Background Brucellosis is the most common zoonotic infection worldwide. It is caused by intracellular gram-negative bacteria, Brucella spp. InTunisia, human brucellosis was reported in the first time in 1909. It represents a notifiable disease that occurs as an endemic evolution. The physical findings depend on the duration of illness, and the disease may be attended by various complications.
Methods This is a retrospective study in the internal medicine department (from 2000 to 2013). The aim of this study was to evaluate the clinical, laboratory findings and therapeutic features of patients with brucellosis.
Results We have studied 42 cases of brucellosis (29 men and 13 women's), they were 46-year-old on an average (16-78 years). Most came from country areas, and only 7 came from the city. The source of infection was attributable to the consumption of contaminated milk or cheese, except in 3 cases of workplace exposure (veterinarian=1 case, laboratories=2 cases). Brucellosis is acute in 30 patients (71%) and focused in 12 patient cases (29%): (spondylodiscitis=8 cases, coxite=2 cases, sacroiliitis=3 cases, splenic abscess=1 case). The clinical profile was made of: fever (100%), articular and muscular pains (70%), sweats (50%) and spinal symptoms (19%). The clinical diagnosis of brucellosis was made by serology in 100% of patients (rose Bengal and/or Wright). The only organism identified was brucellosis melitensis in 18 cases (42%). All of patients had medical treatment (rifampicin and tetracycline) associated to corticosteroids in one case (spondylodiscitis with epiduritis).
Conclusions Brucellosis presents with a wide clinical spectrum. Brucellosis melitensis is the species most incriminated. Eradication of the disease in humans can only be achieved by the control of the disease in animals. This necessitates a multidisciplinary approach involving both humans and animals.
Disclosure of Interest None declared