark Biggerstaff

    Mark Biggerstaff SILVER SUPPORTER BRONZE SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    No. They suffocated him and removed. Took about 15 minutes to get it out. No parts were left in.
     
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  19. MerlinMc

    MerlinMc AH Member

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    Great reminder, Mark.

    Last summer, I took Doxy the entire time I was in Mozambique as well as starting before I left and continuing after I got back. It was a great way to avoid both tick fever and malaria.
     

  20. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Deets is for skin though, not clothing or shoes. 40 percent is pretty marginal as well. I like a higher content. I dislike wearing bug dope but it works.
     

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