Cat scratch disease
is an infection caused by the bacterium Bartonella henselae. It comes from
a scratch or bite of an infected
cat, usually a kitten.
More to Know
Cat scratch disease is usually a mild illness that causes swollen lymph
nodes. The illness is most often seen in the fall and winter.
Someone who has been bitten or scratched by an infected kitten or cat may develop
a bump or blister, then swollen and tender lymph nodes. A fever,
headache, or fatigue also can develop. In a few cases, the infection can spread to
other parts of the body.
Keep in Mind
Cat scratch disease usually gets better without treatment, but sometimes antibiotics
are prescribed. Rarely, a doctor will need to drain pus from a swollen lymph
node. People who have had the infection usually do not get it again.
All A to Z dictionary entries are regularly reviewed by KidsHealth medical