II. Etiology

  1. Chlamydophila psittaci (Chlamydia psittaci)
  2. Bacteria found in wild and domestic birds (5-8% of otherwise healthy birds carry this infection)

III. Risk Factors: Transmission

  1. Pet owners of birds (e.g. Parrots, cockatiels, parakeets, macaws)
  2. Poultry farmers (turkeys are among the highest risk)
  3. Poultry processing plants
  4. Visit to aviary
  5. Veterinarians

IV. Pathophysiology: Transmission

  1. Inhalation of aerosolized infective particles
  2. Exposure to feces, urine, nasal secretions, feathers, and dust of infected birds
  3. Some pet owners kiss their birds, therefore transmitting the Bacteria
  4. Livestock, cats and dogs may act as intermediaries for human infection
  5. Human to human transmission is rare

V. Presentations: Follows 5-15 day Incubation Period

  1. Subclinical, asymptomatic infection (common)
  2. Flu-like illness
  3. Mono-like illness (fever, Pharyngitis, Hepatosplenomegaly)
  4. Typhoid-like illness (fever, Bradycardia, Splenomegaly)
  5. Atypical Pneumonia (fever, non-productive cough, Headache)

VI. Symptoms: Atypical Pneumonia

  1. Fever (>50% of cases)
  2. Non-productive cough (>50% of cases)
  3. Headache (>30% of cases)
  4. Myalgias and chills

VII. Signs: Atypical Pneumonia

  1. Fever
  2. Pharyngeal erythema
  3. Pulmonary rales
  4. Hepatomegaly
  5. Horder's Spots
    1. Similar to Typhoid Fever related Rose Spots
    2. Pink, blaching maculopapular rash

VIII. Complications: Complications are rare

IX. Labs

  1. Complete Blood Count
    1. Slight Leukocytosis with Left Shift
  2. Liver Function Tests
    1. Increased Alkaline Phosphatase
  3. Blood and Sputum Cultures are not recommended due to risk of transmission

X. Diagnosis

  1. C. Psittaci titers

XI. Differential Diagnosis

XII. Imaging: Chest XRay

  1. Lobar Pneumonia is most common
  2. Atypical patterns also occur

XIII. Management

  1. Tetracycline 500 mg orally four times daily for 10-21 days or
  2. Doxycycline 100 mg orally twice daily for 10-21 days

XIV. References

  1. Schlossberg in Mandell (2005) Infectious Disease, Chapter 178
  2. Schlossberg (1993) Arch Intern Med 153:2594-6 [PubMed]
  3. Yung (1988) Med J Aust 148:228-33 [PubMed]

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Related Studies

Ontology: Chlamydophila psittaci (C0008150)

Definition (NCI_CDISC) Any bacterial organism that can be assigned to the species Chlamydophila psittaci.
Definition (NCI) A species of gram negative, obligately intracellular, spherical shaped bacteria belonging to the phylum Chlamydiae. This species survives outside of its host as an elementary body. C. psittaci is pathogenic, being the causative agent of endemic avian chlamydiosis and epizootic infection in mammals.
Definition (MSH) A genus of CHLAMYDOPHILA infecting primarily birds. It contains eight known serovars, some of which infect more than one type of host, including humans.
Definition (CSP) bacteria in the genus of Chlamydophila infecting primarily birds; contains eight known serovars, some of which infect more than one type of host, including humans.
Concepts Bacterium (T007)
MSH D002691
SnomedCT 14590003
LNC LP14167-8, MTHU008707
English Chlamydia psittaci, Rickettsia psittaci, Chlamydophila psittaci (Lillie 1930) Everett et al. 1999, Chlamydia psittaci (Lillie 1930) Page 1968 (Approved Lists 1980), chlamydia psittaci, Chlamydophila psittaci, Chlamydozoon psittaci, Ehrlichia psittaci, Rickettsiaformis psittacosis, CHLAMYDIA PSITTACI, CHLAMYDOPHILA PSITTACI, Miyagawanella ornithosis virus, Ornithosis virus, TRIC agent, Chlamydophila psittaci (organism), Chlamydia psittaci (organism)
Swedish Chlamydophila psittaci
Spanish Chlamydia psittaci (organismo), Chlamydophila psittaci, Chlamydia psittaci, agente TRIC, virus de Miyagawanella ornithosis, virus de la ornitosis, Chlamydophila psittaci (organismo)
Czech Chlamydophila psittaci, Chlamydia psittaci
Finnish Chlamydophila psittaci
Japanese クラミジア・シッタシ, オウム病クラミジア, オウム病病原体, クラミジアシッタシ, オルニトーシスウイルス, 鸚鵡病クラミジア, 鸚鵡病病原体
Italian Chlamydia psittaci, Chlamydophila psittaci
Polish Wirusy ornitozy, Chlamydophila psittaci
Norwegian Chlamydophila psittaci, Chlamydia psittaci
French Chlamydia psittaci, Chlamydophila psittaci
German Chlamydia psittaci, Chlamydophila psittaci
Dutch Chlamydia psittaci, Ornithosebacterie, Papegaaienziektebacterie, Chlamydophila psittaci
Portuguese Chlamydia psittaci, Chlamydophila psittaci

Ontology: Psittacosis (C0029291)

Definition (MSH) Infection with CHLAMYDOPHILA PSITTACI (formerly Chlamydia psittaci), transmitted to humans by inhalation of dust-borne contaminated nasal secretions or excreta of infected BIRDS. This infection results in a febrile illness characterized by PNEUMONITIS and systemic manifestations.
Concepts Disease or Syndrome (T047)
MSH D009956
ICD9 073.9, 073
ICD10 A70
SnomedCT 186657002, 154369005, 186653003, 266200005, 154367007, 75116005
English Ornithoses, PSITTACOSIS, Ornithosis, unspecified, Unspecified Ornithosis, psittacosis (diagnosis), psittacosis, Ornithosis NOS, Psittacosis [Disease/Finding], Psittacosis, Psittacosis (disorder), Unspecified Ornithosis (disorder), Parrot fever, Parrot fever due to Chlamydia psitacci, Ornithosis (disorder), ornithosis, parrot fever, Ornithosis, Psittacoses
Italian Psitaccosi, Ornitosi non specificata, Ornitosi, Psittacosi
Dutch ornithose, niet-gespecificeerd, ornithose, psittacosis, Ornitose
French Ornithose, non précisée, Ornithose, Psittacose
German Ornithose, unspezifisch, Psittakose, Ornithose
Portuguese Ornitose NE, Infecção por Chlamydophila psittaci, Psitacose, Ornitose
Spanish Ornitosis no especificada, ornitosis no especificada, ornitosis no especificada (trastorno), Infección por Chlamydophila psittaci, fiebre de los loros por Chlamydia psitacci, fiebre de los loros, ornitosis (trastorno), ornitosis, psitacosis, Psitacosis, Ornitosis
Japanese 鳥類病, 鳥類病、詳細不明, オウムビョウ, チョウルイビョウ, チョウルイビョウショウサイフメイ, オルニトーシス, 鸚鵡病, オウム熱, オウム病
Swedish Papegojsjuka
Czech psitakóza, ornitóza, Ornitóza, Ornitóza, blíže neurčená, Psitakóza
Finnish Papukaijatauti
Polish Ornitoza, Choroba ptasia
Hungarian Ornithosis, nem meghatározott, ornithosis, psittacosis
Norwegian Chlamydia psittaci-infeksjon, Papegøyesyke, Psittakose, Ornitose