rat-bite fever


Definition of rat-bite fever

: either of two febrile bacterial diseases of humans usually transmitted by the bite of a rat

Examples of rat-bite fever in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web But rats do carry pathogens that can result in other diseases, such as the rare but still dangerous rat-bite fever. René A. Guzman, ExpressNews.com, "S.A.’s Common Critters: Learning to love the common house rat — or at least hate it a little less," 15 Sep. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'rat-bite fever.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of rat-bite fever

1910, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of rat-bite fever was in 1910

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Cite this Entry

“Rat-bite fever.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/rat-bite%20fever. Accessed 18 Jan. 2021.

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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 disease that is marked by irregular relapsing fever with chills and nausea or vomiting, rashes on the arms, legs, hands and feet, and muscular pain and arthritis, and that is caused by a bacterium of the genus Streptobacillus (S. moniliformis)
b : a disease that is marked by recurrent fever and chills, painful inflammation of the bite wound, and muscular pain, rash, and enlargement of the lymph nodes especially in the region where the bite occurred and that is caused by a bacterium of the genus Spirillum (S. minor synonym S. minus)

called also sodoku

More from Merriam-Webster on rat-bite fever

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about rat-bite fever

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