Definition of rat–bite fever
: either of two febrile bacterial diseases of humans usually transmitted by the bite of a rat
First Known Use of rat–bite fever
Medical Definition of rat–bite fever
: either of two febrile human diseases usually transmitted by the bite of a rat:a: a septicemia marked by irregular relapsing fever, rashes, muscular pain and arthritis, and great weakness and caused by a bacterium of the genus Streptobacillus (S. moniliformis)b: a disease that is marked by sharp elevation of temperature, swelling of lymph glands, eruption, recurrent inflammation of the bite wound, and muscular pains in the part where the bite wound occurred and that is caused by a bacterium of the genus Spirillum (S. minor synonym S. minus)—called also sodoku
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