Babesiosis also known as Paraplasmosis,Texas cattle fever,red water fever,Nantuket fever,tick fever is a protozoan parasite where Babaesia microti and Babesia divergens among several other strains are known to cause babesiosis.
The scientific classification of babesia is:-
Eventhough a Romanian physician by the name of Victor babes (see figure 1) was the first to document the malady in 1888 who was a prolific contributor to the field of naturalism via his many published works and several eponyms like Babes-ernst bodies,Babes-negri bodies,and the Babesia Genus it self.But It was in 1893 Dr.Theobald smith (see figure 3) and Fred kilborne who specifically identified the protozoa as the causative agent.
The pathogen is transmitted by a tick bite Ixodes scapularis(see figure 2) bite.The disease is haemolytic.Thus, having similar clinical features with malaria.Ixodes scapularis is also a vector for Lyme disease.Babesiosis can also be acquired via tainted blood and organ transfusions and transplants.Hence,the screening of transplantable tissues must be contemplated not just for HIV,Hepatitis,and Malaria but also for babesia.
Babesia parasites enter RBC at the sporozoite stage develop to trophozoites then to merozoites which then lead to the release of vermicules the infectious parasitic bodies of the pathogen.The diagnosis is done via blood film staining (see figure 4) but not precisely.Therefore,other molecular methods like PCR must also be considered
visit CDC link here for accurate diagnosis techniques.
In addition IFA Indirect fluorescent antibody test can be utilized to help in diagnosis and blood screening techniques.Haemolytic anemia,jaundice,haemoglobinuria are the presented features of the disease due to the multiplication of the parasite in red blood cells.parasitemia is higher in immunosuppressed individuals than immunocompetent individuals.
B.microti causes [ARF] acute respiratory failure and congestive heart failure.Eventhough, B. divergens is the one with higher fatality rates and shorter latency periods of 1-3 weeks compared with B.microti of 1-8 weeks after the bite of the arthropod vector.
The treatment of B.microti and B.divergens srains is Atovaquone 750 mg twice a day along with Azithromycin 500-1000 mg orally [on first days then 250-1000 mg on subsequent days] and this over all treatment goes for 7-10 days.
In case of B.microti patients may recover after mild symptoms.Epidemologically B.microti is common in the americas and B.divergens is predominant in europe.